From rock groups Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath to Leonard Nimoy, the unforgettable Spock from the “Star Trek” saga, they were inspired by “Lord of the Rings” to compose songs!
While the Lord of the Rings cinematographic saga is (already) celebrating its twentieth anniversary, we invite you to come back to these artists who were inspired by the work of JRR Tolkien to compose a song. From rock groups Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath to actor Leonard Nimoy, unforgettable Spock from the SF Star Trek saga, they have put a bit of Middle-earth to music. Focus.
The legendary rock band Led Zeppelin and The Lord of the Rings, it’s a story that works with references in the songs Misty Mountain Hop (which mentions the Misty Mountains in its title), The Battle of Evermore (Who is partly inspired by the Battle of the Pelennor Fields) and Ramble On. In this last track, released in 1969 on the album Led Zeppelin II, we can hear Robert Plant singing “‘T was in the darkest depths of Mordor, I met a girl so fair, But Gollum, and the evil one, Crept up and slipped away with her.”
In 2019, in an interview with Planet Rock, Robert Plant was amused to have had as inspiration the work of Tolkien. “My colleagues in the group were writing serious stuff, social commentary, while I was thinking of Gollum”, declared the charismatic leader of Led Zep ‘.
There is a bit of Middle-earth in the song The Wizard from the hard rock band Black Sabbath! The wizard described in this song released in 1970 on the B-side of the single Paranoid is indeed inspired by a certain Gandalf. “When I wrote this song I was reading The Lord of the Rings“, declared in 2005 the bassist and lyricist Geezer Butler at the microphone of Metal Sludge. “These lyrics are inspired by the character of Gandalf.”
Released in 2009 on the album Endgame, the piece This Day We Fight! by heavy metal band Megadeth evokes the drums and flags used to signal retreat to the ancient battlefields. To write it, Dave Mustaine, the frontman of the group, was inspired by the impassioned speech of Aragorn at the end of the Return of the king.
“Aragorn said” We could die tomorrow, but not today. Today we are fighting “said Dave Mustaine at the microphone of Rolling Stone. “I thought it was a very touching battle speech.” And therefore inspiring for one of the pieces of American training.
Leonard nimoy, the famous Spock of the saga Star trek, surprised his world in 1968 by giving voice to a song dedicated … to Bilbo Baggins! The song, titled The Ballad of Bilbo Baggins, figure on Two Sides of Leonard Nimoy, the second album of the American actor, and offers a wacky account of Bilbo’s journey in The Hobbit.
“I found the idea for this song very charming and then I was very interested in the Hobbit stories”, declared Leonard Nimoy to justify this amusing recreation. The clip, visible below, proves that the American indeed had a very nice time in Middle-earth!
FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS
New Zealand actors Bret McKenzie and Jemaine Clement, hero of the hilarious Musical-absurd Flight of the Conchords, paid a completely wacky tribute to the Lord of the Rings. One of the crazy musical numbers of the HBO show, on the menu of the episode The Actor (S01E11), plunges us into a Middle-earth that is not at all what we know!
The song in question, titled Frodo, Don’t Wear the Ring, is an irresistible parody of the hero’s journey to Mordor in a happy blend of folk, heavy metal and rap. Note that a few years before this tribute, Bret McKenzie, one of the heroes of Flight of the Conchords, played an elf in the Peter Jackson trilogy!