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Dear Jukebox Operator:

Thank you very much for writing something for me. I want to say first of all that if you have a strong idea about what you want to write, please feel free to run with it! I have tried to give some general ideas of things that I think might be cool for the stories, but for the most part I'm pretty open to interpretations. I'm okay with any rating, I don't have any real squicks or triggers. I like things that are scary and creepy and straight up horrific, but I also like things that a cute or funny or fluffy (though I'm not sure if any of the songs I picked really lean that way). I don't need happy endings, but I do enjoy them. If you have different ideas though, lemme have 'em! I like character introspection, I like world building, I like plot. I like porn, but I prefer plot to go with it. I don't know if any of these really lend themselves to porn, but if you think differently, lemme have it! Really, go wild! I'm pretty easy to please! Also, I am super into the idea of crossovers between any of the songs I'm requesting - I think some of them could go together pretty interestingly, so if there's an idea that strikes you along those lines please have at.

I am really excited for this fest, possibly more than is rational. I have a longstanding love of folk music and other forms of ballads and song-stories, and I like thinking about what we don't know as much as what we do. The canons we have to work with here are mostly pretty loose, and I'm excited to see where people go with them. I recognize that this is a lot closer to original fic than most fandom-fests, and I appreciate that it can be harder to make things up whole cloth, so really, thank you! Write what you want, what inspires you, and hopefully what is below has some good ideas if you're feeling lost!

It you are a podficer or a podfic team - I'm super excited, as I've never received a podfic for an exchange before! I think writing a story you know is destined for an aural medium is a cool challenge, and I know the recording of a podfic can be pretty challenging itself, so major props for offering! In this case, since the canon is also aural I think it is an especially interesting pairing! I am a big fan of podcasted/podficed short fiction, but I don't know if I can give any specific likes/dislikes /o\

If you are an artist - I actually really enjoy pieces that have more abstract or symbolic elements to them, so if you want to play with themes and atmosphere rather than create something strictly representational from any of the songs I have requested, please feel free! I don't know if that makes things easier or not, but I appreciate you putting your talents to use for me, in whatever medium!

I am requesting Fanfic or Podfic for all requests and fanart for a few (but treats in any media would be a delight).

On to the specifics!

L'Assasymphonie - Florent Mothe (Song)
Fanfic, Podfic


Je voue mes nuits
A l'assasymphonie
Aux requiems
Tuant par dépit
Ce que je sème
Je voue mes nuits
A l'assasymphonie
Et aux blasphèmes
J'avoue je maudis
Tout ceux qui s'aiment

--

I dedicate my nights
To the assasymphony
To requiems
Killing by frustration
what I sow
I dedicate my nights
To the assasymphony
And to blasphemies
I confess I curse
All those who love each other


This song is from the Mozart Rock Opera - it's sung by Salieri, and is basically about his bitter jealousy. I just really love the concept here, of assassination through music. You could take it literally, and have some kind of murderous bard or musical ritualist, or metaphorically and have it be about using music to destroy someone by creating satirical or slanderous songs to destroy their character. I think the attitude of the singer - the sense of self loathing and the embracing of defeat - is an interesting element to work with as well. Despite the murderous intent, it is really a very defeatist and despairing attitude, and I would love a story about how that all comes together.

Bold Marauder - Sharon Knight (Song)
Fanfic, Podfic

I will sour the winds on high, I will soil the river
I will burn the grain in the field, I will be your mother
I will go to ravage and kill, I will go to plunder
I will take a fury to wife, and I will be your father


I think what I really find fascinating about this is the relationships laid out in the song - there are a lot of them! This song could very easily be a metaphor for colonialism, and I think that you could build an interesting story out of looking at a relationship of individuals and using those kind of theme, or any of the literal imagery used - a war party who has captured local people to use as guides, the leader of a band of rebels destroying their lands to undermine invaders, a mixed heritage family a few generations after an invasion dealing with cultural tensions or maybe new unrest or just skeletons in the family closet (learning grandma was actually a captured war bride, that sort of thing). But you could also totally scrap all that and write about an actual vicious outlaw, someone who has become a (living?) legend, or is a tall tale, or a collection of short tales about such a figure... Or they could be all that in some kind of supernatural force? There are lots of different ways you could go here, and any of them would be really interesting to me!

Brun - Garmarna (Song)
Fanfic, Fanart, Podfic

Och hör du min jungfru vad jag säger dig
Brun sover allena
Här har jag gjort av med femton jungfrur förr
Det blåser och det regnar
Nordast uti fjällen, där vila ock tre nordmän

--

Now listen, my maiden, to what I will tell you
Brun sleeps all alone
Here I have slayed fifteen maidens in the past
It blows and it rains
In the north in the mountains, there rest also three northerners


This is a Swedish variant of The Elf Knight - dude takes a girl to a secluded place to (rape and ) kill her as he has with several others, she puts him into a magical sleep and kills him instead, having vengeance for the others and honour for herself/her virginity. I like this one because the tune is particularly haunting, and also because of the refrain, which adds some pathetic fallacy and also tells us there are three other dead northmen in the hills. How do they fit in? Were they also murdered, possibly to make her more vulnerable? Are they other men who tried to take the maiden against her will? Is this all part of some larger conflict? If Brun just a creep, or does he have some other motivation? And who is the maiden? How does she have this power to charm him? Considering that she seems to go with him willingly, does she already know what she is getting into or is she caught by surprise? And who are the other murdered girls? Do they play a role here? Anything that captures the ominous, haunting feel of the song would be lovely.

I did also ask for art here, and I'd love to see really anything from the song, and especially anything that captures the change of power dynamics.

The First Kiss (Cuts Deepest) - Zombina and the Skeletones (Song)
Fanfic, Fanart, Podfic

I have a confession for you,
My love passed on long ago,
When the world was black & white and I was oh-so young,
Now I'm obliged to take from you what I need to stay strong.
I have a confession for you,
All I love has gone,

The first kiss cuts deeper than the rest,
It's a shame, but it's just the way it is.
The first kiss cuts deeper than the rest,
I will never breathe again.


Sooo.... Vampires :D I am curious about this vampire - she's still clearly pretty hung up on the past! Tell me about what she's doing now, how she is going on about her unlife? Is this a spiel she gives often, or is the subject special somehow, despite her saying they won't be her last? Will her expectations be met? Her perspective on her situation is interesting - she seems to still be waiting for death, or at least some kind of end to her loveless life... Is she still not over her sire, or in her current form is she just incapable of feeling love (and maybe other real emotions?)? Did she do the same to whoever she is singing to here? The song gives a lot to sink ones teeth into (sorry I couldn't resist), so give me your vampires :D

As far as art goes, I feel like the relationship be interesting to depict visually, but there are also some really interesting imagery to draw on as well (especially in the last section before the end).

The Green Valley (Puscifer)
Fanfic, Podfic

Hello stranger,
Can you tell us where you've been?
More importantly,
How ever did you come to be here?
Though a stranger,
You can rest here for a while.
But save your energy,
Your journey here is far from over.
Come the sunrise,
We'll descend through Judgement Valley
And weigh your worth
Before her majesty, the Verde River.


What is the river, what is its power to judge? Who is the traveler, and where are they going that they need to pass this obstacle? Who is the singer, and what is their role as regards the river - a gatekeeper? A priest? Just a local person who has seen this all before? Does the river have real power - is it some kind of spirit or god? Or at least does the the singer believe so, and how does one go addressing the river? What happens if the traveler is not judged worthy? What happens if they try to cross without being judged? I think there is a lot to work with here, and I wold be happy to hear about any aspect of it!

Mama Loi, Papa Loi - Exuma (Song)
Fanfic, Fanart, Podfic

I'll spit my spit,
In your spit.
Then let seven snakes,
Come up from the pit.
I'll stand under this mango tree.
Till you come, come to me.


This is a song by a Bahamian group from the 70's. This is a song about Obeah, a Caribbean spiritual practice informed by African traditions. The artist has a bunch of other songs about it, claiming to be an Obeah man - a practitioner who creates potions and amulets to summon and control the spirits. And of course... make zombies. Not the flesh eating brainless kind, but the semi-dead who are enslaved to perform service to the living. I love this song, I'm fascinated by it, and I would kill to see a story spun from it. Tell me about the ritual, or the people behind it, or what the purposes are for the zombies - or something from the perspective of a zombie? Or tell me about the Loi themselves - what do they want, or get out of these interactions? Tell me about the people who come to the Obeah Man, what they want, what they expect, what they think that is wrong, or right, about this form of magic.

I also asked for art here - anything drawing on the ritual imagery of the song. Be as esoteric as you like! Zombies! The mindless kind, though, not the undead. Shango! The Devil! I see fire in the dead man's eyes. Jingo, Jingo he ain't dead - He can see from the back of his head. Show me!

The Oxford Girl - Oysterband (Song)
Fanfic, Podfic


she says: I never had a chance
to prove them wrong
my time was short, the story long
no I never had a chance
to prove them wrong
it's always them that write the song


This is not my favourite version of this song, which is the one from Granite Years, which has a bit more gravitas to it. Alas, I couldn't find it anywhere online :/ Anyway! This is a song about so many women's stories, and who has control of them. How their abuse gets justified, and how they get blamed. And in this case, because she's dead, how they have chance to speak in their own defense voice. I was a story that contests this - I don't mean that I want to her story from her perspective, and in fact that seems too easy. But I want something that explores other ways that we can try to give voice to the voiceless, in retrospect. Maybe something like a detective or a researcher trying to piece together the story in some way, chasing down rumours and trying to sort out the truth?

Tulip - Jesca Hoop (Song)
Fanfic, Fanart, Podfic

The match arranged and vows exchanged and the dove flew away
The bells spilled out the hollow canyon on our wedding day
To me she gave her hand until death do us part
But the birds will nest with the one that she has promised her heart


I seriously could have quoted this whole thing. I love this song so much! There is a lot going on here, and so many threads that could be picked at for a story. What is this world where a tulips has so much value? I know that the flowers were considered a kind of currency historically in the Netherlands, but then what is the referenced desert? Why does the narrator (the piece is sung by a woman but referenced in text as male, take that how you will) love Ada so much? Is she a princess? Why do the king and Queen sell her? Why is the tulip's petal broken and how does that factor in? Is the tulip actually currency - the narrator seems to use it to pay for both her and the ring, so does it maybe have some other kind of value? It is a tulip or something else? The tulip is a very sexual flower, and in the language of flowers can represent a perfect lover or fame, so there might be something to work with there.

Who is Ada in love with Are they actually a dove or a dove person? is she a shape shifter? She seems to find freedom in her death - is this a metaphorical release or is she actually free to join her own true love in some other form or spiritual... something? Why does the narrator choose to kill her in the end? What is their relationship like? Does the narrator have regrets, and are they about killing her or losing her or never having her?

I did say I would like art for this piece as well - I'd be interested in something exploring the supernatural elements of the song - the doves, the transformation, or something that shows the conflict between the different loves in play.

L'Ultima Diligenza di Red Rock - Ennio Morricone (Song)
Fanfic, Fanart, Podfic

(Instrumental)

This is the opening overture from the film The Hateful Eight. Listening to it in the theater for the first time gave me chills, and it was hands down the best part of the experience for me. I love the way it builds in momentum and menace, and while playing with the same theme manages to convey different sorts of threats, from the almost comical (but not) to the extremely intense.... and of course the final little wind down. I'd love to see a story built around this! In the opening of the film, a large part of the menace comes in the form of an intense winter storm, and that kind of indomitable threat works well, but any kind of building peril could be interesting! Running out of air/food/shelter (underwater? In space?), trying to evade some kind of danger (zombies? a stalker? shoggoths?), some kind of eldrich malevolence? It could be a malevolent treat that is being purposefully constructed as well, like building a frankensteinian monster, or summoning powerful and dangerous. Go wild! I'm really after the slow build, the menace, the intensity, that feeling of alarm and anxiety.

I asked for art here as well - the build up might be harder to convey in a graphic media, but I think the feeling of growing threat and menace could be managed pretty well! I am very open to less representative interpretations here, as well. Make me feel anxious and unsettled!

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