Have you ever been bored out of your mind, not knowing what to do with your time? Are you one of those who go to a bookstore or a library, and have no idea which book to pick? I am one of those who seldom find myself in such situations because I have a never-ending list of what to read or do next that just gets longer, never shorter. Recently I have just added another book to my to-read list, and I find it incredible how I became interested in something that hitherto I would never have picked up: a Disney comic titled The Life and Times of $crooge McDuck.
I picked up the book after listening to Toumas Holopainen’s new album Music Inspired by the Life and Times of Scrooge. Toumas Holopainen is the lead songwriter and keyboardist of Nightwish, a symphonic metal band from Finland, which also happens to be my favourite band. Well, on hindsight, how I came to pick up the comic might not be so amazing after all, since it is similar to how many people feel the urge to read the books that inspire their favourite movies.
Needless to say, the music is inspired by the comic and the making of the album has been Holopainen’s dream for 14 years. Read about the origins of the album here. If you are wondering how symphonic metal goes with a Disney comic, the album is like a soundtrack comprising both classical and folk styles “in the vein of Vaughan Williams, Michael Nyman, James Newton Howard, and Enya.” I find it extremely moving and inspiring that a dream of 14 years has been realised, and its fulfilment consists in creating music from a work of art and sharing this beauty and inspiration with the world. It is like one artist’s imagination catching fire from the flame of another, both expressed in different forms, one never overshadowing the other. There is magic in this.
I wanted to be spellbound by this magic and so I started reading the comic with the music plugged into my ears. So far, I have finished the first chapter and it has been a delightful time, being brought out of my own world and into that of Scrooge’s. The music heightens the already atmospheric illustrations, and its chronological order – evident in the album’s track listing and lyrics – makes it an enchanting soundtrack to the graphic novel. The most awesome bit about this pairing is that Don Rosa, the creator of the comic book, did the cover art for Toumas’ album! How nice it is to have the approval of the artist who drew your favourite comic!
So, check out the relevant books currently available in our libraries:
- The Life and Times of $crooge McDuck: Volume One
- The Life and Times of $crooge McDuck: Volume Two
- The Life and Times of $crooge McDuck Companion
Also, here’s the official music video for “A Lifetime of Adventure,” one of the songs in the album. Enjoy!