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Blackbeard (music)

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This article is about a soundtrack theme composed by Hans Zimmer. You may be looking for the individual Blackbeard.

Blackbeard is a musical theme composed by Hans Zimmer for Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides. It appeared as a track on the film's soundtrack.

Track description

Blackbeard Sample

The three new themes for Blackbeard and the Queen Anne's Revenge, as they are heard in "Blackbeard"

Blackbeard Sample
The track consists of almost entirely new music, split into three parts. The first is an exposition of his new themes, followed by an action variation of the Queen Anne's Revenge. The second is a jolly skipping arpeggio on the bass instruments with hints of the opening of "On Stranger Tides" suite, followed tragic re-orchestration of Blackbeard's theme for his demise. The final section is another variation of the Queen Anne's Revenge theme before restating the three note descending figure from the end of "A Family Affair".

The track can be split into three "strains". The first strain begins with a descending chromatic passage while the chords alternate between I and V diminished (this is technically a very minor motif for the character, and is heard again in the track "Ignorance Is Bliss " from the expended score). There is then a six note pedal figure which is a minor motif for Blackbeard and the Queen Anne's Revenge. The track then moves into Blackbeard's main theme, which is stated three times, accompanied with syncopated chords in the bass. This is followed by a return of the six note figure, repeated four times (each with the third of the chord missing, giving it a medieval sound). The strain is ended with two repeats of the Queen Anne's Revenge theme, underscored with two sets of sixthlets per bar, and then a final loud statement of the six note figure.

The second strain begins with skipping cello arpeggios, with subtle hints of "On Stranger Tides". There are then several incomplete renditions of Blackbeard's theme, modulating through various different keys.

The third and final strain features a driving ostinato rhythm in the bass, alternating between D and Ab, and overlayed by a variation on the Queen Anne's Revenge theme, and finishes with a solemn statements of the final seconds of "A Family Affair".

The first strain marks Blackbeard's first appearance in On Stranger Tides. The powerful statement of the Queen Anne's Revenge theme can be heard when Blackbeard hangs the mutineers. The second strain plays during Blackbeard's death, where he realizes he has been tricked into sacrificing himself before being consumed by the Fountain. The the third strain accompanies the Cook's punishment by the Greek fire cannons.

Trivia

  • The track appears to be arranged in concert suite format (similar to "The Kraken"), however it is actually a compilation of music from three scenes from the film.
  • The music is not in chronological order; the third strain should be in between the first and the second.
  • The official piano transcription is slightly different to the version heard on the soundtrack.
  • The version on the demo score features the three strains as separate tracks: "Blackbeard", "Blackbeard's Demise" and "Fry The Cook", respectively.
  • "Blackbeard" was one of the few tracks to use synthesizers, as Zimmer wanted a more "organic" feel for the fourth score.

Appearances

See also

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