FanstRAvaganza 3 Day 3 : Fandom–Music & the Making of Armitage Videos


What an effect Richard Armitage addiction can have on one’s musical tastes.
Like many of you, I have always loved music; my older sister was a marvelously talented pianist and I spent many happy hours listening to her play. I sing and have performed as a soloist for everything from weddings to Christmas parties to singing the National Anthem for an institute-wide convocation.  But, as in so many other areas, the life-altering experience that is the Armitage Effect brought me a whole new perspective on music.

Frankly, I never considered myself to be much of a Britney Spears fan until Richard Armitage and Heathra’s “Womanizer” came into my life, along with Principessa’s “Kill the Lights” and “Break the Ice.” Maddeningly catchy songs tied to a maddeningly irresistible man.

I became a massive Lady Gaga fan because of RA and Delicateblossom’s “Poker Face.”  DB likes to say she has no shame when crafting these delightful vids; I think she need not feel a moment of trepidation. And the woman really CAN sing.

It’s more than just Troubled Pop Tarts and Bizarre Divas I came to appreciate.  I also discovered the Kings of Leon and Muse and gained a greater appreciation for the vocal stylings of Kelly Clarkson and Chris Daughtry. My love for classical compositions, torch songs and the old standards was re-ignited. From Adele and AC/DC to Yo-Yo Ma and  ZZ Top, Richard + music+ vidders=expanded horizons for Richard Armitage fans.

Amongst my favorites are a variety of fanvids, a little something for all my moods: funny, sexy, sweet, angsty, heart-wrenching, thoughtful. But the common denominator that seals the deal for me (other than the presence of Richard Armitage, of course) is the music.

Which comes first–the song or the concept for the video?

Now that I make my own captioned slideshow vids, more than ever I find myself keying in on songs that capture my attention and asking myself, “Would this make a good RA vid? Which character (s) would it suit best? Can I craft a story around it?”

At times a song gets stuck in my head and just won’t get out of it until I do make a video. I also take suggestions from fellow RA fans, which led me to make “He’s So Shy” and “Dirrty,” amongst other vids. And who amongst us can hear “Sexyback” and not think of Heather’s fabulous trio of vids set to the Justin Timberlake song? WE all know who really brought sexy back, and, sorry, JT, it ain’t you.

This infectious current pop hit is one of those that stuck in my head. Like “Womanizer,” the real RA seems so completely the opposite of these lyrics. It’s one of my favs when I want something funny, upbeat and sexy.

Sometimes a certain genre of music seems to perfectly fit a character. Guy seems to fare particularly well with hard-rocking 80’s metal, perhaps because of that “face like thunder” and the fact our dark knight with his Guyliner, leather and sexy swagger looks not unlike a rock god from the past. I admit I have fun being tongue-in-cheek with Guy quite often and with the whole spirit of Robin Hood 2006, with its rampant anachronisms and improbable plots. So–why NOT create a medieval disco in Nottingham Castle as I did in one of my vids?.

Lucas. Ah, poignant, introspective, enigmatic, a haunted man. A man of thought and action. So complex a character that music in a variety of styles suits. Spy series themes, Coldpay, Kevin Rudolf.  I love this vid, also from Heathdances, featuring Muse.

John Porter of Strike Back. Brave, resourceful, tough-as-nails, yet tender and gentle, too–and sexy as hell. A hero to admire and lust after. Who better than Nine Inch Nails and Delicateblossom to bring us hard-driving Porter goodness?

For a character like Claude Monet, the passionate, incandescent artist, I wanted an instrumental, something with a classical feel. Master cellist Yo-Yo Ma and friends and this tune “First Impressions” from the “Appalachian Waltz” album was my choice.

Fanvids can vary from the sublime to the ridiculous. Thorin. Regal, heroic, masterful–and very, very hairy. So why not this fun vid celebrating perhaps his most distinctive feature–all that long, beautiful hair?

And I don’t know about you, but sometimes I get in the mood for something steamy. And Mr. A and his chaRActers can definitely inspire me. I think Servetus described this song as “ridiculously sexy.” See what you think.

Last of all, this video celebrating our lovely Richard’s career and his bright future, set to the soaring, ethereal soprano of Elizaveta, operatic singer turned pop chanteuse. I think it’s a bit like looking through a colorful scrapbook set to music, the scrapbook of someone much loved and admired.

I want to say thanks to the many very talented vidders who have brought me hours of RA deliciousness, particularly to the two ladies whose work was spotlighted here, Delicateblossom and Heathra (Heathdances). My simple vids are a far, far cry from the complex and creative stuff these ladies do, but I have to say–it’s so much FUN! (And if I can do it, anyone can.)

So, vidders, what sort of music inspires you and how you do go about choosing the music for your fanvids? Fanfic viewers, what are some of your favorite RA videos and vidders? And do you find yourself forever after associating Richard with those fanvid songs?

For more Fandom topics on your Fanstrav 3 journey, check out my fellow tagteamers. For Day Two Fandom entries, visit Fabo at and Gratiana at . For Day Three entries, visit Rose Gisborne at http:/ . Tomorrow, Day Four, check out Fabo again at and IngeD3 at .

Richard Armitage encourages helping those in need. Sometimes those who need our assistance have no voice to speak for themselves. Animals can offer people unconditional love, serve as the eyes and ears of the disabled and help people live longer and happier lives. Consider adopting a shelter pet or donating pet food and supplies to a local shelter or humane society, or Google “animal welfare organizations” for your part of the world to discover more ways you can help.

Help homeless pets find fur-ever homes. Courtesy of

37 responses »

  1. Pingback: F3, Day Three! One voice to thrill them all, and Armitage to bind them! « Me + Richard Armitage

  2. Well, you certainly hit the nail on the head. I would never have even heard some of these songs if it hadn’t been for Richard videos! I have a list of well over 200 favorites, from which I play several of everyday. I love the variety of music as well. Whatever my mood, there’s a video to fit. Delicateblossom, Heathra and YOU make the majority of my favorites!! When I see that someone’s made a new one, I can’t wait to see it! It’s like opening a present at Christmas! Thank you all for your creativity, and the time that you take to make them. And best of all thanks for sharing them with all of us who either don’t have the time or the inclination to make their own:) Also, I’m glad you put a paragraph about animals. That is another cause near and dear to my heart. They provide so much love and companionship to us!! It’s so easy to find a way to help them!

    • Ah, then we have mutual good tastes. 😉 I have purchased a number of songs/albums from iTunes/amazon and on CD purely because I was introduced to the music via an RA fanvid. I don’t think fanvids take anything away from the artists; I think, in fact, they help promote their music. As I said, mine are so simple because I just don’t have the set-up to do vids using video snippets yet–maybe one day. We shall see. Servetus asked us to include a plug for a charity, either one of Guy’s or something we ourselves support, so I have used the American Cancer Society and now animal welfare organizations. Every pet we have owned, and there have been many, either came from a shelter or was taken in as a stray. Right now Puddie Cat, who has co-starred in some of my fanfics, is nestled between Benny and I as we watch TV. 😀

      • I am looking for another little friend because I had to put my little one to sleep over the holidays. I’m going to visit the animal shelter near my parents home over Easter Break. We’ve always had good luck at that shelter. You’re right about the vids being advertising for the music!! /Speaking of, I’d love to hear a fanvid to a Diana Krall song! wink, wink!

  3. Interesting. I also came to Lady Gaga and Ke$ha because of fanvids. I have only vidded twice, but I feel like you have to know the song really well. I know that delicateblossom often picks stuff she’s unfamiliar with, though.

    • I think watching fanvids and making them does expand our musical horizons. Sometimes I hear a song just once and I want to make a video, and then I like to go back and listen to it several times. With more complex vids, you are hearing the song over and over again as you make them, so you’d better either like it or learn to like it. 😉 Benny has made several videos for community events and I heard “I Gotta Feeling” so many times I lost count.

      I remember when DB did the Guy/Marian vid to the Jonas Brothers song. I got the impression she wasn’t too familiar with that one prior to making the vid. 😉

  4. Vidders, bloggers, fanfic writers, etc. I extend my gratitude for all that you do for the rest of us in fandom. Your talent helps us enjoy, create, bond, and indulge. I have never really explored any of these before and am now looking into all of it simply because so many of you have inspired me. Thank you.

    • I’ve said before that creative work seems to spur more creativity, and Richard’s talent spurs us on to our own creative endeavors. Yes, there is music I’ve been exposed to and books I have read and other research I have done that were it not for Richard and the fan community, I would probably have never experienced.

  5. I adore “Fix You” by Heather, thanks to this fanvid ithis has become one of my most favorite songs. Fanvids are yet further proof that it’s not just about admiring a certain actor, there is a ripple affect. We encounter and get the experience things we never would have before.
    Not to mention every time Sexy Back is on the radio. I realy like the song, but now it’s taken on a whole different meaning!
    Great angle for a post Fedoralady!

    • Exactly–our horizons are broadened beyond admiring Mr. A’s beauty, talent and wit. It’s like a bonus for being part of the fandom. I simply can’t hear Sexyback without a silly grin crossing my face. 😉

  6. Great post! You are so very prolific with so many different themes and music to your vids it’s fantastic.

    I do think of specific RA vids I’ve seen when I’m listening to the radio and I hear certain songs 🙂

  7. Being a newbie to fanvidding, I find choosing a song the most difficult.
    My son has a very eclectic collection of music, and every so often I’ll hear something that he’s playing and follow up on it, but there is soooo much out there! The song choice is all important of course, but particularly so, IMO, when it’s set to just stills (the level I’m currently operating at!) which risk being static visually, if that makes sense.

    • For a long time before I started vidding, I had songs in my head that I always thought would make a great vid. So I used some of them to kick things off. I know what you mean about concerns re static visuals. The muvee stylings software I use is helpful in that you can set it to be more or less attuned to the music’s beat. Some of the particular muvee themes lend themselves better to uptempo songs while others work well with ballads. Fun to play around–in fact, I am working on a new vid now. Anyway, it is enormous fun. 😀

  8. Fedoralady, the music to any vid is so essential to the enjoyment and engagement of more than one of my senses which is what I determine the difference between an OK fanvid and an amazing stirring one that I instantly what to add to my collection. I love so many of your vids and appreciate you and so many talented others sharing.

  9. I’m not a Britney Spears fan, far from it, but I love the Womanizer vid from Heathra! And I love your vids of course, Angie, because without them, I would not be here commenting on your blog in the first place! 🙂

  10. Fanvids really have broadened my musical horizons. I’ve always had eclectic taste, but I’ve encountered some wonderful songs and artists that I probably never would have discovered if they hadn’t been set to images of a certain TDHBEW!

    • Me, too. It’s allowed me both to discover new artists like Elizaveta and, as I said, to rekindle my love for other types of music–those torch songs performed by Peggy Lee, Diana Krall, Julie London and others, and wonderful Ella Fitzgerald (and blasts from my childhood long past–“Hair!” 😉 )

  11. Songs I would never choose (Timberlake? you must be joking!) are now inextricably coupled in my head to certain vid images. Like thinking about dessert every time one of these tunes is being used as muzak…

  12. I find the vids and its software lately. And the process was very similar to what you wrote, a song calling for a character, etc. I realized how much it is difficult to handle all of these software, which makes me more impressed with the quality of the vids produced by RA community, even those who are not of our stars, as you mentioned.

    • Exactly, Ana Cris. It takes technical skills and know-how along with the inspiration to do it. Fanvidding is a labor of love and a show of creativity on the parts of so many, many fans of this marvelous actor. Having dipped my toes into the waters of vidding in my simple work, I truly appreciate and admire all the more other’s work.

    • I think one reason vidding is attractive (as opposed to manips) is that the “art” is already there — you are putting it into sequence and obviously tweaking it in some ways — but you don’t have to have a whole artistic vision in order to vid the way you do to photoshop stuff. At least it seems that way to me. I’ve vidded twice now but the whole task of photoshopping to create a manip seems like it would be beyond my capacity.

      • I am starting a class next week in Adobe Elements because I do want to learn Photoshop. My background is in art education, so it’s not coming up with the artistic vision that is the problem for me–it’s my lack of techno skills. What makes me nervous is the thought I will become as immersed in it as I have some other RA-related creative activities. *rolls eyes* However, my husband is the one who signed me up for it (along with himself) so really it will be HIS fault if I do. 😉 Anyway, we shall see.

  13. Hi Fedoralady,
    I love your recommended vids of others! But I also love your vids! You have impeccable taste in putting together songs and images. And your captions are to die for–either when you’re being humorous or heartfelt.
    Cheers! Grati ;->

  14. Yes, thanks to these great RA fan videos, there are so many songs by artists I would ordinarily not give a thought to who now cause me to grin like a fool whenever I hear them. Richard truly does broaden the horizons in so many wonderful ways.

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