As Merry and Pippin sit on the walls
of Isengard drinking, smoking and reminiscing of good times back
in the Shire, the music combines elements of the Shire Theme and
the Fellowship Theme.
Merry gives Pippin the last of
the Longbottom Leaf and Pippin realizes just what leaving with
Gandalf means, a clarinet flirts around with the Shire theme,
then the strings do the same with the Fellowship Theme.
As Merry offers his sword to King
Théoden in service, the music references elements of the Shire
Frodo sides with Gollum against
Sam, "You can't help me anymore.", the music presents a short,
vague, and slightly nightmarish reference to the Shire music. As
Frodo sends Sam away, "Go home." the Shire tinged music warms in
a melancholy way. Perhaps the warped version reflects Frodo's
state and the warmer version reflects Sam's innate simple
A warm whistle moves around the
Shire notes as Merry is told by Théoden that he does not belong
in war and will not be allowed to accompany the Riders of Rohan
to Minas Tirith.
When Pippin finds Merry on the
battlefield, we hear a matured version of the Shire music. Not
only the orchestration but the melody itself is maturing.
After Frodo drains the last drops of
his water bottle, Sam offers him his. When Frodo protests there
will be none for the return journey, Sam states, "I don't think
there *will* be a return journey." With Sam's words, we get just
a little light touch of a Shire variant. Even though things seem
hopeless, Sam pulls Frodo up and I think it's the mere thought
of the Shire that keeps them going.
Sam and Frodo are crawling
up the mountain... rather unsuccessfully... the music presents
both a low roll of thundery percussion (the mountain) and a
clear, high whistle. The clear, high whistle plays a tune only
vaguely referencing the Shire melody. At this point, I think the
whistle represents Sam and Frodo and the last bit of Shire they
hold within them.. even if they wouldn't recognize it.
A moment later, Sam asks, "Do you
remember the Shire, Mr. Frodo?" The music here is not so harsh.
The rumbling mountain is only a whisper against the whistle and
a soothing choir accompanies Sam's soothing memories. Again, the
Shire melody is not very present... the whistle must carry the
As Frodo awakens,
bathed in bright light, in Ithilien, the orchestra plays a
melody we will hear later in the Shire's Green Dragon... the
A soft, lush version of the
Shire A melody
is heard as Sam appears at the door of Frodo's sick room in
Ithilien. I could not decide if this was a Pensive or Hymn
Setting or neither.
That exquisitely beautiful fiddle
plays a version of Shire music I call the
Ithilien as the four Hobbits share quiet
thoughts, company and
drinks at the Green Dragon.
This is Shire music that has matured quite past the more
familiar 'In Dreams' melody. The CR-ROTK liner notes state the
melodies and instrumentation of the Shire are mixed with hints
of the Fellowship Theme. This is
too subtle for me to pick out.
A variant of the Shire A is heard when we cut
Gandalf's wagon pulling up to the Green Dragon to meet with
the Hobbits who will escort Bilbo to the Grey Havens and as
Bilbo asks to see his old Ring again.