Music has been a part of most Avendarian cultures, from the heavy drums of the ancient alatharya, to the discordant tones of the shuddeni, to the gentle harp of the aelin, to the lutes of humanity. In other cultures, such as the kankoran or the ethron, tale-telling and oral history were vital components of their racial narrative. As the races began to intermix, their ways and methods were indexed by the industrious Chadralnite caladaran. In time, their scholarship bore fruit, by making accessible these disparate notions to all. Together, this formed the basis of the modern Bardic Collegium, based primarily in the heart of Earendam the Grand.
Before long, bards would travel the world, walking alongside great armies, entertaining in crowded taverns, recording individual or collective histories, or furthering artistic visions in word or song. The most spectacular of these early musicians discovered a fragment of magic that existed in sound, and learned to tap into it for ever more spectacular performances. Bards became renowned for their profound power to bolster the emotions of others, making them a fixture in the Earendamian Republic, the aelin empire, and every great court or conflict of each successive age. While their martial skill is simple, if showy, their music more than compensates for their lack of other training.
Bards may be of any alignment or ethos, giving them the flexibility to walk alongside any who may have a tale worth telling. Because of both their religious leaning toward the arts and their natural beauty, the aelin are often among the most famous bards. However, the historians of the caladaran and the storytellers of the ethron are surprisingly routine. The shuddeni make for particularly exotic bards, bringing their strange, nightmarish tales and plying unusual oils. The life of a bard means what he wishes, making him indispensible in leisure adventure alike.