Soul Music

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Soul Music
Cover of the 2013 Corgi edition of Soul Music
2013 Corgi edition with art by Josh Kirby
AuthorTerry Pratchett
Audio read byTony Robinson (Corgi)
Nigel Planer (Isis)
Sian Clifford (Penguin)
Cover artistJosh Kirby
Release number
Publication date
Preceded byMen at Arms 
Followed byInteresting Times 

Soul Music is the sixteenth Discworld book, the third focussing on the character of Death, and the one which introduces his granddaughter, Susan. It also features the wizards of Unseen University, though in a smaller role than in Reaper Man.


Other children got given xylophones. Susan just had to ask her grandfather to take his vest off.

Yes. There's a Death in the family.

It's hard to grow up normally when Grandfather rides a white horse and wields a scythe – especially when you have to take over the family business, and everyone mistakes you for the Tooth Fairy.

And especially when you have to face the new and addictive music that has entered the Discworld.

It's Lawless. It changes people.

It's called Music With Rocks In.

It's got a beat and you can dance to it, but...

It's alive.

And it won't fade away.

Podcast episodes

Major appearances

These are episodes primarily devoted to discussing this book.

Date Show Episode External link
2017-10-18 Radio Morpork “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Death’s Club Band (With Rocks In)”
2019-05-08 Pratchat “It Don't Mean a Thing if it Ain’t Got Rocks In”
2020-01-15 The Death of Podcasts “Soul Music”
2020-06-28 Wyrd Sisters “Soul Music”
2020-08-16 Desert Island Discworld “Claire Napier and Soul Music”
2021-03-30 The Compleat Discography “Soul Music”
2021-05-14 Who Watches the Watch “PostCast” (1/3)
2021-05-25 Who Watches the Watch “” (2/3)
2021-06-03 Who Watches the Watch “You Gotta Have Hole” (3/3)
2021-06-07 The Truth Shall Make Ye Fret “Rockstars Or Druids” (1/3)
2021-06-14 The Truth Shall Make Ye Fret “Jail For The Co-Host” (2/3)
2021-06-21 The Truth Shall Make Ye Fret “Gyrate As You Wish” (3/3)
2022-05-04 Nanny Ogg's Book Club “Soul Music”
2022-07-28 Fiction Fans “Soul Music by Terry Pratchett”
2022-08-22 Unseen Academicals “Soul Music, Part 1: Magical Music” (1/3)
2022-11-08 Unseen Academicals “Soul Music, Part 3: Simply Susan”[1] (3/3)

Other appearances

Episodes in which there's significant discussion of the book, but it's not the focus of the episode.

Date Show Episode External link
2022-12-09 The Turtle Reads[2] “Soul Music and the Hogfather”


  • There are three audiobooks for Soul Music: the abridged Corgi version read by Tony Robinson, an unabridged Isis audiobook read by Nigel Planer, and most recently the Penguin audiobook read by Sian Clifford, with Peter Serafinowicz as Death and Bill Nighy reading the footnotes.
  • Soul Music was the first Discworld book adapted in its entirety for television. Soul Music was adapted in seven episodes by Cosgrove Hall for Channel 4 in 1996, and starred Andy Hockley as Imp, Debra Gillett as Susan, Christopher Lee as Death and Graham Crowden as Mustrum Ridcully.
  • The Soul Music soundtrack album for the Cosgrove Hall adaptation was also released, featuring the Discworld theme and other parts of the score, excerpts of dialogue, as well as the songs sung by Imp and the Bank With Rocks In, which span a range of rock and roll styles. The music is credited to Keith Hopwood and Phil Bush.

External links


  1. As mentioned in this episode, part 2 of the Soul Music discussion might not end up being released.
  2. There’s discussion of the book, but it’s primarily a casual conversation about more or less everything else.