Elvish Elvis - He is perhaps the most famous bard of all elvendom - too bad he’s not in elvendom. Most enjoy his unique foreign tunes strummed on an elvish harp, saying he has some talent if only he’d try something more modern and popular than those odd "foreign songs". This bard’s vast elvish patience is gradually worn thin by the hoi polloi’s insufficient ability to recognize his greatness.
Marine Musician - Grizzled and sun burnt, this bard is a sailor through and through. His repertoire consists mostly of sea shanties, rowing chants, and the like, though he has a few rather exotic tunes from far-off isles. He plays a few instruments, but prefers the concertina.
Steamy Songstress - Every man in the tavern quiets down when she begins to play, if only to gaze upon her body with lust. She plays the viola some, with long, seductive strokes, but mostly she just sings provocative tunes. Unlike some, she is actually quite a talented musician, but it’s hard to focus on her musical skill with those tempting curves.
Symphonic Spook - To most, he is but a common bard earning his pay from hard tavern work; to a few in the know, he is actually an agent of the crown sent to spy on insurrectionists. He speaks little and mostly just plays his flute, eyes gazing about the crowded tavern. A few notice he isn’t terribly good; hopefully his cover won’t be blown.
Dwarven Diva - Classically trained in all the greatest of dwarven arts, she is a fine example of dwarven musical talent. Her voice is deep and with great tambor, going deeper than most human men can. She plays a bellowing dwarven drum, slowly beating out melodies that tell of heroes and treasure hordes deep under mountains.
Violent Virtuoso - He’s a fairly good player, but don’t think about calling him anything less than excellent: he’ll think it an insult and start a fight. This one has a mean streak in him and would have no customers but for the fearful and morbidly curious. He plays an odd lute that has an axehead built into the body, for "just in cases".
Martinet Maestro - For many years he served in the royal guard, taking the honor of leading the royal army’s band. Long since retired, he still makes the rounds playing regal old tunes and patrioitic songs. His fans are mostly older folks and veterans, who are reminded of the older days with his classic songs.
Pitiful Piper - The bagpipes are not an easy instrument to play - just ask him. Once a musician of some renown, he decided to switch things up and try playing the bagpipes; his career has been in the dumpster ever since. It’s not that the pipes are unpopular, it’s just that he plays them very, very poorly - some say to the point of pain. Perhaps one day he’ll suck up his pride and give up.
Rowdy Rhythmic - Some bards are intimidated by large, drunken crowds - but not her. She seems to thrive in riotous venues, playing to the whims and wild mood swings of an unruly crowd. She can get a bit unruly too, if she needs to get the crowd started up; even so, she’s quite popular among most folks.
Soulful Soloist - An old man from bygone days, he sings the field work songs and traditional rhythms of his youth. His only instrument is his voice and his syncopated clapping, doling out sad tunes about lost lovers and cursed fortune. Some say he has more bardic skill than appears: his rhythms are entirely hypnotic, causing sentients and animals alike to stop in their tracks and listen to the blind singer.
Rebel Rouser - Young and full of new ideas, she is the voice of the revolution. All her songs are about ending oppression, freedom from the old ways, embracing new and strange ideas. Her entourage consists of a small band of youthful rebels who see her as their leader; their insistence on wearing clothes of a foreign style and chanting the mantras of their political beliefs cause most to laugh or - worse - ignore them.
Glorious Gospel - A former religious monk, this bard left the monastery to be a musical missionary for his patron deity. All his songs focus on glorifying his god, telling of great deeds and salvation. He is almost ever ecstatic about his cause, which draws in just as many as it drives out; increasingly, he is popular among the serfs for his message of a happy life after this one of suffering.
Great Griot - He comes from a nomadic tribe without a written language and is the carrier of his people's songs and stories. He strums a kora made from a hollowed-our gourd and sings ballads of old kings and mythical creatures. Scholars may scoff at unwritten histories, but don't discount the truth of his tales.
Heavenly Harper - This fire-haired woman is a master at harps, be they full-sized orchestral instruments or a folk clàrsach. The strings she pulls on her instrument seem like heart strings: she can make men dance or weep with but a few chords. Yet she seems to mostly play in local taverns and dives, speaking to folk in dark corners between songs - what is she looking for?
Fiendish Fiddler - This dark-suited gentleman goes from place to place, finding the best fiddlers and challenging them to musical duels. He's an incredible player; rumor has it he sold his soul to a demon for his skill and now to earn it back he takes the souls of other fiddlers. No one seems to be able to beat him, but the artifacts he offers as a prize are hard to pass up.
Additional Ideas (1)
He's not a Bard. He's a Fighter. But he's always dreamt of being a Bard. He wields weapons he thinks a Bard should use. Quarterstaff, probably. He carries an instrument. He can play... some. He can sing... okay. He tells people he's an "entertainer." He isn't lying... except maybe to himself.
For best effect, stat out the best Fighter you can, being sure to neglect at least one and preferably two key Bard stats, then spend all secondary skills on "Bard" skills like singing and playing.