Russell got in touch with us to let us know about Title Track Day; a day for celebrating the title tracks which define the heart, soul and success of all favourite albums. When he’s not picking out a playlist of title tracks, Russell plays for a band called – wait for it – The Title Trackers. We pinned him down to find out a little more about living in a world where it’s all about the headlining song.
Q: Let’s get the obvious question out of the way – what’s your favourite title track?
Well, there are three of us in the band, and each of us have different musical tastes and backgrounds (which has certainly been a strength for us in the making of our music.) But of course we all have plenty of musical convergence too! So while we cannot necessarily give you just one title track that is definitively our favorite, how about we give you our negotiated top-3: Born to Run (Bruce Springsteen,) Lola (The Kinks,) and Graceland (Paul Simon.)
Q: You play for a band called The Title Trackers; tell us a bit about that, and where the name came from.
Right, well the concept for our album came before the band name. We started noticing how many of our favorite albums had no title track – Meaning there was no song bearing the name of the album. Many albums have one – like “Born To Run,” noted above. Many don’t! Like U2’s “The Joshua Tree” has no song with that name. We decided we wanted to make an album where we wrote and recorded those forgotten title tracks! As we set out to do this, we realized it was working so well that we’d need to come up with a band name. It didn’t take long to settle on the fairly obvious “The Title Trackers.” And our album is “Lost Title Tracks” which we playfully refer to as “The Greatest Hits NEVER Written!”
Q: …and what made you think about starting a special day for title tracks?
We thought that everyone would immediately understand our project and concept, but as it turns out even many big music fans, and fans of album rock, didn’t instantly know what a title track was! We had to tell them, and then the light bulb went on for them and they understood the whole idea of what we are doing. So we decided that there should be a special day dedicated to title tracks, their importance on albums, and a proper appreciation for their greatness! Many of our favorite songs are title tracks, and it’s been interesting interviewing other artists about why they chose their particular title track, because you can tell that it’s not a question they have been asked before!
Q: Is the title track a thing of the past in an age of digital downloads?
Great question. We hope not, haha! True, fewer people would know if a particular song is a title track if they’re not downloading the full album, but most artists are still promoting their albums as a whole, and not individual songs, their marketing campaigns still focus on the album, so we don’t think the title track is an endangered species at this point, no. And we are here to make sure it stays that way!
Q: Do you think you could make a successful album, just from famous title tracks? May be a Christmas hit?
Sounds like a good specialty product for our next release. Just promise you won’t accuse us of stealing your idea!
Q: Do you have any other favourite holidays and special days?
The best one we’ve seen is “Cow Milked While Flying in an Airplane Day!” Now that’s an important observance. You can be sure we celebrated “National Cupcake Day” this year too, can’t go wrong with that. For standard holidays, of course we love Halloween (an opportunity to dress up as a title track and see if people can guess… Lola might be a good costume!) and Thanksgiving. Oh and since Tracker Andy is Canadian, Boxing Day, naturally!
Q: How will you be celebrating Title Track Day?
We will be playing DJ at our favorite pub, T Boyle’s, 37 N Catalina in Pasadena, CA, from 7pm to 11pm on the evening of May 23rd! We will spin vinyl and CD’s, and people are encouraged to come out and enjoy, but also to bring their own vinyl and CD’s with their favorite title tracks on them, and we will play them! We will also world-premiere some of our “Lost Title Tracks.” Plus we will feature our favorite title tracks all day on our Tumblr blog, which you can access from our website at www.thetitletrackers.com
Thanks for your time, Russell, and we look forward to hearing some of your very own title tracks!