Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Mapping Tom Waits

The songs of Tom Waits contain many geographical references. Waits' narrative ballads are full of interesting characters living interesting lives in atmospheric locations.

Jonas Nordström has scoured the lyrics of all Tom Waits songs and created The Tom Waits Map, a Google Map that shows all the locations mentioned in the American singer-songwriter's back catalog. Click on a marker on the map and you can find out which song references the selected location and read the relevant lyric.

At the moment you can't actually listen to the songs but that might be coming. I discovered that the song 'Danny Says' (Idaho on the map) includes a link to listen to the song on Spotify. So hopefully Jonas is working on providing links to listen to all the songs.

Stompin' Tom Connors was a Canadian country/folk singer who wrote many songs about Canadian locations.

CBC News has created the Stompin' Tom's Musical Map of Canada which maps vidoes of Stompin' Toms songs to the locations that are featured in the songs. Users can search the map by location and play and listen to the song videos directly from the map.

American folk rock band The Mountain Goats have written a number of songs over the years with the words 'Going to ...' in the title, with a destination completing the song's name.

Going to Somewhere is a fun little Street View application that will take you to a random destination based on one of The Mountain Goats 'Going to ...' songs. Just press 'Go' and you will be transported to a new destination.

The only thing missing from this app is the actual music. It would be great if you could actually listen to the relevant song when a new location is shown.

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