Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Music Inspired by British Expat's London Underground Memories


As someone who relocated from London to Indiana, I cannot state quite enough just how much I miss efficient, frequent public transit. Until I moved to the American Midwest, I had taken trains and buses completely for granted, assuming—at the back of my mind—that transportation services such as these were a prominent element of all nations and all cities.

Little did I know that Indiana actually boasts more school buses than commuter buses and—with one or two exceptions—the only trains you will see in the Hoosier State are of the cargo variety. 

This got me thinking about British public transportation and London transit specifically—themes that are ultimately the inspiration for the music below.



I could have approached Last Train to King's Cross St. Pancras in one of two ways: I could have composed a piece recalling the grimy, claustrophobic atmosphere of the London Underground, interspersing the music with rat sound effects; or I could have spoken to the sheer joy of travel, indicating that sense of wonder one feels when bursting through England's capital.

Ever the eternal optimist, I decided to go with the second option. It's often easy, when you're living amid the day-to-day hustle and bustle of a major city, to feel completely at odds with the world around you. It's important to remember that there is a beauty to cities like London. And, in the most unlikely of ways, this can certainly manifest itself during those inner-city train journeys—whether it's an early morning ride on the Piccadilly Line or the Last Train to King's Cross St. Pancras. 

To conclude, I would like to dedicate this piece to my father, who turns 70 today. May he continue riding that train to London and, for the sanity of my mother, may he not fall off (again).

I hope you enjoy the music.

This article was written by Laurence Brown. Laurence is a British expat living in Indianapolis, Indiana, and writes for BBC America and Anglotopia. He is Editor-in-chief of Lost in the Pond and loves nothing more than to share these articles with anglophiles, expats, and other interested parties on social media. Follow Lost in the Pond on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

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