Trouble Train

Album: Songs From Lonely Avenue (2009)

Songfacts®:

  • This is the opening track from American retro singer-songwriter and guitarist Brian Setzer's album, Songs From Lonely Avenue.
  • Songs From Lonely Avenue is a collection of songs that sound as if they could be a soundtrack to a movie. Setzer told Jeff Baenen of The Associated Press that he first had the idea after coming up with a riff. He thought, "That's really cool, that's kind of dark." It sounded like a soundtrack, Setzer said. "So I got that idea - what if I wrote a soundtrack but songs, you know, like old soundtracks from the '40s and '50s. They're dramatic, they have just the pieces, like that, but they're not entire songs."
  • Setzer explained on this song, "his friends are warning him, 'Don't get on that Trouble Train.' But he's on it, he's going down all the wrong roads."
  • The song starts on a foreboding note with a frenzied roar of drums, guitar and horns. Frank Comstock, the 87-year-old big band arranger whom Setzer collaborated with on Wolfgang's Big Night Out orchestrated most of the horn parts for Songs From Lonely Avenue. Comstock told Jeff Baenen of The Associated Press that Setzer had just one instruction when he lured Comstock out of semiretirement: "I just want you to write that way you did in 1950. He said, 'I just want all these fans of mine to know, around the world, that there's more than two chords in any song."
    Setzer said he "just let Frank go. For instance, I would say, 'Why don't we put some flutes and clarinets in here?' And he would say, 'Yeah, that's a good idea. We haven't used flutes yet.' Things like that," Comstock eventually arranged horn charts for nine tracks on the album.

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