Track Toronto is collecting and mapping songs about places in Toronto by using QR codes. The goal is for anyone to be able to explore the city to hear songs related to a specific place (if you visit Winslow, Arizona, be sure to visit the “Standing on the Corner” tribute to The Eagles). The first corner in Toronto is Parkdale.
The city recently installed bright yellow street signs in Parkdale with QR codes of the corresponding song. You scan the code and instantly stream the song, with lyrics of each song printed on these signs. Currently there are eight signs in place.
Part of the inspiration for the project began at last year’s NXNE, where organizer, Jonathan Tyrrell found himself at a panel discussion on branding Toronto as a music hub.
“It’s been an overall positive response since day one. There’s a lot of buzz about Toronto’s music scene and it’s the right time for the project so that’s why people really identify with it,”he said.
“We’d like to make it a very subtle experience where a smartphone can guide you through a ‘song walk’ in Toronto,”
“When users encounter markers located all around the city, they’ll be able to use their smartphone to tune in and hear songs related to that very spot. Whether the song mentions a particular landmark, captures the character of a neighbourhood, or was part of a legendary live show there – the markers alert listeners to a notable site for Toronto music.”
“When the full version of the project is launched, users will be able to navigate an online map locating all of the songs in our collection, paired with text and/or images explaining the connection between song and site. A set of physical markers will be installed in key locations throughout the city, directing wanderers to the online map and alerting them to site-specific songs in that area.”
“And we’re already thinking of other ways to use this system to bring you more Toronto music – imagine being able to get an audio preview of who’s playing tonight at all the venues you pass on your way home, or imagine your neighborhood turned into a pop-up video, filled with layers of rich musical history and new bands to discover.”
“It’s really sweet…we’ve already got a couple of requests from artists and people were pumped about the project,”said Tyrrell.
So far they’ve collected 131 songs. If you’d like to help them build the collection, you can do that here.
Top image ©GL Stock Images