American Pop Rock band Train, composed of trio Pat Monahan (vocals), Jimmy Stratford (guitar, vocals) and Scott Underwood (drums, percussion), was formed in 1994. Originally composed of Pat Monahan and former band member Rob Hotchkiss (guitar, vocals), the two performed at local clubs and coffee houses around San Francisco before expanding the lineup by recruiting Jimmy Stratford, Charlie Colin (bass) and Scott Underwood.
Train’s straightforward approach to honest songwriting and compelling music led to numerous songs. “Meet Virginia,” the band’s second single from their eponymous album, “Train,” was received positively by critics and mainstream audiences. Its inspired melodic hooks and insightful lyrics set the groundwork for what would later be known as “Train music.”
“Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)” from their second album was on the Hot 100 chart for a year and won two Grammy awards in 2002 for Best Rock Song and Best Arrangement. Lead singer and songwriter Pat Monahan stated that the song was inspired by the death of his mother. The soulful words to the song tells the story of a man wondering if the lady making the journey to the unknown still thinks of the man she left behind.
Pat Monahan’s songwriting style is more of a collection of images he’s seen, felt and experience, which he then translates into strings of words that best express the feelings those images conjure.
Prior to writing “Hey Soul Sister” with a ukulele, the band tried an arrangement using an electric guitar as accompaniment. However, Pat stated that it cannot capture the music imagery in his head, and tried various picking styles to no avail before one of the guys picked up a ukulele and played the song the way it is heard now.
“Hey Soul Sister” is a mid-tempo pop song, inspired from an imagination of beautiful women dancing around the fire. It was during the Burning Man, a week long annual event in Nevada, that he was able to conjure up this image and write it into what has now become one of the most played songs in contemporary music.
There is a story behind each song: “If It’s Love” is a love song written by the band for their fans, to thank them for the unending support. “Marry Me” originally consists of short verses but was extended to a full song because of the beauty of its simplicity. It explains why Train songs have that irresistible pull for the listeners. It arouses emotions, unknown or explicit, for every listener, making each note, each word truly unforgettable.
“Train Live in Manila” is on Dec. 7. For tickets, call up TicketNet.
“Train Live in Manila” is presented by DAYLY Entertainment, Rockstar Touring and LAMC Productions in partnership with Smart, Mossimo Music, Coke, McDonald’s, ABS-CBN, Star World, Fox, Myx, The Manila Bulletin, ClickTheCity.com, RX 93.1, Mellow 94.7, Easy Rock 96.3, YesFM 101.1, Ivory Music, Sony Music and Crown Plaza as the official residence.