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Founded at Georgia College in 2015, Trax on the Trail is a website where scholars, educators, journalists, students, and the general public can learn about American presidential campaign music and gain insight into how sound participates in forming candidate identity.
Our interdisciplinary team includes academic experts from the fields of political science, musicology, sociology, history, communications, and ethnomusicology, as well as industry professionals and students.
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The latest from Trax on the Trail
- Singing a Song to the 81%: An Interview with Daniel DeitrichOn July 17, 2020, Trax on the Trail Research Assistant Haley Strassburger and Founder Dana Gorzelany-Mostak interviewed Daniel Deitrich, the South Bend Indiana singer-songwriter who created quite a stir with his praise anthem “Hymn for the 81%.” Read on to learn more about the song that Religion News Service called “a cocktail of prophetic fireContinue reading “Home”
- Musicians. Organizers. Activists. An interview with Andrew Scotchie and Andrew Fletcher, Organizers of the Feel the Beat! Feel the Bern! Fundraiser, Asheville, NCOn May 19, 2020 Trax founder Dana Gorzelany-Mostak and Trax Research Assistant Sarah Griffin had the pleasure of chatting with the two Asheville-based musicians who organized Feel the Beat! Feel the Bern!, a concert to support the candidacy of Bernie Sanders. The February 26th event, held at the Asheville Music Hall, featured The Paper Crowns, Mike Martinez, EleanorContinue reading “Home”
- Tommy Oswalt Weighs in on Pop Culture and the American PresidencyOn May 14th Trax Co-editor Dana Gorzelany-Mostak and Research Assistant Sarah Griffin had the pleasure of interviewing recent Vanderbilt University graduate Tommy Oswalt, who developed a TEDx talk and an interactive game exploring campaign playlists. Here Tommy weighs in on music and political engagement, candidate music strategies, and music’s role in sustaining a robust democracy.Continue reading “Home”
- Trax on the Trail: Researching Music on the U.S. Presidential Campaign TrailTrax on the Trail Research Assistant Sarah Griffin presented her research on campaign music at the Georgia College 23rd Annual Student Research Conference in April 2020. You can check out her poster here. Sarah Griffin (Student, Georgia College), Dana Gorzelany-Mostak (Assistant Professor of Music, Georgia College), Haley Strassburger (Student, Georgia College), Naomi Graber (Assistant ProfessorContinue reading “Home”
- Analyzing and Creating PlaylistsOver the past few electoral cycles, political candidates have capitalized on the popularity of playlist sites such as Spotify, circulating campaign playlists in hopes of forging a bond with voters, communicating their values and vision, and asserting their pop culture cred. This assignment offers students the opportunity to evaluate the effectiveness of playlists as aContinue reading “Home”