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  • Choosing language for your titles

    This is mostly for those who don´t have English as their first language.

    I listen to a lot of German artists (and other non English artists as well) and I've noticed that most non English artist tend to name their instrumental songs in English. and I wonder why?

    Is it because more people will understand or is it just a habit?

    I like to play with words and trying to be poetic when I'm naming my songs and for me that is much more easier to do in my native language (Swedish) but sometimes I'm so influenced by the English speaking world that I first think of an English title. But in the end the Swedish title always sounds better to me.

    I also find that titles in other languages tend to feel more exotic to me in some way.
    But I feel a little bad of thinking that.

    So, how do you people do?
    Why do you name your songs in English? And why don´t you do that?
    https://brugd.bandcamp.com/

    https://soundcloud.com/brugd

  • #2
    I am British. English is the only language I know.

    For one album of mine the album name and all the track titles are in Italian.

    Sometimes I name my track after certain mythical beings and I will sometimes use the original language for that, but it is just one word, not a collection of words, so not really the same.

    Other than that, without a proper conversational knowledge of a particular language I would not have enough trust in Google Translate in order to come up with a track title in that language.
    I may not post anything useful, but at least I do it often

    Bandcamp // SoundCloud // YouTube

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    • #3
      I am from the Montreal area in a province called Quebec (in Canada). This is a few million people speaking french surrounded by an ocean of english speaking people. So, just as a sign of resistance, I usually put my titles in french. Anyway, I release my music to a handful of people, and they all speak french too, so the choice is easy. But I have to admit that the only time I tired to release one of my record to a broader audience, I translated all those titles in english - for the same reason that I am currently responding to you in english

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      • #4
        English as a language is the broadest market. If that influences a title, you are maybe interested in either being understood or largely marketable.
        Besides that it makes no difference to me. If I liked lyrics, I wouldn't be looking for Swedish. I'd be wanting English. If your titles end up HTML most ppl,can use a translator. I listen to an hour ambient-music radio show from Finland each week. The host speaks Finnish, I do not. So I just go to the site and use the translator for all the track names and show description.
        I don't think language has much impact these days one way or another.
        "The dumbest of people are the first to tell you."annodeMy Music
        Check out my ambient radio show list @ recommended listening

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        • #5
          I am English but I love languages, and am trying to learn more, so title language does not bother me. Since this topic began on Swedish, Ulf Söderberg is my favourite Swedish music maker, and his titles are all in Swedish. But the funny thing is, when non-English people give their tracks English titles, that makes me want to select a different language for mine sometime.
          Most of my track titles are in English, I admit, but I have done some Latin ones because I felt they fit the track, and besides, everything sounds cooler in Latin. I am even planning an album where all the titles are in Cornish. Why? For fun, and the Cornish language is interesting and obscure.
          https://thegreatschizm.bandcamp.com

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Cloud Hunter View Post
            I am even planning an album where all the titles are in Cornish.
            That is a great idea

            I'd probably stick to single word titles so as not to say something I didn't mean.

            I may not post anything useful, but at least I do it often

            Bandcamp // SoundCloud // YouTube

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            • #7
              That is a safe bet, but the best titles come from meaningful messages. I am making sure that mine are all going to be correct.
              https://thegreatschizm.bandcamp.com

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              • #8
                "My hovercraft is full of eels"
                Whatsisname's Little Fluffy Clouds | Campsite | Hearthis | Orfium | SeismicTC | Twitter | Ello

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                • #9
                  I try to make my titles as obscure and encrypted as I possibly can because I am really a pretentious ass with an over inflated sense of my own importance.
                  "The dumbest of people are the first to tell you."annodeMy Music
                  Check out my ambient radio show list @ recommended listening

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                  • #10
                    I stink at titles, so I'll choose a word or phrase and plug it into google translate; back and forth, from one language to another until something that seems intriguing to me pops up.

                    My last project was a set of EPs featuring heavily reworked/reprocessed multitracks from decades ago; the series was titled "Reviderade", which you'll know is Swedish for "revised". The first ep is titled "Glymt Lyd", Norwegian for "muffled sound".

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by aoVI View Post
                      I stink at titles, so I'll choose a word or phrase and plug it into google translate; back and forth, from one language to another until something that seems intriguing to me pops up.
                      Interesting...

                      And Itxaronaldia is Basque for Waiting Time apparently...

                      excellent idea
                      I may not post anything useful, but at least I do it often

                      Bandcamp // SoundCloud // YouTube

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                      • #12
                        My mother tongue is german, but most of my track titles are english because that´s a language most people understand even if it´s not their mother tongue. I want the track title to evoke a certain mood or expectation that matches with the track, and this wouldn´t work if the online "audience" are not able to get the meaning of the title. I´m absolutely not sure if this is the best approach, it´s just what makes most sense to me personally.
                        https://soundcloud.com/schneefels
                        https://schneefels.bandcamp.com/

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by SnowRock View Post
                          My mother tongue is german, but most of my track titles are english because that´s a language most people understand even if it´s not their mother tongue. I want the track title to evoke a certain mood or expectation that matches with the track, and this wouldn´t work if the online "audience" are not able to get the meaning of the title. I´m absolutely not sure if this is the best approach, it´s just what makes most sense to me personally.
                          I totally understand that approach.
                          And maybe it’s more strange that I keep naming my pieces in Swedish.
                          This is something that I maybe have to rethink a little.
                          https://brugd.bandcamp.com/

                          https://soundcloud.com/brugd

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                          • #14
                            My native language is Spanish and thought it'd be nice to name my songs using it. I don't see much of a point naming my songs in English although I could do that. I like my language and I like to use it. If I were interested in marketing for a specific group, I would probably name them in English, but I'm not.

                            One other interesting thing for me is how I started to feel that my songs were more my own when I decided to put a certain title to them. Before that, I didn't feel the same kind of connection to them. It's a bit weird and I guess I'm not explaining myself very well but I felt them closer to me once they had a name.

                            Besides, it's nice to read new languages (at least for me), even if I don't understand them. I love the symbols in Gaelic and I don't have a clue about their meaning.
                            http://slde.bandcamp.com
                            https://www.facebook.com/SLDEarg/

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                            • #15
                              Maybe use languages like Elvish (Lord Of The Rings) or Klingon (Star Treck).
                              ahornberg.bandcamp.com
                              soundcloud.com/ahornberg

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