Fan Soundtrack

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Synonyms: Fanmix
See also: Fan Soundtrack Project
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A fan soundtrack, or FST, is a form of fanmix. The term is more commonly known and used than "fanmix" in certain fannish communities like anime and manga. Usage of the term gained popularity through the FST Project, which was the first LiveJournal community devoted to organizing this fannish activity in a monthly challenge format.

FST Format

The bare minimum for a FST is a track listing based on a theme, but various additions are also possible. Many people include digital music files, cd covers, explanations of song choice, quotations of lyrics from the chosen songs, quotations from the source text the FST is based on, FST titles, and the FST play time. FST lengths vary from EP to multiple CDs.

The FST Creation Process

There is no agreement on what, exactly a FST should do, and thus its format/purpose/creation process is entirely up to its creator. The creative process post by darenciel raises various opinions on FSTs, such as "I think what I really want people to get out of an FST is to feel like they're watching a movie" and "making FSTs is like writing fanfiction." As the comments to the post note, for many FST participants, making a FST was a more elaborate process than simply compiling a mixtape of thematically appropriate songs. Choice of genres, the order of the tracks, and matching the mood or tone of the fandom/character/pairing/topic being celebrated with either lyrics or musical timbre were just some of the many considerations that were taken into making an FST. As an example, some participants did not offer up individual song downloads or labeled the Album tag on the mp3 files with their FST title because they felt very strongly that their FST needed to be appreciated as a whole and listened to in the correct order.


dot_fst_snark was created in 2005, as a place where members mocked what they thought were poorly-made FSTs. There was also some debate over the definition of FST, as FSTs about generic topics such as "being melancholy" or "driving" rather than fannish themes began to occur more frequently in the community.[1]