If Jeff Probst and Mark Burnett are the two most important people in the history of Survivor, then Russ Landau is right up there equal third with his fellow composer David Vanacore. Together they have been responsible for not only every single theme you have ever heard on the show, but also every piece of music that enthrals you and gets you attached in every single episode you watch. As an Emmy award winner, Russ has his favourite themes, and even finds himself to be a big fan of the show.
Working with Mark Burnett and coming up with the theme in a car, Russ has managed to travel around the world to the various locations connected with Survivor and works heavily on making each theme it’s own unique sound. Given his close attachment to the show, he still likes the element of surprise with the episodes and even watches them on TV at the same time as everyone else. He even has his favourites, and even has had offers for Survivor contestants to play music with him, something which the production department aren’t too fond of.
In our interview with Russ, he speaks about doing the music for 12 years, coming up with the theme in a car, having the theme voted as one of the most recognisable themes in TV history, how long it takes to put a theme together, why we don’t hear some of the classic themes anymore, being a fan of the show and having bets with the crew, his thoughts on the Survivor’s singing his themes during their time on the show and he feels he would do if he was to play the game.