Almost Famous begins with an allusion to another great film: To Kill a Mockingbird. In the style of the 1963 classic's title sequence, Cameron Crowe pans over a crowded desk drawer brimming with concert ticket stubs, stereo cassette tapes, and other music-related knick knacks. Just like in To Kill a Mockingbird, the miscellaneous bits of memorabilia we see in the opening credits will make sense as the film unfolds; we will soon learn that they are mementos of William's journey.
Tucked away in this stack of random memorabilia are a handful of Polaroid photos. These images capture William on tour with Stillwater. We eventually learn that they were taken by none other than Penny Lane, who is shown later snapping Polaroids of the band, and William, on the bus. These photographs appear once more during the end credits.
As a rock journalist, William snatched up every bit of memorabilia he could find for research purposes—even the botched Stillwater t-shirt, which he stealthily grabbed when no one was looking. But for William, as a rock and roll fan, they are also memories.