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Saturday, June 30, 2012

Soundscape: Winter Beach Norway

Winter Beach (2:46) A winter beach in Norway where Ruddy Turnstones forge with Purple Sandpipers. A Hail storm sweeps in and covers the sand with hailstones.  Source: YouTube

Friday, June 29, 2012

Soundscape: Japanese Tea Garden (San Francisco)

Japanese Tea Garden (2:29). This is a pleasant exploration of San Francisco's five acre Japanese tea garden at Golden Gate Park. It is the oldest public Japanese garden in the United States. Source: YouTube

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Soundscape: The Hidden Life of Bridges

The Hidden Life Of Bridges (5:30) The Portland, Oregon waterfront was graced with three evenings of images and sounds in a temporary public art installation in September 2011. The installation used a series of microphones attached to the Hawthorne Bridge and was broadcast live over the web and via cellphones. Artists converted the vibrations of bridge traffic into an ever-changing real-time sound composition. 

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Soundscape: Rain on Leaves

Rain on Leaves (3:04) This short binaural recording is of a gentle rain falling on leaves recorded in the mountain region of Japan. It is suggested that headphones, or ear buds be used for listening. The imagery is from the area in which the field recording was made.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Soundscape Composition: Prairie Mountain

Prairie Mountain Soundscape (5:43) This work was produced for the 2010 Carnival of e-Creativity, an arts festival in the Himalayan village of Sattal, India. It's a video montage of still photographs created to accompany a composition of field recordings--a sound journey through the evaporation and condensation of Chicago's sound environment, where the audible embodies urban and natural landscapes.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Interview: Hearing sounds from outer space

The sound of space (2:19) Does the universe have a soundtrack? Physicist Janna Levin explains the ideas behind what she calls, the sounds of space. Click2See TED lecture on this topic by Dr. Levin. Source: CNN

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Project: Hearing and Pedestrian Safety

iPod Oblivion (3:35) BBC reporter Ian Hardy looks at what is happening in the US related to pedestrians and bicyclists using headphones or earphones to cut off the soundscape to listen to music. The result of this habit has become dangerous for many who can't hear the acoustic environment around them. This video looks at safety issues and awareness campaigns around the world. Source: BBC

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Noise Issues: Portsmouth Fines Violators

City Fines Noisy Neighbours (1:47) Huge numbers of complaints about noise, particularly loud music, have prompted the introduction of on the spot fines in Portsmouth, UK. How does the community respond? Click2Read Source: BBC

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Documentary: The Boy who Sees Without Eyes

Ben Underwood (47:08) Ben Underwood, who died at the age of 16 from cancer,  learned to "see" by employing a capability known as echolocation to navigate his world.  He taught himself echolocation techniques commonly used by bats and dolphins but rarely documented in humans. By making clicking noises with his tongue and listening to the sound waves he created, he learned to identify objects and get around safely.  Ben attended mainstream schools and engaged in all of the normal activities of childhood and youth. He refused to use a white cane identifying him as blind. He played basketball, danced, practiced karate, skated and rode a bike through his neighborhood. He mastered video games by memorizing scenarios and identifying sounds that characters made just before they changed positions. Source:

Related Video: Seeing With Sound (5:45) Daniel Kish is President of World Access for the Blind - a nonprofit organization which facilitates self directed achievement for blind people.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Soundscape: Polar Ice

Iceberg movements create eerie songs (1:55) Researchers have recorded the sounds that icebergs make as they scrape past each other, after an earthquake or as they break up. Source: YouTube

Ice Sound From Inside and Ice Breaker (:45) The Coast Guard Cutter Healy churns its way through ice that has been broken by the Canadian Coast Guard Ship Louis S. St-Laurent Aug. 27, 2009. The whooshing sound is slushy ice sliding along the hull and the loud bangs are large chunks of ice that were left in the trail cut by the Canadian ship. The audio was captured from inside the bow of the Healy. (U.S. Coast Guard audio clip by Petty Officer Patrick Kelley) Source: YouTube

Friday, June 15, 2012

Research: Secret Elephant Communication

Secret Elephant Communication. (1:44). Researchers at San Diego Zoo have been studying what has been described as the "secret language" of elephants. They have been monitoring communications between animals that cannot be heard by human ears.  Source: BBC

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Soundscape: Spring Asakusa, Tokyo

Asakusa Spring (4:25) It is spring in the Asakusa, a district on the north-east fringes of central Tokyo  along the Sumida  river. The streets are alive with activity and the cheery tress are in full bloom. This is another beautiful soundscape video by Akiharu Hioki.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Installation: Sound Vitale - Bologna

Sound Vitale (2:31). This is an installation that explores the interaction between the sound of the Via San Vitale in central Bologna and images by photographer Kirby Kaufman. The images are distorted and shattered by the sounds picked up by outdoor microphones and processed in real time. The result is a heightened awareness of the ambient noise that often fills one's life in the city. Sound Vitale was designed by Llaria Mancino and developed by Fabio Laci using the real time graphical programming environment Pure Data. Click2Read more.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Research: Blue Whale Songs

Blue Whale Singing off New York Coast (2:45)  For the first time in waters surrounding New York City, the beckoning calls of endangered fin, humpback, and North Atlantic right whales have been recorded. Dr. Christopher Clark describes the excitement of hearing a blue whale singing off the coast of New York for the first time. Clark heads the Bioacoustics Research Program at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Click2Learn more about this discovery.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Project: Sound Mapping Bologna

T-Days Mappatura Acustica (3:36) This short non-narrative video documents a project in Bologna, Italy September 17-23, 2011 in which a section of the city's historical center was compared acoustically with and without traffic. The occassion, known as T-Days, was a unique chance for citizens to discover and appreciate for the first time the historic center of Bologna without the anxiety of everyday traffic life. During this period citizens could participate in a calm and easy walk or a bike ride through three specific locations: Independence Way, Via Ugo Bassi, and Via Rizzoli. The video compares, contrasts and maps the locations with and without the normal traffic sounds. Click2Read more or learn more about a sponsoring group: Sounday Times.

See related video: Sounday va a Pedobus (5:13) Il 17 settembre, in occasione della Settimana Europea della Mobilità le associazioni Giardino del Guasto e Sounday con il patrocinio del Comune di Bologna, propongono un progetto di mappatura acustica di Bologna sull'itinerario del pedobus.

Pedobus: autobus fatto con i piedi di lunghezza non determinata. Consente di raggiungere scuole parchi e perfino gelaterie, visitare musei e monumenti. Non puzza, non costa niente, fa un rumore allegro, aiuta la città a liberarsi del traffico.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Documentary: The Bridge's Inner Voice

The Bridge's Inner Voice (3:25) While installing audiovisual equipment at the Golden Gate Bridge, sound artist Bill Fontana talks about the art of listening and about discovering this unique bridge's inner voice. This video is part of the 75th anniversary celebration of the opening of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, California through an exhibition program known as  International Orange. This exhibition at Fort Point presents new work by contemporary artists responding to the bridge as icon, historic structure, and conceptual inspiration.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Soundscape: Painting the Potting Shed

Painting The Potting Shed (12:17). This is the second video by Greg Hooper included in this directory. It documents an everyday soundscape, in this case the simple painting of a backyard shed. The videographer notes that the "soundtrack is composed from two synced recordings - one inside the shed, one outside. Volume levels should not be loud, more as if listening from about where the camera was positioned." Source: Vimeo 

Friday, June 8, 2012

Soundscape: Portland Cacophony

Portland Cacophony (1:34) This Portland, Oregon soundscape includes a cacophony of acoustic events including the departure of an afternoon Amtrak train for Seattle, construction of a new city park called "The Fields", and the ambient sound of freeway traffic on the steel-tied arched Freemont bridge over the Willamette River. Source: Vimeo

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Education: Jammin' Session

Jammin’ Session (5:11) Animated characters Bing and Bong go on a sound walk and discover rhythm in the crunching of fallen leaves and, are gradually joined by various Flockers, locals and even plants, all adding new layers of sound, such as percussion, bass, melody – even a trombone and banjo. Each addition raises the original beat to new heights. As the group jams together in crescendo, each musician and sound get a moment in the spotlight. Just as the final chord fades, the alarm sounds, the musicians bow and all line up and march off to the original beat.  Source: National Geographic.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Research: Aging and Auditory Perception

Auditory Perception and Aging. Dr. Claude Alain's research interest is in how aging affects the perception of auditory events and how technology can be designed to better assist hearing in the future. Alain  talks about his research using convergent imaging technologies at Baycrest's Rotman Research Institute, Toronto, and how basic science can be applied to clinical practice. Diminished hearing capacity greatly limits human interaction with the soundscape.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Documentary: 90 Degrees South

90 Degrees South (4:35) is a superb short documentary by Meredith Drum about the work of Andrea Polli's 2008 National Science Foundation Artist's Residency in Antarctica and includes field recordings of the soundscape she made during her stay. Andrea is the ASAE representative on the WFAE Board. 

Meredith Drum creates cinema projects as linear screenings, interactive exhibitions and mobile media walking tours. Her work has been screened in New York, Basel, Mexico City, and Valencia, Spain. Source: Vimeo

Monday, June 4, 2012

Soundscape Composition: John Cage's Radio Music

Radio Music  (6:00). In the 1950's television was still in its infancy and radio was at the end of its Golden Era. John Cage, with his ear always tuned to  the acoustic landscape, composed Radio Music (1956) around the concept that society was awash in a diversity of sounds broadcast by radio throughout the day. These sounds, disconnected from their original sources, could prove to be interesting in a soundscape mixed live by eight performers with radios as their instruments.

This video is a presentation of Radio Music by performers Juan Hidalgo, Walter Marchetti, and Gianni-Emilio Simonett. It is based on live radio transmissions at the time of its performance.  Each performer was instructed to tune his radio to different frequencies between 55 and 156 kHz through at specific times throughout the 6 minute score. Given the chance operations involved, any performance of this work will be different depending on where it is performed, the availability of radio stations within the community and the type of content available. Any performance today will be greatly different than that of its first performance on May 30, 1956 at the Carl Fisher Hall in New York City with artists John Cage, Maro Ajemain, David Tudor, Grete Sultan and the four members of the Juillard String Quartet. Click2View a related Video (6:16). in which you see performers following Cage's score. Source: You Tube

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Soundscape Composition: Basin Falls

The Basin Falls (9:50) By Tim Opie.  A composition based on analysis of a sound recording of the Basin Falls. Using the eco-structuralist analysis and composition technique. In this work Opie analysed the sound recording harvesting variables such as change in amplitudes and frequencies. Using jMusic and Apple Logic he then mapped these variables to various MIDI components, such as note, note length, pitch, effect automation, and overall tempo. Source: Vimeo

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Documentary: The Song of the Earth

The Song of the Earth (50:00) BBC with David Attenborough. "The deepest mystery of all: What purpose does music serve? Famed naturalist Sir David Attenborough examines various exotic members of the animal kingdom for clues to this fascinating puzzle.

After laying out for the audience the complex structures that transform sound into music – musical phrases, melodies, themes, and variations – Sir David introduces us to the animal acknowledged to produce the most complicated and longest song yet discovered – the humpback whale.

With Cornell University researcher Katy Payne as his guide, he eavesdrops on these gigantic mammals through a hydrophone dropped into the Dominican Republic’s Samana Bay, where the whales congregate during the winter months.

From the Caribbean, the documentary hopscotches to various points on the globe to show viewers a diverse array of animals that make music: to Australia, for the lyre bird; Sumatra, for the Siamang gibbon; and Sweden, for the great weed warbler." Source: YouTube.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Research: Noise pollution in the Mediterranean

LIDO Acoustic Research (8:00) Although the negative effects of underwater noise pollution may seem straightforward, scientific data is limited indeed. Researchers use hydrophones (microphones designed for underwater use) to collect new data in deep waters, up to thousands of metres below sea level. An array of such devices can also be used to locate the source of any sound nearby. Arrays deployed on the sea bed create an acoustic observatory that does not interfere with marine life, compared with using ordinary listening devices aboard a ship. It also allows for continuous access to data.

Such acoustic observatories have been installed as part of the European demonstration mission called LIDO (LIstening to the Deep Ocean environment). The sound data collected is sent to onshore laboratories via optical fibre cables. Sounds made by whales and dolphins can be heard in real time, with a range of several kilometres. LIDO is coordinated from the Laboratory of Applied Bioacoustics in Vilanova i la Geltrú, near Barcelona. It is here where all the sound data is analysed. The sound data is sent from eleven acoustic observatories across Europe that together are known as ESONET (the European Sea-Floor Observatories Network).