A collaborative post with introduction by
ASSISTANT EDITOR, BOOM BOX POST
This month's collaborative post dives into the everyday lives of the talented editors here at Boom Box Post. For this challenge I asked the editors to open their ears and listen to the sounds they take for granted everyday, and attempt to capture a unique window into their lives with sound. I sent each editor home with a small handheld recorder(unless they had their own) and encouraged them to capture a fresh take on a sound they hear in their daily lives. The results were exciting and surprising, let's take a listen!
Our prompt for this project was to record a sound that is part of our every day life. I occasionally ride my bike to and from Boom Box and figured that this would be a great excuse to record my commute home. I realized that I was meant to focus on an interesting or creative new take on whatever it was I decided to record, but I figured since I had never recorded a bike before that just a straight recording would be interesting enough for me. I taped the recorder to my bike, with the mics pointed toward the gears (since I noticed they tend to rattle a bit as I ride) and hoped for the best as I pedaled home. The clip you have here are various sections of my commute that I found to be either the most interesting or useful for future editorial. Also, as an added bonus, a motorcycle passed by me on my ride home and I got a pretty decent recording of it, so I thought I would include that here as well.
I came across this sound while washing the dishes a couple months ago. They're just your basic, metal mixing bowls from Target with some water in them. As I would wash the dishes, they would clank together and create not only this really cool, almost bell like sound, but also this very interesting resonance. Depending on how much water is in the bowls or even in the bowls themselves, are suspended in water, you can create some pretty distinct sounds. What really fascinates me about the sounds that they can create, in the resonance and how the sound fluctuates in the bowl.
Since the theme for this blog post was everyday sounds, I took to my bedroom to see what I could use to record something interesting. I settled on my comb since it is in fact something I use everyday. I started by rubbing my fingers through the teeth and tried to record that sound with as many variations as possible. I sectioned off where the teeth differed in size and record those separate from each other, as well as in combination. To add different degrees of variation, I also recording different amounts of pressure and speeds. I would also like to point out that my recording was done with my home rig, using a Tascam US-1200 and a Blue Encore 100i.
The sound that I recorded from my everyday life is an old box fan that I have in my apartment. The air conditioner is in the main living area, so it can get quite hot in our bedroom (especially in the summer months). We keep a box fan in our hallway to direct the cold air into our bedroom and that is the sound that you hear! I’ve owned the fan for a few years now, and ever since we moved to The Valley (for you non-Los Angeles folks, it is often much hotter in The Valley than downtown LA or Hollywood, for example) The fan has really seen some action, and has recently started making a slight choppy sound. We’ve gotten used to it so it does not bother us too much, but it is something that I hear every day and never really even pay attention to, so I thought it would be neat to record the sound for this week’s blog post!
Maybe it's because shows like Ren and Stimpy really piqued my interest in sound design, but I'm always fascinated when a specific sound - all by its own accord - is "cringeworthy." In particular, I find chewing / slurping noises both intriguing and repulsive - which explains my simultaneous amusement and horror when I realized that one of the cornerstone sounds of my home would be my housemate's 12-year-old, deaf Chow grooming himself. Since he is definitely not a cat, this grooming ritual involves what can only be described as "enthusiastic guttural slurping." As disgusting as that sounds, I had a hunch that if I put my phone's microphone right up against his sopping wet slobbers, the result would only be even more "cringeworthy." And the recording certainly does not disappoint.
For this project I decided to get a little philosophical and gain an appreciation for common sounds close to home, that I may take for granted. I decided to walk around my front yard and find the perfect spot to record the ambiance of my house. I settled for the sounds of crickets near my palm trees. In the middle of my recording a massive jet flew overhead, rather than scrapping it I kept it to remind us all that in this day and age the natural and the artificial are closely connected.