Computer Music Studio : Project1A
- Music with Natural Sounds *sketch*

1) Sound sketches on CD - presentation of possible forms for the final composition.

Due date: 2/2 - present in class.

Description: At this point you should have a good recording or set of recordings you want to work with. If not, or if you want to augment what you have then check out a field recorder and do some more recording. For 2/2, I would like you to have a set of sketches exploring your sounds and doing trial mixes. Locate sounds that create a good background texture, sounds that can be used for their pitch or rhythmic qualities, sounds that can be succesfully altered with different digital signal processing techniques, sounds that mix well etc. Start to think about the possibilities of how these sounds can create a musical structure. In class you will play your sounds and describe your ideas for structure. Please *Don't* bring in completed pieces - just example mixes.

Step 1: transfer your recordings to the computer. If you used compact flash or another digital format, simply copy the files over. if you have sounds on DAT then you need to follow these steps.

Step 2: review your recordings and locate good spots you want to work with. You can use "Peak" or some other sound editor to edit out good spots and make a set of soundfiles that are easier to use then the huge source files. name the files well and keep track of your material.

Step 3: start to experiment with the qualities of the soundfiles - how certain parts can be extracted for rhythmic use and how the sounds react to different sorts of processing. using Protools, select and bounce to disk your sketches and create an audio cd to play in class. You may use another mixing environment, but you must maintain the same quality and control that the protools users have. I recommend that people use Protools to develop experience with that environment.


Important concepts:

What makes musical form. How can recorded sounds be used to create musical form.

Hardware settings: 44.1K samples/second, 16 bit samples, .aiff or .wav files.

Protools session Data files, bouncing to disk, and creating a musical CD.


possible approaches:

* Soundscape Composition: Following Hildegard Westerkamp’s definition (see the reading on-line), a composition which uses as it’s material a recorded environment, not abstracted, making audible it’s relationship to the original source, or to a place, time, or situation.

* Musique Concrete Composition: A sound piece which makes use of a recorded object, environment, instrument, etc, as sound material for abstract composition. Here the interest is perhaps more in musical form and structure.

* Single Sound Source Composition: A sound piece made by transforming and generating material out of a single sound source, such as a drop of water, a car engine, a dog barking, etc.

* Other ideas that interest YOU. Your composition can be environmental/ ambient or be based on traditional musical structures/ chords/ rhythms etc.