Waves of Waves

July 15, 2012 12:31 PM

"Waves of Waves" explores the sounds which constantly and invisibly lap at our feet, as observed from one particular vantage point on the Westside of Los Angeles. The piece reveals the simultaneously fragile and expansive nature of territories and communities.

"Waves of Waves" is a tone poem composed for the Listen Up, Los Angeles! event on July 18, 2012.

In observance of World Listening Day, members of the LULA! collective were invited to submit original works on the theme of "L.A.'s sonic environment, by neighborhood." The call for submissions specified that the piece should "[celebrate] the practice of listening as it relates to the world around us." Producers had roughly two weeks to conceptualize and produce the piece.

As the founder and curator of the ShortWaveMusic project, my work revolves around preserving the music and folklore of world cultures as transmitted by regional and international broadcasters. Since 2005, I've traveled the world capturing hundreds of these broadcasts for posterity in a one-of-a-kind archive of radiophonic history.

In keeping with my life's work, I chose to do a portrait of my neighborhood of Del Rey by investigating the sundry music and speech heard via radio from my rooftop. Over six days (July 3-8) I recorded nine hours' worth of transmissions, from Ham radio conversations to aeronautical weather bulletins; from Spanish preachers to Chinese advertisements; from big rig truckers to coded espionage broadcasts. I limited each recording to five minutes in order to maximize the breadth of material I could receive.

"Waves of Waves" is the result of one week spent meditating on the collected recordings. Every sound heard in the piece is pulled, chopped, mutated, and processed from these broadcasts; no additional material was used. The piece is meant to evoke the experience of tuning a radio across the bands and pulling in disparate sound from all walks of life, colliding and overlapping in an oceanic tide of language, music, and noise.

posted by mykescipark (1 comment total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

Great stuff mate, really love the ambient sounds you have created, and the interplay of the vocal radio recordings over the top is really nicely done, and the chosen clips work real well with your theme.
posted by marienbad at 3:27 PM on July 15, 2012

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