Sounds from a life in Rockland County.

Ma's House in Palisades

As some follows of Wire to the Ear know I moved from Berlin, Germany back to New York about three months ago. I bought an apartment in the city that needs a complete renovation. Not only do I have a new apartment to renovate I also bought a two car garage I am turning into what I hope will be an amazing studio. Because the apartment needs a complete gut my wife and I have been staying in the upstairs apartment in my mother’s house in Rockland County. Rockland is a typical New York suburb just about 20 minutes north of the city. It’s actually quite nice and I am very familiar with the area because I grew up here. The photo above is Ma’s house.

When I was in College at Suny Purchase I took a class called Social Sciences in the Arts. I never forgot a lesson the professor thought was important. The basic gist was that no artist made any art without an audience in mind. This ties into my Rockland chat above because I’ve been doodling a lot music wise on my laptop over the past three months and realize I am making tunes for my mother and Doug (her husband). Little diddy’s about the car they own, a song about the fact that my mother is top sales lady at her office and a song about Milo their dog. Milo is incredible cute (see photo below) but without a doubt is the boss here. He has these treats called “Dingos” which he demands often. When I say he demands them I mean it. A few of us will be in the kitchen talking and he will walk in, bark and growl loudly until someone gives him a Dingo. So without further ado here’s the song I did called “Milo the Bad Dog”:

Milo the Bad Dog

Please keep in mind this is no way an official song or anything that I will ever release for sale. It’s just a fun blip that took about 40 minutes last night. I used the few simple plug-ins I have on my laptop and I sang in the bedroom using the Macbook Pro’s built-in mic. The drums are an Ableton Impluse with D16 Devastor on them. The synths are an old ReFx Vanguard and Fabfilter Twin.

Today when I got back from the gym the birds in the driveway were extra loud so I took a photo of the tree they were all in and recorded 30 seconds of audio for you. I used the Griffin iTalk app on my iPhone. You can hear the birds and cars going by on Route 340.

Birds in the Trees

Something tells me when my apartment is ready I’m going to miss suburban life.

Related post: Recordings from my day yesterday.

Recordings from my day yesterday.

I had to go to the Social Security office in downtown Brooklyn. I took the 4 Train back into NYC. I feel at home when I hear, “Stand clear of the closing doors please.”.

Julie and I needed to waste some time before we met friends for Julie’s birthday so we stopped by Guitar Center to visit my friend Dan who works there. You can hear some Reggae in the background. I think all music stores around the world sound incredible similar.

My friend Leslie (on the right) needed to get a new piercing so we stopped by one of New York’s famous Tattoo parlors Adorned. I like the song that’s playing. Does anyone know what it is? Buzz buzz!

Time for the celebration so we head to Supper. It’s a great Italian restaurant owned by Frank Prisinzano who became well known in NYC with one of his other spots simply called “Franks”. The food was great but as you can hear it was well loud. My poor musicians ears would have preferred a much quieter place but this is Manhattan on a Friday night.

All the recordings were done on my iPhone using the Griffin iTalk application. You can download and use these recordings for whatever you like. Here’s a download link for the 16bit aiff files. Included is a bonus audio file recorded on the F-train:

http://www.wiretotheear.com/audio/NYC_Day.zip

NYC Day by Oliver Chesler is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License. Based on a work at www.wiretotheear.com.

Related post: Free audio recordings from the Berlin S-Bahn.

Sunday Sounds: Two Hours Before Midnight

Before I got picked up to play my gig at 12PM on New Year’s Eve I went to the bar of the Apollo Art Hotel in Brugge, Belgium to get a coffee. I used my iPhone to snap a photo of the other working musician in the room. I also used my iPhone and the Griffin iTalk app to record a little of the bar sound and in the distance you can hear the keyboard player twinkling some bell sounds.

When I returned to the hotel around 3:00 AM he was definetly drunk, standing and singing loudly. These are the guys buying all those workstation keyboards. He was pretty talented but I guess taste accounts for a lot in life. He definetly worked harder than I did.

Audio samples from the Griffin iTalk for iPhone.

I’ve wanted to pick up one of those little flash audio recorders for a while. You know the ones such as the popular Zoom H2 and pretty looking Sony PCM-D50. I never got around to grabbing one and I’m really glad. It turns out my iPhone makes a pretty sweet recorder.

I downloaded the Griffin iTalk app from the iTunes store and recorded a few clips. iTalk records AIFF files using the iPhone’s built in mic. You hit a nice large red record button and it displays a green “recording” symbol and an input meter. If you pause and start recordings and they remain in the same file. You can name and add notes to your files on the phone. To transfer the recordings to your Mac you install a small program called iTalk Sync which once launched detects your iPhone. A few clicks and you can drag the files from the iTalk Sync window to your desktop. Everything works smooth and easy but how does it sound? I will let you be the judge:

My mother tells me about her day at work:

My step father Doug talks about the weather:

On the check out line at ShopRite (a supermarket):

Some vocals I recorded with Julie for a book reading. I added a gate, compressor and eq on this one:

You can download the 24bit wavs: click here

The main “wow” factor here for me is the fact that I have my phone with me everywhere I go so therefore I now have a neat recorder everywhere I go too!

So what do you think?