Disquiet Junto Project 0284: Creative Commonfield

The project this week was to make an ambient recording based on source audio from the artist Chris Kallmyer. Junto coordinator Marc Weidenbaum writes, “Among Kallmyer’s sonic objects made from the St. Louis clay are ceramic bowls. When making a piece of music from the source audio please do the following: (A) use no additional source audio, (B) aim for a sound that is just as gentle as the source audio, (C) consider using stereo effects to reflect the circular shape of the bowls.”

In keeping with reflection upon the circular, I started by slicing the 97m09s source file into 12 x 8 minute sections: think divisions of a clock, or circle of fifths. The final minute and nine of the source file was silent, so nothing was lost in the slicing.

From Kallmyer’s website, “Chris attempted to create a kind of ‘future folk music’ through hyper-regional materials and communally authored music.” Following from this hyper-regional material viewpoint, I used Audacity to convert each section to a U-Law raw file, then Irfanview to open as raw planar image and save to bmp, resulting in 12 x RRR, GGG, BBB regional remixes. An example of how this works: this process applied to an 8 tone row of 0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7 recorded in common time will produce a bitmap that, when converted back to stereo in Audacity (and sped up by a factor of 3) plays 0,3,6,1,4,7,2,8 with each note’s original pitch and speed, but in one-third the track time due to overlapping.

I lined up my 12 regional remixes in Audacity, discarded 3 that I felt were confusing the mood, panned a few tracks left and right to enhance the stereo effect, tweaked the levels on the frequency spectrum, and poured into one-third of an 8 minute cup.

This is my first official contribution to the Junto, and it has been loads of fun. Thanks for the challenge, Marc.

More on this 284th weekly Disquiet Junto project — “Creative Commonfield: Make ambient music from the sound of clay bowls. — at:


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More from Kallmyer at: http://www.chriskallmyer.com/