What to do with a few minutes of free time, in a minivan?
Every sound heard in the above video, originated from that old minivan.
I had been interested in creating an instrument from found sounds so, when I gave my situation a few seconds of thought, I brought a portable recorder with me and, during my son’s piano lesson, I recorded the sounds of the van’s automatic rear lift gate and side door opening and closing.
Next, I needed software, free software, to help me transform raw samples in to usable instrument. The workflow I discovered while creating this found-sound-sampled-based instrument:
- Cut samples using Audacity
- Use Audacity’s equalizer effect on a number of copies of the sameple, to create a more “pitched” version of the clip that retains some of the texture of the original recording. In this case, I started with the raw sound of the side door, mid-traverse, on its way from fully open to closed. I drew a curve in the equalizer to effect a kind of band-pass filter around a musically useful pitch.
- Load these samples in the TX16Wx
The role of bass drum, is filled by a clip of the side door settling in the the fully open position. The back beat is actually the latching of the door.
The raw samples are available on freesound.org
I have been working on a brass quintet movement for some time now. Last night, I downloaded Musescore, and used it to create a nicer score and parts than I had made with other means. I even made a video, partly aided by the screen capture facility built in to Musescore.