Here is how this piece was made. I played a 12 string electric guitar with a Wampler sustain pedal and Roland Space Echo pedal. Normalized, and reversed that track. Then I used Melodyne to extract a polyphonic midi representation – more or less that same as what the guitar sounded like. Then I added a midi echo effect that is called echo delay which also has a swing setting. The midi output of that was chained into Sonar’s track midi quantization and additional arpeggiator. This midi stream was then into to Kontakt with the tuning set to the harmonic series as show in the photo below.
Micronation is an audio experiment where I took a ~30 seconds of aeolian harp captured during a high wind event and used Melodyne to determine each of four root notes by frequency. [The strings were tuned justly by ear but drift after several hours exposure to the elements outside, especially due to temperature changes] Then I used Paul’s Extreme Sound Stretch to isolation each vertical harmonic structure based upon the roots determined by Melodyne (10 harmonics high by 25 cents wide)and exporting the four files. Then I used Sonar to sequence the exported wav files and applied reverb, EQ, and tape simulation. The experimentally determined roots are 92 Hz, 118 Hz[59/46], 140 Hz[35/23], and 184 Hz [ 2/1 the octave of 92].
off tracks age is an aeolian harp sample that was recomposed by using Melodyne 4’s adaptive Just Intonation and rhythm normalization functions and then the exported result was modified using Native Instrument’s Guitar Rig 5 and Cakewalk Sonar’s Breverb.
September – a collaboration of Christiane Offenbar, Meolog, and myself. All of the audio is derived from Christiane’s singing of Meolog’s poem which is below. The processing created tracks that were based on harmonic series started on 27.5 cents, 41.25 cents, and parallel tracks in a fugue at the octave, minor 3rd, 4th, and 5th.
Bat Bomb is part of an ongoing series of experiments to try to learn how to make aeolian harp type sounds. In this case I used Uhe’s Brazille with a patch that manipulated the overtone by adjusting the modwheel. Using my Linnstrument in MPE mode I was able to independently adjust the overtone (13 in total per note) by moving my finger in the “Y” dimension (which was routed to the modwheel channel control) and the root note from Carlos “Super JI” tuning by selecting the pad I played. The original patch had a lot of high end to it and are some time listening to it I decided to turn the filters down to try to get closer to a sine wave. Then I experimented with tempo. I find the 60 BPM version the most interesting at the time I am writing this post though there are some interesting peculiarities of each version. And, no, I don’t feel that came close to the aeolian harp, yet I think the experiment has its merit in learning sound design technique and audio result. Of course YMMV. I present the audio in the order I find most interesting. And yes, the bat bomb was real – click the photo to read about it as you listen.
Here is the audio spectrum analysis of the 60 BPM version. Click to enlarge.
The above aeolian harp sample (from 2014-11-07 21:12:51 pm) had an interesting sonority to my ears. I wanted to find out what the chord was so that I could reproduce it. So I put it into Melodyne to analyze the chord. As I listened to the file and looked at the display there seemed to be a bit of a disconnect. So I dissected the sample (Sections labeled A through H by ear – there are two disjunct groups) into individual files. Then I normalized them and ran them through Melodyne once more. The resulting sound files and analysis are below. You will notice that in some cases what was a single tone in the original now breaks into more than one note. In other cases more than one note is heard but Melodyne doesn’t show them as separate – I think in these cases the program analysis is tagging them as part of the harmonics which is shown below the main window of the program. Since an aeolian harp is a special case where the harmonics of this is a special case, interesting though it may be. Most of the dead air was removed from the A through H audio samples.
standing in the cornfield you watch the corn grow and
the searing hot days pass on to night to day to night to day,
taller and taller, until you are one with all there is…
for you are one of them…
your roots dig soil,
your stalk stretches greedily for every ray of the murdering sun
in the anguish of a midsummer’s thirst…