Alice Planas and I have been investigating the idea of speech as music. The following is a summary of our in-class presentation from Friday, April 6.
- We’ve both done field recordings
- Alice interested in the creative potential in the raw content she’s been capturing
- I want to see what can be done compositionally with speech as a “generator,” for melody; many people seem to have musical voices
- Tried two approaches initially: compositional & computational
- Attempted to write melodies from in-class recordings by listening and transcribing. This is time-consuming — and made further difficult by the distraction of the meaning of the spoken words. Perhaps it is easier when you don’t know the people who are speaking or don’t care about the content of the discussion… but in our case we were too close.
- Attempted to create a pitch-following patch in MAX/MSP. The idea behind pitch-following was to separate the frequency spectrum into separate slots – ideally a half-step apart and then track which slot had the greatest energy level.
- Fiddle – MAX/MSP patch for continuous pitch tracking
- Paper: Strategies for Continuous Pitch and Amplitude Tracking in Realtime Interactive Improvisation Software
- My earlier experiments
Larry Austin – 3 tracks audio portrait of Joan La Barabara (obtained at Avery Fischer Media Center in Bobst Library)
Joan La Barbara – 73 poems
Thomas Buckner – “His Tone of Voice at 37″
Paul DeMarinis – Music as a second Language:“An Appeal”
Laurie Anderson – “NY Social Life” (requires NYU ID/password)
Bobby McFerrin http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LtXrKo8Btfc