Slice of Life: RoomGameSounds Bonus Track

(This is for the Slice of Life challenge, hosted by Two Writing Teachers. We write on Tuesdays about the small moments in the larger perspective … or is that the larger perspective in the smaller moments? You write, too.)

During a freewheeling exploration of possible song ideas for a recent musical project — A Whale’s Lantern: Field Trip — I put forth a suggestion that my partner and I work with some past audio sounds of a classroom of students working to hack the game of chess.

The theme of the collaborative music project was ‘school.’ I tinkered with something to show what I was thinking — with bass and synth and some effects on the student voices to expand the atmosphere — but we decided to go in another direction instead, cranking out a three minute rocker called Outcast Kid.

Still, I liked how the use of student voices informed a piece of music. Or might have, if we had developed it further. Take a listen:

I still like how the sounds of the kids becomes the atmospheric element of this groove. You can just hear my voice, asking questions of groups of students, and then explaining the games they were making with a modified chess board and assorted other things, like dice.

Peace (sounds strange),

  1. Your creativity is boundless, Kevin! The assignment , the music..I am amazed at the energy you bring to your work. Thanks for sharing your talents with us!

    • I had the audio file from when I walked around the room during this activity.
      I took that audio into Soundtrap (but it could have been Garageband or any audio editor) and added in reverb and other effects to the crowd voices, to give them a sense of overlapping atmosphere. I wanted the voices to spill into each other.
      The bass and drums and synths … I wrote those and played those on the computer (in my case, still in Soundtrap) inspired as I listened to the voices.
      Thanks for asking.

  2. Your natural inclination toward sound and music always amazes me. It makes me think about my own inclinations. Google News recently changed their format to be image-focused (with fewer resources) and I’ve already stopped using it– I scan language much faster than I have patience for viewing stuff. Makes me think– again– on how my teaching responds to my students’ inclinations. Makes me wonder if any of them have thought about it.

    • Interesting … I guess my ears do guide me but I am also just as apt to make something visual, or with words. I guess it’s all about being curious and trying new things, and then wondering how it might help me think as a writer.

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