WTM #1020: Birdvogeloiseau

wReck thiS meSS ~ Radio Patapoe 88.3 ~ Amsterdam
Ethno-Illogical Psycho-Radiographies
PTP  88.3FM
9 juni 2008 // 17.00-19.00

A bird does not sing because it has an answer. It sings because it has a song.
• Chinese Proverb

The bluebird carries the sky on his back.
• Henry David Thoreau

Fete au Tyrol > Emile Decotty [1]

Le Roi de la Montagne > Emile Decotty [1]
The Ugliest, Bitterest, Coldest Dreary Place I’ve Ever Been > Petunia [2]
Easter Morning Birds > Hans A. Traber [3]
While I Was Walking… part 4 > Miya Masaoka & San Francisco Choral Society [4]
For Birds, Planes & Cello 1 > Miya Masaoka & Joan Jeanrenaud [5]
Belgrave, Australia > Jonas Braasch [6]
Marsh Warbler > Hans A. Traber [3]
For Birds, Planes & Cello 2 > Miya Masaoka & Joan Jeanrenaud [5]
Crystal Rainforest > Crystal Rainforest [7]
For Birds, Planes & Cello 3 > Miya Masaoka & Joan Jeanrenaud [5]
Aan de Bosrand > Hans A. Traber [3]
You cannot prevent the birds of sorrow from flying over your head, but you can prevent them from building nests in your hair.
• Chinese Proverb 
CouCou Bavarois > Emile Decotty [1]
For Birds, Planes & Cello 4 > Miya Masaoka & Joan Jeanrenaud [5]
Pak – Then > Vladimir Vaclavek [8]
Nangpa La: Birds Feeding on Biscuits > Geir Jenssen [9]
For Birds, Planes & Cello 5 > Miya Masaoka & Joan Jeanrenaud [5]
Felt Mountain > Goldfrapp [10]
For Birds, Planes & Cello 6 > Miya Masaoka & Joan Jeanrenaud [5]
Yodelin Bird > Donah Hyland [11]
For Birds, Planes & Cello 6 > Miya Masaoka & Joan Jeanrenaud [5]
Floating World 3 > Annea Lockwood [12]
For Birds, Planes & Cello 7 > Miya Masaoka & Joan Jeanrenaud [5]
Nightingale > Hans A. Traber [3]
Conqueror Dub > King Tubby [13]
Icterine Warbler > Hans A. Traber [3]
Mirrors and Cds-reflective surfaces attract birds and are fun in the sunlight. Make mobiles and hang from tree limbs!
• Jane Parr-Whitehead, from Garden Art…from Trash? 
Red Bird: Lis to Birdsong > Trevor Wishart [14]
For Birds, Planes & Cello 8 > Miya Masaoka & Joan Jeanrenaud [5]
Doorway 14 > Kyron [15]
Listen to the Mocking Bird > Kenny Roberts [16]
For Birds, Planes & Cello 9 > Miya Masaoka & Joan Jeanrenaud [5]
Yodeling Whistler > Ronnie Ronalde [17]
A Moscou > Le Tone vs Judith [18]
Bird Trigger > Blurt [19]
For Birds, Planes & Cello 10 > Miya Masaoka & Joan Jeanrenaud [5]
Birds Bath > Greetje Bijma [20]
Great Reed Warbler > Hans A. Traber [3]
Cu-Cu-Rru-cu-cu Paloma > Harry Belafonte [21]
For Birds, Planes & Cello 10 > Miya Masaoka & Joan Jeanrenaud [5]
Annazone > Anna Maria Kiefer vs Leo Kupper [22]
Kipzak > Zaai [23]
Chicken Yodel > Owen Blundell vs Rex Dallas [24]
Yodeling Whistler > Ronnie Ronalde [17]
The Whistling Bird > Lottie Kimbrough & Winston Holmes [25]

“Market, market huge and nationwide. Just one New York merchant sold 18,000 pigeons a day, and there were many more like him. Cities and towns all over just gobbled pigeons up. A delicacy! Trainloads of ‘em were chugging all over America… The last known wild pigeon was shot in… 1900 by a small boy in Ohio (a future president, rumor has it).”

• Jack Collom, Arguing with Something Plato Said

[1] Emile Decotty au Tyrol / Trianon vinyl.

[2] The Ugliest, Bitterest, Coldest Dreary Place I’ve Ever Been / Petuniamusic. Thanx Merijn.

[3] Vogelzang & Listen to the Birds / Europese Fonoclub – Amsterdam. Bird song field recordings.

[4] While I Was Walking, I Heard a Sound / SolitaryB <www.solitaryb.com>. also with The Ensemble of the Piedmont Choirs, Sound Color Ensemble, among others.

[5] For Birds, Planes & Cello / SolitaryB <www.solitaryb.com>. Amazing CD of stimulating-relaxing ambience. Composition and found sound. Captures the co-existence of urban-modern life with that of the secret existence of birds everywhere.

[6] Global Reflections / Deep Listening.

[7] Buddha Beats – Tranquility /

[8] Ingwe / Indies [Czech].

[9] Cho Oyu 8201m – Field Recordings from Tibet / Touch.

[10] Felt Mountain / Mute.

[11] Yodelin Country / Heritage.

[12] Thousand Year Dreaming / Pogus.

[13] Crucial Dub / Deltamusic.

[14] Musicworks 98 / Musicworks.

[15] Doorways / Black Note.

[16] The livin’ yodelin’ jumpin’ legend on a 45.

[17] English-Aussie bird whistlin’ yodelin’ legend.

[18] In Bloom 2 compilation.

[19] The hardest working musical genius in show business.

[20] Sit Down, Listen / BVHaast.

[21] The Best of Harry Belafonte / RCA vinyl.

[22] Ways of the Voice / Pogus.

[23] Very funny TV comedy about boredom on the wet planes and dikes of Friesland.

[24] Duelling Yodellers / Selection.

[25] Kansas City Blues / Document.

Check out Jack Collom’s Blue Heron Yodel, a great talking poem that fuses cosmic insight, with political critique and observations of nature in a kind of audio-superior extension of a Gary Snyder riff. He has also done several books of poetry and bird sighting observations.

This show was for the birds. To cleanse for a moment the preoccupations with things intense and miserable. Life is good but it also sucks. Amazing when you are listening for it or actually just plainly surprised by a bird’s song, you realize how much background “music” there is even in a near urban or dense suburban place. Even in a windy street suburb just outside a city like where my mother lives, you can see birds that you have no idea what their names are. And yet, if you just redirect your focus you will be amazed how much your body is tuning out just to survive. In NY, for instance, you need to tune out stimulus because if you don’t you are overrun with data and it will just remain unprocessed, build up and mold into stress. So it is only when you are making audio recordings / soundscapes in NY or are specifically talking about noise that you are aware of how much your body is secretly absorbing.

People are in denial of this or would rather not think about it. One of the most amazing downsides of urban living is this exposure to unwanted sound or noise. You cannot even as an artist manage to ironically or gebruiks/utility turn it around enough before the noise wins despite your best efforts. The noise musicians play have not converted noise into music but the overbearing noise has been so overshadowing, powerful and omnipresent that we begin to speak its language. So, it is not so much cathartic for us as listeners or for them as musicians as it is increased domination of the realm of unwanted noise that all we can do with is try to put a smiley artistic face on and call it compositional noise or whatever.

There is a great bibliography sent to me by either Rene van Peer [who has done several Dutch public radio thematic programs on birds] or it was sent to me by Jack Collom. The 2 really should meet some time.

HUMAN IMITATION OF BIRD SOUND by Jeffrey Boswall & Robert Barton + A Discography of Human Imitation of Bird Sound by Peter Copeland & Jeffrey Boswall, British Institute of Recorded Sound, 1983.

It is said and proposed and seems possible that the yodel is something that developed in imitation of animal sounds, specifically birds. Several yodelers are also great whistlers: Ronnie Ronalde and Bobbejaan Schoepen. Both sometimes combine whistling and yodeling in the same song. Much exotica includes human imitation of bird calls [Martin Denny]  An amazing ‘fact’ I once heard is that the Mockingbird can learn some 100+ sounds and if located in a suburban area, can actually learn the sound of a lawn mower. There is a whole group of bird whistlers and they have an annual contest, one that was not long ago – I forget the name – documented in a film and it showed the intensity and seriousness of the contestants. The contest was finally won by an outsider, a Dutchman.

“Within the field of Western music, species’ voices most commonly mimicked include the Cuckoo, Nightingale, Quail, dove, hen and lark [I would add the hoohoo of the owl]. Among the most ornithologically inclined composers are Beethoven, Handel, Hayden, Glinka, Mendelssohn, Liszt, Mahler and Messiaen.”

Coincidentally, they are among the classical composers who are also inclined to be inspired by yodeling and incorporate references [non-electrified sampling?] to yodeling in compositions…

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