Occasional posts on subjects including field recording, London history and literature, other websites worth looking at, articles in the press, and news of sound-related events.

07 June 2009

'Why audio recording?'

THE INTENTION WAS to write a post about sound recording compared to photography, why the ‘we live in a visual culture’ argument isn’t a very good one, and the challenges in getting people to listen to non-musical sounds over the internet.

But this was plainly just a long-winded way to avoid answering a more personal question: why bother to make sound recordings in the first place? Luckily, Martin Paling gets straight to the point in a post on his website:

* I like recording because it puts you right into the scene.
* I find it can be more evocative than smell or sight.
* It feels less intrusive than photography.
* It makes me listen.

Although I’ve used the term recording I prefer listening. The recording is very much a by-product of the listening. Hearing is passive, listening is active. If you sit for a few moments and listen anywhere, anyplace you might be surprised at what you find.

That pretty much sums it up for me too. Thanks, Martin.