EMERGENCY BROADCAST – THIS IS NOT A DRILL

Clip on SoundCloud

People are scurrying around the newsroom, frantically waving papers around and yelling. All televisions are turned to one channel: surveillance. Mr. Hobbs, the manager of the station, is trying to calm people down but it is no use. She has discovered the truth. Or we think she did. Or she is on the brink of discovering the news. Anyways, it doesn’t matter. My life’s, all our lives’, work gone down the drain. I suppose her life has been in the drain since she was born, though. Maybe it’s what we deserve.

I can’t help but remember when this all started. There were protests and court cases, and eventually we won. I never thought we were harming her or depriving her of anything. We gave her the perfect life. People would kill to have her life. People would also kill to set her free. She is free what am I saying? Mr. Hobbs is calling. How are we going to fix it this time?


This assignment is similar to the 4.5 star Fictional Radio Ad audio assignment. However, instead of an advertisement, I made a breaking news announcement/ emergency broadcast. I chose this type of assignment because I wanted to incorporate an emergent feeling to my audio, and what better way to do that than an alarm and an urgent voice? I wanted to put the listener in a real world situation, so I chose to do this kind of recording instead of something like a radio show where it could seem fictional. I wanted this “broadcast” to seem real.

The first step is to think about what you’re going to say and write a short script so the recording sounds professional with no stutters. Then, I searched for an emergency broadcast sound on freesound.org. Search for EAS Alarm to get the sound I used. Once you have found the right recording, click the yellow download button.

Then, open Garageband and choose the voice option.

Next, insert your first sound effect into Garageband. I originally saved the downloaded clip to my desktop and dragged it over into Garageband.

Play the recording by pressing the arrow play button. When the playhead gets to a place you want it after the initial sound effect, press the red circle record button to start recording your broadcast. After you are done speaking, press the record button again to stop recording. Then press the square stop button to stop the playhead from moving.

I then inserted the original EAS Alarm sound effect again at the end of my recording by dragging it from my desktop into Garageband.

At this point I thought I was done, but the recording seemed lacking. I decided I needed a bumper while I was speaking to give it a real breaking news effect. I searched freesound.org for background music and news music until I found one I liked.

This was a really long clip (45 minutes) and it was going to take too long to download. Instead of downloading the clip I inserted a new track into my Garageband file by going to Track > New Track With Duplicate Settings. This creates another area for you to record beneath the current recordings so the current ones don’t get overwritten. Once my new track was created I selected it in the middle panel (mine was called Audio Track 11, and yours will be something similar). Then, have both windows open and click record on Garageband, then click play on freesound.org. I was only recording the bumper during the time I was talking.

After you are happy with the recording, you can save it by going to File > Save As and entering a name for your file. To export to SoundCloud go to Share > Song to SoundCloud…. If you want to save the file as an mp3, you can go to Share > Export Song to Disk… and choose the mp3 option.

 

 

If Emma Watson Says it then it Must be True

Take a song and some speech and remix both. Make it meaningful and give it a message.

Souncloud

I think every woman I know has fallen victim to gender inequality, whether that be a cat-call, unequal pay or respect in the work place, or much worse. It is time that everyone comes together to better our world for women and for us all. There is literally no downside when women are equal to men. Now for some personal anecdotes that may allow others who have not experienced these inequalities to see it through my eyes.

Once I was walking through town with my friends on summer vacation. We were on a road trip after we had just graduated high school. While we were crossing the street (it was evening but still light out and there were plenty of other pedestrians) we passed by a U-Haul moving van with two men inside. Their windows were open and as we passed by the driver said to us “Hey, wanna get in the back?” What a disgusting and inappropriate comment to say to anyone, let alone 17 and 18 year old girls. My mom’s boss told her she was overreacting because she used an exclamation point in an urgent email. I have listened to my male friends make jokes about and judge women’s bodies, and then was told to “not be so sensitive” when I told them to stop. I asked my boyfriend the other day if he was ever taught to hold his car keys in his fist, pointing out through his fingers so if anyone were to try and harm him he would be able to defend himself. He looked at me very confused and said no. Of course he wouldn’t have been taught that. Boys aren’t taught things like that. But it was one of the first things I was taught when I got my license.


I chose this 4.5 star assignment because it was similar to the last assignment I had done and I wanted to further my practice with editing audio together. I was hoping that my mistakes in the previous assignment would lend me some guidance in attempting this one. I was Googling around for short speeches, and nothing was really resonating with me. Then I stumbled across Emma Watson’s UN speech. I had seen it when it first came out and while watching it I was quickly reminded how important her speech is for everyone to hear. I knew I would choose this speech, as feminism is something I loudly and proudly support.

Next I had to choose a song. I didn’t want to choose a song without lyrics, because that would 1) make the assignment too easy, and 2) not give as much depth and meaning to the final product. I chose Imagine by John Lennon because it is a slow song with a really similar message to Watson’s speech. I was originally going to cut out the lyrics as Watson was speaking and only play lyrics in pauses, but I liked how the whole song sounded layered underneath her speech. I think it adds hopefulness to her speech. I chose Imagine because to me it has the same message as Watson’s speech: imagine the world as a better place, where everyone lives in harmony and equality.


To create this in Garageband, I first downloaded the songs using a youtube to mp3 site . Just copy and paste the URL of the Youtube video into the website, click start then download.  I save the mp3 files to my desktop so they’re easier to import into Garageband later.

Next, open Garageband and choose voice. (I use voice for everything, it is the least cluttered interface and gets the job done)

Click and drag the two audio files from the desktop into Garageband. Then trim the audio to where you want the speech and song to begin and end. To do this, select the file you want to cut by clicking on it. Move the vertical white line to the spot you want to cut, then click edit > split regions at playhead. This will split the audio box that is selected at the line. You can then select the parts of the file you don’t want and just hit delete on the keyboard.

Now we have to adjust the volume. I wanted the background music to be quieter than the speech. To do this click show/hide animation, which are the two connected dots highlighted blue in the picture below.

Once show/hide animation is selected, when you click on a track a yellow line will appear. This represents the level of volume.

Click and drag the line to move it up or down. To fade out the end of the song, scroll over to where the track ends. Then click a few seconds before and right where the track ends (basically where you want the start and end of the fade to be). This will create two little yellow dots. Click and drag the last dot all the way down. This diagonal line represents the volume gradually being turned down.

Then, save by going to file > save as and upload the song to Soundcloud by going to share > song to Soundcloud.

To export the .band file to an mp3, go to share > export song to disk and choose the mp3 option.

Dear Jolene…

Find a cover of a song and combine it with the original version of the song to create a new/remixed version of the song. After you’ve finished remixing your version, listen to it and see what kind of emotion it now makes you feel.

In the early 1970’s, when Dolly Parton and her husband had been married just a few happy years, Dolly started touring. While she was away on tour a bank clerk named Jolene would flirt with her husband. Dolly’s best friend alerted her of the situation and Dolly came straight back home to Nashville.

After confronting her husband and hearing that the allegations were true, Dolly gave him more than just a piece of her mind. She went to the bank where Jolene worked, and tried to ask her politely and quietly to back off. Jolene did not respond to Dolly’s pleas.

Dolly then asked to speak to a manager. Jolene had a history of trouble with her female clients, so she wasn’t happy to show Dolly to her boss. Well, they went to the manager and Dolly told him that Jolene had been refusing to do business with her, and would only see her husband, which was pretty much true. Well Jolene got an earful from her boss that day and never did cross that line again. Much to her dismay, the matter was not at rest. A couple years later the single Jolene came out, and everyone in town knew exactly who it was about.


I was drawn to this 4 star assignment  because I wanted to learn a little more about Garageband and try out some simple techniques like cutting and splicing songs that I hadn’t tried before. I also really love listening to music and different covers, so the title drew me in. The first cover I thought of was Miley Cyrus’s cover of Jolene by Dolly Parton. Cyrus had done a few covers of her favorite songs during The Backyard Sessions, and this is one I love. I had also watched the movie based on Dolly Parton’s life this past winter, and I was also remembering her amazing life story when choosing this song. Unfortunately, every version of her singing the original song was a faster tempo than the cover. I tried to slow down the original song, but Garageband doesn’t have the capability to change tempo of just one part of a recording.

So, I decided I had to choose a different cover. I chose the Pentatonix and Dolly Parton collaboration. Even though Dolly Parton is in both songs, the Pentatonix cover is very different from the original. It is a different pitch and tempo than the original and the lyrics only line up in the beginning of the song. Although the lyrics don’t overlap perfectly, I actually like the end result. The different pitches give an eeriness to the song in the beginning that I like because it makes the song sound more menacing, which is how I would sound if someone were trying to steal my man. I also like the gradual canon effect the song has as one version lags more and more behind. It sometimes seems like an echo which reminds me of the sorrow she must be feeling in this song. I also really like the very end of both songs, how they both fade into each other. I think this combined version shows the true hurt behind this song, instead of the more upbeat original version.


The first step is to open Garageband and select the voice option.

Then, either press the media button in the top right hand corner and select the songs to overlap, or click and drag them from the desktop into Garageband.

Once the two songs are in Garageband, line up the start of the songs so that the lyrics start at the same time. Just click and drag each orange audio box to move it. Use the vertical white line to decide where to start playing the audio from. This step will just be trial and error until both songs line up. 

Once the songs are lined up, the unneeded parts can be cut out. To do this, select the box to cut. Then, go to edit > split regions at playhead. This will break the audio box where the vertical white line is. Then, just click the unneeded boxes and hit delete on the keyboard.

Then click and drag both boxes back to the beginning of the recording. Go to file > save as and give the new recording a name. To change the file from a .band to .mp3 file click share > export song to disk and select the mp3 option on the pop-up screen and then click export to save as an mp3.

Rest In Peace, Charlie McHue

Tell a story using nothing but sound effects. There can be no verbal communication, only sound effects. Use at least five different sounds that you find online. The story can be no longer than 90 seconds.

Sound effect story on my SoundCloud

Charlie McHue was a NASCAR driver with a passion for speed. This made him one of the best racers of his time, but was always a sensitive spot in his marriage. His wife, Angela, didn’t like his career; she thought it was dangerous and, quite frankly, stupid. She didn’t understand the rush he got from racing and the simultaneous calm that washed over him on the constant turn of the wheel. He felt at peace on the track, while she was nothing but a ball of nerves watching him from behind his pit stop.

During Charlie’s last race of the summer season, he was up against one of his greatest competitors. Charlie knew if he won this race that he may win so much money that he would never have to work again. He vowed to himself to win this race at all costs so that he could make his wife happy and stop racing for good.

Charlie and his opponent were neck and neck throughout the whole race, until the last lap. Charlie pulled ahead ever so slightly, and had just crossed the finish line when his tire popped and sent him spiraling off the track. His car flipped four times and burst into flames. The whole crowd called out along with Angela’s scream. Charlie survived the crash, but had severe burns and many fractured bones. The ambulances rushed to the center of the track where Charlie’s car laid. He was pinned under the car and paramedics couldn’t get him free for about seven minutes.

Charlie was rushed to surgery and Angela waited in the hospital hallway, alone. After fours hours of pacing and worrying and biting her nails, the doctor came out to update Angela. There was severe internal bleeding and Charlie didn’t make it through surgery.

Angela was stunned; almost too stunned to cry. Charlie was all she had in this world and now he was gone. He had left her his winnings, but she would have given anything to have him back, and even racing if he wanted, she just wanted him alive.

 

For this 3.5 star assignment I thought it would be an easy(ish) way to ease myself into creating audio assignments. I used the recommended website for free sound effects. I am also using Garageband, because that is what I have installed on my Mac already. I am not very well versed in Garageband, so I configured this recording kind of unconventionally. I was pleased with the final product, especially because it was my first time using Garageband to make this kind of media. I would have liked the transitions between sounds to be more smooth, but I hadn’t quite figured that out yet. I may be kicking myself later for not using Audacity.

First, I thought of the story I wanted to tell. I then opened Garageband and clicked the voice option. 

That will take you to this screen.

I then went to freesound.org and registered my free account. From there, I searched the sounds that are listed below. There are links to the ones I ultimately chose.

Instead of importing and trimming each sound (I didn’t know how), I had both Garageband and freesound.org open in two separate windows. I started recording in Garageband (click the red circle button at the top) and then switched to freesound.org and played the recording from where I wanted it to start.

When you want to stop recording, click the red circle button again. This will stop recording sound. You then need to press the square stop button to stop the recording from moving forward.

Click and drag the vertical white line to determine where you want each new recording to start. Once all the recordings are done, you can trim each section individually by selecting each box and clicking and dragging the edge of it to be as long as you want.  Then, choose file > save as and choose a name for your sound effect story.

Then upload to SoundCloud, or another audio sharing website. You can do this from Garageband by going to share > song to SoundCloud.