Just back from Bedford working on the Echo Location Bedford Sound map. I had a really fantastic 4 days taking Bedfordians on sound recording walks to gather sounds to place on the map. Have a look at the blog and soundmap. We got some great stuff – including the Bedford Auctioneers, lots of geese and ducks, and visited a number of shops including shoe-menders, key cutters, a barbers, the gym and a Chinese restaurant to name just a few.
For this project, I worked with digital artist Ed Holroyd who designed the online interface. The soundmap is getting really interesting as more features are added. The idea is that you can play the map of Bedford like a musical score. By pressing play, a line moves across the screen and triggers the sounds it passes. There are many ways to customise it (move around the map to frame different combinations of sounds, change the direction and speed of playhead, add musicbox notes, filter by selecting tags) … my current favourite is to ‘filter by user’ which means you can select a username and the map will only play their sounds – so it is a way to hear a certain person’s version of the sounds of Bedford. I’ll be making an installation and short performance with the sounds at The Pad in Bedford on December 10th.