soundscapes…
Posted in sound studio March 21st, 2009 by piablog

Last year I came up with the idea of creating soundscapes – little impromptu sound recordings during my travels, and around my home, accompanied by my photographs. I created 3 series, the first was set in amsterdam, my new home; the second in Paris while I was photographing my upcoming book; and the third in Sydney while I was there visiting my family in August.

The soundscapes were a roaring success, with the finale for series 3, getting a whopping 90 incredibly moving comments, including many emails for CD requests!

I love making the soundscapes so I will begin posting a new series soon, but in the meantime, I just wanted to re-post one of my personal favourites below: this is what is sounds like on my little houseboat. Now that Spring has arrived, I have some windows open to let in the beautiful light, and I am so pleased to notice that this soundscape and is exactly what is sounds and looks like to be in here – birds singing in the trees above, swans visiting through the window, and the odd city noise.

Please enjoy…

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repost: soundscape series finale: living on a houseboat, part two – the end…

well folks, this little sound project has been alot of fun. There is certainly something special about looking at still images and listening to sound, isn’t there? It’s quite different to watching a moving picture. While I’ve been making these posts, I’ve been thinking – how would this differ if I used a video camera? It just wouldn’t be the same. It has taken me back to my Uni days when I was studying time based art, although then my focus was making short films with the now vintage technology of 16mm, however I did experiment a little with still images in film-style sequences and I really enjoyed it – so here I am again it seems, rekindling an old flame.

If you have enjoyed this series do not fret, I will be back with more, albeit spontaneously, over the months to come – this week’s series was just a taste to see how you liked it & to see how it might work on the blog medium. And I think it is unanimous that we all love the idea, is that right? so I’ll be sure to keep it as a regular feature. I can think of so many wonderful soundscapes to capture – living in a foreign land, listening to foreign voices, befriending foreign water creatures… the creative possibilities are endless.

But today, on our series finale, I thought you might like to hear what life sounds like for me on the houseboat. While part one was a glimpse of life on the canal when it rains, this little piece captures the essence of my days here – I feel a bit like I am living on noah’s ark, except that instead of the animals living on the boat, they live around the boat and come to visit me regularly. Can you believe this is in the middle of a city? I cannot.

So come on in and follow me…

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let’s open a window…

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and have a listen. Enjoy…

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

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Thank you everyone for visiting. It is such a pleasure to share my creative endeavors with you on a daily basis. You have become my muse. Thanks to you, who knows what I shall create next…

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(to listen to more soundscapes, please click here)

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music I am inspired by right now…
Posted in sound studio March 20th, 2009 by piablog

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Currently listening to over and over and over again…

Angus and Julia Stone’s new album down the way.  And a selection of songs from Sophie Hunger’s Monday’s Ghost album.

Also loving…

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…Amsterdam band Point Quiet’s latest album, especially this song.

And of course…

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…the beautiful guitar compositions of Romain (known here in the (blog)house as my dear French Boy). He has just launched his very own guitar-enthusiast blog, check it out.

I am playing on the piano over and over and over again:

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Yann Tiersen’s Rue des Cascades volume 1 & 2. It all started from listening to the Amelie soundtrack of course.

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And as always, relentlessly, for the last 15 years, anything from Michael Nyman’s score from The Piano. My favourite to play is Big My Secret.

I am currently composing this song, among others…

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And am currently working in the sound studio with:

French guitarist Romain Bigeard:

www.myspace.com/romainbigeard

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Check out his myspace page for a listen and to see how the songs were made.

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today, lets just listen to the birds…
Posted in amsterdam, music, sound studio February 23rd, 2009 by piablog


Emiliana Torrini’s concert on friday night at the paradiso was sublime. She had my eyes filled with tears during many a song. With her sweet Icelandic accent, she has a way of telling a story that draws you right in, lifting you up on her lyrical wings and guiding you gently through the night air.

I was alight with inspiration and found myself documenting my emotions at my mind’s writing desk throughout the performance. I managed to remember most of it the next morning to materialise it in my journal. Like many pieces of my writing, I’m not sure what I will do with them but one day, I imagine them to be set free, somehow. If not always here, then somewhere.

With the aid of Emiliana’s sweet voice, I’d just like to start this week here in the (blog)house gently. To do so I give you a song which I heard for the first time on Friday night. It’s from her new album, Me and Armini. The song is called Birds, and Emiliana described it as a moment when her and her band were sitting out in the garden in Oxford one night under a tree, listening to the night birds, sipping wine and generally relaxing. It was such a beautiful night that she never wanted the moment to end. Please click here to listen, then sit back, close your eyes and enjoy.

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click here to find out if Emiliana is touring near you sometime in the future.

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