Vietnam in the Studio

Hi there people! Today we are in the studio editing the M10 recordings Dave took from his trip to Vietnam!

One of the trickiest things about a process like this, is figuring out how to name and ID files, when you were not there. When I chop and load sounds that I was present at the recording of, it’s not only easier to name the files, but it puts you right back in that moment. It’s kind of like reading a book that you have already seen the movie of, your brain doesn’t need to do as much work to invent the world and the characters. Though,with that analogy, people usually add that seeing the movie first ruins the book! However, I’m getting side-tracked. It’s often fun and exciting listening to a recording that you weren’t present for, as you have to invent that world in your mind, so in this regard it is like reading a book that has had no Hollywood spoilers. The only downside is that more often than not, Dave has been too busy or too restricted to properly ID the files.

Lesson for the day: Always ID your files with as much info as you can. Preferably at the start of the record, but at the end is just as good. Heck, even in the middle is better than nothing. We simply verbalise what is going on. It’s much easier than writing stuff down and trying to find it later.

The type of things you should say in a recording ID:
– Where you are.
– What time it is.
– What are you recording.
– Which microphone.
– What position the mic is to the object being recorded.
– Who you are (if you plan on giving your files to someone else to chop).
– Why. It’s not always obvious to the person in the studio what is important about a recording and sometimes we record things with a different intention to how they might be used. i.e I might be recording a plane flying past, with the intention of turning it into a spaceship, so I might note that in the record so that the person editing it won’t think it’s an ambience file and chop out the plane!

A lot of these files Dave hasn’t ID’d because he was in places where he wanted to keep the fact that he was recording hidden, either to not draw attention to his microphone in case of thieves, or simply to get the most out of the location without disturbing the locals.

So, time for some detective work to name these files.

Right now, I’m on a rickety train somewhere between Sapa and Hanoi. I can hear the carriages rumble and clunk together, I feel when the train speeds up, slows down etc. This train is full of character. Creaks, moans, screeching, rattles, bumps and clangs! It may well be the best train recording I have ever heard. Even though it was only recorded with the little hand-held M10, it’s another example of catching what you can get.

So if I had recorded this file I might have ID’d it with something like: “OK, I’m on the Sapa express, headed from Sapa to Hanoi. It’s 2 am, so it’s very quiet, no people about. I’m in a passenger car and I’ve put the M10 up by the windowsill because there’s a really nice rattle coming from there.”

Since Dave is usually somewhere nearby, I’ll ask him directly what the locations were like, so that our ID’s for the library are as close as it can get.

This train sounds pretty wicked, right now, I’m expecting it to fly off the tracks. I wouldn’t be suprised if Dave said it was actually the mine cart chase sequence from Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom!

Can’t wait to share it with the world.

Till next time!


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