Category Archives: Field Recordings

Live recordings from the field.

Salem Riverfront Carousel


Day 27: Carousel

Photo Credit: Jim Blodget sketch on Flickr


I recorded this soundscape eleven years ago at the Salem Riverfront Carousel in Salem, Oregon. At the time I was doing a podcast called the Zipboingwow Show and this recording was part of Show #4 (see the show notes for pictures and equipment details). I was experimenting with making binaural field recordings using my new invention – the stereo hat microphone. The mics are positioned on either side of the hat under the band. Be sure to listen to this one on headphones to hear the full effect as I walk through the space.

Download – (MP3 file 3.2 MB, 160 kbps, 44.100 kHz, joint stereo).



Coot with Chick

Parent Feeding Chick
Photo credit: Sandy/Chuck Harris on Flickr.

Here’s a recording I made at the Ankeny National Wildlife Refuge in 2002. It is one of the tracks from my “Sounds of the Willamette Valley” CD. In the liner notes I said:

The mother is clucking at her peeping chick telling it to stay close. Both are swimming in a small body of water about 20 feet away.

I recorded this with a Sony minidisc recorder and stereo cone microphone (of my own invention).

Download – (MP3 file, 932 KB, 160 kbps, 44.100 kHz, Joint Stereo)


Thunder Mountain

We don’t get crashing thunder and lightning here very often. This afternoon we had quite a show. I placed my iPod Touch out on the door mat on the back porch and recorded the thunder using the MultiTrack DAW app. I trimmed the recording a bit and added a fade in and fade out. I copied the track to the pasteboard and imported it into the AudioShare app. From there I brought it into TwistedWave and exported it as an MP3 file and uploaded it to my server. I wrote this blog post offline in BlogPad Pro and later uploaded it. 

I did the oil painting of “Thunder Mountain” when I was in high school. I was inspired to paint it by my older brother playing Rachmaninoff’s Prelude in C Sharp Minor on the piano.

Download – (10.6 MB MP3 file, mono, 9 minutes 18 seconds) First thunder clap is one minute 25 seconds into the recording. The thunder is so loud it distorts.


Salem Art Fair Performance

Salem Art Fair Performance

Salem Art Fair Performance

I went to the Salem Art Fair today. I sat down on the grass and listened to the live music on the main stage. I did a couple of small sketches – the first one of the performers and another of the people around me listening.

I recorded this on my iPod Touch using MultiTrack DAW. I copied the track to the clipboard and pasted it into TwistedWave to convert it to an MP3 and FTP it up to my server.

Download – (mp3 file, 2.4 Mb, 160 kbps, 44.1 kHz, Stereo)





I went to the Oktoberfest in Mt. Angel, Oregon and recorded the glockenspiel in this clock tower. I used my Sony point and shoot camera to take a movie. Later I used QuickTime 7 on my iMac to export the audio as an AIFF file. I then used iTunes to convert the file to a mp3.

The cool thing about this is that the figures are carved by local volunteers and everything is performed by people who have a connection with the scene. Braves of the Grand Ronde native tribes sing a song to the Great Spirit. The youngest daughter of Mount Angel’s Zollner Family of the Z Musikmakers plays the violin as her direct ancestors Robert and Katrina Zollner are presented. The Benedictine Monks chant an ancient hymn in Latin and the Benedictine Sisters sing “Regina Coeli Latare”. The village band plays a polka and Mount Angel’s school children sing “Edelweiss” at the end.

Download – (mp3 file, 7.4 Mb, 6 minutes, 160 kbps, 44 kHz)

Pacific Tree Frog

Tree Frog

Tree Frog

This evening I went out to pick up the mail and I heard a tree frog in our front yard. I went in the house, grabbed my Edirol audio recorder and made this recording.

Only 3% of amphibian species live in North America.  In Oregon, we have 12 native species of frogs and toads, and one introduced species.  The Willamette Valley is currently the home for two native species of frogs, and the one introduced species. Pacific treefrogs are the most common frog species found in the Willamette Valley. Their diet consists mostly of small, terrestrial invertebrates. In January, male treefrogs move to breeding ponds and begin to vocalize. I hear these guys around our yard but seldom see them. This one was about 6 cm (2 1/2 in.) long.

Download – (24 seconds, 281K, stereo mp3, 67 kbps (VBR), 22.050 kHz)