Sound has always been a source of enjoyment and entertainment for me, and performance as well. As a young boy I recall sitting in front of the stereo listening to music my father had selected and whether it was Mozart or the Mill's Brothers, I felt the music in me.

In grade school the nuns would have us read aloud and although at the time I didn't make the connection between the pulse and pace of music and narration, my expression of the words on the page and emotion that I felt and tried to convey were similar to the magical feeling that music created in me. I remember once being dragged around (with a few other children) from classroom to classroom to read aloud. It was at once both embarrassing and enjoyable, though the discomfort would soon fade as I gained confidence with practice and repetition. In high school I sang in several choral groups (I can still remember all the words to "Gaudeamus Igitur"...) and even learned a little Sousaphone so I could play a part in a musical.

I have worked on both sides of the microphone as "techie" and "talent", each has its own challenges and rewards and both share a part of craft and art. In live sound reinforcement the musicians "played" their music, and as audio engineer I "played" the musicians. In radio broadcasting I earned a class III license so that I could work as announcer, engineer and reporter. As a narrator I have performed and "played" the words and works of others, and of my own design.

Where the physics of sound and hearing are so definitive, the power of sound and word are more difficult to measure. How different to read "I have a dream..." than to hear it spoken; how different to read the score of Handel's Messiah than to be singing it immersed in a sea of voices. Just as the synergy of sound and image can result in more than the sum of the parts, the combination of sound and word can transform even simple ideas.

I have taken a few simple ideas and created some performance pieces. "Painting with Sound" is what I call my own creations. They are definitely not high art; they are definitively me. Here are two examples, Perspective and Meeperhead.

These links will take you to the files. The files are formatted as WAV files (sampled at 22MHz, reduced to Mono, and "zipped") and MP3 (stereo CD quality) but they are still large, 2-4 MB.
* Update - Yahoo, in their continuing quest for less customer service, have eliminated public access to these files - now I'm looking for another home for them. TANSTAFPFS any more. The bubble has burst, back to reality.

Here's a link to something you can access. It's rather large, but it is split into several pieces.

Here is something smaller -

Donnie - by Robert Fulghum



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