Is there a forum or community dedicated to documentary audio recording?
June 10, 2016 12:23 AM   Subscribe

I don't mean music. I might mean spoken word. I think I mean "sound effects" and I definitely mean documentary. I'm wondering if there is something analogous to Flickr or photography forums but for audio. Documentary audio, the way people do walkabout photography.

I know about Soundcloud. I think that's more about publishing and music production (though I'd be happy to be proven wrong).

I'm not even looking for audio galleries; I'm more looking for the community behind them.

Example subject matter would be birdsong, train noises, the sounds at famous landmarks, the sea, the footsteps of a crowd, fire drills, regional accents...
posted by hoverboards don't work on water to Media & Arts (6 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
Possibly Freesound? It's got forums and the ability to comment on particular sounds.
posted by coleboptera at 1:47 AM on June 10, 2016 [1 favorite]

There are plenty of Youtube channels that are audio of those types only, and they will certainly have some measure of community via the comments, which seem surprisingly troll-free.
posted by ananci at 1:58 AM on June 10, 2016

The phrase I think you're looking for is "field recordings". This is what it's called when people walk around with recording gear and record the ambient sound to document the soundscape - be it crowds, vehicles, weather, wildlife, music, etc. etc.

You can check out the "field recording" tag on Soundcloud or on Bandcamp - Soundcloud seems to have a lot of raw recordings whereas Bandcamp is more field recordings mixed into music.

There appears to be field recording community hub of sorts here and a quick google for "field recording community" reveals a lot of other potential sites.

An interesting book to read here on some of the theory behind the acoustic environment is Soundscape: Our Sonic Environment and the Tuning of the World by R. Murray Schafer.

And check out Upstream Color if you haven't seen it - it's a great film with a field recordist as one of the key characters.
posted by iivix at 3:28 AM on June 10, 2016 [7 favorites]

Cities and Memory is a global field recordings (and remixes) project.
posted by xo at 10:02 AM on June 10, 2016

I see that you list "London" as your location. Are you aware of London Sound Survey? Apart from being a fabulous recorder of London sounds he also holds presentations and the like. Maybe go see him and become part of the community that's sprung up around him?
posted by soundofsuburbia at 8:00 AM on June 11, 2016

Forgot! If you have a Facebook account, I suggest that you join the World Listening Project group. It's a group that's "devoted to understanding the world and its natural environment, societies and cultures through the practices of listening and field recording."
posted by soundofsuburbia at 12:13 AM on June 13, 2016

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