Songs to Sing: Interpreting Bird Sounds

Beak Beats

Bibliography

Fallon, Robert. “The Record of Realism in Messiaen’s Bird Style.” OLIVIER MESSIAEN: Music, Art and Literature.  Ashgate, 2007. http://www.oliviermessiaen.org/birdsongs.html. Web.

Fitch, W. T. (2005), The Evolution of Music in Comparative Perspective. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1060: 29–49. doi: 10.1196/annals.1360.004 http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/store/10.1196/annals.1360.004/asset/annals.1360.004.pdf;jsessionid=E6A556FFCEC405A4F507649E37E1B40E.d02t03?v=1&t=he67url4&s=532e03e24b7dc922e52e9cf6c08f03a3a28d6d92.

Head, Matthew. “Birdsong and the Origins of Music.” Journal of the Royal Musical Association, Vol. 122, No. 1 (1997), pp. 1-23. Web. http://www.jstor.org/stable/766551

“Hermit Thrush.” All About Birds. The Cornell Lab of Ornithology.  http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/hermit_thrush/sounds. Web.

Roosth, Sophia. “Screaming Yeast: Sonocytology, Cytoplasmic Milieus, and Cellular Subjectivities.” Critical Inquiry 35.2 (2009): 332-50. Print.

Tingley, Kim. “Whisper of the Wild.” The New York Times. 15 Mar. 2012.  Web. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/18/magazine/is-silence-going-extinct.html?_r=0

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6 thoughts on “Songs to Sing: Interpreting Bird Sounds

  1. I think what’s most interesting to me in this research project is the vast scope of your research topics. Looking linguistically and semantically at the birdcalls within the bird community itself, looking socio-historically at the interpretations of bird sounds, and then finally looking through a musical lens at bird sounds will provide a both a wide and deep view into different facets of this topic. I was most struck by the similarity of the bird songs in comparison to the human recreations. I find it very interesting how there is such a long history of human interpretation of natural sounds and how there are so many indigenous populations who use bird sounds especially. Did you look specifically at any indigenous populations and their interaction with bird sounds?

  2. This is so interesting! With so much research in our class about music it’s nice to hear some naturally occurring sounds. The connection to how the calls influences human interaction with nature is a really fascinating, and also pretty complex. I never even thought of that. Super cool and well done post!

  3. I enjoyed listening to your post because I recognized some of the calls that I heard. Now I will know specifically which birds are making which calls. This post is very well done and organized in a succinct yet complete way. Great job! I look forward to the bird costume…

  4. I enjoyed hearing the calls at different speeds; it would be a lot of fun to try and electronically manipulate animale sounds to try and create an entire symphony.

  5. I really liked listening to all your bird calls in your blogpost– it reminds me that Spring is here and birds will start singing again! I also thought that was super cool music was so directly related to the bird calls. One question: in the intro you mentioned something about birdcalls and religion– how does that fit in?

  6. The clip of the Hermit Thrush that gradually is slowed down is an excellent example of how music reflects the natural environment. If I had heard the call at the 1/8th speed without hearing the normal speed version I would have thought it was made by a musical instrument.

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