Talking with Birds

Tom Miller aka Comrade Squelch
“Talking with Birds” is a site-specific sounding event that uses the long-term installation “Pond Station” by Zach Poff at Wave Farm as a point of reception and transmission. A small fleet of sounding objects, including small transistor radios receiving micro FM transmissions, music boxes or other mechanical devices, is launched on the pond and guided by wind, current, and human interaction. Sound-images broadcast above and below the water’s surface include field recordings of migratory birds and local wildlife, bird and animal calls of hunters and shamans, and recordings made during the residency period. As the objects drift towards and away from the Pond Station’s hydrophones (underwater microphones), they mix themselves into foreground and background together with the sounds of the pond. “Talking with Birds” was presented during a special public event on July 22 in homage to Wave Farm friend and mentor Pauline Oliveros, who passed away in November 2016. It aims to create an environmental dialogue inspired in part by her “Sonic Meditations.”