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Educators' Resource Center

CDs for Classroom Settings

In the past decade, a global community of soundscape artists has emerged, creating a wide-ranging body of work that both reflects and responds to the “voice of the planet.” These audio alchemists spend weeks in the field, exploring the sounding nature of place, and then craft sonic essays that aim to share something of what they experienced with their listeners. A vibrant new medium of creative and social expression is being born, a child of documentary/academic field recording and contemporary composition.

Among the themes they explore are:

  • Acoustemology: the relationships between the sounds of a place and the songs and language that arise in human culture.
  • Disappearing soundscapes: presentation of rich communities of sound that are threatened by ecological change.
  • Deep listening: audio productions that aim to stimulate a shift in our common habits of listening. Some create multi-layered sonic worlds, others use innovative recording or production techniques to highlight the sounding world in new ways.
  • Urban soundscapes: audio portraits that focus on centers of human activity.
  • Music informed by nature: some composers seek to create music that moves with the subtle textures and patterns of nature’s voices.
  • Radio art: many soundscape productions begin (and often end) as pieces for radio. Some are making their way online.

CDs suitable for classroom use are available from many sources. For a comprehensive set of links, see our Soundscape Recordings page.

EarthEar - Collection of CDs from producers worldwide. [GO]

Quick guides to tracks on two EarthEar CDs- Why do Whales and Children Sing?: A Guide to Listening in Nature, and The Dreams of Gaia [GO]

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