Libre Music Challenge #15: DIY

Practical tips for recording, editing, and mastering.

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y6nH
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Libre Music Challenge #15: DIY

Post by y6nH »

Libre Music Challenge #15: DIY

This time, no synths, no instruments, no sample libraries: you need to record all your sound sources personally. And so this isn't a microphone contest, we're all going to use the crappy built-in mics in our phones and laptops. Oh yes, and "no instruments" applies in the physical world too. You can record ambient sounds, household objects, animals, whatever you find in your vicinity, so long as it's not intended for making music.

After you record the sounds, you can use whatever editors, samplers and effects you like, within the usual LMC rules. So it's libre software only (operating system excluded, so Windows and Mac users can join in). Additionally, if the recording software on your portable device is proprietary, we'll allow that.

This is all fine:
  • Using a built-in microphone of a phone, tablet, computer, boombox or other portable consumer device
  • Recording non-musical sounds in your environment
  • Playing objects, e.g. by striking, blowing into, shaking, rubbing, bowing, ripping or smashing
  • Combining objects to make improvised instruments, e.g. rubber bands on a shoebox, or a bit of pipe with a makeshift reed
  • Modifying sounds using physical means, e.g. submerging in water, recording through a tube
  • Making sounds with your body, including singing, but if you sing you must include other sounds too
  • Using a radio, so long as it is not tuned to music or any copyrighted material (between stations is good)
  • Using musical accessories such as a drumstick, bow or plectrum
This is not allowed:
  • Musical instruments
  • Separate microphones
  • Dedicated portable sound recorders
  • Pre-recorded sound
  • Pre-recorded or broadcast music
  • Software sound generators
  • Anything under copyright
  • Convolution (e.g. reverb) with sounds not recorded within these rules
These things get you karma (though not necessarily points):
  • Making your source recordings available under an open licence, e.g. on Freesound
  • Recording your own reverb impulses with your portable device
  • Showing us photos or videos of your sound collection exploits
  • Sharing your experiences on social media or blogs, and of course on Unfa Chat
There are no restrictions on musical genre or length.

Entries must be submitted as high quality audio files, preferably FLAC format, and posted or linked on this thread at linuxmusicians.com.

Deadline is Saturday 2 April 2022.
Last edited by y6nH on Sun Feb 06, 2022 8:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
y6nH
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Re: Libre Music Challenge #15: DIY

Post by y6nH »

The general LMC rules are on the first one, here: viewtopic.php?p=120524#p120524

In particular, note that your entry has to be an original work, and you must agree to license it as CC-BY-SA. Also that the total value of prizes is $0, and that you are strictly required to have fun.
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Re: Libre Music Challenge #15: DIY

Post by tavasti »

Fun idea, but with desktop computer, cannot participate with these rules, because no built-in mic.

Linux veteran & Novice musician

Latest track: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ycVrgGtrBmM

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Re: Libre Music Challenge #15: DIY

Post by y6nH »

If your computer has no microphone, and you have no mobile phone, no tablet, no camera with a microphone, no dictaphone, no cassette boombox, nothing with a built-in mic, then I'll make an exception. You may use an external microphone, so long as it's cheap and crappy.
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Re: Libre Music Challenge #15: DIY

Post by tavasti »

y6nH wrote: Sun Feb 06, 2022 10:27 pm If your computer has no microphone, and you have no mobile phone, no tablet, no camera with a microphone, no dictaphone, no cassette boombox, nothing with a built-in mic, then I'll make an exception. You may use an external microphone, so long as it's cheap and crappy.
Ah, ok, I have phone :-)

Linux veteran & Novice musician

Latest track: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ycVrgGtrBmM

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Re: Libre Music Challenge #15: DIY

Post by MyLoFy »

Hello fellow LMClers,

here's my submission:

https://soundcloud.com/mylofymusic/oenopion

I have chosen a theme for the sample recording:
Delicious Wine! Enjoy!

This track is named after Oenopion ("wine-drinker"), King of Chios, son of Ariadne and Dionysus, God of Wine.
All samples have been made with a wine bottle, a wine glass and the respective wine cork. The bottle was hit and blown with several different liquid levels, hence producing various frequencies. The paper label on the bottle was rubbed with the cork for percussive sounds. The wine glass was hit with the cork, creating different frequencies according to the liquid level in the glass.
All samples were recorded with the crappy mics on my outdated Pocophone F1.

Used software:

DAWs:
-Ardour 6.9 for sound design
-Zrythm v1.0.0-alpha.30.1.1 for composing and mixing

Virtual Instruments:
-Sountfont creator Polyphone
-Fluida
-Calf Fluidsynth
-sfizz
-Drops
-Ninjas2
-Geonkick (samples only, no osc)

Plugins:
-Wolf Shaper
-LSP Parametric EQ
-Rubber Band
-Calf Crusher
-XRegion
-ZaMultiCompx2
-B.Shapr
-Dragonfly Hall Reverb
-Calf Vintage Delay

Master Chain:
-Luftikus
-LSP Parametric EQ
-LSP Multiband Compressor
-ToTape5
-Texturize
-LSP Multiband Compressor
-x42-dpl
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Re: Libre Music Challenge #15: DIY

Post by y6nH »

Here's my submission:
https://open.audio/library/tracks/153939/

Pulsing Bulb - Shedskin

Instruments: boxes, tubs and pots I found in my shed; metal racks and trays from the kitchen; a bird; a metal firepit; a filing cabinet (bowed); a bottle of fizzy water.

Main software: Axet Android Audio Recorder; Audacity and Ardour on Ubuntu Studio
Plugins: too many to list, but special mentions to SFizz, LSP Multi-Sampler, CHOW Tape and Phaser, TAL-Dub 3, x42-eq, and many many Airwindows and LSP things. The reverb is a hand clap I recorded under a railway bridge, in LSP Impulse Reverb.
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Re: Libre Music Challenge #15: DIY

Post by bsg75 »

Dear fellow LMC contestants,

here's my submission:
https://soundcloud.com/sg75_2/driftwood-shaker

Samples were recorded with a smartphone - most notably a wine glass (filled with water until a nice G4 appeared when played with index finger) and an improvised shaker consisting of some driftwood art and a nut chain as well as shell chain (see cover art). Noise removal was done in Audacity, all other tasks in Ardour using lotsa LSP and AirWindows plugins. The samples got some Ninjas2 and Drops plugin treatment. Ninjas and Stochas definitely play in team ambiance :)

As always, LMC got me out of the comfort zone, which is a good thing :D :lol:
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Re: Libre Music Challenge #15: DIY

Post by Thomas Lord »

http://basiscraft.com/pubs/imprecession_session.ogg

http://basiscraft.com/pubs/imprecision-number-1.html

---
title: Imprecession #1 (bird and snake) [20220401]
author: Thomas Lord (Berkeley, CA)
...



This recording is my entry for a current round of the a very
serious, silly competition: the **Libre Music Challenge**.

The prompt for this episode of the challenge was to make a
piece of music using only free (as in libre) software but
using no instruments, no synthesizers, and ("so it won't be a
who's got the best microphone contest") nothing but recordings
made with lousy cell phone or laptop microphones.

Sequencers are explicitly allowed under the rules but for
personal reasons I decided to put those on the ban list as
well. See, when I was a teenage nerd I had an interest in
early 20th century "Music Concrete" -- some of the earliest
electronica there was. It was very "tape centric" in that the
main moves for a composer where to cut-up, splice, reverse,
and vary speed on fragments of physical audio tape recordings.
I wanted to explore that idea in the digital domain where you
can zoom right in on the actual wave forms of a recording and
cut and splice with exceeding good precision.

Source recording. I used my cell phone to record:


+ the sound of my clothes dryer tumbling a light load

+ the sound my land line telephone makes if left off the
hook for too long (the "off hook signal" after which I was
tempted to name this track)

+ my wife and I recording some silly dialog to go with the piece

+ a really big aluminum, commercial-kitchen pot lid struck
firmly with the heal of my palm

+ a "this call is now being recorded" warning from a tech giant
that offers some gratis voip service

Everything else you hear is the result of abusing various digital
filters and doing strange edits to the "tape".

I don't know if it counts as cheating or not but in the final
section of the piece you'll hear a distinct chord of fairly clean
tones. How did this come to be? I edited wave forms at very high
resolution.

The off hook klangston, it turns out, contains something like a
somewhat dirty sine wave. I zoomed way in, snipped that, and got
a tiny audio segment that sounded like a "click". I almost-doubled
its length by splicing two copies together, lining up the waves. Then
I doubled that, doubled that, doubled that, and so on for a few folds
and soon had a few minutes of "almost a tone".

Various pitch altering techniques were abused to beat that
almost-tone into what you hear. Throughout the piece, selective
editing and stretching-and-shrinking without pitch preservation are
heavily used.

Fragments of sound are layed out with reference to a 120bpm gride
divided into 16th notes and triplets --- but much of it is
deliberately not exactly "on grid". Hence the name:

[Imprecession #1 (bird and snake)](imprecession_session.ogg)

Technique notes....


## Track: "pot lid ride":

A very large diameter pot lid struck with the palm of my heal. This
is the "gunshot-like" sound in the first half of the piece. I think
I shrunk the clip to raise the pitch. It uses a "Calf Filter" set
up as a 12dB high pass filter, an unfancy generic reverb ("Zita
reverb ambient") and the Calf Tape Simulator to smudge out some
glitches.

## Tracks: "bass [one,two,three]"

These are the plodding almost-a-triad bass line in the first half of
the recording. They are all the "off hook" noise edited into
"almost a tone" and then tortured through "Audio Driver (suboctive
divider)", a 5 band "Calf Equalizer" with resonance points,
configured awkwardly, a ring modulator, and to mix it down -- a pair
of filters, one Calf low-pass, another Calf high-pass.

## Track: "dryer drone"

This is a recording of the noise my clothes dryer makes, strangely
turned into a kind of chaotic drum-kit track using "C*Scape Stereo
delay with chromatic resonances (by Tim Goetze)" -- that gives it
the weird emergent rythm enhancement, the gorgeous 5 band "Calf
equalizer that I love very much now, and again low and hi pass
filters to give it some place w/in the mix.

## Tracks: "screaming off hook" and "Voicemail..."

This is little more than the off hook signal but shrunk (and so
pitch-raised) -- sounds like a funky ringtone. Some scrap of audio
for the imaingary "pick up" of the phone. And some tinkery with the
"this call is now being recorded" message and some random stuff I
left on voicemail.

## Tracks: "wave tone 1-6 (and bus)"

I again deployed the Calf EQ, a comb filter, etc. along with my
hand-made almost-a-tone from the off hook signal and built... a
chord. Those chime-like noises and chord in the last part of the
piece. The bus has a ring modulator automated to reach a mild
frenzy at the end there. All the final "clinks" which, if you are
old enough, might remind you of those old time flip-top butane
lighters are literal copies of the gun-shot-like pot lid sound but
passed through the filter stacks of the wave tones and the echo-y
voicemail.

## Track: "this call"

Unaltered source material from my voip service. "This call is now
being recorded." Oh, in the second part of the song, you can hear
the "now" part of that recording all stretched out (hence low-pitch)
and treated and deployed with some echo and on-grid-then-off-grid
assault.

## Tracks: "lucky snake"

We made these nonsense calls about birds with grenades vs an unarmed
snake in the neighbors garden. I tripled the recording and applied
a variety of distortions differently to two of the copies to get
some glitch-smudging and some fake triple-tracking going.

Woot.

-t
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Re: Libre Music Challenge #15: DIY

Post by Thomas Lord »

(The recording is publicly licensed under the latest creative commons, non-commercial, share-alike, attribution please license.)
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Re: Libre Music Challenge #15: DIY

Post by Thomas Lord »

y6nH
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Re: Libre Music Challenge #15: DIY

Post by y6nH »

The challenge entries are uploaded here:

https://archive.org/details/libre-music-challenge-15

Well done, us!
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Re: Libre Music Challenge #15: DIY

Post by caryoscelus »

bsg75 wrote: Wed Mar 30, 2022 9:43 pm Dear fellow LMC contestants,

here's my submission:
https://soundcloud.com/sg75_2/driftwood-shaker
this is really great ! thanks for making it and releasing under libre license~~
libre artist in many media :: site :: support my music on badcamp :: liberapay ::
ko-fi
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Re: Libre Music Challenge #15: DIY

Post by bsg75 »

Thank you @caryoscelus :D
Never thought of anything else than a libre license for this *libre* challenge :!:

All the best for your remix album!
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Re: Libre Music Challenge #15: DIY

Post by caryoscelus »

bsg75 wrote: Fri Sep 09, 2022 9:18 pm Never thought of anything else than a libre license for this *libre* challenge :!:
a lot of people seem to choose non-libre creative commons licenses though :/
All the best for your remix album!
thanks ! i'm now looking for other tracks to mix with yours~~
libre artist in many media :: site :: support my music on badcamp :: liberapay ::
ko-fi
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