About this project
What's this year's hot summer jam in Almaty, Kazakhstan?
What does the central bazaar in Tashkent, Uzbekistan sound like?
What can you hear on the Mongolian steppe when there's no yurt for 10 miles?
The Silk Road in Stereo will be an audio exploration of Europe, Central Asia, and Mongolia, presented as a series of curated audio pieces.
This summer, we will be driving from the U.K. to Mongolia on the 2011 Mongol Rally. But rather than just drive 10,000 km and call it a day, we've decided to dedicate our trip along the ancient Silk Road to collecting the sounds of this diverse landscape and bringing them back home to share with all of you. As we travel across the massive Eurasian landmass, with it's incredible cultures, histories and peoples, we plan to capture as much of the soundscape as possible - from seeking out local pop music on CD-R and capturing off-air radio, to making field recordings of performances, bazaars, and daily life. The result will be a series of carefully curated audio works, including CD and downloadable music compilations, podcasts, and soundscapes, all of which will be presented on a dedicated website with accompanying imagery. New items will be added to the site for at least a year following the trip, which begins July 23, 2011!
We're looking to raise $2500 to cover the cost of the recording equipment and local music purchases, as well as help us pay for the part of the cost of the tiny car we'll be driving.
If you are a musician, collector, or just a lover of music, and are in one of the countries we will be passing through (or know people who are), we'd love to hear from you! Please send us a message!
Unless you have a car you are willing to drive from Europe to Mongolia (or part of the journey between) and can get visas to the countries we will be passing through in a very short amount of time (most like you will need visas for Russia, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, and possibly Mongolia), unfortunately the answer is no. Our car is full, and the time to apply for visas is running short! If you think you can arrange the above in a very short amount of time, let us know. If you really think you can arrange all of the above AND want to go all the way to Mongolia, you will need to drive your car back home afterwards (as of today, June 23, it is too late to have the car officially donated as part of the Mongol Rally), and will need a carnet de passage, which will also be challenging to get in a short amount of time. If you really think you want to do it after all those warnings, by all means, write us a message!
If you are interested in the Mongol Rally in general, consider signing up for next year! More information about the event is available from http://www.theadventurists.com/the-adventures/mongol-rally
We will be traveling with a Sony PCM D50 and Zoom h4n portable audio recorder (both with built in stereo mic), which we plan to use to record to WAV format at 16-24 bit/48 kHz. We are hesitant to get too fancy or add too many external accessories (mics, etc) for a number of reasons: 1) we don't want to have to worry about powering too many devices; 2) there is always the risk that things may get stolen; and 3) we don't want to draw too much attention to ourselves and risk getting harassed by the police!
However, any and all advice and recommendations is greatly appreciated!
We will be bringing a small netbook, 2 Seagate 750 GB portable hard drives (Mac and PC compatible), and at least six 16 GB SD cards (with more on the way), all of which will be used to organize, manage, and backup the recordings. At every point that we find wifi, we will backup the recordings to a server back home. All the backups will be stored separately from each other in our car, and will be as well hidden as possible.
Yes! But it is currently under construction. Check back, we will be posting the URL soon...
Yes! We will make as much of the field recordings available for re-use as we can. Unless we are asked to do otherwise by artists or interviewees, we will provide a Creative Commons license (considering public domain...). Even in those cases, we will try to obtain Creative Commons attribution, non-commercial, share-alike licenses from the artists.
If you do re-use the recordings, we hope you will share them with us so we can distribute them back to the community! We have also been asked if we would consider a performance (or even series of performances) of works using these recordings. Of course the answer is yes! Let us know if you are interested.
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