Disquiet Junto Project 0419: Dischoir

Disquiet Junto Project 0419: Dischoir
The Assignment: Make music from 100+ vocal samples of held syllables by members of the Disquiet Junto.

Step 1: Welcome to a large, asynchronous, distributed choir. The Dischoir consists of 113 samples of held syllables by over 50 participants in the Disquiet Junto. You can access the files at the following URL. Note that a few of them deviate from the initial instructions:


Step 2: Create a piece of choral music from the provided samples. You are encouraged to make music that feels “human,” that feels like it is simply a lot of people singing at once. However, of course, the end result is up to you; you can and should mix, mash, and create as you please.

Background: This all came about as a result of something Alan Bland mentioned on the Junto Slack. He pointed out that my having misspelled Disquiet as “Disquier” in the December 19, 2019, project title made him think of “Dischoir,” a possible Junto project. Thanks to Alan and to Jason Wehmhoener for helping me think this project through, and to everyone (over 50 contributors) who sent in samples.

Seven More Important Steps When Your Track Is Done:

Step 1: Include “disquiet0419” (no spaces or quotation marks) in the name of your track.

Step 2: If your audio-hosting platform allows for tags, be sure to also include the project tag “disquiet0419” (no spaces or quotation marks). If you’re posting on SoundCloud in particular, this is essential to subsequent location of tracks for the creation of a project playlist.

Step 3: Upload your track. It is helpful but not essential that you use SoundCloud to host your track.

Step 4: Post your track in the following discussion thread at llllllll.co:


Step 5: Annotate your track with a brief explanation of your approach and process.

Step 6: If posting on social media, please consider using the hashtag #disquietjunto so fellow participants are more likely to locate your communication.

Step 7: Then listen to and comment on tracks uploaded by your fellow Disquiet Junto participants.

Additional Details: Deadline: This project’s deadline is Monday, January 13, 2020, at 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are. It was posted on Thursday, January 9, 2020.

Length: The length is up to you. Shorter is often better.

Title/Tag: When posting your track, please include “disquiet0419” in the title of the track, and where applicable (on SoundCloud, for example) as a tag.

Upload: When participating in this project, post one finished track with the project tag, and be sure to include a description of your process in planning, composing, and recording it. This description is an essential element of the communicative process inherent in the Disquiet Junto. Photos, video, and lists of equipment are always appreciated.

Download: Consider setting your track as downloadable and allowing for attributed remixing (i.e., a Creative Commons license permitting non-commercial sharing with attribution, allowing for derivatives).

For context, when posting the track online, please be sure to include this following information:

More on this 419th weekly Disquiet Junto project — Dischoir / The Assignment: Make music from 100+ vocal samples of held syllables by members of the Disquiet Junto — at:


This all came about as a result of something Alan Bland mentioned on the Junto Slack. He pointed out that my having misspelled Disquiet as “Disquier” in the December 19, 2019, project title made him think of “Dischoir,” a possible Junto project. Thanks to Alan and to Jason Wehmhoener for helping me think this project through, and to everyone (over 50 contributors) who sent in samples.

More on the Disquiet Junto at:


Subscribe to project announcements here:


Project discussion takes place on llllllll.co:


There’s also a Disquiet Junto Slack. Send your email address to twitter.com/disquiet for Slack inclusion.

The image associated with this track is by Joe Lencioni, and is used (image cropped, text added) via Flickr thanks to a Creative Commons license:




The “Dischoir” (distributed + choir) project is now live. Thanks to everyone who shared samples. If you sent me one and I failed to put it in the folder, lemme know.



what a great set of samples! It was really hard to choose a subset. I chose one from each contributor and then randomly sampled the rest, and wound up with 11 samples. I took the samples and roughly leveled and pitch-corrected them (if you want these samples they can be downloaded here:

I loaded them each into ChucK with each sample buffer having its own envelope, echo, reverb, pan, and pitch transposer. Then I set up pitch transposing to create simple chords. For example, at about 1:54 it comes in with a version of the program that randomly assigns pitch transposing of either 1 (no transposition) or + 1 third to each sample. I cycle through a few chords before winding up at the original samples again. The whole thing is recorded live with no dubs (I did a few takes). the code is here:

To get chords you just replace [1.] @=> float notes[]; with [1., third, fifth] @=> float notes[] or something. The 11 samples is too much for my laptop if I’m running more than one copy of the program at a time so some of the chords use just a couple of the samples instead of the full 11. I may set it up to randomize the set of samples it uses. I liked the way it came out–might use it at a show coming up this weekend.


This is the music to an SATB Christmas carol I wrote several years ago. The score is here.

I did this in Ableton Live. I used the following two samples:

  • adlez27–deID - for the soprano and alto voices
  • reiners-held-tone - for the tenor and bass voices

I simply dragged the samples into Simpler. I didn’t change any of the settings in the two Simpler tracks except to adjust the beginnings of the samples. Hence, they’re not quite in tune, but I have only so much patience for technical niceties—and the imperfections match the “Dischoir” title.

For the horn part, I used the “Toy Synth & Blown Speaker” MIDI instrument in Live. I suppose I could have used one of the samples for that too, but I wanted my piece at least partially in tune. :grinning:

I listened to it one last time and realized that being in tune is a relative thing. At the end, it’s the horn that sounds out of tune!


Hey All, I started out a lot quicker tempo but you couldn’t tell they were voices but when I slowed it way way down the voice came back and I kinda dug it. I wanted to keep a choir thing going the whole time. really cool assignment Marc. I wanna get back to those voices again.

Peace, Hugh


Honoured and pleased to participate! Enjoyed clicking voices to let them match by themselves.


Well, that was fun…


outrageous glee club
• Key: G minor BPM: 120 Time signature: 4/4 DAW: Reaper Length: 2:44 seconds
• Instruments: N/A
• Plug-ins: Ozone 8 elements
• created a 48 voice choir
• 3 sets of 16 voices each
• chose the voices using Random.com
• Put 16 voices on each of 3 tracks
• They were 3 different duration’s so I lengthened the shorter tracks to the same length as the longest one
• duplicated all 3 tracks for a total of 6


let’s call this a mess, a collage or an impromtu montage.
It was fun.

Zero meaning
let’s call this a mess, a collage or an impromtu montage.
It was fun.

Members of the choir, in order of appearance:

Zero meaning @ZeroMeaning
Anatol @Anatol
Vonna Wolf @VonnaWolf
Bassling @bassling
Northwoods @NorthWoods
Howthenightcame @howthenightcame
ikjoyce @ikjoyce
Michelbanabila @banabila
Paul Christophe Rose @Paul

I added orchestral percussions and several synths


Fun with Norns Mangl. Samples from adlez27, @atomboyd, @baconpaul, Circling Crows, @jet & @samarobryn. One take, and a little extra Valhalla.


My basic approach to this project was to try to create multiple layered textures from many voices with a single voice emerging towards the end. I feel pretty lost, unseen and unheard in this world and I’m assuming others, perhaps many others, do as well.

For the technical side, I used a sampler with multiple effects chain and lots of time stretching to create textures and drones from the voice samples provided. Noodled around with things until I found something I liked.

Having trouble with sharing the link, hopefully this works.


Mine wasn’t in the folder, here it is.

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And the playlist is now rolling:

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i thought it would be fun to convolve samples with one another (it wasn’t)


I created separate tracks for all of the voices. The voices are introduced one by one and build to a crescendo. There is a simple accompaniment provided by a Surge synth preset.


I started by singing a few parts, thinking I’d transcribe the notes and replace them with samples.

Then I thought I’d hear how different takes sounded together, so I found a quiet room (since it was hot and the airconditioners were going) and used my camera to record.

Of course, I should’ve known I’d like the sound of my own voice!

Later I added a few tracks of samples, focusing on lower and higher pitched parts.

For a while I couldn’t figure out what wasn’t working.

I tried pitch-correction, but it made it worse.

Then I identified it was a higher part and looked for the sample, only to find it was a combination of my parts creating a dissonant harmonic or something.

And, finally, I realised that I needed to treat the samples as though they were voices.

So I went back over the tracks built with samples and put pauses between some of their notes.

This was also an interesting Junto as it reminded me how attuned our ears are to human voices.


Listening to this and I can hear a couple of things I should’ve tried:

  • rhythmic synth giving a sense of tempo
  • keeping it straight-forward harmonically by layering a few samples

Great result!

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I’m sorry.


This week’s project is one of my all-time favorites. Given over 100 short audio files containing vocalizations of various vowels, syllables, and occasional other things, from dozens of different voices, we were given the task to weave these into a composition.

With the exception of some transposition towards the end of the piece, I chose not to modify the character original material in any way. What I did do was write a set of scripts which chose randomly from those files and figured out how to generate randomly-varying loops within the files in order to allow any one of them (I did have to skip anything shorter than one second) to be extended to an arbitrary length. Then from that script, I built big, chordal sections where all the voices begin as the same moment (up to 42 parts at one point!), and other sections where the parts overlap and weave in and out over time.

The increasing transposition (up and down) of the sounds gradually distorts them in some disturbing ways. Pretty early on, I thought of this as a vocal requiem, and structured it to reflect the austere, ceremonial nature of such a work.

All sounds were processed, mixed, and virtually placed in a 3-d sound environment using the RTcmix software toolkit.