Hey, lines community. I’m very excited to share with you all the latest release from Phonography Austin, in collaboration with the Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired. It’s a digital release and free to download.
Though you all clearly know how to follow a link and read the description on the Bandcamp page, I’ll copy that same information here, just to provide a little context before you head over there.
I’ll add this, however: I’m absolutely ecstatic by how this project turned out. It was a highly collaborative endeavor, and one that I hope to replicate in coming years. From a somewhat self-serving perspective, it’s fulfilling to facilitate a platform for these students, and I can’t thank them enough for trusting us with their recordings—a medium that plays an outsized role in many of their lives.
Here’s the liner notes:
Sound Surrounds is presented by Phonography Austin in collaboration with the Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired.
Audio recording plays a significant role in the lives of individuals with visual impairment, often serving as their analogue to photography, where snapshots of sound can serve as aural memories. Visual impairment manifests across a spectrum, and students at TSBVI have varying levels of vision loss, including a range of deaf-blindness. In addition to recording audio to capture memories or for pure enjoyment, TSBVI students interpret sound to situate themselves in physical space or to recognize familiar voices. For students on the deaf-blind spectrum, sound takes on a more tactile nature, where exploring sounds is about feeling its vibrations with the body.
Through this compilation of field recordings, TSBVI students share a diversity of audio elements and events that represent their everyday lives. The project not only conveys the day-to-day sonic culture in which the students are immersed but also demonstrates self-determination, revealing part of their decision-making process for participation in and engagement with their surroundings through their choices of sounds. From recordings of Preston Phillips’s tactile exploration of the vibrations of an accordion and foot massager to the scratching of Lukas MacDonnell’s cane during music lessons, this project seeks to expand our notions of who listens and how we listen.
released May 11, 2019
Curated by Lacey Lewis and Travis P. Hill
Cover art by Ethan W.
Cover design by Travis P. Hill
Mastered by Alex Keller