Behind the Scenes of Eardrops: Sounds of the Country

Eardrops Journey Sounds of the Country cover Sounds of the Country is a half hour story with 28 featured sounds. Child listeners join Eardrop as he helps ‘The Farmer’ feed all his animals. This is a lovely story and is very popular with all the preschool age groups and older children too.

Today I am sharing with you the process of producing ‘Sounds of the Country’. This was the title I recorded first, and I was fine tuning the look and feel of Eardrops at the same time. It was an exciting and challenging few months!

This is my brother Dave, at whose farm we recorded most of the sounds for Sounds of the Country. Chopping wood sound? That's him. Chainsaw? That's him too. Tractor, Motorbike, Ute, Chopping, Raking. He worked hard that day!

This is my brother Dave, at whose farm we recorded most of the sounds for Sounds of the Country. Chopping wood sound? That’s him. Chainsaw? That’s him too. Tractor, Motorbike, Ute, Raking. He worked hard that day!

Creating the farm ‘soundscape’ was great fun. Luckily my brother Dave happens to be a farmer in Northland, New Zealand, so his farm, and his mate’s farm down the road, were our main recording bases. My cousin who happens to be an amazing Sound Engineer Roj Green and I lucked in on the ‘shoot day’ with mostly still and sunny weather, and we were able to capture most of the sounds we wanted to.

The famous ute in Sounds of the Country. Trouble was, every time Farmer Dave started the engine the dogs would all start barking. You can hear them on the CD. We kept a few of them in just for fun :-)

The famous ute in Sounds of the Country. Trouble was, every time  Dave started the engine the dogs would all start barking. You can hear them on the CD. We kept a few of the barks in just for fun 🙂

we shut the gate about twenty times to get the clang just right

We shut the gate about twenty times to get the clang just right

The animals were so tame on my brother’s farm. They came running when they saw us, even carrying all the equipment. You can hear that on the CD, especially the ‘cows’ track as 400+ cows walked towards us expecting to be given some hay.

And guess what, we even had a little rain shower, right when were near a little tin shed – as if on cue. That rain sounds fantastic on the CD! I had to smile at Roj lying down to record the rain hitting the blades of grass. Sound engineers really are audio wizards.

Here's Roj our wonderful Director of Sound, in at TVNZ for one of our master edit sessions. We laid the story out on my Sony Vaio laptop first and then took the 'rough cut' into the studio to fine tune. We worked many late nights in here!

Here’s Roj our wonderful Director of Sound, in at TVNZ for one of our master edit sessions. We laid the story out on my Sony Vaio laptop first and then took the ‘rough cut’ into the studio to fine tune.

Once we recorded the field sounds (the animals and other featured sounds), it was time to go into the studio. We created a background, which is a very subtle atmospheric track, which we laid down as the base for the story. Then we arranged the sounds as per my story script – and began the process of editing, re-editing, testing the draft edits on young children, and re-editing again.

When we were sure we had the final script ready it was time to book our voice artists. The amazing Daisy Lawless is the voice of Eardrop. She was brilliant to work with and happy to come into the studio in the evenings to work with us. Daisy’s voice has that nice balance between young but not childish. She was 19 when she voiced Sounds of the Country. And guess who scored the role of The Farmer? Roj! He moonlights as a voice artist. I have had many comments about the voices used on all the Eardrops CDs and how gentle and lovely they are.

We mastered Sounds of the Country at 4am a fortnight after the final voice record. It was an incredible moment and a real milestone in the Eardrops journey 🙂

“These CDs are amazing – my daughter just loves to listen to her Sounds of the Country one, but it is so damaged now from her hauling it around I have to replace it. What fabulous resources you have created” Robyn, Porirua

If you look closely at the silhouettes for the guessing game on Sounds of the Country, the outline of this guy might look familiar!

If you look closely at the silhouettes for the guessing game on Sounds of the Country, the outline of this guy might look familiar!

Are you talkin to me?

Are you talkin to me eeh eeh?

Shop for Sounds of the Country on iTunes here Google Play here or Trade Me here

Eardrops Journey Sounds of the Country cover

Thank you for reading! Comments welcome. Liz xx

One thought on “Behind the Scenes of Eardrops: Sounds of the Country

  1. Pingback: Llook out its a Llocal writer … | Liz Donnelly

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