Mocking a Mockingbird

By JM • Elective, Sountopia • 1 May 2013

This project is for the Soundtopia course I am taking. In this course we were supposed to recreate the pitches of any song we wanted as long as it meant something to us whether it was utopic (happy) or dystopic (sad). I chose the song Mockingbird by Eminem because it made me feel dystopic and I feel that I can relate to it. I learned how to create an instrument (the diddly bow). I am proud that I was able to recreate the diddly bow and use it to create the pitches for my song because I didn’t think I could at first. Check out my recreation of Mockingbird below and then check out my artist statement that explains my reasoning behind it.

 

Mocking a Mockingbird – Artist Statement – JM

 

     The project we were given was to recreate the pitches of a song that had meaning to us. By being given this task, we asked to create instruments that would allow us to recreated these pitches. The instruments we created as a class were the Kalimba and the diddley bow. I made my own instrument and it was a drum so that I can match the pitches of the drum in my song.  I learned how to make all of these instruments. I also learned about the science of pitch, how it is measured and how it is imperfect therefore making it appealing to our ears.

 

     The story that fits with the pitch of the song is that sad story of a family that falls apart. It is the story of a family that focused around the 3 children. The parents tried to give the kids a happy life and in exchange the kids were asked to do thing just like in any other normal household. But there was an everlasting evil there. It lingered and could lash out at any time. It was the father. If something goes wrong, the lives would seem to be a fairy tale or nursery rhyme that had gone bad. That had what seemed to be a sad ending or a hidden feeling that was all sour.

     I feel that the pitches of this song definitely fit the story that is a part of me. I believe that this fits because the song has a set of pitches that are meant to be in a major up and down scale but is put to a slightly lower pitch and slowed down to make it slightly dystopic. But then it becomes more dystopic due to the pitch of the rap voice since it is also somewhat in a minor pitch due to the fact that the rapper is sad when rapping this song.

     To make this whole project possible it took a long process. We first studied what made pitches appealing to us and unappealing to us. It turns out, that the reason why we like music is because it is imperfect rather than perfect. The nexts step of the process of making the project was to choose the song we wanted to recreate and what it meant to us. After this step we created our diddly bows due to the great FE guest Jay. After we made diddly bows we made our own Kalimba’s (thumb piano’s). We were then left to recreate the song. I decided to create my own version of a snare drum so that I could make the pitches of the drum in my song. I then divided the different tracks of my song (beat/drums, piano/melody, singing voice/chorus, Rapping voice/Verses). This allowed me to created my song in a more organized manner. After recording these, I uploaded them to Audacity and edited my audio to recreate my song. This then gave me my final product.

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