Sounds of the Season 6: Bringing it Together (Men’s Room!)

Because Sometimes Only Hearing is Believing

I’m featuring sounds from my recent audiobook projects, just for fun, and I hope that this feature of my narration work will resonate with authors and listeners. Here are some of the others.

Many times my FX are drawn from a marvelous website called Freesound.org.  I cut, slice and alter them using effects found in the Audacity tool (also free to download and use). Sometimes I create the sound myself, using my voice or things to hand.

Featured Sound: Men’s Room

I’ve been doing really short sounds recently, and wanted to go to the other side of the spectrum, something longer and showing how the sounds ideally can fit into the background and enhance the listening experience. Enter DL Ashmore, one of my most faithful and enthusiastic author clients, who is continually crafting new ads for his “Business” series available both on Amazon and Audible.

When he sent me his first in the series, Unfinished Business,  I thought “ah, police procedurals”. I’m starting to record his fourth book today, and my sense of the genre has sharpened a bit. I now call it “ex-military pseudo-vigilante porn”. There are good cops, who’ve been raised right and know how to enforce the law, including creatively at times. Bad guys abound, but they generally get theirs, as in the clip below about an arrogant young gun who has vulture-capitalized a children’s hospital and plans to fire all the staff to finance his dissolute lifestyle. Yeah, like that’s going to happen.

Here’s the sound, “Men’s Room” from Taking Care of Business (linked to his Facebook post, might have to scroll down a bit to see it):

Excerpt from “Taking Care of Business” (DL Ashmore)

How It Sounded

The sounds here are all pretty mundane; opening and closing the heavy bathroom door, unzipping pants, and then the semi-limp body of a vulture capitalist hitting the tile floor. The trick was to keep them slotted tightly into the narration (without long beats between the words, and so forth) so that the listener might feel really there. At the end of the clip, the venue actually shifts in and out of the men’s room, from the ladies’ conversation to the dope’s last thoughts.

How It Looks

Women may wish to avert their eyes. It’s the row of urinals that makes a men’s room unique. I only found about a thousand and six pictures that would do the trick. Here’s one from iStock:

Bathroom for men, especially clean, spacious

The Business series by DL Ashmore is available at both Amazon for e-book and paperback, as well as on Audible for the a-books. The fourth audiobook in the series, Ugly Business, is at Amazon now and will be out on audio later this fall.

Sounds of the Season 5: Arrows and Spears

Because Sometimes Only Hearing is Believing

I’m featuring sounds from my recent audiobook projects, just for fun, and I hope that this feature of my narration work will resonate with authors and listeners. Here are some of the others.

Many times my FX are drawn from a marvelous website called Freesound.org.  I cut, slice and alter them using effects found in the Audacity tool (also free to download and use). Sometimes I create the sound myself, using my voice or things to hand.

Featured Sound: Arrows and Spears

Believe it or not there are actually several FX on Freesound for “battle” including medieval-style conflicts. You can hear horses, the clash of swords, men shouting, it’s incredible. Sometimes it’s Live-Action Roleplaying stuff and others I think may be drawn from movie soundtracks. I’ve used them before.

But for the recent prequel to Gilbert Stack’s Legionnaire series, entitled The Jungles of Ekanga, I had a special challenge. During a climactic moment of the action, I needed the sound of Roman soldiers armed with throwing spears being harassed by jungle tribesmen firing arrows. No clashing, no shouts or horses, just impacts. So I crafted it.

Here’s the sound, Arrows and Spears:

How It Sounded

There are many great FX for arrows, but I added some that qualified as “thunk” or “clunk” to get the spear impacts. I also threw in a couple instances of “chopping meat” for the ones that hit their targets. All this was to run under the narration and hopefully not distract too badly from the tale: what you’re hearing is much louder than the volume I used.

How It Looks

I should probably do a post someday on “How I Suck at Searching” because the results of my terms is often both depressing and amusing. Below is one lovely photo I found with “Romans in the jungle”. But I also got pictures from various iterations of “Survivor”; and there is evidently either a person or a product, or both, having to do with ED that, ahm, “comes up” on that search. Sigh…

The Legionnaire series by Gilbert Stack is available through #12 on Amazon and I have the privilege of the first six chapters out on Audible. It is a truly marvelous adventure with epic scope but lovely bite-sized pieces for you to read and enjoy. Start with The Fire Islands if you like, and then later if you find yourself geeking out, come back and enjoy this prequel, the kind of We-Knew-Him-When stuff that the fans really love to hear.