Someone last night made a comment about recording techniques that’s created an idea in my head that still lingers. We were discussing the creation of a sonic space, a sort of architectural discussion of sound – common studio talk. I mentioned that one of my favorite recordings I ever made was in an impromptu outdoor setting. Intended to sound low-fi and silly, it actually came out quite clearly, with the most natural sound. And so he says (paraphrased), “well, yeah, the best recording studio is out there” – gesturing out the window to Pine Street, a commercial center of our lovely Capitol Hill – “only most people don’t want to hear the other sounds. You could record in the woods, if you want silence…” and there my ears just stopped listening as I remembered that grove of trees near the summit of Mt. Si. Talk about acoustic space. The pine-needled floor absorbs all the peripheral sound you may possibly fear, and the openness of the air, due to trees spaced far apart from each other, is like an unobtrusive wind. The trees protect from the elements, keeping all the noisy, dirty stuff out, and they also keep a secluded isolated pocket of silence within. This, my friend, is the perfect recording studio.
Now, I’m not saying I’m going to hike to the top of Mt. Si with a laptop, microphones, stands, wires, not to mention a guitar and all the rest. (Though, what a project! How would there be power?) But I absolutely love the idea of turning a wood into a studio. No walls. Part of this is definitely a relentless attachment to Bridge to Terabithia, I know. But it doesn’t seem all that far-fetched, if I could find a closer wood (within reach of an extension cord). A whole new reason for living in the Pacific Northwest – the evergreens.