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Audio ds106 Thoughts/Ideas

The Artist behind the Audio

Ira Glass and Jad Abumrad both had interestingly calming takes on the use of audio. When thinking of art, my mind goes to things that are tangible, and while audio is not tangible, it is one of the best forms of art.
Glass in his four part interview, which I did not expect to watch all four parts but did, talked about the struggles, ease, and internal battles that occur for someone in the audio industry. Like in the Week 3 assignment post, to me radio is antique, but not as much as when he started describing audio books. Audio books and media that is provided through just audio is like the radio, except it is just more accessible and portable now than having a huge radio on your deck or in your car. I listen to hours of podcasts everyday to help my ADHD get through the work day, so probably when radio was the only access to audio in that format, it is what I would listen to. He also discusses that it is probably the toughest form of medium to be able to master. A lot of people get caught up in wanting to seem like other hosts, performs, etc that it comes off as disingenuous and the ones who succeed “know they are not doing the best work at the beginning” but they push past it to get to that better work.
Abumrad describes more the ability that he and others have to use audio to create a story. While a story could have little meaning or excitedness behind it, it’s about the “coimagining” that people do. In trying to tell a story, you want someone to feel like they were also there having the rain droplets on their face, or the heaviness in the chest, or warmth of hugs. It follows our human nature of wanting to be in groups or work together and feel empathy. Being able to feel others emotions grows stronger connections.


Overall audio is definitely tricky and the ones that know how to do it, do it as well as they can. It’s something that takes a lot of time and practice, but when pushed past that plateau of “I know this sucks, but I have to do it” is where all great radio and podcasts come from.

The videos I watched are linked below, please take a watch! A great example of out of the box thinking of what our words and other audio can do.

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