Roof Drone


A few weekends back I got out of New York City with the Missus and headed upstate.  It was a beautiful weekend, but it did rain for a while, which gave me an excuse to do some recordings.  Some family friends have a beatiful old barn on the edge of their property that I have been dying to record in for some time.

The barn has old wooden beams, a metal roof, and a small bat population.  When it started raining, I ran over to start recording, thinking that the metal roof coupled with the acoustics of the interior would lead to some interesting results.

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Unfortunately, the rain was a little too light and constant for the impacts on the metal roof to be that interesting, so I was not hopeful when I set up the recorder.  I didn’t think I would get anything worthwhile unless the pattern of the rain shifted.  However, when I got home and started sifting through the recording, I discovered the rain was not the coolest part.  It was the roof itself!  If you listen closely, the roof shifts in the wind and generates wobbly low frequency sounds. Can you say “Roof Drone?”  I had thought I would go home and trash the recording, but am glad I spent the time sifting through all of the content.

Now, I have to go back on a windy day to get just the sounds of the roof moving against the rest of the barn.  In addition, there are occasional bat vocalizations, a few birds, and a couple of planes that are all filtered through the roof and the barn.  It might not be the best result, but it turned out to be a worthy and interesting experiment.

Recording Geek Note: Rig consists of Schoeps CMC5’s setup for MS, with the MK4 as the mid. It was all tracked to a Sound Devices 744T at 24/96

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  1. Thanks for sharing! Windy days are good, I’m sure, but I’m always amazed at what goes on just sitting out on a hot day in the sun.

Michael Raphael August 7, 2010