April 17th, 2008

Nico Concreto (0-3 Months)

Today marks 3 months since Nico joined us in the post-womb world. It’s been a really wonderful time. And I mean that — filled with wonder. Seeing and hearing her learn to interact with the people and things around her has been totally fascinating. The arrival of smiles, focused eyes, a strong neck (keep keepin your head up), and clumsy but effective hands — all of these things have felt like milestones. Just yesterday, we got her to laugh a little bit, a truly joyful development.

As you might infer, we’ve been recording a lot of this: photos, video, audio. And while I’m trying to be cautious about uploading her life to the interweb, I’m glad to have all of this, to share a bit with friends and family now, and of course to share with Nico later.

Last week I embarked on a project to make something that would represent Nico’s first 3 months in the world, aurally and visually. As part of the process, I combed through the 25 or so audio recordings I had made, which were full of little revelations. Not least of which was hearing how the shapes of her sounds — like the shape of her face and little body — have already changed so much in such a short time.

Another amazing thing was seeing the way a waveform could illustrate the dynamics of a good cry —

I’ll spare you the audio on that one. Ultimately, I cut over 100 loops and percussive blips’n’burps to use in the assemblage of some post-natal electro.

I also combed through, with Becca’s eyes too, about 1500 digital photos we’ve snapped so far. A lot of these are throwaways, of course — blurry shots, bad framing, etc. — but rather than throw them away, we’ve kept them, and they came in handy. I decided to match about 700 fast-moving photos to her loops’n’whoops, and a lot of those “throwaways,” in combination with the good shots, made for some stunning sequences, especially at a beat-matched frame-rate (yay Ableton video!).

The end product is a collage/montage that proceeds more or less in chronological order. I premiered it last Friday at an electro-acoustic concert @ Brandeis and it was a big hit (but, of course, beats + baby = surefire crowd pleaser). Hope u digg too —

Future installments to follow, no doubt.


  • 1. Greggy B.  |  April 17th, 2008 at 8:51 am

    Bravo! What a great way for friends separated by a whole lotta mileage to experience at least an a/v representation of Nico’s first months. She’s a stunning kid, which is no surprise. I love the video. I’m particularly drawn to those moments where repetitions of visual elements and repetitions of sound samples seem to line up initially before you realize it’s not exactly — if at all — in sync. I think enough time’s passed since my last post-tonal analysis class that I can once enjoy letting my eyes trick me into hearing things that might not even be there.

  • 2. Caro  |  April 17th, 2008 at 9:55 am

    Too frikin’ cute! I think this makes her the youngest human beat box ever. And it’ll only get more interesting from here on in.

  • 3. 1893  |  April 17th, 2008 at 6:23 pm

    You already know

  • 4. nina  |  July 28th, 2008 at 9:38 am

    awwww, she’ll love it when she’s older!!


I'm a techno-musicologist, internet annotator, imagined community organizer.

I left my <3 in the digital global, but I reside in Cambridge, MA, where I'm from.

I represent like that.

wayne at wayneandwax dot com

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