I'm extremely lucky to live in the neighborhood that is Bedford Stuyvesant. It is filled with brownstones, neighbors saying hi to one another, trash, homeless people, car honking, trumpets drifting from rooftops. It sounds distinct from other neighborhoods, yet reflects the bustle that is NYC.
It is with frame that I went into my audio final. I wanted to do something that highlighted the connection between a place and their sound.
With that in mind, I decided to make a sound walk that didn't focus on just sounds that you hear on the street, but the music and audio that reflected the neighborhood. Inspired by Passing Stranger: The East Village Poetry Walk, the project sets out to explore BedStuy in a celebratory manner, giving a nod to its struggle and role in the rise of hip hop and jazz in American history.
To do this, I researched areas that were filled with history. Old roller skating rinks, churches, and street corners that laid the foundation for the growth of a new type of sound. I compiled these into a map, and paired it with interviews and music based on these key areas. A piece of what would be a much longer version is below, along with a map of key locations.
Please take this as a proof of concept. It only showcases a couple blocks, but lays out what the entirety of the walk would look like. In an ideal world, I would be able to produce it while including my own interviews, having a native Brooklynite who has a penchant for hip hop lead the discussion, and would be able to use all the music royalty free.
Clifton Block Party feat. Ali Shaheed & Hank Shocklee // Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn // 09.15.2013