From Patagonia to the Amazon rainforest, South America has some of the most biologically diverse areas on the planet. It is also home to an incredible range of bird species, many of which are under threat of extinction, such as the Hooded Grebe with only around 800 adults left in the wild or the critically endangered Araripe Manakin, endemic to Brazil.
Through A Guide to the Birdsong of South America I want to help tell their tale and spread their song through inspiring music by some of the continent's rising stars.
The idea began a few years back when, as a producer I started experimenting with the idea of making music inspired by birdsong. I knew a lot of bands and producers across the continent, and thought, why not use this to highlight the wave of exciting musicians across South America, as well as the plight of its wildlife?
I came up with a tentative list of threatened birds from the seven countries represented by the list of artists. Then I took this list to the community birdsong site Xeno Canto to source and get permission to use the rare song samples themselves. Once I had 22 birds, each musician chose their song and species and went to get inspired!
I wanted to ensure the project also supports the organisations working on the ground to protect these birds. I reached out to an NGO called Aves y Conservación, a partner of BirdLife International in Ecuador that works to protect and raise awareness about bird species. Proceeds from the album will support them and their work.
I have also been working with the graphic designer Scott Partridge who has created 12 unique illustrations, one for each species.
The list of artists is confirmed, they have chosen their birds and are now hard at work making their birdsong inspired tracks. These will be completed in the next month and from there I will send the tracks to be mastered and produce the album. Scott's bird designs are done and looking fantastic (see below) so we can't wait to get them printed!
Now I’m raising the 2,500 Euros needed for professional mastering, vinyl pressing and packaging, the illustrations, printing costs and the distribution all over the world. I have all of this lined up and ready to go. At the last count we had over 1700 Euro in the form of dozens of small donations through our Kickstarter project