Mixed live on World Listening Day 2020, July 18, 2020. You can read my thoughts on this year’s theme: “The Collective Field”, here. This mix collects the Black spaces and Green spaces of Black neighborhoods on the south side of Chicago, from hydrophone recordings of marsh land at Marian R. Byrnes Park and Big Marsh to picnics at Washington Park and neighborhood parties.
When we say Black Lives Matter then Black space matters, Black Sound matters, then sounds we make, hear, live with and create matter and must not be dismissed or denigrated before they are heard. This is what I tell myself. We need our creativity and sensitivity. I haven’t led soundwalks since the lockdown. However, I have been recording our prairie and have many recordings of an urban community with a wildlife reserve. The prairie is located between Jeffery Manor, a residential neighborhood in Chicago, IL and a large rail yard. This area is also called the calumet region and was once inhabited by Indigenous tribes of Miami, Potawatomi, and Illinois. There has been a lack of investment and dis-investement we have struggled with over decades.This community has suffered tremendous loss of local economy and ecology over many years. Recording during a pandemic gave me a chance to reflect on the sound of crisis in an area lacking economic investment. We must be present while we fight for our future. This is a time of expansion and liberation. These recordings offer us a way to listen to communities of color by listening for the ecological, economic and residential life that make up the community to decolonize our listening according to Jennifer Lynn Stoever(The Sonic Color Line) is “to listen to and out for each other” and (to add) our environment.