Folks, we HOBOs like to be creative. That’s just a fact, and music is no exception. HOBO composes the freshest music for commercials, for TV shows, for films, and for you! Because of the industry’s wide range of musical demands, we’re versatile in many musical styles and genres. Take a listen, won’t you?
Cup o’ Joe, Java, Morning Mud, Bean Juice, Cup of pipping hot Joseph, Brew, Battery acid, Nectar of the Gods…aka Coffee.
Well friends, I’m on the bean. I’ve been addicted and voluntarily drinking coffee since sophomore year of high school. Of course I can stop drinking at any point. Drinking and making coffee is a passion and favorite pastime of mine: specifically espresso, cappuccinos, and lattes. Espresso is rich in flavor, sweet, smooth, and just plain delicious–but only when it’s been made correctly. When poorly made, you may find yourself exclaiming, “Eww gross, espresso is so bitter and sour!” I’d venture to say that many people haven’t experienced properly-made espresso.
Making espresso is very much like mixing audio. You need good ingredients, solid machinery/tools, and most importantly a good barista/engineer. For flavorful espresso, it all starts with freshly roasted beans. Depending on the roast and type of bean, its good to let the beans rest for at least 3-5 days from the roast date before grinding. As it ages, you’ll find the espresso’s flavors and aroma enhanced. Next, it’s time to grind. A good burr grinder is actually more important than the espresso machine. To achieve quality espresso, you want your bean ground evenly. It ensures plenty of surface area for the water to extract the rich flavors hiding in the bean. You might be tempted to use a blade grinder…don’t give in! A blade grinder is vicious and will violently thrash and create an uneven grind. After grinding, fill your portafilter with about 14 grams of grind. Next, tamp with a good amount of body weight. Some say 30lbs of pressure, I say tomato, toe-mah-toe. Then lock the portafilter in place and pull the shot! It should take around 20-30 seconds to pull. If the stars and moons have aligned and all the moving parts play nice, you’ll hopefully have a tasty demitasse of espresso.
If your tastebuds have been excited and your mind intrigued, check out some of the videos below for further look into the world of espresso (& latte art)…
Below are some great videos about making espresso by NYC barista Mike Jones from Third Rail Coffee.
It seemed like yesterday…popcorn in my right hand, skittles in my left…watching a movie called “Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring”. A movie that transported the viewer into a world of visual and aural awesomeness while taking you on a great adventure. Little did I know, this would start a slight obsession with the LOTR Trilogy. So what if I saw The Two Towers about 7 times in theaters (2 of them IMAX). And maybe I have all the extended version DVDs (I highly recommend the extra features, it’ll rock your socks! ). But as I watch the trailer for The Hobbit, I have a strange feeling that Peter Jackson will once again deliver a great trilogy and I’ll be forced to spend a lot of cheddar at the cinema.
As an audio engineer, I’m excited to hear all of the cool sounds they’ve chosen to bring life into this fantasy world. When reading The Hobbit, you can tell there are loads of creatures, landscapes, fight scenes that will be a blast for the sound designers to work on. It will most likely push them creatively too. As I read The Hobbit, I couldn’t help but have ideas of what this world would sound like. Don’t lie, I know you have too! That’s one of the great things about reading a book and then watching the movie. Now, putting aside your feelings about which is better, the film or book, you experience someones perception and audio nativity of a fictitious world. You experience how they take words on a paper and make them into a unique, sonic reality. They bring life, emotion, and ear tingling goodness to the movie goer. Ahhhh, I love it.
So when you’re in the theater watching The Hobbit, try and remember what you imagined while reading the book, you might just be pleasantly surprised by what has been created.
As my Aunt Ida exclaimed, “monsters going to university?! Ridiculous”. Well, never say never because that’s what’s happening next year. As a big fan of Pixar, I’m always super pumped for one of their releases. That’s when I get to dress up as Mr. Incredible and go see the next edition of aural and visual coolness they’ve created. What a catalogue, Monsters Inc., Wall-E, and now Monsters University. Working on one of those films is a sound designer’s dream for they give you an open canvas to bring a compelling and believable soundscape to a world of creatures, machines and environments that have no natural sounds of their own. The visuals pull you into their world but the sound work brings it to life.
I’m especially looking forward to hearing how the monsters sound. Not just their roar when on the job scaring kids but the details of their body movements, various vocalizations, and any other special powers they might have. Monsters Inc. had some really awesome and unique sound design and I have a feeling Monsters University will take it to a whole new degree and that’s no BS.
Summer of 2013, hurry up and get here. In the mean time, check out the trailer…
On May 30th, a new and slightly untraditional comic book series called M3 was released. “What makes this untraditional you say?” Well, M3 features a powerful and independent woman who has NO superpowers. She just kicks some serious behind with her own strength and abilities. “With a comic book like this, shouldn’t there be a trailer with epic and powerful sound design?” It just so happens that Erica Schultz, author of M3, asked Hobo Audio to sound design the trailer. What self respecting engineer wouldn’t jump on the opportunity to create some sonically pleasing sounds?!
Since this is a comic book trailer, there isn’t live action, right? Which means, it’s not your typical sound design job. It was my job to bring real life sound to a series of illustrations. With the audio, I had to “fill in the gaps” and imply movement that wasn’t visually there. I was up for the challenge.
Before I go into detail, play down the trailer so I don’t spoil it for you….Play Trailer…done? Great.
Take the scene where M3 breaks out of her handcuffs and throws a mean right hook to the FBI agent (:35). When approaching the scene, I first imagined what it would sound/look like in real life. I then brainstormed the sounds I wanted to use and how it would add depth while implying the action of the illustrations. I also knew it needed to be a little larger than life. The audio needed to show M3’s strength as portrayed in the comic. She’s a strong gal so having a subtle and wimpy punch wouldn’t do her justice. For example, the impact to the FBI Agents face showed the audience that she knows how to throw a good right hook. Nothing like a juicy punch!
Well friends, thats just a glance at how I approached sound designing the M3 trailer. Thanks for reading. To check out the awesomeness that is M3, click here!