listen to africa

an audio adventure through africa


Sounds rss

Throughout the 24,000 kilometre expedition, we are recording sounds and voices from across Africa - from people and music to wildlife and soundscapes. You can subscribe to our podcast, browse all our sound recordings below, or listen to:

Wildlife | People | Travelogues | Soundscapes | Music | Podcast

If you work for an educational, nonprofit or research organisation, or in community radio / podcasting and are interested in using any of our sounds, please get in touch.


 

Geotag Icon Wildlife: Yellow-casqued Hornbill

audio, wildlife posted by on Jan 15th, 2010

This is the first of many recordings we made on the beautiful Tiwai Island, one of Sierra Leone’s largest inland islands and a nature reserve preserving one of the last tracts of the Upper Guinea Forest in Sierra Leone. Eight types of hornbills are found on Tiwai, including this beauty, the Yellow-casqued Hornbill, whose whooshing wings and distinctive trumpeting vocalisations are often heard above the forest canopy – especially at this time of year. This is an edited extract from a much longer recording we have of this pair of hornbills. In the background, you’ll hear cracking noises and other movements created by some of Tiwai’s larger animals – including a group of Lesser Spot-nosed Monkeys in the nearby branches. We’d like to thank all the Tiwai Island crew, especially Suzanne for all her help and our guide, Hindowa Kamara, for his patience, knowledge, skill and silence! We’ll be posting several more recordings from Tiwai over the next few days (along with a couple of blog posts to update you on our travels, which have been quite eventful recently…).

Species: Ceratogymna elata
Common name: Yellow-casqued Hornbill, Yellow-casqued Wattled Hornbill
IUCN Red List status: Near threatened
Date and time recorded: 07:17 local time, 23rd December 2009
Location: Tiwai Island, Sierra Leone (view on map)
Equipment: Sennheiser MKH30/40 to Fostex FR2LE
Copyright: Listen to Africa
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Geotag Icon Soundscape: Chain ferry to Guinea

audio, soundscapes posted by on Dec 15th, 2009

The ferry to Guinea

We reached the river that demarcates the Guinea-Bissau / Guinea border between Pitche and Foula Mouri early, while wisps of mist still hung over the river. The chain ferry tilted in the water at the near bank, attached to a chain stretching between the two banks. In this recording, you can hear the clunking of chains and the chatter as passengers hauled the ferry across the river. As our equipment was buried deep in the Land Rover (we took a lift across Guinea for security reasons), this was recorded on Atlantic Rising‘s kit, while they were doing real work (thanks folks!). You can read more about this journey in the blog.

Date and time recorded: 09:23 local time, 15th November 2009
Location: Between Pitche and Foula Mouri on the Guinea-Bissau / Guinea border (view on map)
Equipment: Atlantic Rising‘s equipment (details to follow)
Copyright: Listen to Africa
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Geotag Icon A walk on Orango (flip-flops vs sandals)

audio, soundscapes posted by on Dec 15th, 2009

In place of the sounds of the salt-water hippos we hoped to record on Guinea-Bissau’s Orango Island (but couldn’t afford to), here are some flip flops and sandals, recorded during a walk through some of the island’s mangrove forests. Huw was wearing the (stylish, velcro) cycling sandals, and Will “short leg, strong foot” Lorimer of Atlantic Rising was wearing the flip-flops (brand unknown).

Date and time recorded: 10:24 local time, 11th November 2009
Location: Orango Island, Guinea-Bissau (view on map)
Equipment: Sennheiser MKH30/40 to Fostex FR2LE
Copyright: Listen to Africa
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Geotag Icon Wandy the bird watcher

audio, people posted by on Dec 15th, 2009

Wandy Toure is a bird watcher, guide and general legend at Tendaba Camp in The Gambia. Here, he tells us how he got started in bird watching and guiding, and where to go for the best bird watching around Tendaba. The “airport” he mentions is a helicopter landing strip among rice fields near Tendaba village, and Kiang West is a nearby national park.

Date and time recorded: 16:28 local time, 16th October 2009
Location: Tendaba Camp, The Gambia (view on map)
Equipment: Beyer-Dynamic M58 via FEL MicBooster MB-1 to Fostex FR2LE
Copyright: Listen to Africa
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Geotag Icon Soundscape: Morning at Tendaba

audio, soundscapes posted by on Dec 14th, 2009

We recorded this shortly before recording Life in the mangroves – and standing just a few metres away, in the wilderness near Tendaba by the River Gambia. Any help on identifying the species here would be very appreciated! Best listened to in stereo.

Date and time recorded: 07:52 local time, 16th October 2009
Location: Tendaba, The Gambia (view on map)
Equipment: Sennheiser MKH30/40 to Fostex FR2LE
Copyright: Listen to Africa
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Geotag Icon Hoop and stick

audio, soundscapes posted by on Dec 14th, 2009

We were walking back from a bird watching tour with a local guide and another pair of touring cyclists near Tendaba in The Gambia. Night fell as we arrived in Tendaba village and, hearing frogs that sounded like cowbells, we decided to stop and record for a while. Just after we’d packed up, two young boys ran up the track towards us, rolling their metal hoop – an old bicycle rim, as far as we could make out in the darkness. Here’s a snippet we managed to record, in mono (we only had our shotgun mic with us at the time).

Date and time recorded: 19:22 local time, 16th October 2009
Location: Tendaba Village, The Gambia (view on map)
Equipment: Audio-Technica AT897 via FEL MicBooster MB-1 to Fostex FR2LE
Copyright: Listen to Africa
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Geotag Icon Soundscape: Island waves

audio, soundscapes posted by on Nov 13th, 2009

Recording the wavesWe recorded this at low tide on Orango island – a stunning and sparsely populated island of deserted beaches and mangrove forests in Guinea-Bissau’s Bijagos archipelago. The sea was remarkably calm during our stay on the island, and the sounds of the lapping waves at an ebbing low tide struck us as especially gentle.

Date and time recorded: 17:43 local time, 11th November 2009
Location: Orango, Bijagos archipelago, Guinea-Bissau (view on map)
Equipment: Sennheiser MKH40 to Fostex FR2LE
Copyright: Listen to Africa
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Geotag Icon Soundscape: The pirogue to Orango

audio, soundscapes posted by on Nov 13th, 2009

Loading the pirogueLast week, we left our bikes in Bissau and set off by boat to a couple of islands in the Bijagos archipelago – a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve – with Lynn, Tim and Will of Atlantic Rising. The weekly boat between Bubaque and the sparsely populated island of Orango was a wooden pirogue, which we shared with around 50 people, a dozen or so chickens, several pigs, a few goats and – on the return journey – six cows. We made this recording while the boat was still being loaded, before the bottles of palm wine and sugar cane alcohol had been cracked open for the five hour ride.

Date and time recorded: 12:30 local time, 7th November 2009
Location: Bubaque, Bijagos archipelago, Guinea-Bissau (view on map)
Equipment: Sennheiser MKH30/40 to Fostex FR2LE
Copyright: Listen to Africa
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Geotag Icon Soundscape: Life in the mangroves

audio, soundscapes posted by on Nov 12th, 2009

We recorded this just after dawn in the mangrove forest on the banks of The River Gambia, placing the microphones on a tripod among the mangrove roots to try and capture the astonishing pops, clicks and drips coming from them. We think the pops and clicks are created by crustaceans but if anyone knows for certain, we’d love to find out so please let us know in the comments! Best listened to in stereo.

Date and time recorded: 08:05 local time, 16th October 2009
Location: Tendaba, The Gambia (view on map)
Equipment: Sennheiser MKH30/40 to Fostex FR2LE
Copyright: Listen to Africa
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Geotag Icon Cooking with Kumba

audio, people, travelogues posted by on Nov 4th, 2009
Kaira Konko Scout Lodge. © Listen to Africa

Kaira Konko Scout Lodge. © Listen to Africa

Kumba is the housekeeper at Kaira Konko Scout Lodge in Soma, The Gambia, where we stayed for a few days. In this recording, Bex joins Kumba, Kadi and Fatimateh in the kitchen (well, by the fire in the courtyard) and chats about The Gambia, the UK, this and that while cooking the evening meal. We’re not sure who was interviewing who here, so we’re posting it under people and travelogues, and we apologise for the sound quality in parts of this recording.

We’ve mentioned before that we’ll sometimes post contact details for grassroots projects we come across in case anyone feels inspired to donate. The Kaira Konko Scout Lodge gives young boys and girls a haven where they can work, play, learn and get involved in scouting. The Hampshire-based Kaira Konko Scout Fellowship supports the Lodge with the aims of maintaining scouting and education, assisting the community of Soma and working to make the lodge self-supporting. Monthly donations go towards the education fund and one off donations can go towards supporting big projects.

Date and time recorded: 17:44 local time, 18th October 2009
Location: Soma, The Gambia (view on map)
Equipment: Beyer-Dynamic M58 via FEL MicBooster MB-1 to Fostex FR2LE
Copyright: Listen to Africa
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