First Wood Thrush recording of the season. 6:15am, 3 May 2016. Shindagin Hollow near Brooktondale, New York. © Lang Elliott. Please adjust volume for a gentle and soothing listening experience.
Yesterday I rose early to hear the fluting of a Wood Thrush, but didn’t hear a peep. This morning, as if by magic, the songs of thrushes rained down upon the forest floor, glittering like stardust sprinkled upon the greening landscape. How enchanting and reassuring … the Wood Thrushes have once again returned!
Arriving in the twilight, my friend Beth Bannister and I heard a Wood Thrush singing on the far side of the hollow, too distant for a nice recording. So we moved farther down the road and found another, but he flew up a steep hill and over the ridge, his songs scarcely audible in the distance. Finally, we found a male singing on a forested slope above a gurgling brook. He stayed put and allowed us to get a wonderfully soothing soundscape, which is featured here.
The air smelled of wild leeks, which carpeted the forest floor. Brilliant green patches of false hellebore were scattered here and there. I laid on the ground with my head among the leaves and peered at the canopy above. Somewhere in the treetops, our singer scattered his flute-notes with a rhythmic cadence that was relaxing and hypnotic in effect. How glorious it was to lie there among the sprouting herbs, with signs of spring all around. A moment to be treasured, an elixir for the coming day.
Friends … if you find that my blog has a positive impact on your life, please help support my effort by making a modest donation.
So beautiful and uplifting and soothing! The clarity and fluidity of the wood thrush’s song is unparalleled. A few evenings ago, a humid afternoon gave way to rain and I was surprised to hear a thrush send out a few phrases in the midst of the steady rain! Later that evening, as twilight turned to dark I heard it again! I have never noticed them to sing in the rain or at the edge of night.
All our thrushes seem to have a spurt of song in the evening, often with lots of calls thrown in … perhaps an end of day celebration before retreating to a safe perch for the night.
One of the most blissful, heavenly voices in the forest. It touches the heart and soul.
As I close my eyes and listen to your recording, the scatering notes of the thrush’s song is most pleasing to the ear, and touches the delicate fibers of my soul. The soft simplicity and clarity of its voice brings me into a sublime-like peace which has a wonderful healing quality for me. I like that your recording is of a single bird, unaccompanied by other sounds of nature’s creatures. It makes for a more relaxation experience…the only reality of nature’s music is the state of mind it induces in the listener. I thank you Lang for the wonderful experience.… Read more »
Connie: I am so glad to hear that my thrush recording moves you as you describe. If only everyone could experience thrush songs this way.
There’s a lightness within when I’m in nature or when not, listening to your recordings of forests and ponds/marshes come alive.
We are still “borrowing” a few of your beautiful Wood Thrushes down south with migration. I had one of these beauties singing in a branch right in front of m in High Island, Tx. just yesterday. It was magical. Hope my new gravatar of the really red Red Knot I saw yesterday in Bolivar comes through OK. Crossing my fingers. Never had one of those gravatars before, and my Red Knot is a lifer! :o)
Yep … yooz a red knot!
Oh, so evocative of a misty, muddy hollow. Beauty that defies description (although your blog entry did him justice!)… Swainson’s thrushes just arrived – last night in fact – to my own forest home in the SF Bay Area. They are the first and last to sing, these welcome pilgrims of heaven.
Love your photo in the hellebore, Lang! That’s a keeper. I love that you look so happy, immersed in your Earth element! xox
P.S. I can’t bear to leave your forest hollow! Your thrush is welcome to continue singing here all morning. If you ever have CD’s to accompany your blog recordings, please tell us! I would buy this one in a heartbeat.
By far, my absolute favorite birdsong…so uplifting and haunting all at the same time. The sound of the water in the background is so classic as I nearly always encounter them near rushy little streams. The Thrush’s song is very fluid, just like the water and deep. Always my favorite. Others thought so too. “He touches a depth in me which no other bird’s song does,……The thrush alone declares the immortal wealth and vigor that is in the forest, ..Whenever a man hears it, he is young, and Nature is in her spring. It is a new world and a… Read more »
Oh my … great quotes. Thank you Rebecca!
Still my favorite bird song. Brings back to my previous home in the Baraboo hills of central Wisconsin.
Thank you! Such an ethereal sound! Your soundscapes and videos give me a mini-vacation into our landscapes.
That’s one of my goals: to give people “mini-vacations” … nature therapy … to relieve (at least temporarily) the stresses of the day.
the sound bar doesn’t appear in my blog feed…I am not too computer savvy and its an i-pad. but it worked in the past.
Eleanor: It’s working fine on this end and nobody else has signaled a problem. So perhaps your internet connection slowed down? Try again later and let me know what happens.
Pura rítmica minimalista,te ha gustado,la pieza,lang,lang,que te envié con dríve.
beautiful thank you Lang! Loved your new selfie! 🙂
I love this! Now, I know they will soon be across the lake and singing in our woods here! Thanks so much
Amy: they have probably already arrived … why not go out tomorrow at dawn to listen for their songs?
I was in the Peter’s Woods today and it is beautiful. I saw a few warblers up top, the bees in their favourite tree and a Red Hawk calling and there is a creek! However, no Wood Thrush yet. I will go back tomorrow just like you did! lol
Lang, I would love to have a book filled with your wonderful essays/musings on nature, accompanied by the song of the bird you were describing. I envision a book designed so as the reader turned each page, that bird’s song would play while the reader read about the encounter or more about the bird.
Susan: In a true sense, my blog is becoming that book. In most ways it is superior to a book because I can include recordings and videos … media that is extremely difficult to integrate into book form. Current books that include built-in audio players generally sound absolutely horrible and the recordings themselves are extremely brief. An immersive soundscape simply cannot be communicated with such technology.
great job!!! it reminds me of walking at the vic (enter from keese mills road and just KNOW i’d hear the thrush at a certain part of the trail. you are right, i feel like i’m there.
I know that walk and the wonderful sounds one might hear along the trail.
You did it! Thank you! So beautiful. Perfection, I’d say, of my favorite bird singing with a babbling brook and blue jays, as background harmony. Poetic descriptions included. WOW, softly. Enchanting. I hope you enjoyed this heaven-sent, earthly experience.
I enjoyed it deeply, in the moment of experiencing it, and then later in listening to the recording and writing out my memory of the event.
me eyes and ears are not what they once were so I really appreciate your archive of bird song
Lang, you really captured some beautiful sounds in this recording! Anyone could feel that they were right there with you in the Hollow. Thanks.
Thank you Tom … that’s what I was shooting for … the sense of actually being there. I find the recording quite lovely and keep playing it over and over, here in my studio. If I close my eyes, it’s almost as good as being there.
Oh, yes! The very best bird song in my woods in TN too. And this morning he sat preening on a limb of a sumac just outside my bedroom window, no song, but a chance to really look at him!
How lucky I am to gather an armload of warm clothes from my dryer and walk through the fresh morning gladness of Shindagin hollow to fold and tidy my own little world in the midst of this one! I rarely can name-that-tune or the creature making it, but what a gift to have my all molecules relax and open and smile in the lovely presence of morning woods and water and song…thanks Lang!
Wonderful to hear, Martha … my soundscapes are meant to provide a tonic for the molecules of self-embodiment. Let us be grateful for the intrinsic healing quality of nature’s music.
Beautiful! And especially lovely accompanied by your poetic description, too. Life is good!
Life is good!
ahhhh, my favorite of all bird songs. always a joyous moment when i hear the first one of the year. beautiful recording and word picture of the event
it’s definitely fun but quite challenging to create effective word pictures!
Beautiful recording as always! Such an amazing sound; I can’t wait to hear them once I can get out to the woods again.
Thank you, thank you, thank you! It is thrilling to know you heard this on this very morning, and this afternoon we can all revel in this heavenly sound. Can’t thank you enough, Lang! Nice shot among the leaves, too!
You’re welcome Marilyn. It is wonderful to be able to share an experience so quickly, while it is still fresh and new. Especially during migration season, when every day is significant, and new arrivals deserve to be celebrated without delay.