Sonic Network, maker of Sonic Implants sample libaries andinstrument sounds for film and TV composers, has released a new guitarlibrary, I’d Like to Buy a Vowel: Adventures in Talk Box Guitar.“It’s a unique concept, to be sure,” says Sonic Implantsfounder and president Jennifer Hruska. “We thought it would befun to give our users something off the beaten path.”
Those unfamiliar with this curious device by name will almostcertainly be familiar with the distinctive sounds it can produce, aspopular artists as diverse as Joe Walsh, Peter Frampton and Bon Jovihave used the Talk Box to startling effect during the course of thepast 30 years of popular music. The Talk Box allows guitarists toeffectively “talk” guitar notes by routing the guitar’s amplified soundthrough a piece of tubing that the player holds in his/her mouth.Fluctuations in mouth position relative to the tubing enable the playerto evince all manner of artificial “speech” using the guitar as theplayers “voice.”
Layout of the Talk Box CD-ROM includes a generous selection ofmultisamples carefully selected to evoke the traditionalcharacteristics of the instrument. Sonic Implants engineer PeterDrawbridge explains: “Picking the right articulations wasimportant because we wanted users to get an accurate overall feel forthe instrument. This is why we made sure to mix in some of the more’static’ tube sounds with the actual ‘talking’ syllables, since whatmakes the Talk Box so distinctive, apart from the actual ‘speaking’part, is the elastic ‘growl’ the box imparts to the guitar itself. It’sa very unique timbre that you really can’t duplicate with an overdriveor distortion pedal.”
An entirely separate portion of the disc is devoted to sampledphrases that were programmed in four musical keys at three differenttempos apiece, affording users the opportunity to combine sampledlicks, trills and bends with the aforementioned multisamples to createrealistic sequences.
The CD-ROM, comprising multisampled tones and chords in addition tothe sampled phrases, is available in GigaSampler and Soundfont formatsat Sonic Implants’ Website, www.sonicimplants.com, where those interested canalso find MP3 demos of the Talk Box in action. Downloadable files ofthe Talk Box multisamples are also available in the previouslymentioned formats.