One of my proudest moments so far as Head of Content at Stabl is this commission for Audible: My Life In Sound. It’s a 40 minute podcast, designed as bonus material to accompany the brand new Bill Bryson audio book, ‘The Body’ which is available exclusively on Audible. We were asked to come up with a selection of ideas for a podcast that would accompany the book, something Bill Bryson himself would have the final say on.

Bill chose ‘My Life In Sound’ a podcast in which you’d hear different voices share their own unique experience of sound, their own distinct and different relationship to it. We wanted this to be a beautiful auditory experience, with beautifully bespoke and enchanting sound design, unusual and distinct voices (ones that you might not be used to hearing), and one that had Bill’s input.

All our lives are steeped in sound. But as audio producers, we are constantly thinking about sound. It is a central to our lives – where we work, how we earn our living, where our skills lie.  I knew when I spoke to Michael Umney, that he would be a perfect match for this project. Michael along with the support of another wonderful producer, Jessie Lawson have created an incredible auditory experience.

The podcast shares the words of a poet, a musician, an author, a nature sound recordist, an actor/ voice coach and a piano tuner interweave and through listening to them we learn something about the experience of being deaf, living with tinnitus, transitioning from male to female, learning how to listen not to mention a wonderful anecdote involving Bill Bryson, and a Bear in the woods.

Says Michael:

My Life in Sound was a wonderful opportunity to make an open, contributor led documentary. It gave myself and Assistant Producer Jessie Lawson a chance to interview a fascinating and diverse set of people as they considered their deep, revealing and often moving relationships with their hearing. It also gave me the rare opportunity to form an organic narrative from their stories rather than bending their realities to fit an imposed story. This kind of human centred work is what got me into audio documentary in the first place and it was such a pleasure to come back to it with the support of an encouraging and understanding team.

Enormous thanks to Jessie and Michael, and to Bill Bryson and of course to Audible for giving us the opportunity to make it. We are incredibly proud of how this programme sounds and if you’re an Audible member, please do give it a listen.