I happened to meet some folks traveling through town during the Three Rivers Arts Festival who had some Sugar Gliders. I was squatting (literally) with some people near a spot where a Sitar player was busking near the Hilton Hotel. I love the sound of that instrument, and had approached the musician with my card, asking if he’d consider sharing a Sitar Tone with the project. He said he was one of very few players in town and it would be a rare tone indeed. He’d think about it. Turns out he never got back to me, but something magical came from my querrying the Sitar gent. The people right next to me said, “We’ve got something that’d make a pretty rare ringtone–have you ever heard a sugar glider wake up?”
When they told me they were very cute and playful marsupials, I was excited about the idea. Would this be the world’s first Sugar Glider (Petaurus breviceps) ringtone? I couldn’t wait to try recording the audio and hear their little sounds. We made an appointment to record a tone/snap some photos.
Wikipedia helped me to learn more about the Sugar Gliders–they have these twin skin membranes called patagia: “The membranes are used to glide between trees: when fully extended they form an aerodynamic surface the size of a large handkerchief. Membranes are also used to gather food while hunting.”
The folks I met had two of these supercute pets: Frisbee and Lupin. The Locally Toned photo shoot stars Lupin. The ringtones are 100% Frisbee.
Here’s the Frisbee Wakes Alert Signal. I simply copied and pasted the same sound clip a few times throughout the time line in order to make this tone. When I heard the audio run through my headphones, I was astounded–it sounded as if it had been generated by an electronic signal. As Frisbee’s owner put it, “Gliders do make this ‘attack’ sound when they’re frightened and defending their nests in the wild, but our Frisbee has always been very vocal and she just does it to give you an earful if you wake her up too early.”
The Frisbee Montage Tone consists of Frisbee’s attack sounds when she pounced on her little rafia toy, and that funny and distinct sound that Frisbee makes when she wakes up.
Thanks to Lupin, Frisbee and their keepers for one of the most fantastic tones in the project!