|Tom Hays, Writer/Producer|
It was a few years back, a time when life had a different feel to it. The air in the recording studio seemed electric … sparking … crackling with activity and creativity, spiced by the smells of stale pizza, herb and cigarette smoke, filled with the amplified sounds of voices, music and sound effects.
As my friend John and I worked into the fuzzy hours of the night building commercials for my advertising clients, we had little knowledge of just what was coming our way, courtesy of an errant sound mixing console.
My agency studio was filled with second hand equipment, mostly acquired from radio stations. That old broadcast console and the Ampex recorders had some miles on them, but I had a good consulting engineer go through the place on a regular basis who kept it right up to specs. Maybe too good.
As I said, it was late, and we were trying to finish up, but as we were listening to a playback, we started to hear some sounds that were not coming from what we had just recorded, faint sounds as if from far, far away. We were in a soundproof studio. Nothing was on except the tape player, the console and the speakers. What was that noise? We turned off the tape playback, but the far away sound persisted. We turned the speakers all the way down, and still the strange sounds came. With our ears we followed the sound to the source, the small broadcast monitor speaker in the console. We were not a radio station. We were not “broadcasting” anything. It got weird after that.
“If we’re not broadcasting,” I said, “then we must be receiving.” John turned up the volume on the console monitor and the sound became more audible. It was like nothing we had ever heard before, like a microphone was on in a strange place and no one knew it was on, and it was being transmitted. Somehow, my old radio broadcast console was picking up that transmission. Strange indeed, for the sounds were like an old radio serial from days gone by. “John,” I said, “we’d better get this while we can.” John turned on one of the recorders and we started recording.
The recordings continued, night after night, and in time we came to discover that what we were hearing was some sort of transmission from a small planet named Amphibia, in a far away galaxy known as Croakatoria. All in all, we managed to piece together 40 of these recordings. Astounded as we were, but fearing how the government dealt with those people telling stories about "hearing people from outer space", we dared not release the recordings to the public. The project was code named “Star Base Toad”.
Kept secretly and securely in my vault for all these years, I have now decided to risk ridicule and share these recordings with others who may find them of interest … people who may wish to hear about life on other planets, about alien civilizations and the distant reaches of space and time. It is important to me that the world has the opportunity, through these recordings, to study the society that exists on Amphibia so that we may try to better understand our own. There has never been a time when we needed that more than right now.
In order to share this amazing audio discovery with as many people as possible, I have transferred the 40 recorded Star Base Toad episodes to 4 audio books, which have been published and are being distributed online by OpenBookAudio.com. They are now available at most audio book dealers including iTunes and Audible.com. The four audio books are also available in CD format at StarBaseToad.com.If your imagination will allow you to believe that life exists elsewhere, you can now listen and learn about the strange and exciting life on Amphibia. I urge you to listen carefully to the entire series.