A listening tour of the West Coast with Doofy Doo’s The Tourist

Blake Gillespie

We used to crash on couches when we traveled. Connect with friends who’d put out feelers for options; post inquiries on Craigslist; post feelers on Facebook and Twitter; arrive in town and make friends at a bar in hopes of a fortuitous lead. Now there’s an app to eradicate uncertainty and whitewash adventure.

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Doofy Doo’s The Tourist rekindles the spirit of the road and couch surfing. The subtext of “Belong Anywhere” in Airbnb ads wreak of colonialism, but in the hands of Doofy Doo we experience the immersive effervescence of local conversation, headlines, and sounds of the city through sonic collages.

The experiment was to visit 15 cities over the course of 2015, recording live sets in each location that sample sound bytes from local news, Youtube clips, and field recordings during his stay. Each collection is accented by Doofy Doo’s trashcan percussion and melodious guitar meditations. Stationed in Sacramento, Doofy Doo traveled as far south as Mexico—recording in La Frontera—and as far north as Vancouver.

Airbnb improved the model of couch surfing. Mi casa su casa as a 26 billion-dollar industry is complicated. Doofy Doo’s sound collages respect the communities he observes. Each collection offers the same vicarious immersion (see also: voyeurism) as a download without the risk of displacement, housing crises, and gentrification.

For a sampler of each cities best offerings, Doofy Doo compiled The Tourist:

Listen to individual cities—15 total—at Doofy Doo’s Bandcamp.

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