Phone app makes music from baby noises

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WELCOME to the 21st century equivalent of recording your child singing a nursery rhyme - a mobile app which turns your little one’s gurgles into real music.

The invention by an East Lothian dad-of-two and musician was launched this week on the iPhone and iPad and can turn literally any sound into a professionally polished piece.

babiesAloud creator Sandy Butler joins son Reuben to create some tunes to be kept as a memento. Picture: Katielee Arrowsmith

babiesAloud creator Sandy Butler joins son Reuben to create some tunes to be kept as a memento. Picture: Katielee Arrowsmith

Backing tracks range from gentle lullabies to modern beats and the finished tune can be shared online with friends and family.

Sandy Butler, 27, from Ormiston, said he was inspired to come up with the babiesAloud app after recording his own children.

He said: “When I was small, it was commonplace for parents to tape record their children in order to create a sound-memory from childhood.

“Nowadays, we can use a simple recording device to do something similar, but babiesAloud is completely different in that it not only provides you with voices or sounds, but provides a full music track as a unique memento that you can share and keep.”

Mr Butler, who has two children – Sylvie, three, and one-year-old Reuben – teaches guitar to children through the charity Fischy Music.

It was after he recorded the gurgles of a six-month-old Sylvie for a comedy song that friends flooded him with requests.

Mr Butler, who has been a musician all his life and spent his childhood in his father’s recording studio, said: “The first version was a rhythm track with Sylvie’s voice over the top.

“I then began to think ‘what if I could offer this to other families?’

“Not everyone can pop upstairs to their own recording studio, so the idea of an app, giving the same end result with no technical knowledge needed, began to form.

“Babies start to babble from the age of about six weeks and, according to experts, mirroring those sounds helps to establish and develop conversation.

“Our app is a fun way to interact with your baby which also leaves you with a lovely memory captured in music.

“My own children are excited to have their own ‘musical memories’ – they want to listen to them over and over again, and are always keen to create more.”

The app has already proven a hit with mum Kate Heggie, 16-month-old son Jamie and three-year-old daughter Anna.

Ms Heggie, 33, also from Ormiston said: “It is great – kids love it. I have used it with both my children, it’s really simple and I was delighted.

“All the songs are really good and it genuinely sounds like your baby or little one is sampled in a pop song – it doesn’t sound gimmicky it actually sounds like a track you would have on a compilation.

“It’s something nice that you will be able to play back to them when they are older. It’s just like a sound version of a photo album.”