A Bafta-winning musician from Kinross has recorded an 80-minute album of “happy” noises, including dog barks, owl hoots and even dishwasher bleeps.
And now he is “selling” the LP online, in exchange for cheerful messages.
Tommy Perman came up with the idea of creating a record of purely positive vibes after becoming frustrated with the overwhelming negativity he saw on social media during lockdown.
He got in touch with 50 friends from around the world – from as far afield as Australia, Japan and the US – and asked them to send over sounds that made them happy.
Tommy, 40, was soon inundated with audio files of pet sounds and nature noises, as well as recordings of a man singing for alms in India, a 13-month-old playing a xylophone and the sound of cider being brewed.
The 20-track ambient recording called Positive Interactions, reminiscent of electronic masters Boards of Canada and Brian Eno, took about four months of late night sessions to produce and is now available to download.
But instead of asking for cash, Tommy is giving away free copies to anyone who sends him an email about something that makes them happy.
“Now that I’ve finished, I want to share this album with as many people as I can,” said the father-of-two. “Rather than asking money I thought it was a nice idea to encourage some happy thoughts.”
Tommy said: “Last year, when the coronavirus crisis hit, like lots of people I felt quite lost and alone.
“I was relying on social media to try to stay connected to others. But I found Twitter especially negative and it was definitely impacting my mental health.”
He said: “I realised I needed another way to reach out to people and I thought of the Positive Interactions project as an excuse to contact lots of my friends and focus on happy things.”
He said: “The reaction to the project has been extremely uplifting.
“At first I shared it with the friends who’d contributed and I was delighted with their responses.
“Since then the project has been shared more widely and I’ve received hundreds of messages from all over the world in ‘payment’ for the album.”
Tommy said: “Reading them is humbling and quite an emotional experience. I’ve received so many lovely notes about the small things that make people happy – some are really funny – all seem really heartfelt.”
Already, the record has changed hands for messages such as: “Waking up to find y cat asleep on my legs makes me happy,” and: “My son has just learned to gently rub my forehead the way I have always done to comfort him.”