Evps, short for Electronic Voice Phenomenon, are recorded voices and sounds that not normally heard with the ear but can be heard on playback. Many ghost hunters, believe evps to be voices of ghosts or spirits trying to communicate with the living.
The concept behind EVP's
Go into an area that could contain spiritual entities and literally have a conversation with the ghosts. Ask them a question, wait a few seconds, then ask another question. It's not important to actually hear the ghost's response to the questions. If you do hear a verbal response then your ghost hunt has just found gold. When you've finished asking all of your questions go back home and rewind the tape. Listen carefully from the beginning to the end for anything out of the ordinary. It has been reported in some haunting cases that the ghosts at the site have answered the ghost hunter's questions. You have to listen closely, the answers are not always clear, and may even be in a different language.
In very rare cases the voices will respond directly to the questions asked. I was sucessful at my very first attempt at this at home in Oregon.
Many people have had success with this method however there are some serious problems that need to be addressed. One key characteristic important with EVP is the ghost hunter's own listening process. The tapes have to be reviewed and carefully listened to several times. The problem with that is that if you listen to anything long enough you can begin to hear things. You also have to be able to weed out all the background noises such as passing cars, barking dogs, the wind, etc. There's also the nature power of suggestion. You may want to give the tapes to a trustworthy, impartial listener. Ghost hunters have the tendency to hear what they want to hear from the tapes. They know what questions were asked and have an idea of what answers to expect. Because the technique's authenticity is impossible to prove on tape, regardless of what's recorded on it, can be considered hard evidence.
Tips to Good EVP Recordings:
Use a full size tape recorder, not the handheld models. The small tape recorders are fine for witness interviews but not for EVP recordings.
Use an external, static free microphone.
Always use brand new, high quality tapes. Never record over old tapes. There's always a chance that the overlapping recordings will mix and you'll hear things that shouldn't be.
Don't bump the microphone and if you do, make a verbal note of it on the tape. You may also want to note any other nature sounds such as gusting winds, creaking doors, etc.
Record in 20 to 30 minute sessions. You can record longer, but keep in mind that you have to listen to the tape later. If you record two hours of tape then you have to listen to two hours of tape. That can be very time consuming.
Ask clear and precise questions.
Don't whisper during the recordings. You are not going to scare the ghosts away.
After each question wait at least 10 to 15 seconds before asking the next question. It won't do much good if you never let the ghost get a word in edgewise.
History of EVP
EVP was first heard of in the 1920's
In 1939, Attila von Szalay an American photographer experimented with a phonograph record cutter, trying to capture spirit voices.
It's said that he achieved some success with this method and got even better results in later years using a wire recorder.
In the late 1950s, the results of his experiments were documented in an article for the American Society for Psychical Research.
In the late 1940s, Marcello Bacci of Grosseto, Italy claimed to be able to pick up voices of the deceased on a vacuum tube radio.
In 1952, two Catholic priests, Father Ernetti and Father Gemelli inadvertently picked up EVP while recording Gregorian chants on a magnetophone.
When the wire on the machine kept breaking, Father Gemelli looked to the heavens and asked his dead father for help.
To the shock of both men, his father's voice was heard on the recording saying:
"Of course I shall help you. I'm always with you."
Further experiments confirmed the phenomenon.
In 1959, Friedrich Juergenson, a Swedish film producer, was recording bird songs.
On playback, he could discern his mother's voice saying in German,
"Friedrich, you are being watched.
Friedel, my little Friedel, can you hear me?"
His subsequent recording of hundreds of such voices would earn him the title "the Father of EVP."
He wrote two books on the subject: 'Voices from the Universe' and 'Radio Contact with the Dead'.
Juergenson's work came to the attention of a Latvian psychologist named Dr. Konstantin Raudive.
At first sceptical, Raudive began his own experiments in 1967. He too recorded the voice of his deceased mother saying:
"Kostulit, this is your mother." Kostulit was the boyhood name she always called him.
He recorded thousands of EVP voices.
1970's and 1980's
Spiritual researchers George and Jeanette Meek joined forces with psychic William O'Neil and recorded hundreds of hours of EVP recordings using radio oscillators.
They allegedly were able to capture conversations with the spirit of Dr. George Jeffries Mueller, a dead university professor and NASA scientist
Equipment you can use to record EVP
1. Digital Voice Recorder
2. Tape Recorder
4. Mobile Phone
5. Video Camera or Camcorder
You do not need to buy the most expensive of equipment to record with.
Before commencing recording spend 10 minutes or so just winding down and relaxing and listening to soft music. You can also then say a short prayer, if you choose.
Then sit and switch on your recorder and record up to 2 minutes.
You can record for less or you can record up to 5 minutes. The longer you record, the more time it will take you to go through your Audio EVP capture.
When recording always make sure you speak clearly, slowly and always leave a space in between your message.
Editing an EVP Audio Capture
You won't always achieve a 'Class A' recording everytime you record.
You may find you have quite a clear audible EVP capture and you may not need to use software, but if you find your capture is not very clear you can edit your audio by increasing volume and removing a notch of the noise or you can amplify/filter etc.
Every researcher has their own way of editing, so it's all about trial and error and what works for you. The above recording in my livingroom was untouched......Yet clearly understandable.
We don't all hear the same as our hearing is different in each and everyone of us.
Some people will hear higher pitched words and others lower...EVP researchers train their ears
You do have to listen carefully as there may be a message for you...if you dont listen intently you may miss the message intended for you.
You don't have to be psychic to recieve an EVP and some people might not get a message the first time they record, but you will get an EVP capture.
My view is EVP is another way of channelling messages to and from the other side.
Is EVP Dangerous?
In all the time I have recorded EVP not once have I been harmed.
According to my research there have been no cases where EVP Researchers have been harmed.
I have had the occasional swear word in a recording... if you do happen to get a recording that has any negative content, my advice is to delete and ignore it.
In my opinion, we have both good and bad people among us in the living world and i feel that when you die and go onto your next spiritual life on the otherside you may very well take your personalities with you, at least for a while.
Many Blessings on your adventures into the Paranormal, Astoria Brown :)