Final Vol of Birdsong Project out now feat. Yoko Ono, Bette Midler, Animal Collective and more

Article Contributed by Shore Fire Media | Published on Sunday, October 2, 2022

For the Birds: The Birdsong Project today releases Volume V, the final volume of its wide-ranging collection of 242 recordings inspired by birdsong and supporting the conservation of birds and their habitats. Now available for streaming on all platforms, Volume V features 47 recordings---songs, instrumental pieces, and experimental works---across the stylistic spectrum along with compelling literary interludes. The volume’s musical artists include Nico Muhly, Anohni & Yoko Ono, Alexandre Desplat, Animal Collective, David Van Tieghem, Bibio, Juliana Barwick, Holland Andrews, Mamadou Kelly, Tommy Guerrero, Shabaka Hutchings ft. Esperanza Spalding, Annie Gosfield, My Cat is an Alien, and many more. Spoken word recordings interspersed among the musical contributions feature performances by Bette Midler, Michael Keaton, Christiane Amanpour, Daryl Hannah, Adrien Brody, Lili Taylor, and others, reading works by authors including Pablo Neruda, W.S. Merwin, Joy Harjo, Seamus Heaney, Wendell Berry, Elizabeth Bishop, Andrea Potos, and more.

The Birdsong Project was produced by Randall Poster, the Grammy Award-winning producer and music supervisor known for his longtime work with Wes Anderson and Martin Scorsese. It was conceived and inspired by Executive Producer Rebecca Reagan, who brought a grand creative vision and wisdom to the project. Additional executive producers are Elliot Bergman, Stewart Lerman and Lee Ranaldo.

Yoko Ono, who with Anohni contributed the song “I Love You Earth (Thomas Bartlett remix),” said about The Birdsong Project:

“There are so many of us in the world who are now awakened, ready to act to save our world. So let’s work together to save this planet. Together. That’s how we will change the world. We change, and the world changes. Have trust in what you can do. Have trust in how fast we can change our world for the better. Why? Because we have to. Believe that we are one and together we will make it. Love is what connects all lives on Earth.


love, yoko”

"We were all thrilled when Yoko agreed to support the birdsong project," said Randall Poster. "Her poems and performances were an inspiration to us as we began to connect with artists in this shared mission to celebrate the birds and birdsong.

Yoko continues to inspire us with music and helps us expand our sense of community. We find fortitude and fun in the simple declaration, I LOVE YOU EARTH.

The music that Yoko and Anhoni contributed to the collection of songs sweeps you away into the air and clouds above while grounding us in this very moment on earth.

Thanks to Thomas Bartlett who makes us all better for his contribution to this piece.

As always, FOR THE BIRDS"

“I love birds, and they tell us so much about the health of our own environment and communities. The Birdsong Project is a great demonstration of the joy and meaning birds bring to our lives,” said Lili Taylor (Outer Range, The Conjuring), who is an avid birder and National Audubon Society board member. “When Randall Poster approached me about the project last year, I knew it was an idea whose time had come, and I was so glad to introduce him to Audubon to kick off this wonderful partnership introducing people to birds and raising funds to support conservation.”

Since the May release of Volume I, The Birdsong Project has been featured in the New York Times, The Guardian, New Yorker, CBC, Rolling Stone, Pitchfork, Stereogum, Apartment Therapy, Cool Hunting, WNYC, Uproxx, Brooklyn Vegan and more. Earlier this month, Poster was interviewed by NPR’s All Songs Considered where he shares the story and inspiration behind the project. The interview highlights tracks from the 5-volume project. Listen HERE.

The complete 5-volume collection from The Birdsong Project is now available for streaming. The full collection is also available as a limited edition 20-LP deluxe box set, which features a 60-page book including an essay by musician-ornithologist Jonathan Meiburg of Shearwater and a package bursting with paintings and illustrations of birds by well-known artists.

The project’s expansive collection of 242 recordings represents a remarkable assemblage of diverse talent from across the creative community in support of an important cause, including GRAMMY, Oscar, Emmy, Pulitzer, Peabody and James Beard Award winners Ad-Rock, Sam Amidon, Laurie Anderson, Beck, Cassandra Jenkins, Dan Deacon, Julia Holter, Daniel Lanois, Elvis Costello, Flaming Lips, Haden Triplets, Jeff Tweedy, Jim James, Kamasi Washington, Karen O, Kurt Vile, Atlas Sound & L’Rain, Makaya McCraven, Arturo O’Farrill, Hania Rani, Mark Ronson, Nick Cave, Stephin Merritt, Mark Mothersbaugh, Terry Riley, Tyondai Braxton, UNKLE, Yo-Yo Ma, and many more. The majority of the recordings were made specifically for this project.

Spoken-word contributions recorded and donated to the project feature an array of writers and actors including Jonathan Franzen, Maggie Smith, Ocean Vuong, Alice Waters, George Saunders, Florence Welch, Greta Gerwig, Jeff Goldblum, Jelani Cobb, Matthew McConaughey, Natasha Lyonne, Regina King, Robert Pattinson, Sean Penn, Tilda Swinton, Tim Blake Nelson, Bobby Cannavale, Olivia Wilde, and more.

All proceeds from The Birdsong Project will be donated to the National Audubon Society, the world’s oldest environmental society dedicated to the conservation of birds and their habitats.

In a project partnership, the Brooklyn Botanic Garden has mounted a multidisciplinary exhibition and program series in collaboration with exhibition creative director and Birdsong Project producer Randall Poster—running now through October 23. It includes an outdoor exhibition of birdhouses created by international artists and inspired by Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s resident birds as well as The Birdsong Project's recordings.

To help foster an awareness of—and love for—birds in future generations, The Birdsong Project has also partnered with eyewear brand Warby Parker to donate 20,000 limited-edition "Birdoculars" to numerous cultural institutions that support the conservation of the natural world and its avian inhabitants.

Additional events will take place with the American Museum of Natural History in New York City (in conjunction with the re-opening of the Hall of Oceanic Birds in 2023).

Listen to Volume V here:




1. For the Robin on My Porch - Written by Andrea Potos. Read by Bette Midler

2. May Birds - Performed by Nico Muhly

3. Etude No. 2 (Thomas Bartlett remix) - Composed by Philip Glass. Performed by Maki Namekawa

4. Beginning - Written by W.S. Merwin. Read by Stephen Park

5. Passerine - Performed by Balmorhea


1. Here - Written by Kim Addonizio. Read by Odessa Young

2. Mourning Dove - Performed by Holland Andrews

3. One Heart - Written by Li-Young Lee. Read by Christiane Amanpour

4. Perched - Performed by Anna Clyne feat. Nathalie Joachim

5. Syrinx - Performed by Daniel Thorne

6. Toy Boat - Written and read by Ocean Vuong



1. I was popular in certain circles… - Written and read by Gabrielle Calvocoressi

2. Strange Signals From Jerry the Wood Pigeon - Performed by Peter Broderick

3. Birdbrain - Performed by David Van Tieghem

4. Ode to the Hummingbird - Written by Pablo Neruda. Read by Daryl Hannah

5. Bells and Birds - Performed by Alexandre Desplat


1. Skylarks & Magpies - Performed by Bibio

2. End-of-Summer Haibun - Written by Aimee Nezhukumatathil. Read by Winslow Bright

3. Screech for Scratch - Performed by Annie Gosfield

4. Rørsanger - Performed by David Rothenberg and Benedicte Maurseth

5. Sandpiper - Written by Elizabeth Bishop. Read by Michael Keaton

6. Silver Horns - Performed by Sarah Davachi



1. An Exercise in Love - Written by Diane Di Prima. Read by Riley Keough

2. Brown Thrasher - Performed by Animal Collective

3. Chant for the Swinging Swallows - Performed by My Cat Is An Alien

4. Coast - Written by Alice Jones. Read by Grace Gummer

5. In Her Secret Garden - Performed by Julianna Barwick

6. emu808 - Performed by Sam Gendel


1. Now Is the Time - Performed by Money Mark

2. Cocoa Morning - Written by Bob Kaufman. Read by Adrien Brody

3. Calthra - Performed by Tommy Guerrero

4. Morning Rituals - Performed by Shabaka Hutchings feat. Esperanza Spalding

5. Redbird Love - Written and read by Joy Harjo

6. The Ruined Spring - Performed by Zander Schloss



1. I Love You Earth (Thomas Bartlett remix) - Performed by ANOHNI & YOKO ONO

2. Murmuration - Performed by Robert M Thomas x Daisy Chute

3. St Kevin and the Blackbird - Written by Seamus Heaney. Read by Liam Neeson

4. Thirow Dio - Performed by Mamadou Kelly

5. Grus Grus - Performed by Evan Parker & John Coxon

6. Star and Crescent - Written by Kenneth Rexroth. Read by Elliot Bergman


1. Mockingbird Song - Performed by Saunder Jurriaans & Danny Bensi

2. Morning Calls - Performed by Carter Burwell

3. [“Always in the distance”] - Written by Wendell Berry. Read by Randall Poster

4. [“The cherries turn ripe, ripe,”] - Written by Wendell Berry. Read by Lili Taylor

5. Serenade at 2 - Performed by Anne Müller

6. paired: unpaired - Music by Oliver Coates. Performed by Rosa Arnold and Jeanita Vriens of the Ragazze Quartet

7. Re: Happiness, in Pursuit Thereof - Written by C. D. Wright. Read by Hailey Benton Gates