Discovering Electronic Voice Phenomena (EVP): Case Study Books Published Between 1964 and 1981
(Including Some Comments about My Own Discovery of the Phenomena)
Friedrich Jürgenson’s Voice Transmissions With The Deceased
In Stockholm 1959, Jürgenson was intent on recording birdsongs in a countryside garden. What happened on this occasion would change the course of his life.
My first thought was that one of the tubes was damaged during the trip. Nevertheless, I turned the recorder on again and let the tape run. My second recording it was just like before: I was hearing this strange hissing and the distant bird chirping. Then all of a sudden there sounded a trumpet solo as if to announce something. I listened with continued surprise as suddenly a male voice began to speak in Norwegian. Though it was very quiet, I could clearly understand the words. The man was talking about "bird songs at night," and I heard a number of chattering, whistling and splashing sounds, and among them what seemed like the chirping of a sparrow.
Suddenly the bird choir fell silent and with that so did the hissing sound. In the next instant the twittering of a finch was audible and in the distance you could hear a titmouse — the tape recorder was working perfectly again.
But what had actually happened? The fact was totally clear to me; this was a Norwegian radio broadcast. But the only radio receiver that we had was left back at the house, and it was not turned on.
There were no other radios far and wide because of our isolated location and considerable distance from the next village. Besides, this mysterious transmission was first turned on and then suddenly turned off.
"Tsar-region," didn’t that sound strange? I immediately had to think about Anastasia. "Friedrich, you're being observed . . ." added the same voice with firm emphasis.
I was selected by some unknown force to be a pioneer and at the same time to be a humble guinea pig also forced to endure with body and soul a considerable measure of stress and challenge.
He admitted his initial idea was wrong that connected the mysterious voices on the tapes with 'planetarians' or space aliens and unidentified flying objects. At that time, sightings throughout the world were creating worldwide curiosity and speculation. There was later another incorrect alternative conclusion reached by himself and his wife as they made negative assumptions about the entities giving the messages. His reel-to-reel tape recorder was still in exile under his desk when something happened that aroused surprise and introspection. Then:
The same words were even audible in the crackling of the stove fire or in the rustling of paper.
There was no doubt for me that this was truly a sound phenomenon and not my imagination, because I could clearly recognize the sound and character of the same female voice, that had been heard on my tapes on many occasions.
He decided shortly before Christmas to resume listening to tape recordings. Listening to the voices that he heard on the tapes, Jürgenson recognized brief utterances in many different languages, sometimes in rapid succession. One frequent woman's voice who addressed him by name would eventually introduce herself as 'Lena' — her voice would be heard so often that he would often refer to her as his otherworldly radio assistant. Among the voices audible to Jürgenson were those he recognized as being those of friends who'd passed over from their Earth lives. The voices urged him to "make contact with radio" and one female voice was heard by Jürgenson to say "We need voice amplification." He observed about these messages, "Apparently it was about certain sound frequencies that were to be transformed into words." Working with the tape recorder and a radio receiver allowed the "mixing in" of the phenomenal messages into radio programs. One voice declared, "Through the radio . . . you have guessed it . . . much more will come through." Among identifying factors for the EVP were that the messages would often combine languages and often be presented via singing "in that certain multilingual manner, not only solo, but also as a choir and ensemble." Jürgenson described having to 'peel' the voices of his unseen friends out of the motley confusion of the radio transmissions, sometimes with only partial success. Among the voices recognized by Jürgenson was that of his own mother and he found that vocalizations from famous individuals could be heard along with those of simple workers, sometimes calling each other by their own names. The list of historical names he associated with the transmissions includes Stalin, Hitler, Trotsky, Lenin, Van Gogh, Elenora Duse, Annie Besant, d’Annunzio, Goering, Himmler, Felix Kersten, and, as a name introduced by a 1987 correction, Hilda Goebbels. Jürgenson described a memorable "dream visit to a receiving station for the dead" where he encountered a man without a face who introduced himself as having the same name as one of Jürgenson's friends, 'Hugo F.,' and mentioned he was a cavalry officer when he was young. Upon relating his dream to his friend with the same name, Jürgenson was told by Hugo that he, himself, was a cavalry officer when he was young. In a matter of days, the friend unexpectedly died of a heart ailment yet Jürgenson heard his voice several times in the following hours and acknowledged in his book, "I don't recall if I heard his voice within me or if it was outside in the open." The scope of the voices detailed by Jürgenson in Voice Transmissions With The Deceased encompassed one that sounded like that from "A robot instrument" announcing "in a mechanical German." (I, myself, had experienced similar incidents as described in TESTAMENT.) In reaching conclusions about his research, Jürgenson admitted avoiding such general concepts and terminology as God, Love, Spirit, the Good and the Bad yet he appraised the secret of life and death was hidden in the depth of our consciousness. A postscript to Voice Transmissions From The Deceased added an additional anecdotes as Jürgenson described "The Case of Rigmor Andersson." The following is an excerpt.
Konstantin Raudive's Breakthrough
Apart from myself, three people were present at the demonstration: Dr. Zenta Maurina, G.Sch. (a teacher) and Mrs. M. Jürgenson. Jürgenson went straight to the point and let us listen to a selection of his recordings. Against a background of ordinary tape-noises voices were audible; we could hear them, but our unpractised ears had great difficulty in identifying them. They had to be repeated several times before our sense of hearing could gear itself to the unusually quick rhythm.
At the first recording Jürgenson made in our presence, through microphone, voices appeared that could not possibly have come from any of the people in the room. Dr. Maurina, for instance, remarked that she was under the impression that the inhabitants of the beyond were living a happy, carefree life. A voice answered: "Nonsense!" This word was distinctly audible and easily identified by all of us when we listened to the tape being played back, and there were other voices that could not be determined quite so unequivocally.
In the introduction of Chapter I, Raudive stated the objective for the investigation documented in his book:
Those oriented towards natural science believe that such problems can be solved by empirical means. This book is the record of an attempt to do so.
Other EVP Experimenter-Authors
Some of the observations in Talks With The Dead suggested to me that an EVP researcher might place too much importance on obscure communications or a personal interpretation of a single EVP message. For example, Welch described an incident that he believed involved a message from his 'guide' that Welch interpreted as "reincarnation is not a regular way of life."
When I first became aware of spirit messages augmenting recorded conversations on microcassettes as I transcribed interviews and audio journals, I continuously made new discoveries about the scope of spirit message/EVP and unattributed sound phenomena made possible through listening to the tapes as chronicled with the two Internet books at testament.org. Technological innovations have improved the quality of audio recording and this may be one explanation for the lack of commentary by Jürgenson and Raudive concerning unattributed sounds.
One of the most common unattributed sounds noted in tape transcripts comprising TESTAMENT is that of "clicking, clock or ticking" although silent digital timekeeping had become standard. Similarly, I discovered that such sounds had been a factor during the December 13, 1969 test demonstration by Raudive (as mentioned in Bander's preface to Breakthrough). Then, the first ten minutes of playback resulted in disappointment when a "clock on the mantelpiece had been ticking loud and clear and a labrador puppy, two rooms away from where we were, had been crying. These sounds were there and it was impossible to hear anything else." The evening concluded successfully when an unattributed voice recording was heard during a test — "a rhythmic voice, twice the speed of a human voice" saying, "Raudive there." The following night, Raudive signed a publishing contract with Colin Smythe, Ltd.
Back in 1995 when it first struck me as possible that spirit messages heard on audio tape wouldn't be limited to interviews conducted in haunted houses, I again listened to my first two telephone conversations with Maxine and that was when I discovered that spirit messages could also be heard upon closely listening to these tapes. This eventually led me to investigate my collection of interviews recorded while I was working at Paramount Pictures and again I found spirit messages were audible throughout the tapes.
Sometimes it was extremely difficult attempting to identify each spirit utterance and unattributed sound heard on the tapes. From a publishing perspective when I was planning to publish TESTAMENT, I considered that a reader perusing the book could find the inclusion of spirit messages as something too incredible to consider and for this reason alone decide against reading it. Once when I was proofreading the manuscript, I thought it might be beneficial to omit some of the spirit words as these continuous messages capitalized and in parentheses made the transcript hard to read yet just as I started to remove some from the transcript I came upon the previously typed spirit message "DON’T CHANGE IT." I decided to leave in the spirit messages and hoped the book would still be accepted by perceptive readers who would understand that the intention of my enterprise was to share an unadulterated case study without any infringement imposed by commercial prospects or considering how others might respond. My perspective has evolved over the years in the respect that now I'm convinced all recorded materials and radio broadcasts feature EVP yet few people are aware of this while it would seem that those who do have this knowledge have been reluctant to discuss the phenomena due to its complexity in relation to the unawareness of the public. Perhaps, the EVP easiest to distinguish on radio broadcasts is the occurrence of the word "NO" sometimes heard simultaneously during a comment — thus indicating that something hasn't been remembered correctly while also clarifying a situation for observant listeners.
Perhaps what is my most memorable incident involving EVP happened on one occasion after I gave up trying to distinguish one particular word that didn't become any clearer after dozens of playbacks. Occasionally when this happened I would find that after taking a break and then listening to the passage again, the utterance would become discernible so this is the course I once more decided to take. At this time, my mother was becoming progressively more ill with flu-like symptoms and she finally agreed to go to the emergency room, something that she often tried to avoid no matter how poorly she felt. After returning from the hospital and resumed my transcribing work, the spirit message now sounded unmistakably like “VISIT.” Hurrying back to the hospital, I discovered that Ellen was alone in her room and her oxygen tube had fallen away. After reattaching the apparatus, I sat with Ellen for a while and when she seemed to become dizzy I went to find a nurse. I was surprised to learn the treatment instructions focused on cardiac care so I explained my mother’s condition and bronchial treatment commenced that resulted with my mother soon breathing easier. If not for my visit, I don't know if she would've received the necessary care that evening. This incident convinced me that there can be a telepathic aspect with some instances of spirit messages/EVP. Following the publication of Jürgenson and Raudive's books about their EVP research, the development of more sophisticated audio and video technology made possible new modes of communication from the ascended realm. These contacts are known categorically as 'Instrumental Transcommunication' (ITC). (EVP/ITC articles list) One surprising anecdote about EVP although the phenomena isn't given this term is presented in the article "Here Is UFOlogy's 'Bombshell Physical Proof'" in relation to an incident involving flying saucer contactee Truman Bethurum (1898-1969).