Posted by Dale on Nov 29, 2010 in Uncategorized
, Voice Over
A few weeks ago I was driving home from an audition, slowly drifting back and forth from actual concentrated driving and looking for something, anything more interesting then driving in LA, when lo and behold what did I see? A sign!
This sign, just like other signs, was designed to catch the eye of passerby’s. Those driving with a constant wondering gaze in search of something beyond the ordinary.
Now a sign that can promise a better life for only 19.99, a greater hamburger for cheaper, a new way to straighten hair, a cell phone plan that can connect you to spaceships in the next galaxy, a place to get a custom voice over demo, an airline that… what a minute, did I actually see a sign on the side of the road advertising Voice Over Demo Reels? Yes my friend, yes I did.
It’s a new world order and enough people now know about voice over to warrant road side signage.
I call that I wake up call from the alien ships above and I better make sure my cell phone plan is set up for interstellar calls.
The days of a few have giving way to the many, and if you’re not busy changing, then you’re busy dying. And the best advice I can give for living a happy full life, is,
Posted by Dale on Nov 15, 2010 in Voice Over
In the world of strange Voice Over Recordings this one goes down as one of the strangest, and served as a lesson of “Go With the Flow, but don’t forget to call your agent if things go way too long.
Last week I recorded a Voice Over for the show “Bleep My Dad Says”. Only this was no promo read, but rather a commercial read for a commercial that Bill Shatner is watching in the show, and said commercial features Cybill Shepherd. You following me here?
So my part consisted of saying three lines, simple right? You just lay down the tracks, do three takes of each, bing, bang, bong, out the door…right?…Right?
My call time was 10 at the Warner Brothers lot, Set 5. The last time I had a call time I was wondering if Y2K was going to force me store gallons of water, buy a generator, and move to Wisconsin where I could be “Off the Grid”
I got a script messengered to me, and they even had me of the cast list page under Co Star. Although there was an asterisk next to my name, and the dog, so I wasn’t completely flattered.
For the recording we actually we’re called to set, where Bill was totally checking me out as if might have been a Klingon.
Then they had me stand in the middle of the set with Cybill Shepherd where we had a pleasant chat about here career from “The Last Picture Show”, to “Moonlighting”, to the present, all in about a two minutes.
We recorded and then I was sent to the Green Room to wait. They did apologize for making me hang out in the Green Room rather then my own trailer. There was just too many people on the show they told me. I’m just thrilled that someone thought I might need a trailer!
The “Go with The Flow” part was the rest of the day as I was reminded how good I have it with Voice Over. I ended up leaving at 4:30 that day, after lot’s of waiting and little reason for me to be there.
The “Call My Agent” was reinforced by my agents as they asked “Why didn’t you call us!?”
I guess the unique, odd experience is enough to let someone make me sit in a room all day with a fridge full of beverages another voice over actor and an head executive of the show from CBS, who we thought was an extra.
Posted by Dale on Aug 17, 2010 in Uncategorized
Recently I went to a Voice Over conference in LA in an effort to stay atop of what’s new in the biz. As I looked around the room, I quickly became aware of one thing.
I recognized almost no one!
Why is this important? Well, I’ve been in the biz for a while and through that time have come to be familiar with quite a few of the industries working professionals. Those people were not there.
So who was?
I set down at the table and struck up a conversation. From that point on, nearly everyone I talked with were people trying to get into the Voice Over business.
Turns out this conference had people come to LA from Norway, Britain, Japan, even Las Vegas. All hoping to bite from the pie that is Voice Over.
With websites like Voiceover123, the world of Voice Over is no longer in LA, New York, and Chicago. Now it’s in Salt Lake, Madison, and I guess Norway and Japan.
It used to be that the Voices from LA, and NY went to those places.
(I’ve voiced commercials in Europe, Asia and Australia.)
Now the voices are coming to LA and NY from those places and they’re willing to do if for cheap.
I’m not here to talk about the good old days and how things are going down hill, but rather to identify where the business is headed, so I make sure my business is headed that direction as well.
If you don’t change with the times you face becoming obsolete. Just visit the Closed Steel Mills of Pennsylvania, or talk to a guy who still has a high speed dubbing tape deck.
So it’s changing, now what? Well that’s a great question and one I’m still working on.
The only thing I do know, is that it means effort and work and risk and not giving up on the dream of working as a Voice Over Actor.
Posted by Dale on May 10, 2010 in Voice Over
So two jobs in the last few weeks have come down to me and another “Woman”.
Which, in my opinion, is fantastic. If they go guy, it’s me. If they go girl, they go her, and there just isn’t that much I can do about it.
So on one job, they went with the girl, the other me. 50/50? I can live with that.
What’s more on one of the jobs they told me one of the big reasons I got the job was I was the only one able to say, “Ahhhhhhh” and make it sound believable.
Who knew that skill set would one day pay off?
Posted by Dale on Apr 12, 2010 in Voice Over
“It’s down to you and another guy!”
Agents love this! They love to call you at those times where you think they’re calling about a job.
They don’t want you to get to excited, but they just got a call from the producer and they said they’ve narrowed the massive nationwide search down to you and 5 other guys. So stay by your phone, cause the call could come at any moment and when they make up their mind they’ll want to record right away!
My advice…Do not stay by your phone! Do not call your family to tell them “the good news!”! Do not start thinking about how much money is coming your way! And do not start spending any of that money!
Do whatever you can to put it in perspective. Yes, it is an accomplishment. Yes, you have a much better chance then you did when it was down to you and 1252 auditions via VoiceBank. Yes, you need to be able to record if they do go with you. And, Yes it could change your life.
Just remember, chances are what they are and the “House always wins in the long run”, and it’s not down between you and another guy, cause they just went with Matt Damon, who’s schedule just cleared up, and who they wanted all along. One more thing, try to stay positive.
Posted by Dale on Mar 24, 2010 in Voice Over
It’s been my experience that when a big account goes, it goes. You’re the voice, then you’re not, and that’s that.
After all why would they bring back someone they got rid of. That would be like bringing back the first Darren Stevens from Bewitched.
The other part of winning a big account is losing a big account. It is inevitable, at some point, the ride will end, the bars will lift off and some kid with bad acne and no motivation will ask you to exit while someone else takes your seat.
“Easy Come, Easy Go.”
is easy to say when it’s coming. Try it when it’s going. That’s the hard part.
I was talking with another Voice Over talent today about “the going” part. He said that he wished every voice over could get a big account and then lose it. It provides a perspective that you just don’t get when it’s coming.
The tendency of big accounts is lazy and entitlement.
The hard work somehow doesn’t seem as important and you begin to feel like you deserve the checks.
When that goes, if you’re not in the right place mentally, it can lead into a major downward spiral. Then you get desperate, and that’s the kiss of death for a read and a career.
I personally have had the big accounts and lost them, and have wrestled with every emotion that comes with that.
Luckily, I’ve now had the experience of having one of those big accounts come back, and having lost with the ability to say “Easy Come Easy Go”, while it was going, I can now fully enjoy the coming (back), with an appreciation and understanding that only comes from losing.