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Review my demos pleeeeze?
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Don Deane



Joined: 24 Sep 2018
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2018 2:17 pm    Post subject: Review my demos pleeeeze? Reply with quote

I recently recorded the following commercial and narration demos with the help of a VO coach and audio engineer. As a newbie to this experienced group, I'd appreciate your critiques to indicate how these demos are likely to be perceived and received by the world.

Thanks in advance for all comments about performance, production, appropriate market niches, etc.

https://soundcloud.com/user-975745594/don-deane-commercial-demo

https://soundcloud.com/user-975745594/don-deane-narration-demo


Don
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todd ellis
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Joined: 02 Jan 2007
Posts: 9234
Location: little egypt

PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2018 3:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hi don - welcome to the group --- i hope you stay after you read this.

it's hard to be the first response on a post like this because ... well ... you are not ready. it would be a disservice to your future self to allow important folk to hear these demos. the narration demo is EXACTLY the type of thing i would expect to hear in a state park exhibit ... but that's not necessarily a good thing. throughout, i hear you "reading" - i don't hear you "speaking".

others will put it better, as they often do, but i say this to help you - not hurt you.
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Bruce
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Joined: 06 Jun 2005
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Location: Portland, OR

PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2018 4:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Don,

You sure are trying and that's half the battle! I'll try and make a couple of generalizations which may or may not be helpful. You'll need to drop some of the old fashioned announcing techniques such as hanging on to words too long, especially words at the end of phrases or sentences. Your cadence is a little hard compared to your relaxed and conversational read. Also it's good to be conscious of your style of read versus the material you're narrating. It was odd to hear Dixieland music in the background of your narration of modern painter Francis Bacon. It's little things like that that need to be paid attention to as well.

I'd invest in a few sessions with a very good coach and then through them learn how to listen to yourself, self critique, and improve on your own.

B
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Don Deane



Joined: 24 Sep 2018
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2018 6:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bruce: Thanks for the feedback.

You say: "You'll need to drop some of the old fashioned announcing techniques such as hanging on to words too long, especially words at the end of phrases or sentences. Your cadence is a little hard compared to your relaxed and conversational read."

While I can hear some of my own flaws in these demos -- especially the ponderous pace in the narration one -- it would help if you could pinpoint a few specific examples of the general points you cite, such as hanging onto words too long and and using an overly hard cadence. Thanks.
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Philip Banks
Je Ne Sais Quoi


Joined: 20 Jun 2005
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Location: UK Portgordon, Scotland

PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2018 11:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Beneath the tone, the sound, the style lies a giant of a man. A man with a huge heart and a mind full of stories waiting to be told. He'll fix you with his gaze and take you anywhere in the universe. Take him by the hand and let him show you the secret of life.

Read the above and keep reading it until it becomes you. YOU are enough.

The notes from m'lovely colleagues you need to take on board and what they hear you need to hear. It's obvious you are open enough to do that.

THE competition killer. Master being you and no one will ever be able take a job from you.

SECRET - I suck! BUT, if a producer wants me I'm the only game in town!
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Bruce
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Joined: 06 Jun 2005
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 25, 2018 8:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Don Deane wrote:
... it would help if you could pinpoint a few specific examples of the general points you cite, such as hanging onto words too long and and using an overly hard cadence....


Individual word reading and pacing analysis are better handled by an in person coaching session than by postings on a bulletin board. I'll bet there are some good ones in your area.


B
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Art
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Joined: 27 Sep 2017
Posts: 59
Location: Atlanta, GA, USA

PostPosted: Tue Sep 25, 2018 11:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Anyone here will tell you my input is worth it's weight in 24 karat gold, plus the Hope Diamond. My name is on the tip of the tongue of every important person in the business, and they send me books of blank checks with their signature so I can drain their bank accounts for whatever fees I please.

Actually almost no one has ever heard of me, BUT, I do have two ears, and I love doling out free advice! (Free 24k gold!)

Editing-wise, the commercial demo is the right length, but the fact it's comprised of six :10 second commercials makes it feel fabricated. It should feel like excerpts from :30 and :60 commercials, not 5 1/2 complete reads.

Read-wise, Todd is right: you have a good voice, but your reads need more time in the oven. I used to think "you're not ready" was something coaches said when they decided they'd like you to continue dumping hundreds of dollars into their bank accounts (which I've never done), but you're not paying me and I still say, "This is not ready."

You start a cadence at the beginning and then hold it through to the end, no matter how the text changes. For instance, in the Davy Crockett one, you're telling us about the man dying and your tone is the same as when you tell us not to wander off the park trail. Speaking of which, the student visa one and the park trail one were the best of the narration, the Cycle Incorporated one was the best of the commercials.

For an example of what I think Bruce is talking about: The Dodge Ram is better than "...any other truck in it's claaaassss...The new Dodge Rammmmm hauls the competition awayyyy..."

You have a nice timbre and the production doesn't sound amateurish, but you need to connect with the emotional tone of what you're reading and convey it.
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Philip Banks
Je Ne Sais Quoi


Joined: 20 Jun 2005
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2018 11:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Reading and thinking about the above, I find golden, usable information at multiple levels.

Listener level - I sort of stopped listening
Talent producer level - Nah! Not really gonna get you anywhere.
BA level - YOU listen and hear what's wrong.
PhD level - When you speak of mountains people should be able to see them.

I'm Philip Banks and I approve this message.
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dwpthe3rd
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Joined: 28 Feb 2010
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2018 7:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

^^^ thaaat is veerrry fuunnny ^^^
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Rick Riley
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Joined: 12 Aug 2011
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2018 10:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I hear someone who likes their voice. Thinks they have a deep, resonating quality and that's what's going to get them jobs. They are wrong.

I don't say that to be rude but I've been a victim of that myself early on in my radio career. Get over it. You don't talk to your friends that way so don't talk to the microphone that way. The mic is your friend. Tell it your stories. Share with it. Confide with it in the products you're selling and the stories your telling. Consider it your BEST friend. A friend with really deep pockets and wants to help you have deep pockets as well.
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Philip Banks
Je Ne Sais Quoi


Joined: 20 Jun 2005
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2018 12:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fabby perspective!
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todd ellis
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2018 1:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

OP hasn't come back in 5 days - this horse might be dead.
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Tre M.
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Joined: 01 Nov 2017
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Location: Florida, the cold part.

PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2018 1:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To you my friend I say this...

Get a decent coach. If you cant get coaching right now watch as much video on the type of VO you want to do. I wanted to do network promo, I watched (and still do watch) loads of promo videos, even after landing my first promo gig.

Got with a great agency, which sent me loads of auditions, but I wasnt hitting on em. Callbacks are great, but I want to BOOK. I asked some of my buddies that are killing it in promo and they suggested a specific coach. I've been working with him and my reads have gotten much better.

So much that it has affected my other reads as well. Booked 2 jobs this week using the methods learned.

If you were a footballer, you wouldn't just walk on the field and say I wanna play would ya? Even walkons put in the work to get a scholarship. I hear "it" in your reads, I just don't BELIEVE it yet. Make us believe. The fact that you're taking to heed what folks are saying shows you have a good 'tude about it. We're here to help man.
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Don Deane



Joined: 24 Sep 2018
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2018 1:43 pm    Post subject: "OP hasn't come back in 5 days - this horse might be de Reply with quote

OP has been monitoring the comments. He and his horse are bruised but not dead.

Last edited by Don Deane on Sat Sep 29, 2018 2:24 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Yonie
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Joined: 31 Aug 2011
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2018 1:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tough lessons, yeah? S'good you're taking it in as much of a stride you can. Most of us started where you are. Me being one of them, and I was haaawrible.
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