Sunday, 25 August 2019

"At the Double-Tones, It's Exactly..." - Or, IS IT??


When the bulk of your working life has revolved around 'split-second timing', you develop some pretty serious habits/quirks. Sometimes, it's as simple constantly checking time - even while at a dinner with your spouse... Other times, it's the daily worrying that your watch is actually on the exact correct time.

As with many others who've done the same work I have over the years, I've had to constantly rely on 'split-second timing'. People would laugh at me as I'd freeze mid-stride - waiting for the exact second to sync my watch with the television network ID, or the 'double-tones' on 680 News, for example. But later, they'd look in amazement as a song I was playing on a bar music system would end JUST as the CBC TV logo signalled the start of a Leaf's game.

Well, today I decided to stream 680 News on my computer and was rather bothered because when I heard their 'double-tones' and habitually checked my Apple watch, I was already two full minutes into the new hour! HOW??? My watch is always driven by network time - ROGERS network time - as is 680 News.

My world stopped and OCD kicked in. In my head, I heard screeching tires, a submarine dive klaxon... a needle scratching across a record (a-la WKRP's Dr. Johnny Fever, just before shouting out "Booger!")... I started twitching.... The whole mess...

Ok, so I was just folding laundry today - hardly something one needs to have such exact timing for. But it really started to bother me. How could my Apple watch be so far off? I even went to "www.time.is" and sure enough, my watch was correct. Then, how could 'they' be so far out?

Then it hit me... This wasn't live radio I was listening to. I was streaming that which began as a live broadcast and then goes through who-knows-what to get on their site for us to stream... All of that process introduces some amount of digital delay - and I did have to pause the stream a couple of times...

*Whew* all is as it should be. Goats gently floated back down from the sky to their field, trees perked up, birds chirped...and that submarine re-surfaced. I put my med's (a bottle of rye) back in the cupboard and went back to folding the laundry. I should have it all folded in another 10 minutes - or so...
Editor's Note: No idea why the double-spacing between paragraphs. It didn't start out that way.


Sunday, 4 August 2019

2nd V.O. North - Coming Soon!

I am getting excited!  The 2nd annual V.O. North conference is getting closer and closer.  September 21st and 22nd, 2019, in Toronto.  No idea how many 'sleeps' are left, but fewer by the day, for sure!


This is where all types of pro and aspiring-pro voice talent, coaches, agents, etc., get together to share concepts, learn, practise and yes, even just 'schmooze'.  I enjoyed it so much last year, it was a no-brainer to sign up again this year (and my wife, Elizabeth insisted too.  Her support for my VO business is stellar!).


Not only do voiceover talent gain from conferences like this, but their clients do as well.  Talent learn new techniques, and improve on the old ones.  We learn about new equipment and more efficient methods of everything to do with voiceover, from recording and editing, to new ways to remotely connect with studios and clients.  We also learn what new industry standards we should be following, as well as those to watch for on the horizon.


Yup, it's an exciting time for those of us who talk to ourselves in little rooms.  ...For two days, we actually get to talk with other people - in big rooms!