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Thursday, April 30, 2009

How to get a Voiceover Agent

An insiders look at how to get signed with an agent in Los Angeles. Funny stuff....

Adam Caplan's post on Don LaFontaine

Adam Caplan's article on voices.com really helps carry on Don's memory. Don's impact on the Trailer/Promo Industry was something that will never be equaled. The Tisherman agency and Don combined in the early '80's to become the strongest combo on the planet. Here's a little background history to go along with Adam's piece: When Don started as Editor/Writer/Producer/Director with Floyd Peterson's Trailer house in NY, my agent at MCA, Dan Davis, sent me to him in 1959 or 1960 and I did my first trailer under Don's direction. He was not only a fabulous director, all I had to do was copy his read and it was nailed. He hired me for hundreds of films over the next years, until he went to Paramount and worked both sides of the mic. In those interim years by the way, he had gone to work for Dan Davis who had left MCA in the early 60's to form the famous trailer house, Kaleidoscope. Don was and is an inspiration to so many of us. On my last trip to LA, Paul Pape took me to Don's grave and then we did exactly what Don would do.... We went to the Formosa and had a Good-Bye drink.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Good News and Bad News..

I was watching a 1933 Hollywood movie about the depression (actually supposed to be in London). '33 was really the second year of our great depression. It was about rich people who lose everything and their employees who get laid off and have to start over. No welfare or union funds back then to help them along. It was strictly survival of the fittest and I remember well what my parents went through. It all adds up to good news and bad news. Bad news first: We're in it again. The good news is, it forces people to get off their butts and reinvent themselves....and you've found something-VOICEOVER. Congratulations!!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Voice your opinion....

There are many changes occurring rapidly in the Voice over Industry and those of us who are already professionals realize we have to bend to adjust to these changes. I have found an unusual number of potential clients who expect"Re-Do's"because they changed script or mis-timed their material. I'm told by my students, that many of them have no concept of grammar or spelling on their scripts, proper paying methods, paying on time, or, methods of receiving the audio. Fly-by-Night Production companies are springing up like mushrooms offering professional talent to "their "clients and I guarantee that the $200 voice they hire, will be billed to that client at $500 to $1000. As one who started in the business before there were residuals, I believe the business is going back to that status. Likewise, you'll be creating your own pension fund and medical insurance and, eventually, by survival of the fittest the business will evolve again, I think, but many years later. So what's the answer for the present? Regardless of your years in the business, get vocal about the treatment you're getting if you've experienced any of what I've stated. Let the services you're paying into, know how you feel. They need you every bit as much as you need them.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

How to Get Started in the Voice Over Business

This is the essential step by step guide on how to use your voice to make a living. It will change your life.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Seminar update...

May has all 6 spaces filled up, June has 3 spaces left, July has 4 spaces left.

New York Times Article

A little story about Voiceover in the NY Times for those who haven't already seen it.... http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/12/movies/12heym.html

Monday, April 6, 2009

Living up to your Demo

Entering or trying to gain entrance to a new profession can be pretty scary. It's been years since you could walk into a radio station where you went to College or in your hometown and get a job. When I went for my first job, the second radio station I went to was WFBL (CBS Affiliate) in Syracuse and the kindly program director said he'd put me on that summer ('49) when his current student announcer went back to Philadelphia for the summer. The announcer was Dick Clark who I ended up working with decades later. The WFBL P.D. suggested that I go to the new TV station if I didn't want to wait. I walked in and said I was an announcer (I'd had a one semester course in it in '48). That P.D. asked where I had worked and I named WLAD in Danbury, CT. That of course wasn't true but I started the following Monday doing the news on WHEN, the first TV station in Syracuse, NY (5000 TV sets in all of Syracuse at the time) Moral of the Story-you better know you can live up to your audition. Today, that relates to your Demo. You better know you can live up to your Demo. When you're starting out today, thoroughly check out who you are studying with as well as who is making your Demo - It's critical for your future! How do you live up to your Demo? PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE! (along with PERSISTENCE, PERSISTENCE, PERSISTENCE!)