My first directed session. What could go wrong?!

I booked my first gig with a national brand and production company! I was hired through my agent to voice some spots for Durex Condoms with Vice Media. I was beyond ecstatic when I saw the email from Brandon telling me I booked the job. I jumped, laughed, smiled, and heck I almost cried. I had finally booked a larger job. All the money and time I put into training has began to pay off. This was the beginning of a long road that will surely be filled with many highs and many lows, but that’s any voiceover journey. OK back to the gig.

The plan was to have two sessions. The first session would be basically a trial run to see how my delivery was and to ensure the script didn’t need any tweaks etc. The session went swimmingly. I hit it off with Ashley and Ethan from Vice. We were laughing and it was a super relaxed environment which made for an even better delivery from my end. There were two spots. We ran through both the scripts multiple times and I gave a variety of reads. During the session I re-read a few lines at the end of one of the scripts and after I finished, Ethan told me I knew exactly where my read was off and picked it up perfectly. They gave me some direction but were super pleased with how I guided my way through the spot. I have them to thank for making the recording session that comfortable.

One hour later, and we were done. I just had my first directed session as a voice actor and it went amazing. All I had to do was clean up the files a bit, export, and send. Sounds easy right? Well it should have been. I went to listen back to the files and I was surprised with a super quiet but super high pitched ringing that happened throughout the whole recording. This had never happened before. I went back up stairs and tried to replicate the issue. I even had my fiance do a google call with me (like the session) to see if that was the issue. I could not replicate the sound for the life of me. A slight panic set it, but I knew in the back of my mind that I could fix this.

I straped on my headphones and opened up my trusty RX Izotope Audio Editor. This tool was the tool that would save the day. After about 2 hours of tweaking and trying different settings to remove the ringing noise and not affect my voice, I had finally found it. While I was doing this editing the vice team had emailed me asking what was taking so long…I mean all I had to do was export the files and send them right?! Luckily in this instance I knew how to use the tools at my disposal to fix the issue at hand. The vice folks were also very understanding and were happy when I sent them the files. If you recall, I said this session was the first of two, but after the producer reviewed all of the files, they decided they had what they needed and the one session was enough. I felt so good about myself and I do not mind tooting my horn. I killed it that day. I came in and did my job, and boy did it feel good! To this day I do not know what caused that buzz, but I will never use my booth mic for the recording and for the directed phone call ever again.

The takeaway from this blog post is to know how to use all of your fancy tools and gadgets. Things are going to go wrong, and there is just no avoiding that, so it’s best to be prepared.

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