March 2013 Highlights

Outside the Box: What Did You Say?

by Erik Cudd

I am a very boring guy. I know this because in social situations when I begin to discuss things that interest me to a great deal, I suddenly find my audience dwindle and those who remain are either trying to be courteous and make me feel good because they are nice, or they are trying to stay awake because I am putting them to sleep. Through serious reflection I have concluded that social gatherings should be best used for observation and answering small talk questions. Thus, I have decided to sit down and write about the things that I contemplate when sitting alone on a bench in the mall and people watch, or notice something listening to a TV or Radio station.

Production 212: Beginning the Internship

by Dave Foxx

I've decided that this is either going to be wildly successful or a gigantic puff of nothing. You may recall that last month I promised to take you along as I school my intern on the finer points of radio production. For most of you, this is going to be completely remedial learning. For a few like my intern Becca, it will seem like completely new material. Regardless of where you stand in that spectrum, I am going to assume everybody is at the same level, just to make sure that by the time we get into the finer points of beatmixing, we'll all be singing the same song.

Q It Up: Cheap and Free Plug-ins!

Q It Up: Cheap Thrills: There are lots of very inexpensive plug-ins out there for audio production, some of them even free. Are there any that you have found that you like and use? Tell us about them, how you use them and how you like them!

Radio Hed: Read Commercials To Your Client

by Jeffrey Hedquist

Despite what many clients think (hope), your listeners have not been sent scripts of the commercials, and are not avidly reading along as they play. Many people are barely paying attention. It is only when something that interests, amuses, frightens, warns, advises them will they listen. That's why it's dangerous to put a written script in the hands of a client for the first time. They'll treat it like a print ad and start nit-picking the wrong things. They should hear it in as close to the way a listener will hear it.

Test Drive: Sony Sound Forge Pro for Macintosh

by Steve Cunningham

As this column has recently noted, voice actors seem to have taken to the Macintosh platform of late, particularly the still-sleek MacBook (formerly known as the MacBook Pro). Recently the menu of available stereo editors for the Mac has increased, and this one has been of particular interest to those actors who have either made the switch from Windows to the Mac OSX or are considering it (my good friend Blaine notwithstanding). As you may know, Sony has recently introduced its venerable Sound Forge program on the Macintosh platform.

Feature: Five Phrases We Could Do Without In Radio

by Jim Van Dusen

This isn't another article complaining about "Helpful Friendly Staff" or "our experience makes the Difference"... though those are worth some complaining.... No, this article is about some other ones. In fact, you might be okay with a couple of these tired phrases. One radio colleague told me one of these phrases was his "go to" when he couldn't think of anything better. Well, these days, we need to always think of something better. Sometimes we can make our stations sound better just by making a few small changes. Here are five phrases you might want to think twice about using.

"...And Make It Real Creative!": Did I Tell You the One About...

by Trent Rentcsh

Once upon a time, there was a young man who believed in the words, "Theatre of the Mind." Blessed with more heart than sense, he felt that radio held a mystic Creative potential... the power to tell all the stories of the human condition in a way no other Creative art could, by painting the pictures in each listener's imagination, using only the power of words. Sadly, like most idealists, our hero was soon disillusioned. It wasn't just the practical needs of the radio medium (repetition of the client's name, phone number and 37 year old jingle being but a few), but the dawning truth that, like any Creative-for-hire medium, turning a commercial production into a compelling "story" isn't easy.

The Monday Morning Memo: Curves Cost Money

by Roy H. Williams

Curves are difficult to create in bodies, buildings and furniture. But they always attract attention. Curves are good. All the best stories have them. Good movies, plays and books curve one way then another, taking us in directions we did not anticipate. We can never see what's around the corner. Curves are the mark of a master. Only a true craftsman can build furniture with elegant curves. A building with curves is the mark of a talented architect. Bodies with curves are maintained by exercise and a disciplined diet. DNA alone is not enough to keep sensuous curves in place. Great storytellers rarely take the onramp to the Interstate. They prefer to take the scenic route that curves through the countryside of the mind.

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