What if I Suck?

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kri
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Post by kri » August 5th, 2006, 5:00 pm

I understand how you feel Sandra, but not with the Spanish. I did a section of Les Liaisons Dangereuses, our current French project. I agonized over this at first, and needed to post a tester to see what other French speakers thought. Fortunately there were several native French speakers who said my recording was fine. I can handle fine, fortunately (or unfortunately?) procrastination coupled with perfectionism just means I agonize over it but just deal with it. In the end I couldn't finish all of my section, so I had to give over the last bit to be read by someone else. It was just so much work!!

Incidentally, have you asked around in the Sp. Don Quixote thread? Even non-native fellow Spanish speakers could have some insight for you.

In the end, I am sure that your recording sounds just fine to native Spanish speakers. Keep in mind it won't just be native spanish speakers listening, it'll be multi-lingual people like you as well. Have you ever heard Rayner's reading of The Awful German Language?? Here's the URL: http://librivox.org/the-awful-german-language-by-mark-twain/ Go take a listen, just a few seconds. Please, I'll wait...

What a great accent, eh? What a great reading as well. Not everyone's going to love Rayner's reading and accent, but there are definitely those that do. Not everyone's going to enjoy your accent, but there sure will be those that do. Just imagine that Spanish man who listens to your recording, and just happens to love American accents...anyway, you know what I mean :)

You're sharing great literature with people who love great literature like I assume you do. All you can do is try your best, and I have a suspicion that many who listen to your Spanish reading will be able to detect that enjoyment in the text. Sometimes that's all you need to draw them in.

Sandra
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Post by Sandra » August 6th, 2006, 1:30 am

kri wrote:Have you ever heard Rayner's reading of The Awful German Language?? Here's the URL: http://librivox.org/the-awful-german-language-by-mark-twain/ Go take a listen, just a few seconds. Please, I'll wait...
I listened...and enjoyed! I do love a charming foreign accent.

Shall I try my Spanish recordings again? I think so. :oops: Thanks to all who responded to my desperate lack of confidence. It has helped me.
Sandra
[color=purple]As usual, the grownup world made very little sense to me... (Manny Ellis,[i] Neighbourhood Tales[/i])[/color]

Planish
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Post by Planish » May 30th, 2007, 11:23 pm

kri wrote:Have you ever heard Rayner's reading of The Awful German Language?? Here's the URL: http://librivox.org/the-awful-german-language-by-mark-twain/ Go take a listen, just a few seconds. Please, I'll wait...

What a great accent, eh? What a great reading as well. Not everyone's going to love Rayner's reading and accent, but there are definitely those that do.
Yeah, it is great, and I love the irony of him reading that particular title.

Another great accent I like is chocoholic/Laurie Anne Walden's. Where, exactly, is it from? I'd listen to her read the phone book. In her readings for Emily Post's Etiquette, her voice seemed particularly appropriate for the material, somehow.

I've discovered (to my great surprise) that I have some sort of accent. I didn't know I had one until I started listening to my readings. I am so jealous of folks with nice clear resonant voices because mine is so raspy, which bothers me a bit.

Then I read this bit about Andy Devine (character actor, usually played older comic cowboy sidekicks) and his unmistakable voice, in Wikipedia:
He was a star football player at Ball State University, which led to his first film role in the silent film The Fighting Football Cardinals.

Although it was at first thought that his peculiar voice would prevent him from moving to the talkies, it became his trademark and strongest selling point. Devine told people that his speech was the result of a childhood accident. (His story is that he had been running with a curtain rod in his mouth and fell, the instrument piercing the roof of his mouth, and when he was finally able to speak, he had the wheezing, duo-tone voice that would make him famous as an actor.) However, a biographer explains that this wasn't true but was one of several stories about his voice fabricated by Devine; see the link to http://www.froggythegremlin.com/. Devine's son Tad told an Encore Westerns Channel interviewer[1] that the accident had indeed happened but that Andy Devine himself was uncertain whether it was the actual cause of his unique vocal quality.

He appeared in more than 400 films and shared with Walter Brennan, another character actor, the rare ability to move with ease from "B" Westerns to "A" pictures.
So, I figured I'd just work with what I got.
There is no frigate like a book / To take us lands away,
Nor any coursers like a page / Of prancing poetry.

chocoholic
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Post by chocoholic » May 31st, 2007, 6:33 am

Planish wrote:Another great accent I like is chocoholic/Laurie Anne Walden's. Where, exactly, is it from? I'd listen to her read the phone book. In her readings for Emily Post's Etiquette, her voice seemed particularly appropriate for the material, somehow.
(blush) Thanks! I'm from South Carolina.
Laurie Anne

asad.khan
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Post by asad.khan » June 8th, 2007, 9:28 pm

I sucked at drawing in my high school.....I sucked at remembring those labeling names of animal parts in my biology class........I improved at them because I did not run away from facing my weak points. The easy thing to do is to run away....running away is the best medicine to solve all our problems...but in the long run... we'll be losers!

you improve by trying not by running away. That's been experience of my short life!


:)

Starlite
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Post by Starlite » June 9th, 2007, 4:55 pm

Great advice Asad!!
"Reasonable people adapt themselves to the world. Unreasonable
people attempt to adapt the world to themselves. All progress,
therefore, depends on unreasonable people." George Bernard Shaw

Caliban
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Post by Caliban » September 28th, 2007, 3:50 pm

Speaking purely objectively. Unless there's some perfect echo that occurs in nature I don't really know of, no one before Edison ever heard the sound of their own voice. You can't hear your own voice without audio reproduction because your ears are in entirely the wrong place (acoustically speaking) to hear it. They're located inches away from the larynx for one thing and share the same resonant chamber as all the rest of the equipment that produce the rumbles, buzzes, hissing, and everything else that goes into producing human speech.

So its really no wonder people get a little intimidated when they begin objectively to listen to their "Real" voice. Its going to sound a lot flatter and thinner than the "Virtual" voice you hear literally, "In your head". If you speak with your fingers in your ears blocking your acoustic (real) voice, you hear (with your skull) all the stuff that occurs "locally" but but is attenuated. Mind you! A trained speaker or singer uses everything in the arsenal, chest cavity, facial mask, even sinuses.

My point in all this is that however "Strange", its essential to listen to your recorded voice because your virtual voice is a liar. You can hear short words even soft phrases perfectly well virtually but discover on playback that these barely made it out of your mouth and were all internalized, got swallowed in the plumbing sort of. You heard them but the mic didn't.

So, if I might suggest in regard to your voice, don't worry about how you sound, worry about how you are heard which is much more important. The rest will take care of itself with practice.

Cal

Addenda - I make this point after spending a while trying to discover the source of "drop outs" in my recordings when the lesson of an old drama teacher, dreadful, prophetic, and entirely wonderful came drifting across a sea of memory. So I figured the point was important enough to share.
We're so different! I sometimes wonder why we are friends. Then you remind me.

SSherris
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Post by SSherris » October 1st, 2007, 8:24 am

Cal, that's all pretty interesting.

My pressing question: Why then do other people's voices sound fine to me? My own voice always sounds tinny and whiny when I hear it recorded, and that's comparing it to other voices I hear. Or is it just because it's contrasted so starkly against the voice I'm accustomed to hearing in my own head?

Jc
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Post by Jc » October 1st, 2007, 8:49 am

I think your voice would sound fine to you if you didn't know it was YOUR VOICE.

I think we get used to our voices heard from "inside our head" and are much more aware our voice. For instance, if you speak a little higher than normal, or if you have a cold and your voice is rougher, you notice it more than the people around you. So when we first hear our voices, we're struck by how different it sounds, and since we're not used to it, it sounds ugly.
Put yourself in the Readers' Accents Table. See this post.
(Busy real life & traveling, sorry if not here often.)

Caliban
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Post by Caliban » October 14th, 2007, 7:32 am

SSherris wrote:Cal, that's all pretty interesting.

My pressing question: Why then do other people's voices sound fine to me? My own voice always sounds tinny and whiny when I hear it recorded, and that's comparing it to other voices I hear. Or is it just because it's contrasted so starkly against the voice I'm accustomed to hearing in my own head?
Do the finger in the ear thing real quick while no one's looking .... that's not your real voice either but do you hear all the bassy good stuff that's there? Almost none of that makes it past your lips unless you train to do it. And even then its still going to sound louder than it is in the real world because your ears are right on top of it.

This is really neat stuff we're talking here!

You have this internal model of how your voice is supposed to sound and as you listen more and more to your recorded voice your brain will start working on the problem automatically. Part of the process you went through when you were an infant and began to make sense of all the noises the adults (the ones moving around on their legs which looked kinda neat too) were making at you and discovering ways to match them.

New model - new voice! Or at least you expand your repitiore.

Cal
We're so different! I sometimes wonder why we are friends. Then you remind me.

Mark Bolton
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Post by Mark Bolton » June 10th, 2009, 6:46 pm

When doing a paid voice over and working with a director often they will say "that sucked" and usually you know it too as a performer. If you know it sucked but cant figger out why / how to fix it the director will help on out.

This horrifies many Media Students who are taught that this is negative and will deflate the performer to the point they just "corpse'.

I have worked with Voice teachers who make out it is some inner talent or mojo that makes you either brilliant or / you suck.
IE there is something missing in your soul.

This is not true at all any more than if you were a beginner at skiing and you keep winding up on your butt it is because you are a failure as a human being.

This is just Chalatanry on the part on incompetant teachers.

There are many techniques and levels of difficulty and ways o practicing and studying that help you develop as a performer.

If you arent any kind of overblown ego then "sucking" on occasion or even frequently only makes it more of a triumph when you "get it right " YES !!!!!! :-)

Nullifidian
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Post by Nullifidian » February 15th, 2010, 10:10 pm

Ever since I was 11 - 12, I've dealt with a severe physical impediment to clear speech: my tongue. Mine is so large that if I don't watch myself at every moment, I start slurring my words together unintelligibly. I drilled myself for months during one summer vacation, sitting down with a copy of Quiller-Couch's Oxford Book of English Verse and tape recording myself, to improve my diction to the point where it was comprehensible.

Now I'm catching myself at it again. It's such a strain to sit down for even ten minutes of straight recording, much less the thirty minutes to an hour for a longer chapter, that it starts to show in my recording. When I get tired, I start to slip into slurring words, especially when there are alliterative sibilants like that. And when I do, I get really aggravated. It's as if all my hard work, not just on the chapter I'm reading, but all those hours spent years ago were for nothing.

I don't know that I'm looking for advice. I just needed to rant a bit. :(
Last edited by Nullifidian on February 16th, 2010, 7:46 am, edited 1 time in total.

annise
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Post by annise » February 16th, 2010, 12:01 am

It is a long time to talk if you are not used to it- I start slurring as I tire - I think its like running a marathon when your longest walk for years has been to the letter box - so I think it will get better as you get more into training.

Somewhere there is a collection of things that you can do - I'll see if I can find them , one by someone who had had major speech difficulties and now did a lot of lecturing

Anne

RuthieG
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Post by RuthieG » February 16th, 2010, 3:16 am

No advice, but reassurance that you are not alone. I cannot record straight for more than 10 minutes. Mouth gets dry, and words don't come out right. I go back and edit the first ten minutes' worth, then I am ready to start recording again.

Ruth
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