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    Sep/01/2011 | Posted by John Melley
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    September 11th

    Sep/01/2011 | Posted by John Melley
    It's hard to believe 10 years have almost passed since that terrible day when Al Qaeda Terrorists attached our country. We were all touched by loss that day, either directly, or indirectly. A High School friend of mine, Ted Hennessy was on the first plane that crashed into the World Trade Center.
    Ted and I weren't super close friends. He was a year older than I, but we were in Cub Scouts together. His father was the Pack leader. We were in band together for many years, went to the same church. Ted was a very talented musician, and what a whit. Cutting, hysterical and... kind.
    I didn't see Ted much after he graduated High School, but he worked for a company that provided printing software that was used in my parents' business. He trained my folks how to use it. In short, both our families lives intersected in many ways.
    It's odd, sometimes, how we as people measure time and that somehow, in some way 10 years, a decade... has slightly more significance than say 7, 8 or 9 years. It's something we all do. And so we do it this year in remembering that terrible day, that horrible and painful time.
    I went through my archives and came across an audio montage of clips I pulled from our sister station WBZ AM 1030's broadcast on 9-11-01 and the days following. I combined it with other clips we had archived from coverage of another tragedy here in Worcester, Massachusetts where several fire fighters were killed battling a warehouse blaze a few years earlier.
    I set the piece to Aaron Copeland's "Fanfare for the Common Man." Putting it together was part of my grieving process. It was what I could contribute at the time. It was the only thing I could think to do.
    It aired several times during the few days after 9/11/01. It has not aired since.
    I present it to you now, in memory of Ted, the First Responders and Service Members and all of us who lost a little more innocence that day.
  • 9-11 Firefighters
  • Affirmative action for Ugly People?

    Aug/31/2011 | Posted by John Melley
    Ok... In the land of Equality of Opportunity Vs. Equality of Outcome, this one has me a little more than bewildered. Indulge me, for this post is dripping with sarcasm. You might want an umbrella.

    Economics professor Daniel S. Hamermesh of the University of Texas at Austin is proposing another class for Affirmative Action... for ugly people. The professor has done some research and from all appearances he's got figures that prove "Ugly people" earn fewer dollars over their lifetimes than "Good Looking people." Life just isn't fair, is it?

    Hey professor! When I was a kid I wanted to play in the NBA. Guess what? I'm 5 feet 11 inches and I can't shoot straight to save my life. That's not fair either.

    He claims ugly people can't really change their ugliness. Therefore, in his opinion, ugly people should get affirmative action... uh... what's the term here... benefits/protections?

    Seriously? How are we going to determine this? Isn't "beauty in the eye of the beholder"?

    What if someone dropped a few pounds or got a different haircut, or a nose job, or dental bonding, etc? Will this take them out of the "Ugly" pool? Will plastic surgeons be put out of business because people won't get as much plastic surgery because they get better benefits being ugly? Did you ever think of that, professor? Maybe we should then give affirmative action protection to plastic surgeons to help them out too.

    Will we be setting up yet another government review board so people who feel less than comfortable in their appearance can get their official "Ugly Stamp of Approval"? What kind of acronym can we come up with for this? Here's one: "BURP" Board of Ugly Review Process. Here's another: "DUPE" Department for Ugly People Equality. How about another? "BUPKIS" Bureau for Ugly Persons Kindness In Society"

    Picture this. A person walks into the "BUPKIS" and says: "I want to be a protected class, because I think I'm ugly. Please label me 'Ugly'."

    "Whaddya think? Is he really ugly or not?"

    "Looks pretty ugly to me."

    "Me too."

    "Whoooooooooo Weeeeee! You're Ug-guh-ly!"

    "All those in favor of deeming the person 'Ugly' say 'Aye'."

    "Aye!"

    "Congratulations, you're officially 'Ugly.' Here's a paper bag. Please put it on."

    "Oh thank you! Thank you so much!"

    What about the Fugly people? Will they get "Uber Ugly" Status?

    I don't think I'm ugly, but I've "got a face for radio" and I've done pretty well, if I do say so.

    To me this is utter nonsense. Our economy is on the ropes. Businesses aren't hiring because of the uncertain business environment and costly regulations and this guy Hamermesh wants to add "Ugly" into the mix. Spoken like a true professor who hasn't a clue about running a business. Maybe he does, but I doubt it if he's got time to study ugly stats.

    This is an ugly idea that should get neither affirmation nor any action to further the cause.

    Melley Voices Characters for Sticky Burr Video

    Jan/10/2011 | Posted by John Melley
    I voiced 3 Animated Characters for this video. Can you guess which ones? (Hint: I first show up at 2:05 into the video)

    Enjoy!

    John

    Recording Session Nightmares

    Dec/13/2010 | Posted by John Melley
    Last week I sent out an email to my newsletter subscribers and asked them to share some of their weirdest experiences, while recording or performing.

    The winner of the voted best story will win a $50 Starbucks gift card, or something of equal value if you're not a coffee drinker.

    I'm happy to say the stories I've received so far are great, so if you have a great recording session story, send me an email to: John@JohnMelley.com and share it with us. I'll post them and the story that receives the most votes will win the $50 Starbucks gift card, or something of equal value if you're not a coffee drinker.

    Read On!

    Hi John, good to hear from you

    I specialize in audiobook narration, and a big part of my enjoyment in doing this comes from volunteering at RFB&D.  I get to read/record all sorts of books for them, from technical instruction manuals, to medical textbooks, to fiction.  Recently I had a children's book by author Jon Seizka (sp?) called "Spaceheadz".  I was having great fun with it until I got to a chapter 4 pages long of the hamster speaking.  4 WHOLE PAGES of "eeek weeeeek eeeeek eeeeeee, weee eeek"! This one got me both laughing and out of breath.  I can now add a 3rd language to my capabilities..... hamster!

    Kind regards,

    Ann

    Hey John,

    My nightmare has reoccurred a few times, recording my interviews over the phone and nothing on playback.

    Flipped the wrong switch.

    We’ve been caught saying some things with the mics open at the Meadowlands.

    Once I called an entire race with the mic off, or they didn’t record the race, so I had to improvise over the replay.

    Watched the replay show with bad edits inadvertently left in.

    I’ve done spots with the wrong dates or inserted words that weren’t in the script (Freudian slip)

    Ken Warkentin


    Dear John,

    The funniest and most embarrassing thing to ever happen to me was at a recording session in Berlin, Germany.  I was assigned to the American Forces Network and scheduled to do an interview with the incomparable Count Basie.   First of all, I was so doggone nervous meeting such a giant of a talent, and would you believe - the Count was in his
    underwear in his hotel room eating peanuts from a planters bag?

    He greeted me and asked me to take a seat.  In hooking up my Nagra Reel-to-Reel and plugging it into the wall socket as a safety precaution in case the battery failed I began my interview.  Half way through it, I happened to look down and notice that the mic cord was dangling.  The darn thing wasn't even connected to the recorder.  You talk about a red face. Whew!  By then Mr. Basie noticed it too and he began to laugh and laugh - then I began to laugh and laugh as tears rolled down my face.  Being the kind gentleman he was, he said don't worry sonny, we can start all over again whenever you're ready.

    Ed Tooma

     

    Hi John,

    About 25 years ago, I had a client who sounded like a sloth on downers, but insisted that he do his own tag line.  This was many years before digital manipulation would have allowed me to time compress him, so I used an old trick I learned years before.  Several wraps of tape around the capstan increased the speed of the tape slightly, speeding up the delivery but not so much that it distorted his voice.  Judicious splicing of the resulting tape made him sound a lot less like he was on Quaaludes.  What they say about multimedia these days was always true: it's all about the workarounds.

    Calvin B. Littlefield

    Dear John,

    Does singing the Ave Maria in church and swallowing a bug interest you?  I was singing a solo and straight out...... mouth open....bug in and gag, cough, gag! 

    It was difficult to explain to the congregation what had happened, so I continued and re-grouped. Maybe that's how you all got your show-biz genes.

    Elinor Melley A.K.A. “Mah!”

    So send YOUR  great recording session story to: John@JohnMelley.com and share it with us. I'll post them and the story that receives the most votes will win the $50 Starbucks gift card, or something of equal value if you're not a coffee drinker.

    September is National Voice Over Month

    Sep/01/2010 | Posted by John Melley
    September is National Voice Over Month!

    How are YOU going to celebrate National Voice Over month and share it with your clients?

    Watch the video below and then Share your ideas by sending me an email to John@JohnMelley.com.

    I'll put all the ideas together and post them on my blog so we can use it as a shared resource to market our businesses!

    Join the celebration and I hope to hear your ideas!

    Voice Over Integrity

    Jun/28/2010 | Posted by John Melley
    Voice over is a fun business, but keep in mind YOU are an important part of making your clients' dreams come true! Honor them by giving them your best every time.

    Some thoughts.

    Watch Sound Disappear Right Before Your Ears!

    Mar/29/2010 | Posted by John Melley
    How can one sound affect another sound? Watch this quick video and hear what happens! Post your comments and feedback below!

    Adding Reverb to Voice Over Track

    Mar/11/2010 | Posted by John Melley
    This is the video I promised that would go into more detail about adding the reverb effect to a voice over track. Enjoy. Please feel free to add your comments and feedback below!

    Production Video Update

    Mar/10/2010 | Posted by John Melley
    Here's a quick update on the status of the next voice over and production video lesson.