Voiceover – David Whitfield

After formative feedback, I decided to re-record my voice over, as it was pointed out to me that the initial voiceover track contained too much content about Hull as a city, not about David Whitfield the man.

I rewrote the script, concentrating on David Whitfield, in a morning, and using my sound studio and recording software, I ensured that the voice over matched the video content.

Before Amendment Voice Over

Before Amendment Voice Over

In the example above, the audio is raw, and unamended.  It lacks depth, volume, and would sound a little “empty”.

Voice Over - Audacity

Voice Over – Audacity

Using the Audacity software, I was able to increase the bass and treble within the waveform, and also increase the volume of the audio, so that when it is imported into Premiere Pro, I can adjust it to match the audio from the piece to camera as well as the music.

MP3 Radio Demo

As I’m looking to get into the world of paid radio, I thought it was time to put together a demo to send off to radio stations around the area, and maybe a little further afield.

I was forwarded a link from one of my lecturers (Thanks John), for a freelance presenter role at a local radio station, Minster FM, and as I’ve got weeks to fill between Years 1 and 2, I thought I’d give it a bash!

If you listen to the link, and have any comments to make, then I would love to have your feedback.  If you happen to be a Programme Director of a radio station, and you fancy taking a chance on a new presenter, then I would definitely love to hear from you.

Soundcloud Radio Demo

 

Sound Assignment – Practice Recording and Producing

After deciding on the bed to be used on the podcast, I felt that I was able to go ahead and practice recording a few voice links and adding some music to the interim podcast.

Using a USB Microphone and a Pop Filter, I recorded some vocal links to sit within the podcast.

 

When recording the voice links and then playing them back, I realised that the USB microphone did not have the level of bass, treble and pickup that the more expensive externally powered microphones offered.  To get around this for the practice, I added extra treble and bass to the recording, normalised the track, and also increased the decibel level of the recorded track.  This offered a work around, however, compared to the powered microphones, there was still something missing from the recording.  The best way I can describe it, is that the recording sounded tinny and hollow.

By recording voice links, I had to fade the bed to a level where it could still be heard, but didn’t drown out the sound of my voice.  I did this by fading the bed to a level where it was suitably audible to be heard, but didn’t drown out the vocal.

JingleandIntro

Jingle and Intro

 

The image above shows in the final export a 23 second intro, which fades to the vocal introduction section of the podcast.  By using the Fade Out option, this makes for a smooth transition from full volume bed, to a combination of reduced volume bed and vocal intro.

By using a combination of Bed, Vocal Link, and Outside Recording/Music Track, the interim podcast is complete, and it sounds very good, apart from the vocal quality of my microphone, but that can be overcome by using a powered mixer and a better condensing microphone.

BedVocalMusic

 

Sound Assignment – Beds for Podcast

As mentioned elsewhere in the blog, I’ve used Audacity previously to create music shows for an online radio station, so using that experience, I thought it would be a good idea to try to put together a smaller podcast in order to see what information I had retained.

The music clips were taken from bands, up and coming, and also established, and because this podcast will not be published, I did not request talent release.  I will represent the podcast visually so that I can demonstrate what I have done to create the work.

Initially, I researched royalty-free beds, so that there was music in the background of the podcast.  I found a track that I thought was suitable from FreeSFX.  I selected a track called “After Dusk“, which was described as a funky dance loop.  However, the music file was only 31.53 seconds in length, so had to be altered to ensure that there was enough of it to make the bed long enough to cover the podcast.

Podcast Loop

Podcast Loop

As the music track is designed to be a loop, it was fairly easy to ensure a smooth transition between the end of the track, and the beginning of the second instance of it.  There was a very small duration of silence at either end of the track, which required removal.  The examples below shows the start and end of the track with the silence.  Once the silence had been removed, then it was easier to make the match with another instance.


By removing the silences at either end of the file, I was able to replicate the track numerous times so that it became a longer track.  I made the track longer than the 10 minutes duration of the podcast, so that I was able to fade out the end at the 10 minute stage.

 

AfterDusk-11minute

AfterDusk 11minute

 

 

Sound Assignment – Working with Audacity

Audacity is a audio editing program that is available to download for free.  It doesn’t have all the tools that are available in Audition, or Cool Edit Pro, but for basic editing, the price tag cannot be argued with.

I have used Audacity for a couple of years now, to create voice-tracked links for my radio shows, and also to ensure that the music tracks are of a similar level throughout the hour of music that I am producing.

The photo below, is Audacity, and I have imported a MP3 of Utah Saints – Something Good ’08.  As you can see the waveform is large within the two stereo elements of the track.

Audacity-UtahSaints

 

By using the tools within the software, you can change the sound of the track, changing the volume, adding bass/treble, or fading in and out to name a few.  The next image shows the same track, but it has been through the normalisation process.  This process takes the peaks and makes changes to them.  It also removes the DC offset, which takes the top and bottom away from the track.

 

Normalise

 

With these waveforms, you can start to build a selection of songs, and voice-tracked links in order to make a radio show.

The photo below shows an entire hour of music, including the voice links, that I created for a radio station that I worked at back in 2014.

Show - SHCR

 

 

The mix between the tracks and the links, have been edited to create a seamless hour of radio.

Adobe Audition

I’ve taken the opportunity over the Christmas break to investigate one of the pieces of software that we will look at in Semester 2.

AuditionAudition2

 

 

 

 

 

 

Adobe Audition is a piece of software that allows editing and transformation of audio in a waveform.  The version I have been experimenting with is Audition 3.0, which in terms of the progress of the software, is quite old, but the basic principles are the same.

In the left screenshot above, you can see a music track, Baltimora – Tarzan Boy, that has been imported into Audition, and the various options that you can use to alter the track are listed on the left side.  The track has been imported into the first of 6 multitrack layers.  The right screenshot shows the mixer screen where levels can be changed for each track imported.

 

Previously during my radio work, I have used Audacity, which is a free, open-source, audio editor.  As with Audition, you are able to work on the waveform, using various options to change the audio.  My usage of Audacity, has been limited only by the small amount I have needed to change, usually with home recorded vocal links between tracks, increasing bass/treble, removing white noise, and amplifying the track to the same level as the music track.

Audacity

I’m looking forward to learning more about Audition as it is widely used within the media industry and the skills I gain within the lessons, I will be looking to build on through the weeks, and taking those skills to the radio station where I work, and hopefully further into paid work within the radio industry.