Friday, December 14, 2007

A "Note from the Universe"

I subscribe to a free daily email titled Notes from the Universe. I really enjoy these daily bits of inspiration and perhaps you will too. Here is the one I received recently.

By the simple act of thinking, Joe, vortexes are created, invisible energies are applied, and circumstances begin creeping to make real what was previously just imagined. This supernatural pull of your thoughts continues long after you think them, whenever there follows intent, expectation and action; moving mountains, parting rivers, and doing the "impossible" until there is the inevitable manifestation.

This is how your "thoughts becoming things." How they physically become things in a dimension that already exists, with billions of players and massive momentum. Not by appearing out of thin air, but through a manipulation of such forces in the unseen that literally begin shifting, morphing, and arranging all of the elements in your life so as to deliver to you the nearest equivalent of what you've been thinking. In other words, the "law of attraction."

"Thoughts becoming things" explains the law of attraction. It's why there is a law of attraction. And unlike any other 3 words in all the vocabularies of all the languages in the world, "thoughts become things" tells you exactly where you fit into the picture, as the thinker, the decision maker over what you will think about, revealing your power as a supernatural, all powerful, unlimited, CREATOR.

But, of course, many prefer not to think of themselves as so phenomenally powerful.

The Universe

Monday, December 03, 2007

Airwave Talent

Ladies and Gentlemen, I am extremely proud to announce that I am now represented by (drumroll please . . .) Airwave Talent!

Airwave Talent is based in Cleveland Ohio and is a full service talent agency representing professional voice talents from all over the USA and beyond. We are also listed on VoiceBank.Net.

Airwave Talent is the brain child of Vic Harris, an experienced voice actor and producer. Vic is a no B.S. kind of guy and I can really appreciate that. I am confident that Vic will make Airwave Talent a major player in the industry and I am looking forward to a long and mutually prosperous relationship.

My heartfelt congratulations go to Vic and everyone at Airwave Talent, including ME! Hoo HAAAAAA!!!

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Some educational resources

I came across some great educational stuff on Youtube that I thought you might be interested in. Brought to us by the fine folks at Voice123, there are some very interesting and educational pieces here. I especially enjoyed the one on Branding by Nancy Wolfson of Break Into Voiceovers and the one on Auditions by Susan Berkeley of The Great Voice Company.

WARNING: They seemed to have quite a few technical glitches while recording the Nancy Wolfson one so you may have some trouble listening to that one but if you get through it, it's fantastic information. I hope you enjoy!

Friday, November 30, 2007

An Education in Anime Voice Acting

I came across this piece on Youtube about the actors who do the Dragonball Z shows and games. It's about a half hour long and I found it very educational. I hope you enjoy.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

The Do Not Miss Event of 2008!

Everyone who is anyone in the world of voiceover, has at least heard about VOICE 2007. This was the 1st event of it's kind, bringing together top voice talent, producers, coaches and others, from all over the world in an event of learning, sharing and networking.

The list of presenters included such voiceover luminaries as Rodney Saulsberry, Pat Fraley, Bob Bergen and Don La Fontaine! I can't wait to find out who will be presenting in 2008!

The location and dates for the 2008 Voice Over International Creative Experience (a.k.a. VOICE) were announced recently. For those of you who want to start planning, here's the scoop:

Dates: Friday, August 8th - Monday August 11th
(There will be a reception on the evening of Thursday, Aug. 7th)
Location: Hyatt Regency Century Plaza - just south of Beverly Hills in Los Angeles
Registration Opens: January 1, 2008

The organizers are still working on the information & registration website but as soon as I find out the URL, I'll let you know.

I am definitely going to start saving my pennies because I missed this event in 2007 and I DO NOT want to miss it in 2008.

I hope to see you there!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Making your own way.

Bryan Cox is a stand-up comic and voice actor. He is also one of the bravest, most creative, guys I know.

So what did Bryan do you ask? He wrote a book. When he tried to get his book published, the response was . . . well . . . less than enthusiastic.

Now at this point, most people would just toss the book up on a shelf and settle down in front of the TV, but not Bryan. No! He figured heck, nobody wants to publish my book so . . . I'll publish it myself, as an audio book!

Where others would have seen no way, Bryan Cox made his own way!

An all this, after surviving a broken neck, a heart attack and Cancer all within 3 years! Is this a brave, creative guy? Uh . . .HECK YEAH!!

His book is titled Road Stories of the Real Highway Comics and is filled with stories from Bryan's 18 plus years as a stand-up comic. Sometimes funny, sometimes sad but always personal, this highly entertaining audiobook is a must-listen for anyone interested in the worlds of Stand-up Comedy and Voiceover. Click here for a little sample.

Go visit his site at and pick up a copy for yourself.

Monday, October 29, 2007

I fought The Law . . . and The Law won!

Hey Everybody

I just had an amazing conversation with a guy who is opening up a brand spanking new talent agency. Now while nothing has been finalized yet, it looks like he wants to add ME to his roster of talent! Man oh man am I excited!

Let's see now, that would bring the number of agents representing me to . . . drumroll please . . . 1!! That's right, my first agent! HOOOO HAAAA!!!!!

How did I get this agent interested in representing me? I can't be 100% sure, but I firmly believe that the Law of Attraction, A.K.A. "The Secret" had a lot to do with it.

So what the heck is this Law of Attraction stuff about anyway?

Well, unless you've been under a rock for the last several months, there has been quite a lot of hullabaloo about a program called "The Secret". In "The Secret", a long list of prominent people including the likes of best selling authors John Gray (Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus) and Jack Canfield (The Chicken Soup books), teach about the Law of Attraction and how they've used it in their own lives. The DVDs and Books have become runaway best-sellers and been featured on many talk shows including Larry King Live and Oprah!

A while back, I received some information about a two hour audio program (and full transcript) describing a rather practical approach to learning about the Law of Attraction. This program only costs 7 bucks, heck, I spend more than that on lunch!

So, if you're interested in finding out what The Law Of Attraction is, how it works, and how to get it working in your own life, this may be pretty good place to start.

To get the $7 Law of Attraction Program, click here.

As far as my new agent goes, I am hoping to hear from him very soon so we can finalize the deal. It's my intention that nothing will prevent that from happening (that's LOA stuff), but keep your fingers crossed anyway. I can use all the good vibes I can get.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

The Internet Marketing Plan for Voice Actors

In order to achieve massive success in the voice over business, there are a number things we all need:

1 - Oodles of talent
2 - One or more killer, and I do mean KILLER demos
3 - a killer MARKETING PLAN!

OK, there's probably a bunch more stuff you need, but these 3 items are certainly among the top 10.

Having number 1 and number 2 doesn't mean much if the voiceover buyers out there are oblivious to your existence. That's where the new "Internet Marketing Plan for Voice Actors" comes in.

Created by the fine folks at, Internet Marketing Plan for Voice Actors is timely and necessary information for all of you who are working diligently to move from voiceover "wanna-be" to voiceover "professional".

The Authors have provided a clear, comprehensive and actionable plan for enhancing your visibility among those critical voiceover service buyers out there.

The plan includes information on Advertising, Internet Marketing, Branding, search engine optimization and even such cutting-edge topics as Social Media Marketing.

I read through this guide from cover to cover and found it to be chock-full of useful information and I think you guys will too. To learn more, please visit

Friday, October 19, 2007

Are you taking care of business?

If we are to succeed in the voice acting business, we must pay just as much, if not more, attention to the "business" part of the equation.

Yeah, there's voice, most of us in this business have one, and yeah, there's acting, most of us are pretty OK in this area too, but the business part, that's where we "creative" types, fall on our faces.

I must confess, I haven't been doing a very good job of keeping track of my business. I have basically been working on the honor system. I do a job, and I wait (and hope) for a check to arrive . . . eventually.

Oh yeah, periodically I might jot down a client name and some dates on a napkin somewhere, but when the checks come in, do I carefully match up my check stubs with my napkins? Am I sure that all my napkins have been paid? Uh . . . not really.

So how do we keep track of the constant, never ending, avalanche of clients that want to send us sacks of cash for our services (man, oh man, talk about wishful thinking!)? Good question, I'm glad you asked.

I just recently learned that Intuit, the makers of Quickbooks, a respected name in accounting software, has made their QuickBooks Simplestart 2008 accounting software available for FREE!

Hey Joe! Did you say FREE??

That's right, FREE. It's not a 30-day trial, it's a full-blown accounting package that you can download and install for free and you can use for as long as you like to keep track of your business.

I am so glad the people at Intuit have done this because frankly, I caught a cold recently and most of my napkins . . . well, that's another story.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

I recently did a voiceover job for a local ad agency that I had auditioned for many months ago but never heard from. The guy I'd auditioned for left the company and a new guy took over. He sent me a query to see if I was available to do two 60-second pitch scripts for them.

uh . . . HECK YEAH!

While the money wasn't all that great, this is a new client with the possibility of repeat business, and they prefer that I do the jobs from home!

So I did the job from my tiny home studio and received the following feedback:

It sounds like you have a lot of reflections happening in the space where you recorded these.

CRAP! I need a sound booth!

While I would love, love, love to be able to plunk down a couple grand and have the people at Whisperroom or GK Acoustics send me their top of the line Vocal Booth, the day when I will be able to do that has not yet arrived, so . . .

I cranked up Google and started searching for ways to improve my sound. Since I, like most actors I know, am on a very limited budget, my aim is to produce professional quality sounds, at dollar-store prices.

I start searching for DIY voice-booth designs. There are several available on the internet for free or for a small fee. In addition, if you search through the various VO message boards, you will find many talented, generous people who willingly share what they have done and what has worked for them.

One of the designs I came across during my explorations, was created by a musician named Tim O'Brien. His design is clever, portable and most important, cheap!

Now although Mr. O'Brien is not a voiceover guy, I thought that some of you guys might find his design of interest, so here it is, Tim O'Brien's DIY SoundBooth / SoundWall.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Ladle Rat Rotten Hut

A quote from Don LaFontaine: "Devote yourself to the service of the words and you're halfway there."

The Service of the Words. . .

But what if they are the wrong words? Can you still serve them?

Arthur Godfrey read a story on his TV show back in the 1950s titled "Ladle Rat Rotten Hut" which when read aloud and with the right emphasis, reveals itself to be the epic tale, "Little Red Riding Hood". Although the words themselves may be wrong, the meaning remains intact if you a) read them aloud, b) emphasize them correctly and c) "Devote yourself to the service of the words".

There is an audio file of "Ladle Rat Rotten Hut" on this page which you can listen to. You can find the complete text of the original book "Anguish Languish" by Howard Chace on Kevin Rice's site.

Why don't you try one of these "Furry Tells" as an exercise?

Friday, October 05, 2007

Speaking of Games

D.B. Cooper and Pat Fraley, two of my voiceover heroes, recently made a fabulous presentation at the Game Developers Conference in Austin Texas. This is great stuff folks. Go check it out. You can even download an audio file of their presentation!

What's up in the world of Cartoons?

Many people who go into voiceover secretly desire to get into animation. I mean let's face it folks, are the people who voice "The Simpsons" some of the luckiest actors around or what! Anyway, I recently came across Cartoon Brew which is a fantastic site for people who want to know what's happening in the world of animation. Why not take a look?

Monday, October 01, 2007

Voice acting is hard work

Man oh man did I have a tough day at the office. Well the studio.

I reported to Everest Productions for an ADR session and went into the studio as I've done countless times before ready to give it my acting all.

Everest handles production for EBRU TV, a Turkish TV company in New Jersey. I've been doing ADR work there off and on for over almost two years.

For those of you unfamiliar with ADR or Automatic Dialog Replacement work, that's when you have a movie or TV program that has already been completed but one reason or another, some or all of the dialog of the on-screen actors needs to be replaced. A voiceover actor is hired to record the new and hopefully improved, replacement dialog. Sometimes, they do this to remove cuss words for distribution on regular network TV and such.

The stuff I've been doing is replacing stuff that was originally recorded in one language and has been translated into another language. In this case, it was a Turkish TV show entitled "The Teacher" which we were dubbing into English.

You still with me? OK.

So we get through the first several sets of dubs and all is well. Then my director suddenly realizes that the character I am voicing has some very long, wordy speeches in this episode and the guy who did the script translation did'nt do such a good job matching the translated dialog to the lip-flap.

In ADR work, the dialog and the voiceover actor try to match the lip-flap or mouth movements, of the actor on-screen as perfectly as possible. Otherwise you get that really bad Kung-Fu movie effect where you see the actors lips moving but there are no words coming out or you can hear the actors voice but the on-screen actor's lips don't move until 2 or 3 seconds later.

OK, so now the fun begins.

Most of the speeches this particular character has in the show are approximately the length of the Manhattan yellow pages. Undaunted, my director says to me, "here's what you're going to say". I snatch up my pen and we furiously try to re-write the dialog to better match the lip flaps.

So here are the ingredients for this particularly tasty stew:

Two - episodes that need to be completed tonight in order to meet the scheduled deadlines.

One - actor who never took a class in speed-writing or stenography. My handwriting is at best chicken scratch and at worst heiroglyphics.

One - director / recording engineer who has had a long day and is short on patience.

One - gaggle of kids running around the office, just outside the studio door, due to a Turkish Holiday!

Yummy Yum Yum!!

Needless to say, we got through it and while there were a few cuts and bruises, nobody got seriously injured . . . not even the kids.

If anybody ever tells you that voiceover work is easy, tell him he clearly doesn't know what he's talking about.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Hispanic American Urban Cool

These words describe my friend and colleague Anthony Mendez, a NY-based voiceover pro who was recently interviewed by Radio and Production Magazine about how to become successful in this business. As a fellow Hispanic-American, I was really inspired by this article and I hope you will be as well.

Getting started in voiceovers

This is a question that comes up quite a bit. My online colleague Dave Houston wrote a really great article addressing this very question. Take a look, you might learn something!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Accents and Dialects - Upcoming class!

Hey! I just came across an upcoming Accents and Dialects class being taught by the one and only Mr. Pat Fraley!. Mr. Fraley is arguably America's #1 voiceover teacher. The class will be in November in Buffalo NY so if you can make it, do it baby, do it!

Accents and Dialects, that is the question.

It has never been more important for voiceover actors to learn to do accents and dialects. Why? audiobooks and computer games. These industries have literally exploded in the last couple of years!

I was at Barnes & Noble last night browsing the audiobook section and I must say I was absolutely floored! It looked to me like every single book published these days is done in both print and audiobook formats. That's a lot of voiceover work for a lot of actors doing a lot of voices.

What about video games? They have become as important, if not more important, a part of the entertainment industry as movies! The current release of Halo 3 is, according to Microsoft, the biggest entertainment launch in history selling over $170 Million on it's opening-day! That's more than double the the 1st-day earnings of Spiderman 3, the biggest movie opening in history thus far.

These two increasingly important industries will continue to need more and more talented voiceover actors who are versatile and can do many characters, accents and dialects.

I don't know about you, but I think I'd like to get in on some of this action. Here is a resource that might help you (and me) get started.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

MTV Gives you Legally Blond: the Musical

I just read on another blog that MTV will be airing the entire Broadway production of Legally Blonde the Musical! The first of at least 3 airings is supposed to be on Saturday, September 29th at 1:00 but I would check local listings to verify that. For those of you who love broadway shows, here is a chance to see one that I've heard is pretty darn good, for free!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

A couple of cool tools for your voiceover arsenal.

While browing the VO-BB, a voiceover industry bulletin board which I cannot recommend highly enough to anyone working, or wanting to work, in any aspect of this business. I recently came across a couple products I found quite interesting.

1. The CEntrance Microport Pro. Now I haven't gotten hold of one of these babies myself, but it was given a rather good review by a very respected voiceover pro, Mr. Frank Frederick and when it comes to VO technology, Frank's word is as good as gold as far as I'm concerned. You can read what Frank had to say about it here.

2. Adobe SoundBooth CS3. When it comes to recording software, there's a new kid in town! This product brings advanced recording functionality to the novice / intermediate crowd and boy does that include me! After going through the features videos on their site, I can honestly say that I can't wait want to get a copy of this for myself.

Friday, August 31, 2007

Marketing yourself as an actor / voiceover

So I've been giving this subject a lot of thought lately though I haven't really come up with anything good. What are the techniques you use to market yourself as an actor / voiceover? What has been effective and what hasn't? Is it the internet site? Business cards? Post Cards?

I'd love to hear from you on your favorite marketing techniques. Let me hear from you.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Books and Stuff again

Here is a list of books I highly recommend having read each and every one personally. I hope you find some of these useful.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

A most amazing display of power.

This is a somewhat off topic but I wanted to share this with my readers (assuming of course that I actually have some!) Is it real? I guess you will have to judge for yourself.

I came across this video of a man who, through a daily practice of meditation, has been able to harness an energy within himself that those in the East call "Chi". He uses this power to heal people and only reluctantly allowed himself to be filmed.

I believe it is in fact quite real and I believe it is an amazing example of the power that we each possess but which we often never develop. If this man can develop these abilities and do these things using only the power of his mind, what then can we do in our own lives through the judicious application of our own minds?

Monday, July 23, 2007

On acting and aging.

There is so much hullabaloo on all the actor message boards about acting and growing old. Here are some words of wisdom from people much wiser than myself about the whole aging thing. I hope you find some wisdom here.


Age is something that doesn't matter, unless you are cheese.
~ Billie Burke ~

Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter.
~Mark Twain

A man is not old until regrets take the place of dreams.
~John Barrymore

The key to successful aging is to pay as little attention to it as possible.
~Judith Regan

How old would you be if you didn't know how old you were?
~Satchel Paige

By the time you're eighty years old you've learned everything. You only have to remember it.
~ George Burns ~

Nobody grows old merely by living a number of years. We grow old by deserting our ideals. Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up enthusiasm wrinkles the soul. ~Samuel Ullman

You are as young as your faith, as old as your doubt; as young as your self-confidence, as old as your fear; as young as your hope, as old as your despair. ~Douglas MacArthur

Growing old is mandatory; growing up is optional. ~Chili Davis

To me -- old age is always ten years older than I am.
~ Andre B. Buruch ~

Old age isn't so bad when you consider the alternatives.
~ Maurice Chevalier ~

Age is a matter of feeling, not of years.
~ George William Curtis ~

It is not how old you are, but how you are old.
~ Marie Dressler ~

Those who love deeply never grow old; they may die of old age, but they die young.
~ Benjamin Franklin ~

If wrinkles must be written upon our brows, let them not be written upon the heart. The spirit should never grow old.
~ James A. Garfield ~

Men do not quit playing because they grow old; they grow old because they quit playing. ~Oliver Wendell Holmes ~

To be 70 years young is sometimes far more cheerful and hopeful than to be 40 years old.
~ Oliver Wendel Holmes ~

From the middle of life onward, only he remains vitally alive who is ready to die with life.
~ Carl Jung ~

Youth is the gift of nature, but age is a work of art.
~ Garson Kanin ~

When I was young I was amazed at Plutarch's statement that the elder Cato began at the age of eighty to learn Greek. I am amazed no longer. Old age is ready to undertake tasks that youth shirked because they would take too long.
~ W. Somerset Maugham ~

Old age is like flying through a storm. Once you're aboard, there's nothing you can do.
~ Golda Meir ~

Don't just count your years, make your years count.
~ Ernest Meyers ~

We are not limited by our old ages; we are liberate by it.
~ Stu Mittleman ~

The more sand has escaped from the hourglass of our life, the clearer we should see through it.
~ Jean Paul ~

Live your life and forget your age.
~ Norman Vincent Peale ~

The older the fiddler, the sweeter the tune.
~ English Proverb

Old age is the most unexpected of all the things that can happen to a man.
~ Leon Trotsky ~

The person of wisdom is the person of years.
~ Young ~

Do not regret growing older. It is a privilege denied to many.
~Author Unknown

Monday, July 16, 2007

It's a wrap!

Well, I am back home in NJ. The shoot ended Friday night around 1:00 a.m. and Tyler Martinolich (The Producer) and Patrick Griffin (The Director), seemed well pleased.

The final scenes involved another NY actor who flew in Thursday for the shoot on Friday. He played a grizzled old security guard who Clint idolizes but slowly comes to realize is mad as a hatter. Rich from NY had a scene by himself and then a scene with me inside a car where he reveals to me his true nuttiness.

It was great to have someone to work off of. The scenes we shot on Tuesday with the kid were great fun as well but it's a little different working with a kid than with an adult actor. These were actually the first two scenes in the movie, but they were shot last.

I must say this was an absolutely amazing experience for me. My thanks go out to Tyler and Patrick for casting me in what I am confident will be a really great short. I can't wait to see the final product. I am hope it turns out incredibly well and that it gets these guys (and me!) some well-deserved attention.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

My worst night on set by far

Tonight was the worst yet. No lines, just walking, stalking, pointing and not shooting. It was so hot and humid I was drenched in sweat and we just kept doing it over and over take after take. First it was just me just walking off into the distance. Easy, right? Wrong! My walking was fine but they were having trouble with the angles and elevation and speed and zoom etc . . . on the friggin crane shot.

Then I had to stalk around the building, turn the corner and aim and . . . yes! No! Nothing to shoot. Disappointed, I re-holster the gun and stalk off. Do that shot again, and again, and again. My legs were starting to tremble from crouching and stalking my imaginary foe so many times. Then we change the camera angle and do it all over again, and again, and again.

By the end of the night, I was exhausted and soaked in sweat. Did I mention the bugs in Savannah? I think this must be where they all come to spend their summers.

Am I loving it? DAMN RIGHT I AM! Loving every second of it.

Tomorrow we shoot the final scene and wrap the movie. I'll let you know how it turns out.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Turns out I'm a crack-shot!

We finally got out to the range today. We informed the proprietor that I'd never touched a gun before. He started me on a .22 at 20 feet. I was consistently hitting that sucker right in the center. Then we went to a .38 at 30 feet. I hit it dead center twice and close to center more often than not. Then we went to a .357 at 40 feet. I got 4 out of 6 pretty close to center. The proprietor was impressed. That was good enough for the director.

When we got to the set, I had to shoot a .357 Magnum with an 8 inch barrel like the one they used in Dirty Harry. I was only shooting blanks so after shooting the live .357 rounds on the range, the blanks where nothing! Even a full fire round only had a slight kick comparable to the .22 I shot on the range. So we did the scene where I blow the crap out of a candy machine and then storm off into the darkness. There was an armorer on set to provide the guns and ammo and a local law officer to check the gun and rounds between every take. At the end of each take I had to walk to the armorer so she could confiscate the gun between takes. Presumably this is so nobody puts a live round in the thing between takes.

It is amazing how much stuff is involved in the making of even a short film! As the actor, I felt like such a tiny part of the process even though I am the lead! I am having such a blast though. We did the scenes and wrapped early so I guess everything went well. Tomorrow we do the dramatic walking off into the distance scene with a crane pulling up and back as I walk away. Remember the end of Dirty Harry? That's the scene.

That's all for now. More tomorrow.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

More on Clint

Monday nights shoot went well. We did many takes of me saying such classic Clint Eastwood lines as "being as this is a .44 magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world . . ." It was a lot of fun. The guys were very complimentary about my acting.

Today we were supposed to go to a shooting range for me to learn how to shoot an actual .44 Magnum but the range was closed. We'll try again tomorrow.

Tonight we shoot a scene with a kid actor who has been in a few major things. It's a short but complex scene that they want to cover from many angles so it should be fun. I'll let you guys know more as things continue to develop.

By the way, Savannah is indeed a beautiful city but it is unmercifully hot and humid and the bugs are relentless. At one point last night I was saying my lines into a mirror for the umpteenth take and a virtual cloud of mosquitoes was hovering between me and my image in the mirror. Them suckers don't play! Well, I guess that's why its called paying your dues. I was also warned to stay at least 6 feet from the waters edge because there's an alligator in there that doesn't take kindly to northerners. They don't have to worry about me getting to close to him, I can assure you.

That's all for now. I'll post more when more happens.

Being Clint Eastwood - Day 2

The first night of shooting is over. We did many takes of me talking to myself in the mirror saying lines from Dirty Harry. The heat and humidity were oppressive and the insects were relentless. I guess that's why they call it paying your dues. At any rate, both the director and producer felt good at the end of the shoot and were very complimentary about my acting. Tomorrow they are taking me to a shooting range to learn how to handle a .44 Magnum! Hoo HAA!! I can't wait.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Being Clint Eastwood - Day 1

Here I am in Savannah GA waiting for my first night of filming. They will be picking me up shortly and taking us to a fort on Tybee Island where I understand you have to stay 6 feet from the shore because of an alligator who is particularly ornery who lives there. The heat down here is pretty bad and the humidity is a killer. Patrick (the Director) and I just spent a couple of hours rehearsing tonights shots. Based on some other work I've seen from these guys, this film should come out pretty amazing. I can't wait to see the finished product.

Last night they took me out to dinner at a local eatery and we talked and talked about movies and Clint Eastwood and their vision for the film. Then we went to a Karaoke bar near my hotel. I sang a song, Tyler (the Producer) sang a song and then an honest to god bar fight broke out! You just gotta love them Southern boys.

Anyway, I will keep you all posted on things as they progress.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

2/30 a.k.a. The Narrator

OK, so I just finished doing some voiceover work for the very talented John Rhee of Fretboard Pictures
for his latest short film 2/30. I thought it turned out fantastically. Check it out for yourselves

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

One for the Troops

My good friend Robert Gavila (on Guitar) wrote this song in support of our troops in Iraq. This is a true Renaissance man. He is a genius programmer, writer, artist and musician. I hope you enjoy.

By the way, I believe that's his daughter on vocals. She's a cutie!

Monday, June 18, 2007

Clint Eastwood

I just got offered a role in a short film playing none other than Clint Eastwood!

Well, not quite. I play a guy who was named after the man who is arguably America's greatest living actor / director / producer and not too shabby a singer (remember Honky Tonk Man?) but who in reality is everything that the real Clint is not. Despite being a real loser, my Clint gets to have his Dirty Harry moment in the movie and I can't wait to have it! Look for it at a film festival near you!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Lit Between the Ears

I recently had the pleasure of making the acquaintance of the good people at Lit Between the Ears and Two Plus Plus Productions LLC who gave me a very warm welcome on their blog.

From their site: "Two Plus Plus Productions LLC is an entertainment company located in Clinton, New Jersey USA. We write, publish, and produce radio drama. We also publish and edit Lit Between the Ears - Celebrating the Power and People of Radio Drama."

A big thanks to William Spears, President of Two Plus for the warm welcome. I hope you guys have enormous success in the coming years, and don't forget, I'm a voice-actor !

Friday, April 13, 2007

Books and stuff

Taking Steps to Become a VO Actor

Here's some of the stuff I have done or am doing to move forward as a voice actor.

OK, I took a class with Pamela Lewis Pamela Lewis for Cartoon Character / ADR in 2005. She's the author of Talking Funny for Money : An Introduction to the Cartoon/Character/Looping Area of Voice-Overs. I highly recommend her book and class if Cartoon Character work is of interest to you. I also have taken the cartoon/character intensive class at the Edge studio with Paul Liberti which was very good. I am currently taking the Advanced Voiceovers class at Actor's Connection with J.J. Adler which starts ends week.

Harlan Hogan has some fantastic information regarding VO coaches on his site.

Some of the people on this list that have been recommended to me are Joan Baker Author of Secrets of Voice-Over Success: Top Voice-Over Actors Reveal How They Did It (which I am currently reading) , Wendy Dillon and of course, the Edge Studio.

Harlan also has a fantastic list of books that you may want to take a look at. The books written by him are really great and very funny. I highly recommend Pamela Lewis' book which I mentioned above, and The Art of Voice Acting, The Craft and Business of Performing for Voice-Over by James R. Alburger. You can take a look at my list of books a couple of posts down from this one.

There is a wonderful message board called the VO-BB which is run by a professional VO people and has many, many full-time professional voiceover people on board who love to share tips, information and bust each others chops. It's a great group of people that you should get to know.

There is an acting podcast you should listen to created by Darbi Worley and Roz Coleman at where they interview people from all areas of the entertainment business including voiceover casting people and actors. In Episode 22 bonus is an they interview with Joan Baker, In episode 18 they interview Johnna Gottlieb, a VO coach and consultant, In episode 6 they interview J.J. Adler, an agent at Abrams Artists and VO teacher. This is all great stuff too.

I hope the information I've provided is helpful to you. Please feel free to contact me if I can be of any additional help and good luck!

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Masterful Minimalist Acting

I've just come from seeing a most amazing film called "The Lives of Others". The film is in German with English sub-titles but that does not take away from the dramatic impact of this piece at all. This film has no shootouts, no wild chases and no explosions but kept me completely engrossed for the entire 137 minutes.

I was absolutely blown away by Ulrich Mühe who plays the role of Captain Wiesler, a state interrogator, teacher and surveillance expert. Watching this gifted actor's performance is truly an education. To witness the character arc as he goes from loyal Police Captain to what is essentially a disloyal criminal of the state, is an incredible minimalist masterpiece. Every emotion, every nuance, comes across on his face and that is were the all the magic happens. One reviewer said "it's like watching someone being born".

OK, it's not really voiceover related, but I highly recommend this movie for any serious student of film acting. You will definitely learn something watching this man perform.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Pay to Play

So I've enrolled in an "Advanced Voiceover Class" at the Actor's Connection with J.J. Adler who is also an agent at Abrams Associates. I am really looking forward to it.

The class was recommended to me by Darbi Worley of I have to tell you, if you haven't heard of this Podcast, you are missing something good brudda! Darbi and Roz Coleman do a fantastic job of enlightening us on the ins and outs of the acting profession. They interview actors, directors, casting people, voiceover people and many other people in the industry, who share their stories candidly and entertainingly. I highly (is that too many "ly" words in a row?) recommend you crank up your iTunes, go to the iTunes store and do a search on "Acting". They should come up as the #1 podcast on the subject and with good reason. Subscribe today people, you'll thank me!

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Happy Birthday to Me!

So another year has gone by. Born on the Ides of March, I have been doomed to desire a life full of creativity yet have a life full of the mundane. Mortgages, fence repairs, gutter cleaning, dogs and flat tires and car accidents oh my. Yet there is so much creativity in dealing with these mundane things, isn't there? At any rate, this year will be my most creative ever. I've already made that my determination. I WILL make this year my most creative ever, no matter what! There, I've said it. I've asked. I will believe. I will receive.

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Academy Awards Recap

My thoughts about The Oscars.

Don LaFontaine did a great job as one of the Live Announcers. Kudos to Don!

Ellen Degeneres as the host - I love Ellen. I don't care what anybody says, I love Ellen. Is she the funniest person on earth? Maybe not, but I love Ellen.

Best Motion Picture: "The Departed" - Not my favorite picture but still a really great film. The end of the movie was a bit of a letdown for most of the people who I've spoken with but the consensus, a great film! I was rooting for Babel.

Lead Actor: Forest Whitaker, "The Last King of Scotland" - Forrest Whitaker is one of my heroes. Here is a guy who is not classically handsome, not thin, not this, that or the other, yet here he is, one of our most respected and talented actors. I love this dude! One of my goals is to work with Forest someday. In a way though, I was really rooting for Peter O'Toole since I don't know if he'll ever get another nomination and I'm pretty sure Forest will.

Lead Actress: Helen Mirren, "The Queen" - I didn't see this film but I love Helen Mirren. Early in the show there was a song done by Jack Black, John C. Reilly and Will Ferrell where they made reference to Helen Mirren being "hot"! I must agree. For a more "mature" actress, Helen is a real hottie and I mean that in the best possible way. I really loved Meryl Streep in "The Devil Wears Prada" and Judi Dench in "Notes on a Scandal".

Supporting Actor: Alan Arkin, "Little Miss Sunshine" - I have been a fan of Alan Arkin's since "The Russians are Coming, the Russians are Coming" in 1967 (for which he also won an Oscar!) and one of my all time favorites, "Popi" in 1969 (I was 7 when I saw that movie and I still remember loving it!). What an amazing actor and another of my heroes!

Supporting Actress: Jennifer Hudson, "Dreamgirls" - Jennifer is the embodiment of what can happen when we move courageously in the direction of our dreams. I am so happy for her though I think that Cate Blanchett was amazing in "Notes on a Scandal", Jennifer did an amazing job for a rookie actress in this role. I wish her much success in the future.

Directing: Martin Scorsese, "The Departed" - What can anyone say about Martin Scorsese? The man is a bona fide genius and I really can't wait to work with him someday.

Adapted Screenplay: William Monahan, "The Departed" - Best Picture should have the best screenplay, no?

Original Screenplay: Michael Arndt, "Little Miss Sunshine" - I heard an interview with the screenwriters of this film on the Creative Screenwriting Podcast. My wife and I really loved this movie and I'm glad they won.

Animated Feature Film: "Happy Feet" - Loved it, but I also loved Cars and Monster House. I love animated features. I can't wait to work to do voice-work on some of them!

Art Direction: "Pan's Labyrinth"
Cinematography: "Pan's Labyrinth"- I really liked this movie a lot. It was rather dark, but an amazing film.

The rest of the categories went to well-deserved winners as well. Overall I thought it was a great show.

I'm glad I got it on Tivo and I'm glad that we had the forsight to record the two programs scheduled after the Awards so I was able to see it all, commercial free! Don't you just love technology!

Friday, February 23, 2007

Guilty Pleasures

Someone asked a question on another forum and I thought I'd like to share my response here.

Question: I just don’t get it! WHAT is the big fascination with American Idol?? Has TV gotten so bad that THIS is what passes for entertainment? Can someone please explain why this show is such a phenomenon??

American Idol is the number one show in the U.S. because it is a show about dreams. Young people working as clerks, laborers, bank tellers, waitresses or burger flippers, can step up and make a grab for the brass ring. We watch this process and we root for those people because we secretly wish that we had the balls to do it ourselves. And when someone wins, we are thrilled because it reinforces in us the conviction that dreams really can come true.

Ultimately, the people who have won American Idol (and many who didn't win) have had their lives changed forever! Kelly Clarkson was a cocktail waitress and now she is a multi-platinum recording, grammy winning superstar! Reuben Studdard was a college student in Alabama and now has had a number one album and a number one single. Fantasia Barrino went from an illiterate single mother to the star of "The Color Purple" on Broadway. Carrie Underwood's first album went 5 times platinum and she won the Best Female Vocalist award at the 2006 CMAs and Best Breakthrough Artist at the 2006 American Music awards. Taylor Hicks was a second rate performer in small venues in the South and now he's had a number one single and his star continues to rise. Clay Aiken (who didn't even win!) was nerdy special-ed teacher, now he's a star.

Why are we fascinated with American Idol? Because if it can happen for these people, these nobodies from nowhere, then it can still happen for us. It shows us that dreams can and do, still come true. And that's what we all want, isn't it? Isn't that why we are all here chasing our own dreams?

Thursday, February 22, 2007

More Turkish

The people at EBRU TV have been keeping me busy. My friend and director Tom Wayland has booked me for another 10 hours of work next week! Keep the VO work coming guys! I love it!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Soap Star

So I booked a soap opera gig with EBRU TV, a Turkish TV company where I've been doing ADR work for over a year now. They hired a new director for this new prison drama soap opera. He auditioned me during a session for another show and hired me as one of the series regulars. HOO HAAA!!

While they don't pay what American TV companies pay, it's still pretty sweet to be a working professional voiceover actor, which is extremely cool and great experience.

Now if I can get some of that American work, things would really start swinging!

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

THE Event for voiceover people

Just wanted to let you guys know, in case you haven't already heard, that there is going to be a conference in Las Vegas during the last week of March and if you are involved in voiceovers in any way, you will want to be at this event. It's the Voiceover International Creative Experience (V.O.I.C.E.) . This will be the first of what promises to be an important annual event for us all. For more information, visit their site at

Thursday, February 01, 2007

How do I Become a Voiceover Actor?

I was listening to Episode 3 of Avi Melman's Voice-Over podcast. By the way, if you don't already subscribe to this podcast, you should. Great stuff. Anyway, the guest, Rikki Simons mentioned that his friend Crispin Freeman has a great article on how to become a voiceover actor on his site so I thought I'd share the article with you so here it is.

How do I Become a Voiceover Actor?

Saturday, January 27, 2007

It's going to be a very good year!

So far, my 2007 has been great vo-wise. Here's an update.

Yesterday I auditioned for Coca-Cola to do a voice for a Mexican penguin who works inside a Coke machine! I had to do a Cheech and Chong type Mexican character for the piece. Keep your fingers crossed.

Earlier this month I booked a narration for a DVD Extra on the upcoming release of "Pokemon Ranger and the Temple of the Sea" being released this April. I also got to do a character for one of the DVD shorts, "Pikachu's Mysterious Island" where I played the voice of Exploud. I basically had to yell "EEEEXXXXXXPLLOOOOOOUUUUUUUDDDDD" several times, but it was fun. Actually quite a bit more challenging than I would have thought.

I also continue to work regularly for my Turkish ADR clients. It was my director on the Turkish spots that got me the Pokemon job. It pays to network and it's nice to be nice!

Well, so far my year has begun with a bang. I'm hoping to keep the energy flowing in the right direction and I hope you all will do the same!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Booked one!

I just booked a job for Pokemon. No, I am not going to be one of the little creatures. I am doing a narration for one of the DVD Extras about the making of the movie. It's a nice gig and another step along the path to Voiceover greatness!