What do people expect of a voice actor? Joe Loesch believes that voice actors need to interpret the script and convey its meaning while matching it to the voice of the character they’re playing. Can you personally relate to the script or product? If not that’s okay. You can act! Learn how to develop a character that you feel comfortable with that can relate while discovering reading styles, techniques and best practices.
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Joe Loesch is the voice for many cartoon characters for the Disney channel. He narrates and produces audiobooks for Harper Collins, Zondervan Publishing and The Lampo Group. He has voiced dozens of commercials for national advertisers, Philips/Magnavox, Bridgestone/Firestone, Folgers Coffee, Sun Sweet Prunes, Ford, Chevy and Toyota. For local and regional advertisers, Auto Masters, Texas Ford Dealer Association and the list goes on. He has also appeared in dozens of national TV commercials.
Joe recorded and produced Dave Ramsey’s “Junior’s Adventures” audio CDs. Joe does all of the voice work on this project. Listen for yourself…listen or visit, DaveRamsey.com. He is also the 2013 Communicator’s Gold Award winner for his audiobook work.
Welcome to Voice Over Experts, brought to you by Voices.com the number one voice over marketplace. Voice Over Experts brings you tips, pearls of wisdom, and techniques from top instructors, authors and performers in the field of voice over. Join us each week to discover tricks of the trade that will help you to develop your craft and prosper as a career voice over talent. It’s never been easier to learn, perform and succeed from the privacy of your own home, and at your own pace. This is truly an education you won’t find anywhere else. Now for our special guest.
Joe: Hey everybody, welcome to Read at Joe’s. I’m Joe Lesch, a spoken word producer, voice actor and coach, coming to you from Nashville, Tennessee. My topic for today is, it’s what you say and how you say it. Well, I have to admit, when Jennifer from voices.com asked me to create a podcast for this series, I was kind of at a lost because I was wondering what could I say that hasn’t been said a hundred times before? I’m sure that just about every topic has been covered, time and time again. It’s what you say and how you say it. This applies in my voice over career and in my personal life as well. In voice overs you don’t write or get to approve the copy you read, so in this case the what is of someone else’s ownership, but the how, well that’s the difference between you and your client, and whether you’ll turn out to be their spokesperson or not. Commercials catch my attention, on TV and radio, more these days than in past years. It’s more likely because I’ve been experiencing more commercial work lately.
It could have been an interesting product that jumped out at me, but most likely it was the voice actor who forced me to pay attention to the ad. Whatever the reason, when you put the what and the how together correctly, you have a little radio show. The voice over business is fun. It offers flexibility and can be very lucrative. It’s a multibillion dollar business. Having a marketable voice is half the battle, and it’s more than just reading, it’s acting. You need to do more than just read. When preparing to read a script, you want to explore the what before you get into the how. What is the product and who is it geared to? Who is your audience? How can you connect with the product and cause your listeners to connect with the product, and you as well? Think about your personal experiences. People, places and things you can relate to. If you can’t relate to the product, your character can. You’re an actor. Act like you care. Understanding your script, and what it has to say, is necessary to be able to sell it. What is the message of your script?
Visualisation works. Who are you visualising when you read your script? If you have trouble relating to it, change your focus, and find the character you can relate to. Like I said, visualisation works. Your conversational skills must be impeccable. You can have a great voice, but if your listener detects that you’re reading, you’re probably not going to book the job anyway. When I get a new script, first I must understand it. Second, I find my character and third, lose the periods and commas and practice it as though I’m conversing with my counterpart, and breathing on my terms. When in conversation we break in unusual places because we are thinking about what we are about to say next. When we read we breath in predetermined areas. Once I’ve gotten comfortable with the script, on my terms, I go back and add the original punctuation back in. Now that I’ve been successful in making my copy sound conversational, I now can make it more easily conversational with the original punctuation.
If any of the dialogue is tricky in places and may cause me to stumble, I’ll practice it over and over until I work out all the bugs. Tongue twisters are key for me. I do tongue twisters, regardless of the copy. This helps tremendously with diction. This is it for my podcast for the day. I hope that some of these tips will be helpful to you in your voice over career. I’ll be travelling around the country this year with booth camps, b, o, o, t, h, that’s booth camp for strategic voice over training. Get in touch with John [Florian 0:05:05] at voiceoverexpert.com and book booth camp in your city. This is Joe Lesch from Read at Joe’s.
Thank you for joining us. To learn more about the special guest featured in this voices.com podcast, visit the Voice Over Experts show notes at podcasts.voices.com/voiceoverexperts. Remember to stay subscribed. If you’re a first time listener, you can subscribe for free to this podcast in the Apple iTunes podcast directory, or by visiting podcasts.voices.com. To start your voice over career online, go to voices.com and register for voice talent membership today.