Monday, 31 May 2010

Public Service Announcement - 2nd update

Coastguards turned to Jonathan Ross's Radio 2 show for help after a boat skipper blocked an international distress channel.

Dover coastguards said the crew left a microphone on while off the Kent coast, blocking radio channel 16, which is reserved for emergency calls.

Ross's radio show could be heard in the background so staff called the BBC, which made the appeal in a news item.

You can hear the appeal here

Thanks to BigFish Media voiceover artist James Knight for the quick work on getting the audio

Sunday, 30 May 2010

Public Service announcement - an update

The announcement then made BBC news website...

Coastguards turned to Jonathan Ross's Radio 2 show for help after a boat skipper blocked an international distress channel.

Dover coastguards said the crew left a microphone on while off the Kent coast, blocking radio channel 16, which is reserved for emergency calls.

Ross's radio show could be heard in the background so staff called the BBC, which made the appeal in a news item.

The coastguard said the vessel blocked the channel for about three hours.

It later moved out of range as it travelled north into the Thames coastguard area.

It is not known whether the crew heard the broadcast, but Dover coastguard said it had not heard of any further problems.

"Unfortunately this happens quite a lot and we normally track down the vessel using direction finding but in this case we could not, so we approached the BBC," said a coastguard spokesman.

A BBC spokeswoman said: "As the boat had Radio 2 playing in the background, the Radio 2 newsreader made the on-air appeal at the next opportunity, which was the midday news within Jonathan Ross's show.

"We were happy to be of service."

Saturday, 29 May 2010

Voiceover man makes public service announcement

It isn't often that as a Radio 2 Newsreader you have to make public service announcements. In fact, in my 12 years at the station, this was a first for me.

Radio's Ross helps out in sea drama
Source PA News
Updated on 29 May 2010


A boat skipper who blocked an international distress channel led to an appeal on Jonathan Ross's Radio 2 show.

Dover coastguard discovered the vessel's crew had left their microphone on, blocking channel 16 off the Kent coast, which is used for distress calls.

All coastguard staff could hear was Radio 2 on in the background so they called the BBC, who made the appeal on Mr Ross's show during a news bulletin.

You can hear it here

Ricky Salmon is also a voiceover artist and podcast producer.

A public service from voiceover man

It's not often that BBC Radio 2 Newsreader voiceover artist and podcaster Ricky Salmon makes the news wires but he did this weekend:

Radio's Ross helps out in sea drama
Source PA News
Updated on 29 May 2010


A boat skipper who blocked an international distress channel led to an appeal on Jonathan Ross's Radio 2 show.

Dover coastguard discovered the vessel's crew had left their microphone on, blocking channel 16 off the Kent coast, which is used for distress calls.

All coastguard staff could hear was Radio 2 on in the background so they called the BBC, who made the appeal on Mr Ross's show during a news bulletin.

You can hear the audio here
http://www.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fbit.ly%2Fap1fDL&h=3ded1

Voiceover News May 2010

Here is what we have been up to this month:

Ricky Salmon has recorded on-hold voiceovers for Reliance Monitoring Services and BSG Property Services.

We are pleased to now represent an actress and voiceover artist with a thousand voices Charlotte Gittins.

We are shooting and editing a series of web videos (or podcasts) for the LBRO - a government quango - at our Television Studios in Surrey.

Hannah Scott-Joynt has recorded voiceovers for British Gas instruction manuals for gas-fired tumble driers and renewable energies.

Ricky Salmon has recorded a voice-over for a commercial for "MR Emmanuel" being shown on Channel TV. See it here.

Sandy Warr has recorded a voiceover for on-hold prompts for SEW Infrastructure in India, which BigFish Media are producing and mixing with the music.

We are pleased to now represent voice-over artist and broadcaster Nicola Walker.


We have completed a large voiceover job for Centrica: arranging the translation of an induction video into Italian and then arranging an Italian voice-over artist to record the audio.

Ricky Salmon was the "Voice of God" at the Purple Apple Award Ceremony in London alongside Claudia Winkleman. We were celebrating the best in Shopping Centres across the UK.

Ricky Salmon has recorded a corporate voiceover for SRC.

Ricky Salmon spent four days recording a voice-over for Elsevier-Ross Wilson Archie, then another day doing the amends. So many of those biological terms were mispronounced!

We are delighted to represent a very talented actor and Voice-over Artist Andrew Fallaize.

Ricky Salmon has recorded the first two voice-overs for videos for a large trade website. Hopefully there are many, many more to come in the next few months.

Ricky Salmon has recorded a voice-over for The Blind Co in Wadebridge.

Ricky Salmon has recorded another voice-over for Lloyds Banking Group; this time it's for their Election Roadshow.

Ricky Salmon has recorded a voice-over for what could be the next television commercial for Doritos. Click here to see it.

Saturday, 22 May 2010

Do you trust the news on the radio?

I know this post isn't strictly voiceover news, but as I am also a BBC Radio 2 Newsreader I found this fascinating:

What source of information do you trust most for your news? The TV? the internet or the radio?

Well if you said the radio then you are in good company; most people trust the news they hear on the radio the most.

Two thirds - 66 per cent – believe what they hear, compared to 58 per cent trusting the internet and 54 per cent accepting what they see on the television.

I wonder how much of that is down to the me and how much to Charlotte Green?

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Voiceover man - sounding older than I look

Although this blog isn't strictly - or in fact anyway related to our voiceover work, I thought it was worth sharing.

I was doing the weekly shop in Waitrose and, because I had bought two bottles of wine, the lady on the check-out asked if I was over 25. That's what they seem to do these days: need proof of ID if you are, or look, under 25 rather than 18.

I produced my driving licence which she looked at casually. Then she spotted my birthdate. Her reaction will live with me for many years to come. It reminded me of "that" look that Gillian Duffy gave a Sky News reporter when she was told that Gordon Brown had called her a "bigotted woman".

We then had quite a laugh and it made my day. I joked that it's a curse - a curse that I can live with. I went on to say how ten years' of night shifts and now working seven days a week obviously agreed with me. And, anyway it's in my genes and I am just lucky, before thinking later that actually my late father looked rather older than his years for most of his life.

Another year and my few grey hairs will be a lot of grey hairs and I won't get asked anymore.

I'm 43.

Saturday, 15 May 2010

How to find a voiceover artist

Are you looking for a voiceover artist for your project? If you are then there is certainly no shortage to choose from. And that in itself can be a huge problem; you could be completely overwhelmed by the choice of voice artists available on hundreds of websites. To say it's daunting is an understatement.

Because the voice you choose will reflect your company brand and the tone and style that your project with present, it is vital that you choose the right person.

Most websites will let you see and hear voiceover artists and their previous voiceover work. Just by looking at a website you will be able to tell instantly if you may want to do business with this person. If the website is too fussy, too garish or so hard to navigate, you will be very likely to just skip to the next one.

If the audio doesn’t play - or takes too long to load - you may give up at that stage too. And if what you hear is awful, whether it's a bad voice or not what you are looking for, you will move on quickly.

And if the voice artist you hear is not in good quality or sounds too "live" (like they are in a large open space) and not warm then you may question whether their home studio can really produce the quality that you are looking for.

Here are some other handy hints to help you during your search for a voiceover artist on the internet:

1. After you get in touch for the first time ask for some MP3 samples if you aren't able to download them from the voiceover artist's website. It's much quicker than asking for a CD in the post or an audition. How the voice artist responds - and how long it takes - will tell you as much about them as the audio

2. Ask for a voiceover demo. Any professional voiceover artist with their own home studio will be more than happy to supply you with a SMALL portion of your script to be recorded for you to check that their voice is right for your - or your client's project. But don't be surprised if they change the odd word or two or add tone or watermarks to it. There are just too many unscrupulous producers who expect a recording for a "demo" then use that as the real thing without paying.

3.Ask for the voiceover artists CV. Many will have a list of previous clients on their websites, but if they don't make sure you check them out with previous clients. Many voiceover artists will have testimonials from previous clients on their website; how about contacting two or three of them to check that they are real?

4. Talk money. Many voiceover artists will give you their fee for your project - based an their hourly rate. If you are trying to source a voiceover artist for a large project, many will give you a fee for the whole project. Some voice artists will invoice for payment after you have received the audio; others will require a fee upfront with the balance at the end; others will want the full fee upfront (especially if you are in a different country to the voice artist).

5. Call the voiceover artist. You will then be able to hear what they really sound like and if the audio samples on their website were twenty years ago or more recent.(We all sound different than we did five years ago, let alone twenty). You will also be able to tell if you can do business with this person by having a chat, see if they are friendly, brusque, stressed, more than willing to help you or arrogant

6. Ask the voice-over artist if they can provide all services digitally. Some voiceover artistss have the equipment and skills to record the at their home studio, convert it into an audio file of your choosing and allow you to download it directly from their website. Oh and ask the voiceover artist when they will finish the project and if they charge for amendments.

Sunday, 9 May 2010

Looking for a Voice-over Agent?

Are you looking for voice-over representation? Are you looking for a voiceover agent? As well as being a recording studio in Woking, Surrey BigFish Media may be in a position to offer you voiceover representation.

However we are a small agency and do not take on inexperienced voice artists. What's the point? We couldn't guarantee you any work and it is our reputation that suffers if you can't cut it in the booth.

If you are seeking a voiceover agent. Do not send us:

videos of you on youtube;
your radio presenter/disc jockey showreel;
you commentating on a football match or similar
or, and this one we had quite recently, a recording of you talking on the telephone. No agent will take you seriously again. Ever.

Just because you can present a radio programme doesn't mean that you will be any good as a voice-over artist. They are different, if related, skills. However it will give us some idea of your level of experience and what your voice sounds like. You will, though need to get a proper voiceover showreel made. This is something we can do for you. Please ask for details. Once you have your voiceover showreel made, then and only then should you think about approaching a voice-over agent

We have mentioned in previous blogs about how having a theatre, acting, radio or TV presentation or broadcast journalism background helps enormously – but you do need more. Can you take direction without getting uppity? Can you use your voice in different ways – albeit slightly. Can you read out loud and bring a script to life? Are you any good at sight reading? Sometimes you just don't get the time or opportunity to read a voiceover script beforehand.

If you are used to writing and reading your own scripts, how will you cope reading someone else's, badly-written, over-written or technical scripts. Can you read a voiceover script to time? This is often necessary to fit the words to the pictures of a video if it has already been cut. And - finally if you suffer from claustrophobia, forget it. Voiceover booths are often very, very small places indeed.

There's more to this voiceover lark than you might think.

Saturday, 1 May 2010

Voice-over news April 2010

Ricky Salmon has recorded voiceovers for on-hold prompts for 1staction.

Ricky Salmon has recorded a voice-over for a corporate video for Ocelot Systems.

Ricky Salmon is the voice-over on a new advert for "The Dog Hole". Hear it on Jack FM in Bristol. How many times can you say "dog" in 30 seconds?!

Ricky Salmon has recorded a voice-over for another corporate video for Lloyds Banking Group.

Bill Buckley has narrowly missed out on recording a voice-over for the BBC1 Programme "This Week". The producers were going to go with another "Come Dine With Me" spoof but then changed their mind and are going with a "Strictly Come Dancing" spoof instead.

Ricky Salmon has recorded more voice-overs for on-hold prompts for the Rustington Golf Centre. Only because I used to live there.

Ricky Salmon is the new voiceover for on-hold prompts for the travel company Superbreak.

Ricky Salmon has recorded voiceover on-hold prompts for the Belgravia Centre in London. Yes, the hair-loss people.

We can now offer a different way of getting audio to you. If you have an Audio TX codec, we can connect using VOIP.

We are delighted to now represent Welsh Voiceover Artist Robb Dee.

We made a voiceover showreel for TV reporter Leah Ferguson.

Andrea Simmons and Ricky Salmon have recorded voiceovers for adverts for Kiss FM in Northern Ireland.

Ricky Salmon is the new voiceover for on-hold prompts for Sharps Skips.

Bill Buckley has recorded a voiceover for an instruction manual for Rapid Post.

Michelle Horn has recorded voiceovers for on-hold prompts for Quicklet in Northern Ireland.

Ricky Salmon has recorded station voiceovers for Radio Lion in Surrey.

Steph Bower has recorded the voice-over for a trail for "The Man Who Cycled the Americas" showing now on BBC1 TV Scotland.