Live from Emo Dojo
Live from Emo Dojo

Episode · 2 months ago

Careers for Crazies; Voice Acting, Narration, and How to Embrace Our New Robot Overlords

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

John Emotions shares what he's discovered so far in his voice acting adventures, and how artificial intelligence and ocean floor-mapping technology will change the way we think of audio forever. He also shares his thoughts on how drummers and graphic artists survived the attack of the machines years ago, and how voice artists in the new world might utilize technology to their advantage. Email john@emodojo.com or leave a voicemail/text at (405) 440-3330. Please leave a review if this podcast moves you.

As you heard on yesterday's episode oryou'll, hear on the next episode, if you're listening backward, that I'malways looking for ways that people with mental illnesses or mentaldisorders can make a living being themselves. So yesterday we talkedabout art, work and NF, I overly complicated it. I went back andlistened to that episode and it was very lengthy. What I meant to say is bysome etherium with coin base. Put it in your coin, Wallet about a hundred anfifty bucks worth sign it for open sea and uploads. Your art work to open seaconnect. Your Open Sea account with Coin Wallet. Vala, that's what I meant to say, but it tooklike fifteen minutes to spit it out. In this episode, I'm going to talk alittle bit more about something. I'm working on and you'll recall that I'mgetting started with voice acting and like book narration. Well through thatprocess, I found another thing called artificial intelligence voices. So I'mgoing to kind of connect these thoughts and I hope you can follow along becauseagain it's another way that people with mental disorders are creative people.Both can have a job that pays decently, that you know put a roof over your headand food in your belly and just be flexible around yourself. You know whatI mean: it's not so regimented and structured that it squeezes the lifeout of you so yeah on top of an F ts, I'm pursuingthis voice stuff. Now the first one is pretty straightforward: Voice, actingor voice narration, depending on what you're reading, I guess so what I'm?Starting with you know I've just through a process of elimination. Youhave to start somewhere first and I'm not sure what I'm going to like. So Ifound a great coach like apparently is world renowned and award winning and hehappens to be here in the same town I live in, which doesn't really matter,because all of this can be done over skype anyhow, but I started workingwith him and that's going to be fun, so I'm working toward narrating nonfiction books like self help, books and business books, and things like that because well seems like a coolchallenge because you have when you're reading something like that could be non fiction. Well, that is notfictioned. By definition, I guess like a business book or something you kindof, have to understand the concept and read the kind of through the spine ofthe story. I guess to know how much tention to keep into each sentence,because if you give every sentence like super emphasis, then there is noemphasis and it's going to wear the listener out. So I'm going to work onthat and I'll. Let you know how that progress is I'm going to do that undermy real life name? And you know just because that could be a real job.Couldn't turn into a real thing? The next thing I'm working on, it'sreally cool. So here's the deal back in...

...the s when a record company would signa band. Only the best bands would get a budget from the wrecked company to makea music video, and then you get on MTV, with the hopes of like being superfamous well in a way it turns out, gets sortof like that in the book world. Your book has to have really high hopesof making its money back or high demand in that sort of thing. Before thepublishing company will front you the money to pay to have an audio book made.Now, if you are not a good reader, you I've heard people like. I listen toaudio book by a famous drummer that I like. Well, he read his own book andapparently he reads like a drummer which is crazy because he was reading his own story.He wrote the book and yet he couldn't read it. He read it like a drum likeyou'd, expect a drummer to sound reading a book frankly, and he wasreading like his his last name. His mother's last name is one character perline and reading his bandmate by you know name, but every line soundedexactly the same, and it's so hard to like follow along because he was not atrained narrator. He was a guy saving some money because he thought peoplewould want to hear his voice, but the problem is it's not really your voice?You want to hear it's the continuity of a story and in that sense keeping thecontinuity of a story is really fully imagined in your head. When you'rereading a non fiction book, you have to imagine, there's a story in there andget into the author's head and kind of deliver it in that same way. So I'mkind of excited about that. On the flip side, though, there aren't,how do I say it? There are hundreds of thousands of books in existence that donot have audio books available for them, which is a problem especially to peoplewithout sight. If you can't see you can't read, but they love to hearstories, so I'm m working with the company, nowthat's going to take my voice and I have to like read it and like severaldifferent emotions, the same script over and over several different waysand they're going to convert that into an artificial intelligence voice. Thatcould speak any words, so the benefit of this is then they can go startinstead of having a publisher having to pay six or seven thousand dollars tohave a book created for an author, this books can be generated for a fractionof that cost just by feeding the text into a computer. That then applies myai voice sue the book while I'm doing something else, so that turns intoresidual passive income. For me save the AI voice creator and it gets lotsof books that were previously unavailable up on to audio book shelves.So I think that's a win win and Oh boy what they can do with this voicetechnology so and it's just beginning now, so I think it's really fascinating.Imagine all how far we've come with...

...visual technology right from early likesteamboat, Willi cartoons to full on Avatar things like nowadays, where thefull er like in marvel, comics and stuff for entire scenes are just fullyC gi. So we've come so far in the visual realm, but we've never reallyapplied applied that technology horse power to the audio world and what I'mgetting at now is soon now that they're kind of targeting a lot of thistechnology to audio specifically is we'll be able to take my audio voice. For example, Oh and my audit, my aevoice is going to be johnny motions so somewhere in the world of the UNCITED,people that are buying audio books in the future will go down and seenarrated by Johnny Motions, and I think that's fucking dope, here's what's even cooler. So, ofcourse you could imagine. Let's say I just say a cegid of meright. You can imagine what I look like you can't, because I try to hide what Iactually look like, but I know what I look like. I look like a regular person,a regular white dude. Let's say and through C Gi, you could turn mycharacter on screen to be a black guy version of me or a Hispanic guy versionof me or an Asian guy or even a feminine version of me. You could doanything on the screen and I'm sure you as a listener can imagine that withyour eyes, sure, of course you can change a CG characters to mix and matchat will. You know a I does it with deep fakes and things like that alreadysuper easy, but now imagine with my ai voice if they can apply the sametechnology and all of a sudden, I'm speaking Mandrin or I'm speaking,Spanish or even ancient Latin fluently and accurately. But it's really just mestill at home doing nothing. Having already submitted the script, that'show powerful the new software is going to be as we move forward it'll be ableto take me and turn me into any of those characters. I can be multilingualon the fly, so here's where it's really interesting to me, because I'm new tothe voice over narrator type industry, very new, completely new brand newright. If list like it's a couple, episodes go, I just said: I'm s goingno go. Do it well, there's tons of people in the voice over industry,they're, fucking, freaked out, apparently about v about ai in general,it's going to take their jobs out, it's coming for our jobs. The robots werecoming, and I think it's interesting that I'm coming in right now, becauseto me it does it's not taking anything from me. I didn't have anything in thisindustry to begin with, and I also have the wisdom of being in two otherindustries that were supposedly going to be taken over by automation androbots, and you know easier tools for the for the masses. One of those isdrumming have been drumming, since I was a little child like three years oldlove, it wood drums. Eventually, I have...

...electric drums now too. At some point.In the late earl S, synth drums were coming out programmable drum machinesthat just played the whole song all at once. You didn't need a drummer andthere were people in the public realm and the media or whatever like. Oh, isthis the end of drummers? No, it was not at the end of drummers. I havenever ever to this day lost the gig to a synth machine. Youknow what I mean and people went say. Well, you don't know about the gigs,you didn't lose. I do because I know which gigs I try for and I get the gigsI try for as an organic drummer like a human drum or whatever. There are some great things aboutelectric drums per se. Electric drums that program able drums- I'm nottalking about I'm talking about electronic drum sets that look and feelsimilar to regular wood drum sets, and they play the same once you getused to them. However, you can you could just at thepush of a button change it from a drum set that I sounds like led Zeppelin andthen to one that sounds like Diranda ran and then maybe a rega sound, andyou know they're, just that's fun at the touch of a button. Changing yourdrum sit. It changes your whole mindset and you know that's cool, but againthat thing didn't take over my job. That actually helped so electric drumscame and helped a lot of times they play to what's called the click track,which is a sequencer there's the sequence drums, but you know what it'sdoing things that I don't have limbs to do. While I'm playing live so say myright hand is over on the ride symbol. My left hand is doing something on theHigh Hat and then the snare drum and my feet are busy with the base drum in thehigh hat petals, I've got no other limbs. Maybe I wanted tamborin shaken in thebackground. Maybe want a cow bell on every other beat. Maybe I want adifferent like random salsat on on a wood block or something well, I canprogram all of that and still play the drums, so they co the cog ist togetherreally nicely, and I think in the same way, that's the thing that manyexisting and former voice artists are kind of missing. Is that if you embracethe technology you can you can make it work with your existing set up whateveryou're doing now? It could enhance it. I don't know if you have apple plus TV,what I I don't know what the fuck apples doing with the names of theirproducts these days, but anyway, apple has a channel where they play TV showsthey have original series and what not you can get it usually for a year or so.If you buy a device like a laptop or something so you might already have itand just didn't, try it out. There's several good shows on there Ted Lassoet Cetera, et Cetera, but the one I was interested in theesone call with the producer, the music producer Mark Ronson. I think it'scalled see the music something like that and he did a really cool episode aboutautotune. I don't know if you know much about how music is produced or ifyou've heard the term auto tune before, but I'll try to explain it the best. Ican the there's songs out there by like...

...share if you believe in love, whetherthat one part where she hits the chorus where you do do you believe in ittweaks the note a bit that's auto tune and also the sort of fake sound, some pop artist like no no fense butlike pop parts like Brittany, spears use, auto tune, not in that notetweaking way, but to actually smooth out her voice when her voice was alittle flat or she couldn't quite hit. A certain note. Autotune will help Nugyour notes into place, so it makes it sound more perfect. However, the humanear still hears something slightly robotic, so it sounds a little off inthe case of Pop music and people like Britany spears. It sounds very polishedin kind of almost metallic. That's because it's going through auto tune, and I think that's really how theinventors of auto tune proper than you know. The brand name of softwareoriginally intended it to be used like to correct slightly off vocalperformances, and then people like share. I think she was one of the firstto use auto tune. Specifically, to tweak the note intentionally to adifferent octave within the bars that she was already singing, and so this isn't to be confused withother vocoder kind of sound effects like one of my favorites is what I callthe robot sound like from the old ees rap Egyptian lover or intergalacticfrom the busty boys, that kind of Roe body sound. There's tons of bands, Mister Roboto, all that stuff-that I kind of like that it's kind of fun, but that's not autotune, auto tune isyou know? The thing I just described is where it tries to fix vocalperformances that are not perfect or in the case of share. She uses it to tweekright there and here's a trip, here's how autotunecame to be. It's there's a software that autotune is based on that theoriginator developed to measure underwater caves and valleys andmountains through like a sonar, take technology. So what it's doing is itsreading seng out waves as they bounce back it can map ocean floors, and you know depressions volcanoes. Allthe things that are on the ocean floor that we can't see the original softwarewould go under water and just shoot out the sonor and map the entire oceanfloors. That's how we have maps of ocean floors. Well, what autotune doingthe autotune soft with it kind of evolved from that, is basicallyemulating the caves and valleys in your throat. So imagine this now. If it knows thecaves and valleys by Ai Algorithms. Now, in the future check this out, it willliterally, I visioned a day two years from now tops where you cango somewhere and have a laser scan of...

...your throats. That can be read into aautotune type of machine and give you a perfect profile of your voice that youcan then tweak visually and see what the different tweaks sound like on thescreen before you apply them, and then, of course, save those different models.But what I'm saying what I'm getting at now is that technology is what they'llbe able to use to make my you know: White American sounding voice, soundlike an appropriate Latin American voice, Asian languagevoice, your you know differently, European accents and things like thator their specific languages. It's not just the words they're saying which waskind of easy for a machine to translate words now, but the actual accents insound will sound authentic because then they could take voice maps of peoplefrom those native country, languages visually in software and Morphin. Withmy voice map from here, meanwhile, changing the words, so it willliterally sound like inner here's. The hope that I can turn johnny motions inthis weird little character that you hear all around the world in differentcircumstances like your N, Inter in Britain, and you call up a company andyou hear him on Day, voice answering machine or you're inthe subway in Atlanta, and you hear the voice overhead telling you to get offthe train at a certain stop. You know just like that, not because I want to hear my voiceeverywhere, but because I want this recurring revenue string, could youimagine just getting pennies every time your voice has played or heard on thosekind of systems in those different countries around the world? So I think,if you get in now and get in early, you might be able to build a brand foryourself with your voice and I'm telling you if you've gotmental illnesses or a mental disorder. It's pretty easy to sit in a paddedroom with the microphone and Rant. So it might be the perfect job for you,but one last thing on the autotune, especially with what Ronson showed onhis on his series, was what makes it cool because I didn't think auto tomwas cool. I thought was to I kind of like the share song, pretty cool. Idon't like this. The production of Brittany, spears music much. I LoveBrittany. I just don't like the production of her old music because ofthe autotune, but when he brought it up with some new artists like tea pane,where they crank that fucker up all the way and now they're they're, reallyjust fucking, with autotune as a new form of art. So I think that's cool,because it's progressive when it's breaking new ground and it's using atool in a way that it wasn't intended to use much in the way that JimmyHendriks or Eddie Van Halen use the guitar. And the way is that you're notsupposed to play it Tom Morello. You guys bell a Fleck on the base yeah. I think there's something to besaid about that, because vocalists don't have a lot of options with theMike, but with they're not going to sing through afuzz pedal or distortion. Sometimes the...

...store sinner, sometimes you'll, getthat old telephone sound or just some cheesy, cliche kind of sounds. But whenautotune came around you can adjust autotune to your own desire in thestudio. So you wan't, set on low medium high, goes like from one to ten tea.Paine cranks is up to ten, so he gets that wave I road. Well, I can't evenimitate it because I have adole right here so yeah, it's just because as adrummer, I've always had these extra toys now electronic toys to play with,and I think it's only fair that vocalists have toys like auto tune isespecially if they're going to break them and use them in ways they weren'tmeant to be played with that makes them artist in my mind and quickly, the other industry I usedto work in that gut was going to get taken over by robots or the masses orthe new tech tools was graphic design. So I've been in a graphic designer nowfor maybe twenty five years a long time and we started back in the day where weactually had to cut and draw and do things with their hands, and then thecomputers came on. So we've been with the computers and illustrator andprograms like that since they've been around and because of that, we've always had to think of things inour mind and start with a blank piece of paper. There weren't programs likecanvas where most of the parts you could need to make something thatpasses are readily available. So basically, if you're using canvas mymind, your Ma, you're more of an assembler than a graphic designeryou're assembling existing parts, if you want they'll, give you a templateto start with graphic artists, start with nothing except the burning desire and image intheir mind that they have to get out into the world and most graphic designers are veryparticular about things. Like contrast, the illusion of movement proportion line, weight, distances things like symmetry of course, andafter when you do it year after year, it's intuitive. It's also intuitive tospot bad art. When you see something just been clumsily assembled so again, I've never lost any any workto somebody that uses can va, for example, because they just they it'snot set up for a person to think originally like when I designedsomething corporate loco or something I literally sit with the client, and Ilet them talk for a while, and I listen and I try to get in theirhead nine times out of ten, I nail at the first try espect. Well, you know the core designand then we might tweak the font, maybe or something try something out, butyeah and it's all original just comes from conversation that sparks an ideain my mind, and normally I haven't done it about an hour after I leave and thenI sit on it for about a week and pretended like hey yeah. I got it. Youknow I finally took me a while, but no...

...it's a flash of genius. It comes outreally quick and then I bill for longer amount of time. That's just the way itworks, but I wouldn't get paid when I get paid to do this work. If Iwas simply assembling parts that already existed, my clients could havedone that themselves and a lot of them do do that themselves. They come fromme for the things that make their business or their brand original andthat's a blast. It's not a blast to do that, work full time, because then ittakes all the fun out of it. You feel like you're, just become a commodityand of course you need the flexibility to go, be free and feed your mind withnew things to remain creative so that when you're asked to do a new creativeproject, you have that new found creativity each day so yeah if you're a voice actor,because somehow you found this episode because it's in the key words or in thetranscription yeah man, don't worry about, don't worry about it, Dude justget, or do that just adapt like? I don't think you fear the technology. Ithink you just fear change, there's going to be competition, but the AI isnot who you should worry about. What you should worry about is the entireindustry being pushed into your closets at home, because now everybody andtheir uncle can compete with you. So don't worry about the machines worryabout the new humans. There are a lot of great new voices. I've heard comingup, but I'm not talking about myself, because I don't I don't rate myself. Idon't know what the fuck I'm doing, but I hear a lot of new voices coming up onpodcast. I listened to about the voice acting industry and, if you're anestablished, voice, actor, new actors or who should be concerned with and ifyou're out there with the facade like helping them and then charging themexorbitant amounts of money to produce a demo. That's not going to work,that's not really helping them passive, aggressive, much yeah. So my suggestion was re. I mean Idon't know, don't copy me but like you could literally create a secondfictional character and go dabble into the AI world, make yourself in a eyevoice and see if you can generate some recurrent income, so you can just gosit on the beach. You know you might not make a fortune, but you'll makeenough to cover your expenses and like live a normal life, mental illness ornot met. I realize I can talk a long timeabout nothing. Sometimes that's cool and you can listen to me talk aboutnothing for a long time. I'm proud of you for that all right, so you're,probably hearing this on Friday, if you're up to it, if you're up on it.This is this will be there Friday morning for you. I hope you have a hellof a week end and I got to talk to a couple people onsocial media, real quick. So I want to interview two people in particular onmy twitter account before I shut those down for the holidays or until theholidays or whatever. Sometimes I like to check it on Christmas and see if theworld's falling apart or see, if there's general sense of joy and goodtiping anyway, so I'm going to jump off for a little bit off of twitter andfacebook after find a couch got to use market place, to find a council quickbut yeah the next. Several days a plan...

...on setting bus down tipperary, you knownot delete them, it's not a big deal. I just want to let you know if a fir respond throughsocial media, because I'm not really there you'll have to email me, John, ate, Modo, jo or he can just call and leave a message old school style. Thatis four o five. Four four o three three three or you can also send the text of right on right on and now back to the wall.

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