John | Podcasting
John | Podcasting

Episode · 1 year 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, or you'll hear on the next episode if you're listening backwards, that I'm always looking for ways that people with mental illnesses or mental disorders can make a living being themselves. So yesterday we talked about artwork and and FT's. I overly complicated it. I went back and listen to that episode and it was very lengthy. What I meant to say is buy some etherium with coin base, put it in your coin wallet, about a hundred fifty bucks worth, sign up for OPENSEE and uploads your artwork to open see connect your open sea account with Coin Wallets Voollah. That's what I meant to say, but it took like fifteen minutes to spit it out. In this episode I'm going to talk a little bit more about something I'm working on and you'll recall that I'm getting started with voice acting and like book narration. Well, through that process I found another thing called artificial intelligence voices. So I'm going to kind of connect these thoughts and I hope you can follow along because again it's another way that people with mental disorders or creative people both, can have a job that pays decently, that you know, put a roof of your head and food in your belly and just be flexible around fund yourself, you know what I mean. It's not so regimented and structured that it squeezes the life out of you. So, yeah, on top of and FT's, I'm pursuing this voice stuff now. The first one is pretty straightforward, voice acting or voice narration, depending on what you're reading, I guess. So what I'm starting with? You know, I've just throw a process of elimination. You have to start somewhere first, and I'm not sure what I'm going to like. So I found a great coach like apparently is world renowned and award winning, and he happens 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 working with him and that's going to be fun. So I'm working toward narrating non fiction books, like selfhelp books and business books and things like that, because, well, it seems like a cool challenge, because you have when you're reading something like that could be nonfiction. Well, that is nonfiction by by definition, I guess, like a business book or something you kind of have to understand the concept and read the kind of through the spine of the story, I guess, to know how much tension to keep into each sentence, because if you give every sentence like super emphasis, then there is no emphasis that it's going to wear the listener out. So I'm going to work on that and I'll let you know how that progresses. I'm going to do that under my real life name and you know, just because that could be a real job can turn into a real thing the next thing I'm working on. It's really cool. So here's...

...the deal. Back in the S, when a record company would sign a band, only the best bands would get a budget from the record company to make a music video and then you get on MTV with the hopes of like being super famous. Well, in a way it turns out it's sort of like that in the book world. Your book has to have really high hopes of making its money back or a high demand in that sort of thing before the publishing company will front you the money to pay to have an audio book made. Now, if you're not a good reader, you I've heard people like I listened to audio book by a famous drummer that I like well, he read his own book and apparently 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 like you'd expect the drummer to sound reading a book, frankly, and he was reading like his last name is mother's last name, as one character per line, and reading his bandmate by you know name, but every line sounded exactly the same and it's so hard to like, follow along because he was not a trained narrator. He was a guy saving some money because he thought people would 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 the continuity of a story is really fully imagined in your head. When you're reading a nonfiction book, you have to imagine there's a story in there and get into the author's head and kind of delivered in that same way. So I'm kind of excited about that. On the flip side, though, there aren't, how do I say? There are hundreds of thousands of books in existence that do not have audio books available for them, which is a problem, especially to people without sight. If you can't see, you can't read. But they love to hear stories. So I'm working with the company now that's going to take my voice and I have to like read it and like several different emotions, the same script over and over several different ways, and they're going to convert that into an artificial intelligence voice that could speak any words. So the benefit of this is then they can go start instead of having a publisher having to pay a six or seven thousand dollars to have a book created for an author, these books can be generated for a fraction of that cost just by feeding the text into a computer that then applies my ai voice to the book while I'm doing something else. So that turns into residual passive income for me, say, the Ai Voice Creator, and it gets lots of books that were previously unavailable up onto audio bookshelves. So I think that's a win win and Oh boy what they can do with this voice technology. So 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 like steamboat Willie cartoons to full on Avatar things like nowadays where the full every like in marvel comics and stuff, where entire scenes are just fully CGI. So we've come so far in the visual realm, but we've never really applied applied that technology horsepower to the audio world. And what I'm getting at now is soon, now that they're kind of targeting a lot of this technology to audio specifically, is we'll be able to take my audio voice, for example. Oh, in my audio my ai voice is going to be John Emotions. So somewhere in the world of the uncided people that are buying audio books in the future will go down and see narrated by John Emotions, and I think that's fucking dope. Here's what's even cooler. So of course you can imagine, let's say, just say, a CGI version of me, right, you can imagine what I look like? You can't because I try to hide what I actually look like, but I know what I look like. I look like a regular person, a regular white dude, let's say, and through CGI you could turn my character on screen, mean to be a black guy version of me, or a Hispanic guy version of me, or an Asian guy or even a feminine version of me. You could do anything on the screen, and I'm sure you, as a listener, can imagine that with your eyes. Sure, of course you can change a CGI character, to mix and match at will. You know ai does it with deep fakes and things like that already super easy. But now imagine with my ai voice, if they can apply the same technology and all of a sudden I'm speaking mandarin or I'm speaking Spanish or even ancient Latin fluently and accurately. But it's really just me, still at home doing nothing, having already submitted the script. That's how powerful the new software is going to be as we move forward. It'll be able to take me and turn me into any of those characters. I can be multilingual on the fly. So here's where it's really interesting to me, because I'm new to the voice over narrator type industry. Very new, completely new, brand new. Right, if looks like it's a couple episodes ago, I just said I'm just going to go do it. Well, there's tons of people in the voiceover industry. They're fucking freaked out, apparently, about about ai in general. It's going to take their jobs. Oh, it's coming for a job, as the robots are coming and I think it's interesting that I'm coming in right now because to me it does. It's not taking anything from me. I didn't have anything in this industry to begin with, and I also have the wisdom of being into other industries that were supposedly going to be taken over by automation and robots and, you know, easier tools for them, for the masses. One of those is drumming. I've been drumming since I was a little child, like three years old. Love it would drums and eventually have electric drums. Now to at some point...

...in the late s early S, synth drums were coming out, programmable drum machines that just played the whole song all at once. You didn't need a drummer and there were people in the public realm and the media or whatever like, Oh, is this the end of drummers? No, it was not the end of drummers. I've never, ever to this day, lost the gig to a synth machine. You know what I mean? And people might 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 gigs I try for as an organic drummer, like a human drummer whatever. There are some great things about electric drums per se. Electric drums, that programmable drums, I'm not talking about I'm talking about electronic drum sets that look and feel similar to regular wood drum sets and they play the same once you get used to them. However, you can, you could just, at the push of a button, change it from a drum set that sounds like led Zeppelin and then to one that sounds like Duran, Duran and then maybe a reggae sound. And you know, there's just that's fun. At the touch of a button changing your drum set. It changes your whole mindset it, and you know that's cool. But again, that thing didn't take over my job. That actually helped. So electric drums came and helped a lot of times I played to what's called the click track, which is a sequencer. There's the sequence drums, but you know what it's doing? Things that I don't have limbs to do while I'm playing live. So say my right hand is over on the ride symbol, my left hand is doing something on the High Hat and then the snare drum, and my feet are busy with the bass drum in the high hat petals. I've got no other limbs. Maybe I want a tambourine shaking in the background. Maybe want a cowbell on every other beat, maybe I want a different like random salsa beat on a wood block or something. Well, I can program all of that and still play the drums. So they killed. They coexist together really nicely and I think in the same way that's the thing that many existing and former voice artists are kind of missing, is that if you embrace the technology you can, you can make it work with your existing set up, whatever you're doing now. It could enhance it. I don't know if you have apple plus TV, where I don't know what the fuck apples doing with the names of their products these days, but anyway, apple has a channel where they play TV shows. They have original series and whatnot. 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 it and just didn't try it out. There's several good shows on there, Ted Lasso, etcetera, etc. But the one I was interested in there's one call with the producer, the music producer, Mark Ronson. I think it's called see the music something like that, and he did a really cool episode about auto tune. I don't know if you know much about how music is produced or if you've heard the term auto tune before, but I'll try to explain it the best I can. There there's songs...

...out there by like share. If you believe in love, where does that one part where she hits the chorus where you do? Do you believe in it? Tweaks the note a bit. That's auto tune and also the sort of fake sound some pop artist like no fense, but like pop artists like Brittaney Spears, use autotune, not in that note tweaking way but to actually smooth out of voice. When her voice was a little flat or she couldn't quite hit a certain note. Autotune will help nude your notes into place, so it makes it sound more perfect. However, the human ear still here's something slightly robotic, so it sounds a little off. In the case of Pop music and people like Britney Spears, it sounds very polished and kind of almost METALLICI that's because it's going through autotune and I think that's really how the inventors of autotune proper that you know, the brand name of software. Originally intended it to be used like to correct slightly off vocal performances, and then people like share, I think she was one of the first to use autotune specifically to tweak the note intentionally to a different octave within the bars that she was already singing. And so this isn't to be confused with other vocoder kind of sound effects. Like one of my favorites is what I call the robot sound, like from the old s rap Egyptian lover or intergalactic from the Beastie Boys, that kind of robodi sound. There's tons of bands, Mr Roboto, all that stuff that I kind of like that it's kind of fun, but that's not autotune. Autotune is, you know, the thing I just described. It's where it tries to fix vocal performances that are not perfect or, in the case of share, she uses it to tweak right there. And here's the trip. Here's how autotune came to be. It's there's a software that autotune is based on that the originator developed to measure underwater caves and valleys and mountains through like a sonar take technology. So what it's doing is it's reading saying out waves as they bounce back. It can map ocean floors and, you know, depressions, volcanoes, all the things that are on the ocean floor that we can't see. The original software would go under water and just shoot out the sonar and map the entire ocean floors. That's how we have maps of ocean floors. Well, what autotune doing? The autotune software, it kind of evolved from that, is basically emulating the caves and valleys in your throat. So imagine this now, if it knows the caves and valleys by Ai Algorithms. Now, in the future, check this out. It will literally I vision a day in two years from now tops, where you can go somewhere and have a laser scan of your throat that can...

...be read into a autotune type of machine and give you a perfect profile of your voice that you can then tweak visually and see what the different tweaks sound like on the screen 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 that technology is what they'll be able to use to make my you know, White American sounding voice sound like an appropriate Latin American voice, Asian language Voice, Europe, you know differently European accents and things like that, or their specific languages. It's not just the words they're saying, which was kind of easy for a machine to translate words. Now put the actual accents and sound will sound authentic, because then they could take voice maps of people from those native country languages visually in software and morph them with my voice map from here, meanwhile changing the words so it will literally sound like in a here's the hope that I can turn johnny emotions in this weird little character that you hear all around the world in different circumstances. Like you're inter in Brittany and you call up a company and you here I'm on the voice answering machine, or you're in a subway in Atlanta and you hear the voice overhead telling you to get off the train at a certain stop. You know, just like that. Not because I want to hear my voice everywhere, but because I want this recurring revenue stream. Could you imagine just getting pennies every time your voice is played or heard on those kind 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 for yourself with your voice. And I'm telling you, if you've got mental illnesses or a mental disorder, it's pretty easy to sit in a padded room with the microphone and Rant. So it might be the perfect job for you. But one last thing on the autotune, and especially with what Ronson showed on his on a series. was what makes it cool, because I didn't think autotune was cool. I was to I kind of like the share song pretty cool. I don't like this the production of Britney Spears music. Much I love Brittany, I just don't like the production of her old music because of the autotune. But when he brought it up with some new artist like tea pain where they crank that fucker up all the way and now they're they're really just fucking with auto tune as a new form of art. So I think that's cool because it's progressive and it's breaking new ground and it's using a tool in a way that it wasn't intended to use much in the way that Jimmy Hendrix or Eddie Van Halen, use the guitar and the ways that you're not supposed to play it. Tom Morello, you guys Bella Fleck on the base. Yeah, I think there's something to be said about that, because vocalist don't have a lot of options with the MIC, but with the not going to think through a fuzz pedal or distortion, sometimes distortion, or sometimes you'll get that old telephone...

...sound or just some cheesy cliche kind of sounds. But one auto tune came around. You can adjust autotune to your own desire in the studio. So you want it set on low, medium, high. It goes like from one to ten. Tea Paying cranks is up to ten. So he gets that wabble up our will. I can't even imitate it because I don't have auto tune right here. So yeah, I just because as a drummer I've always had these extra toys, now electronic toys, to play with, and I think it's only fair that vocalist have toys like auto tune, especially if they're going to break them and use them in the ways they weren't meant to be played with. That makes them artist in my mind, and quickly the other industry I used to work in that got was going to get taken over by robots or the masses or the new tech tools was graphic design. So I've been a graphic designer now for maybe twenty five years. Long Time, and we started back in the day where we actually had to cut and draw and do things with our hands, and then the computers came on. So we've been with the computers and illustrator and programs like that since they've been around, and because of that we've always had to think of things in our mind and start with the blank piece of paper. There weren't programs like Canva, where most of the parts you could need to make something that passes are readily available. So basically, if you using CANVA, in my mind you're you're more of an assembler than a graphic designer. You're assembling existing parts. If you want, they'll give you a template to start with. Graphic artists start with nothing except a burning desire and image in their mind that they have to get out into the world. And most graphic designers are very particular about things like contrast, the illusion of movement, proportion, line weight distances, things like symmetry, of course, and after when you do it year after year, you it's intuitive. It's also intuitive to spot bad art when you see something just been clumsily assembled. So again, I've never lost any any work to somebody that uses Canva, for example, because they just they it's not set up for a person who think originally. Like when I designed something, corporate logo or something, I literally sit with the client and I let them talk for a while and I listen and I try to get in their head. Nine Times out of ten I nail at the first try. It's but well, you know, the core design and then we might tweak the font, maybe your something's try something out, but yeah, and it's all original. Just comes from conversation that sparks an idea in my mind and normally I haven't done in about an hour after I leave and then I sit on it for about a week and pretended like hey, yeah, I got it, you know, I finally took me a while, but no, it's a...

...flash of genius. It comes out really quick and then I bill for longer amount of time. That's just the way it works. But I wouldn't get paid what I get paid to do this work if I was simply assembling parts that already existed. My clients could have done that themselves, and a lot of them do do that themselves. They come for me for the things that make their business or their brand original, and that's a blast. It's not a blast to do that work full time, because then it takes all the fun out of it. You feel like you're just become a commodity. And of course you need the flexibility to go be free and feed your mind with new things to remain creative so that when you're asked to do a new creative project, 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 the transcription. Yeah, man, don't worry about don't worry about it, Dude. Just get or do that debt. Just adapt. Like I don't think you fear the technology. I think you just fear change. It's going to be competition, but the AI is not who you should worry about. What you should worry about is the entire industry being pushed into your closets at home, because now everybody in their uncle can compete with you. So don't worry about the machines, worry about the new humans. There are a lot of great new voices I've heard coming up. But I'm not talking about myself because I don't I don't rate myself. I don't know what the fuck I'm doing. But I hear in a lot of new voices coming up on podcast I listen to about the voice acting industry. And if you're an established voice actor, new actors are who should be concerned with. And if you're out there with the facade like helping them and then charging them, you know, exorbitant 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, I mean, I don't know, don't copy me, but like you could literally create a second fictional character and go dabble into the AI world, make yourself an AI voice and see if you can generate some recurring income so you can just go sit on the beach. You know, you might not make a fortune, but you'll make enough to cover your expenses and like, live a normal life, mental illness or not. Man, I realize I can talk a long time about nothing. Sometimes that's cool and you can listen to me talk about nothing for a long time. I'm proud of you for that. All right, so you 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 hell of a weekend. And I got to talk to a couple people on social media real quick. So I want to interview two people in particular on my twitter account before I shut those down for the holidays or until the holidays or whatever. Sometimes I like to check in out Christmas and see if the world's falling apart or see if there's general sense of joy and good tithings anyway. So I'm going to jump off for a little bit, off of twitter and facebook, after find a couch. I got to use market place to find a counter quick but yeah, the next several days a plan on...

...setting those down tipporarily. You know, I'm not deleting them. It's not a big deal. I just want to let you know. If I don't apply or respond through social media's because I'm not really there, you'll have to email me, John at Emo Dojoe, or you can just call and leave a message old school style. That is four hundred five, four, four oh three thirty three hundred. You can also send the text to them, number right on, right at all. And now back to the wall.

In-Stream Audio Search

NEW

Search across all episodes within this podcast

Episodes (132)