What are the top voiceover youtube channels? The channels that you turn to for the best sources of information, education and information for voiceover. Well, that’s the controversial murky water that I find myself swimming in right now. Anytime you use the words top or best to describe anything, you are bound to open pandora’s box. The level of nays can be just as loud as the yays. But as a lover of Youtube University, I find myself looking for the best channels to inspire and inform me on what’s happening in the voiceover industry.
Over the years, there have been many channels and talent who have utilized Youtube as a way of getting out their message, producing content and expanding their brand awareness. Sure, there are other outlets to do that, but Youtube is the second largest search platform in the word. So when people search for the top anything voiceover, the top voiceover Youtube channels will appear right there with their google search.
The problem comes with the disagreements. Over the years, I have heard the mumblings of personality conflicts and staunch disagreements with the methodology and teachings of certain VO Youtubers. Some have argued that anyone teaching and encouraging the use of Fiverr to “newbies” don’t have our best interest as an industry at heart. And these kinds of disagreements turn people off to certain Voiceover Youtube channels. I get it. But I also get that change is dolorous and that regardless of disagreements, the popularity and relevance of the VO Youtubers making these videos cannot be ignored.
How I Decided Which Were The Top Voiceover Youtube Channels
I had to create criteria. I decided that the age of a channel, consistency of uploads, value to its viewers, and entertainment value and how well known the channel is, would be how I decided. I also decided to list them in random order as to not seem to express biases toward or against. Still, there is some subjectivity even in the criteria that could still open itself up to criticism (and me). Still, in good faith, I decided to give it a shot with the disclaimer that these are not mostly recommendations but acknowledgments that these channels have all come across my radar.
Ask Dave Fennoy Anything
Ask Dave Fennoy Anything Streams on the DaveFennoy Voiceover Training Channel every Wednesday at 8pm Pacific time. Dave is a legend in voiceover gaming who also has his hand in countless areas of voiceover. He is an authority in VO Games and Character Coaching. You can catch him at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCpR7jedutYNue9GU84uS-Cg
The Gift Of Gab
Gabrielle Nistico’s Channel post videos with frank voiceover advice with a witty and sometimes dry humor style that appeals to both new voice actors and professionals. Gabby is a voiceover actor, demo producer and career coach in Charlotte. Her channel can be found at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC-JhbChXLVwTvgSxrtWpajg
Earl Hall- Earl Hall Studio
Earl markets his brand as a coach capable of taking students from step 0 to 100. He has a number of courses online for marketing your own voiceover career. He runs a free training facebook group and teaches students to automate their voiceover success. His channel is https://www.youtube.com/c/EarlHallStudio/featured
A VO’s Journey
Anthony Pica’s brand stretches across platforms from Facebook to Youtube to Instagram. He is spreading the word of what it really takes to earn a living, learn how to voice actor and run a voiceover business from the perspective of someone who is doing it. Check out Anthony at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCaSvjdnxdx69qoW9ryuxCjQ
Starting in 2012, Anna Brisbin built a voiceover channel and career from doing impressions from movies, cartoons, and assorted characters. Her channel attracts viewers drawn to see her perform these impersonations. The best part about it is that she did it all from her not-so-fancy, sometimes messy closet with very basic equipment. To date, Brizzy Voices has a whopping 2.1 Million subscribers and has videos that boast 27 Million views. Not bad. Not bad at all. Her channel is https://www.youtube.com/brizzy/featured
When you have a name like Voiceover Masterclass, it just sounds so official. Peter Baker’s gentlemanly British style and consistently give his videos a university type of feel to it. You almost feel as if you should enroll into the channel as opposed to subscribe to it. His videos a purposefully produced and feature a professional theme with the thumbnails. His voiceover youtube channel is https://www.youtube.com/c/Voiceovermasterclass/featured
VO Buzz Weekly
Chuck and Stacy are two of the most known figures in the voiceover business. Few people have as many friends and are as well-liked then the two of them. They have been producing the only Voiceover Talk Show since I have been a working actor. No other voiceover channel rivals professional network shows like theirs does. Each week, they bring you a new voiceover superstar. Catch their show at https://www.youtube.com/user/vobuzzweekly
VOBS- Voice Over Body Shop
Dan Leonard and George Whittam are two of the most respected voiceover tech guys in the business. Dan, who is an accomplished voice actor himself, and “George the Tech” have been teaming up for more than a decade to help make voiceover technology more understandable for users. They host a live one to two-hour-long show each week where they explain VO gear and bring on special voiceover guests. Find them at https://www.youtube.com/c/Ewabsshow/featured
According to his channel, Jordan is a Voiceover Talent, Voice Matcher, Demo Producer, Audio Producer, Audio Engineer, Improv Theater Actor, Music Enthusiast, Tech Geek, Professional Sideburn Grower. It’s that last part that makes you tune in. Not only does Jordan know his stuff, but he’s about making good content that helps people. Recently Jordan has started doing courses to help other voice actors with their sound, an area that so many of us get wrong. His channel is https://www.youtube.com/c/JordanReynolds/featured
Mike DelGaudio dedicates his channel to the tech of at-home, professional voice over. He review microphones, studio equipment and help new voice actors set up their studios from hardware to software so they can make the next great recording! The Booth Junkie channel has attracted 123,000 subscribers and has reviewed Reaper, portable isolation booths, kaotica eyeball and compared cheap vs expensive microphones. Booth Junkie is found at https://www.youtube.com/c/BoothJunkieVO/featured
Bill Dewees is a professional voice over artist and coach. His channnel helps new and existing voice over artists get found, get heard, and get hired. Everything from picking your first mic to how to land VO jobs and get paid. Bill has some of the most consistent content on youtube for voice actors, posting new videos twice weekly. It’s simple in production and straightforward in approach. The channel, like some others, is a gateway to Bill’s coaching sites that guide viewers to success in voiceover. His channel is https://www.youtube.com/c/BillDeWees/featured
Undoubtedly there are other channels I forgot to mention. And for some that I did mention, I may be facing cancel culture. If there are any that I should have put on the list, go to youtube and leave a comment under the video in the comments section. Please try to be respectful.
Am I The Big Deal Voiceover Guy or am I hardly working? Here’s the answer. Every shot that Lebron James takes has the potential to be game-changing, and yet, it’s just another day at the office. Every surgery a surgeon does is one of the many surgeries he may do in a day and one of the thousands he may do in his career. Each one is life-changing and still, it’s just another surgery that he has performed. Likewise, every voiceover that I as a voice actor does, is another job that boosts a brand’s exposure but is one of the close to 10,000 that I have done and soon forget. Not every VO job is a big deal.
People often ask me the question “What are you working on nowadays?” Since I have entered the professional realm of VO, it’s always stood out to me as an awkward question. I don’t quite know how to answer. I often answer with “What do you mean?” They usually respond by saying “You know, Are you working on a project right now?”
My response always ends up being an education for the person in how voiceover works. “I work every day and there is no particular project that I can remember. I do my work, send it back to the client and forget it.” I often use the analogy of the surgeon or the basketball player to explain.
Perception vs Reality About Voiceover
I have figured out that there are two kinds of people when it comes to voiceover. The people who think that every day I am doing Disney movie voiceovers that take months to complete and the type who think that I barely work and only make a few dollars to eat scraps for lunch. In reality, the truth is somewhere in between.
The Blue-Collar Voiceover Talent
I consider myself a blue-collar voiceover talent with a voiceover business. I am not the big studio, SAG Aftra Union voice that is on all the stuff you hear everywhere. But I also don’t consider myself a freelancer. Mine is a business that services clients. I remember auditioning in person for the Harlem Globetrotters who were impressed with my talent and long list of big clients on my resume. After the audition, the interviewer excitedly asked, “I see you’ve worked for a lot of big companies?” I said “yes. I have provided them with voiceover for commercials and narrations from my home studio.” At that point he seemed less impressed and said “Oh, you’re a freelancer.”
I should’ve considered this a warning sign. He seemed not to respect my profession, which eventually showed in the way they treated me, but that’s another story. At that moment I corrected him “No! I have a voiceover business. I can take this job as long as it doesn’t interfere with me servicing my clients. I have radio stations who I image for and a list of other independent clients who depend on me.” But his response was again condescending “We have other guys who have side gigs also who get some time to work when they are out on the road.” And that should’ve been my sign to run.
The Voiceover Business Entrepreneur
He is not alone in his misunderstanding of my voiceover business. While he downgraded my profession, others look way up at me as if I am the voiceover version of Tom Cruise. They think I am doing Mission Impossible trailers every day and Pixar films. Frequently I have conversations with these types who, when I let the air out of their balloons that I don’t have these major roles, they actually ask me “Why NOT?”
They generally go on to explain that my 17-year-old career should be taking a path that it hasn’t taken. “Man this is Atlanta. You should be calling Cartoon Network or go up to Tyler Perry Studios and tell them to give you a job. Why haven’t you reached out to CNN?”They basically then think that I have failed myself to which I have to explain that “That’s NOT how things work”
CNN, nor Cartoon Network, nor Tyler (as if I’m on a first-named basis with Mr. Perry) don’t take to anyone walking up to their studios for jobs. Trust me, I’ve tried. I have to explain to people that I instead do steady, everyday work that most people never hear in the general public or don’t pay attention to. Things like narrations and explainer videos along with radio imaging and a lifetimes worth of nightclub and hip hop concert commercials. I assure them though, someone is listening to my voice 24/7 and there is no time of day that I am not being heard. With that explanation, they return to me back the cool factor.
Average Voiceover Guy in a Changing World
Getting people to understand that my job is just a job or that its a job at all has always been difficult. It’s not the traditional pathway that a college-educated dude from Brooklyn takes. It was a path that chose me. As the economy changes, more people are looking for multiple streams of income. And they first look towards their talents for remedy. Many are seeking a greater understanding of what they too can do with their voices. And with that, more people are open to listen and learn what an average voiceover talent does with their day.
Working from home has become the new norm. Tens of millions of people had suddenly been converted from office workers to digital home-mads when the shutdowns began. We left our one on one relationships at work and shifted to virtual co-workers, no longer sharing a workspace and the casual conversations at the water cooler. The business trips stopped. The cold coffees in the break rooms ceased to exist. And the things that connected us and gave us variance in our lives came to a halt. For so many, these disconnects made us feel lonely.
I remember when the pandemic started many of my colleagues and friends in the voiceover business joked about their many years of experience working from home. Like them, I had been working from home for many years. As a full-timer in the voiceover industry, you work in a booth, or a closet, or any enclosed space that will help reduce reflective noises. And for most, they come out of those spaces after a full (or partial) day’s work to interact with their families and friends and enjoy activities.
My life and experience working from home have always been different. Before becoming a voiceover talent, I worked in the school system as a substitute and afterschool teacher. As you could imagine, I was never alone. I was always busy, with tens and sometimes hundreds of kids around me. There were parents to talk to and co-workers to congregate with and share outrageous and unbelievable stories about the kids. After school, I hung out with my co-working friends.
But in 2006, after 2 years of part-time voice acting, I made a commitment to being a full-time voiceover talent (after I was fired from substitute teaching). No more hanging with co-workers or seeing the kids. Or conferencing in person with parents to discuss why their kid’s behavior at school was markedly different than it was at home. No mas! And as a result, I became far less relevant to the people I worked with. To make up for this, I involved myself in activities.
What’s So Different About Me?
When I left my job, or rather, when my job left me, I had to find different things to involve myself in. Unlike so many of my friends and former co-workers, I don’t have a family. Over the many years, I have had many girlfriends but I don’t have any children. I don’t even have a dog. For much of those years as well, I lived alone. While I saw even my youngest brother get married and have beautiful daughters, I decided that a life of travel was the path for me.
I am also an introvert who has always forced himself to be social, and it’s worked for me. I have found friends in new countries while traveling. I’ve encountered new buddies while working out in the gym. I have new friends from attending various Spanish meet-up groups. And even found some guys who gladly and repeatedly dropped me on my head doing judo (lol). I have made friends based on the activities that we have in common which has warded off loneliness. But generally, when those activities were over, I was back to the voiceover booth and back to being alone.
So Why Do I Feel Lonely Now?
The pandemic really highlighted how fragile my associations were. It shone a spotlight on how I had medicated myself with travel and meet-ups. It was initially tough and made me feel lonely. Unlike my co-workers who had their children, spouses, and dog to huddle around the barrage of news coming in about the virus, I did not have that. I was actually working doing radio imaging (alone in the booth) to inform and encourage people to stay home. All the meanwhile spending no time producing nightclub commercials, because they were locked down. I was also suffering from health issues that started before covid.
All of the things that I had occupied my time and mind with were crumbling around me. My social interactions have been reduced to social media and a sharp increase in on-screen time. My time in the gym halted and my only exercise was a brisk walk from the studio couch to the bathroom before my bladder gave way. There was no more swimming. There was no martial arts training. Instead, there were short drone flights around the neighborhood with my DJI Mavic; at least until that fateful day when I flew it into some electrical wires (RIP Mav).
Suddenly I was doing nothing but scrolling. My health and good sense dictated that I follow the CDC guidelines. It wasn’t long before I saw posts from here in Georgia and other red states where everyone was back out and about. Heck, at that point the pandemic had just started a month prior and some clubs were back open. Everyone was having fun. They were in the bars, hanging out in Miami, going out to restaurants and I was still sheltering. The gym re-opened in June 2020. Some of my gym buddies went back to working out immediately. Some were decidedly cautious. But regardless, I allowed my membership to lapse and have still not renewed.
What Now? Do I Go Back To Normal Now That I’m Vaccinated?
No! The pandemic isn’t over. 94% doesn’t mean 100% effective and there are still breakthrough infections. The number of people getting vaccinated with both shots is waning. And the anti-vaxers are getting louder. All of this means, that as the summer progresses, I take caution in finding things to do outside with my girlfriend. We still plan to do activities but in a controlled manner. I’ll get back to medicating myself with travel. I have already started flying again, but I take extra precautions. But in all of that, I’ll still be working from home.
The Covid pandemic has taught me a few lessons. It has taught me that people need people and to strengthen the connections that I have with others. It’s taught me that working from home isn’t for everyone. Being a loner is ok. But I don’t have to feel lonely. It’s important to discover commonalities with people and to keep up with them. The pandemic taught me that we are all mentally vulnerable and the necessity to continually evaluate one’s psychological health. I am still learning the value of random calls with the thousands of unused names and numbers in my contacts list. Because when dealing with the stress of toilet paper and gas shortages, we need others to relate to who are dealing with the same crap.
Click here to listen to my last DMX Hip Hop Radio Commercial
A New Urban/ Hip Hop Voice
Everyone Had A Favorite DMX Song Or Line
Dawn, LeShaun, Ines, and Alicia (ooh)
Theresa, Monica, Sharron, Nicki (uh-huh)
Lisa, Veronica, Karen, Vicky (damn)
Cookies, well I met her in a ice cream parlor (aight?)
Tonya, Dianne, Lori and Carla (okay)
Marina (uh) Selena (uh) Katrina (uh) Sabrina (uh)
About three Kim’s (what?) Latoya, and Tina (woo)
Shelley, Bridget, Cathy, Rasheeda (uh-huh)
Kelly, Nicole, Angel, Juanita (damn)
Stacy, Tracy, Rohna, and Ronda (what?)
Donna, Yolanda (what?) Tawana, and Wanda (what?)”
The Making of The Radio Commercial
When I looked for the right laptop for myself in 2018, I searched far and wide. I know a little bit about tech, so I thought it would be an easy process. I needed something that was portable and could fit inside my small Tumi backpack. I needed something with at least 15 inches in screen real estate with a bright touch screen. And I needed a laptop that could handle audio editing and would be great with the audio interface that I planned on buying (so it had to have Thunderbolt 3). Aside from that, I wanted a laptop that just looked Great. I found all of that and more when I purchased the $2000.00 Dell XPS 15 2 in 1.
It was the perfect machine. I did the research on it. Dave2D (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TvXBl063ixk) said it was a “Kick Ass” machine. The Best Buy salesman raved about it. I was impressed that it could handle video renders in 4K and had a 4K screen. This seemed more impressive to me than other options. For me, it was worth spending more money on this machine than any computer I had ever owned. I pondered the decision for months. Should I spend this much on a computer? The answer was “Yes”. It’s for work. Spend the money. On September 1, 2018 I walked into Best Buy and purchased the XPS 9575. That was when the Nightmare on Dell Street began.
Excited I went home, unboxed it and starting using it. But it wasn’t long, minutes, before I noticed that the computer sounded like a jet taking off. It was loud and the fans kept going off. I thought it would stop, but it didn’t. Immediately I also noticed that the trackpad had issues. I did the recommended updates out of the box in hopes that this would resolve the issues. It didn’t. The next day I called Dell support.
Dell support helped me with further updates that kept the machine from making noise but the trackpad issue continued. It wasn’t constant but it was noticeable. I decided fairly early to return it to Best Buy within the 14 day return window and get a replacement unit.
Excited as I was the first time, I unboxed the machine, set it up the way that I like and started using it. It required me to do some out of the box updates which I decided not to do. All was well. I had the machine for 12 days when I took it on a business trip to Seattle and onward to New York. On the plane, the machine began to give problems again with the trackpad. It was the same left side of the computer freezing that the other unit suffered from. I was frustrated and now had a dilemma. I needed to return this machine, but the box and the receipt for it was back in Atlanta. I was stuck with it. From here, I had no choice but to work with Dell to resolve this trackpad issue.
Upon returning to Atlanta I contacted Dell’s Customer Support once again. I told them the issue and they work with me by remotely controlling my machine and troubleshooting it. The agent was confident that after more than an hour, he had resolved the problem. Moments after getting off the call, it was clear that the problem was indeed not solved. After posting on Facebook about the issues, a friend who repairs computers advised me to never buy a (H)Dell.
But I was stuck with this computer and it’s problems with the lid closing, which I mentioned in the video and it’s trackpad problem and I was left to the mercy of Dell trying to fix the issue remotely. After speaking with the Dell representative who advised me to send the computer to them to fix, I instead took it to Micro Center, a Dell Authorized repair place.
Micro Center ran test on my Dell for more than a week and was unable to duplicate the problem. But finally, they decided to manually test it and saw the issue. Still their best idea for a fix was to uninstall Dell’s version of Windows 10 and install a factory version. I took my machine home after weeks of not having it, and on the first night, the problem came back. I called Dell and requested the box to send it to them.
I sent my machine to Dell who had it for weeks. They did not know the problem. Finally after pressuring them to figure it out, they sent it back to me with a new backscreen panel and said that that was the problem. It wasn’t long before I figured out that a new screen fixed the ghost touches, but not the trackpad issues. This was unacceptable. Still, Dell reps insisted that the problem was fixed.
More time went by as Dell did more remote take overs of my computer. The process became monotonous as each time the attempted the EXACT SAME things to repair the issue. So I began researching the problem myself and found that on Reddit and even Dells own website that hundreds of people had the same issue. Most notably I found this video which ironically was posted around the time I bought my computer. And the issue wasn’t issolated to the 9575. I began to realize that this was a problem with other Dell Laptops.
I spent hours in the meantime with Dell Serive Reps before I finally demanded that they issue me a new laptop. They agreed. Dell sent me a new laptop. I spent more time setting up the new machine, and weeks observing it before I finally sent back the 2nd unit that I had had.
The new machine was a joy. It worked great. From there I began using it and editing video and finally audio. From January 2019 until late March, it was fine. Then came the problems again. It started with the same trackpad issues. Then the ghost touches which went haywire. Finally in April, the frequent reboots, blue screens and ultimately, the computer crashed. I had to reload the OS. Everything I had was lost. I searched Dells site for the newest drivers. I tested the machine to be sure that it was functional. But, another few days went by, and the problems with ghost touches and trackpad problems returned.
I started to give up. I posted my issuess about my Dell on twitter and they responded to me privately, asking me to give them another shot at troubleshooting the issues. This was a waste of more hours, multiple times on the phone and through remote take overs of my computer. The process went on for weeks. I posted more videos of my woes to document Dell’s failures. Finally, I gave up. Dell issued me a “fix” that made the computer less buggy. As long as I no longer had the ghost touches, I could operate the computer using a mouse, which is what I do. That’s hardly what you want to do after buying a $2100 machine that had so much promise.
I seldom use the Dell. I bought the extended warranty in case the ghost touches come back and Dell refuses to honor their committment. But what a shame! My limited time makes it that I can’t fight with them anymore. I was initially enamored with the bright screen and the aluminum back but that all turned into a nighmare. I am presently looking for another computer at a decent price. There are great Windows laptops that will be coming out in 2020 so I will wait until then. But one thing is for sure, “Dude I’m Never Getting A Dell”. And I will advise that my friends don’t either.
Early in my career, I approached a producer about doing a demo for me. He was not a professional voiceover demo producer. But he claimed to have knowledge in the field. So he grilled me on a number of things about my capabilities. And one that seemed to stick with him was accents. Particularly, the British fake accent. His insistence on me doing this fake accent and misrepresenting myself as anything other than what I am, disturbed me so much, I passed on using him to produce for me. What I was looking for was someone who accentuated my talent as a mainstream urban male voice, but he missed the point of it all.
The Fake British Accent
My recently late brother was British born and raised. He had a strong proud British accent. He made it clear many years ago that my British impersonation sucked. He made it clear that almost all Americans sucked at British accents because they lack the understanding that there are regional accents in the UK just like there are here in the US. It made me reflect on the fact that generally speaking, you have to have an understanding of a people to really get the language and sound.
I also always watched as people annoyed the hell out of him with their fake British accent whenever he was in the US. You could see on his face how he struggled to avoid telling them to “Piss Off.” After a while, it even annoyed me.
Black Sounding Voiceover ???
Recently in voice over African American talents have been fighting to make the community understand that same point. Black sounding voiceover or black accented voiceover is not the same as being a black talent. Some people get it. Others don’t. Authenticity comes not just from a voice, but from a story and understanding of the culture. I’ve recently come across more post that say they specifically want African American Voice Actors for a role and that want to honor those parts with authenticity.
Language, Accents & Culture
I’ve observed the same happening in the Latino voice over world. As many people know, I taught myself Spanish. In my personal life (pre-pandemic), I travel to Latin America several times a year, keep friends in Latin America and meet sometimes several times a week with native Spanish speaking friends to improve my Spanish. Pronunciation has always been important to me but my Spanish, while containing some nuances from Costa Rica (where I have spent a lot of time), my Spanish is mostly generalized.
From that, I understand the urge for non native Spanish speakers who know a few words here and there to insert their very gringofied accents into auditions. But there has been more of a movement to make sure that they people who audition for the roles are the right fit. People who try out for Spanish speaking roles need to understand the culture from the inside. They need to know that there are various Mexican accents and slang. They need to know when called for a Colombian accent, there is a difference between the costal and Paisa sound. And all of these accents change as you travel Latin America.
I’ve witnessed Americans in traveling butcher Spanish accents and think nothing of it and even mock it. Because I’ve spent time learning the language and culture, it upsets me. In voiceover, it’s no less upsetting. In calls for Spanish voice over talent, I see descriptions of the type of accents which stress, native speakers only.
The Fake Jamaican Accent aka The Jamaican’t Accent
I am a Jamaican American. It’s something that I am very proud of and recently I accepted the idea of being a Jamaican voiceover talent. I decided to accept that role and make it part of my toolbox after running into talents online who thought that they could do Jamaican voice over and it turns out to be terrible. I’ve always spoken to my parents and a small group of family members in an occasional Jamaican Patois. Where I grew up in Brooklyn, everyone was from the Caribbean. And everyone who wasn’t, developed a Jamaican accent. In that environment, those people knew the culture, listened to the music, ate bammy and sounded real. But as I explored the terms Jamaican voice talent, I found some really bad imposters. Stop it. Stop this craziness.
I have to be honest in saying that it’s actually insulting to hear people do your accent and mess it up. I understand where a person might think it’s flattering but if it’s done wrong, it’s not. And it’s almost always done wrong. It can come off as a negative interpretation of what you think a population sounds like, almost as if you are mocking it. My Dad often says “That Jamaica is the most culturally influential island (per square mile) in the world”. I get it. Bob Marley. Usain Bolt. Reggae music and great vacations. But beyond one or two Jamaican phrases like “Ehhh Mon” and “Wha Gwan” one should never go any further, especially not to make money from it.
Look, if Hilaria Balwin has taught us anything, it’s that admiration should not turn into false actualization. There is plenty of space for everyone to be, proudly who they are. I proudly represent New Yorkers and Jamaican Americans everywhere I travel in the world. But when I’m off in Australia, I’m still that Brooklyn dude in the way that I speak. Latin Americans here in the US, still prefer to speak to me in English no matter how much I speak to them in Spanish. And Jamaicans like myself, don’t want to hear you butcher our accent.
Professionally, there are enough voiceover talents in the world to get the job done. If you need an African American male voice, call me. Or a Jamaican voice. Call me. Or a New York Urban male voice guy, that’s me. But if you need a British voice, call me for a recommendation. Don’t do it yourself and don’t hire someone who sounds “British”. And stop insisting that every American talents needs to learn that accent to be successful, as two dialect coaches have implied to me on Linkedin. People should do what they do best. Be themselves.
As a voiceover talent, I do a lot of voices. And I do a lot of voiceover for different genres of voiceover. But as I have expressed before, being a radio imaging voice is one of my favorites. I have nailed a bunch of commercial voiceover auditions and it is really satisfying to book them, but nothing like booking a radio station. Recently I booked KZBT. I’m super excited about this station for several reasons. For One thing, I’ll be their Hip Hop Radio Imaging Voice
Most of the stations that I do radio imaging for are R&B or Gospel stations. I love that work. At 40 plus years of age, I have a grown person’s voice and I actually listen to the music from those stations. But when I entered into voiceover, I was in my twenties and hip hop was everything to me. I did thousands of commercials over the years for hip hop nightclubs. I enjoy that work so much that I go back and listen to my old commercials. So when KZBT called me, I was super excited.
I don’t do as much current Hip Hop anymore. I do a lot of Throwback stations. I enjoy that too but there is a difference from hip hop stations. Hip Hop stations allow me to be wild. I can adlib things in a very unpredictable way on hip hop stations that I can’t on old school or throwback or gospel stations. That’s the difference. That’s what young people like.
The talent who did the voice for the station is one who I respect greatly. He inspired me to get into radio imaging and voiceover in general. But, like myself, he has a huge commanding voice. He makes you pay attention. But there is a new generation of hip hop radio station listeners and they hear things differently. They don’t want to hear a booming voice. They feel that voice may not be talking to them on their level. So many stations are switching to a younger sounding urban voice.
Luckily for me, I can also change to a younger sounding voice as well. If you’d like to book me for your station, leave me a message here on the site and I’ll get back to you.
VoiceoverPete is a famous voiceover talent, salesman, comedian, Youtuber, Gamer and Product Spokesman who gained fame through hard work, ingenuity, controversy, and a bit of luck. Pete Accetturo is a name I had never heard before, but became curious about when his alias, VoiceoverPete began popping up in my Google autofill searches. After several weeks of seeing it, I started to wonder who this guy was.
VoiceoverPete has over 1 Million Youtube followers, a feat envied by the fiercest of Youtubers. When I ran across his name at various times of searching the term “voiceover”, I began investigating and following his youtube channel. That lead me to a barrage of funny and sometimes strange videos. I began to realize that VoiceoverPete was also PitchmanPete and CharacterPete who leveraged his background in sales and marketing to solidify a place in the voiceover world. But his story is not the average, as I quickly learned from his videos. His story is that of controversy and a rift with Fiverr.
VoiceoverPete and Fiverr
His initial relationship with Fiverr can be a story of its own. Voiceover talents have longed railed against the site that neither vets it’s talent nor charges fair market rates for voiceover. The ripple effect is believed to be that clients grow accustomed to inferior voiceover in favor of cheap prices. But Pete disagrees. For Pete, as he explained to me, Fiverr was very lucrative for him, earning him 5 figures of income a month. He figured out the algorithm and how to rank at the top of Fiverr search. He worked hard to promote his brand and with the help of his son, who is a video producer, launched his Youtube channel which attracted much attention.
That attention as a Youtuber, pitchman, and voiceover talent, caught the eye of gamers who contracted him to create videos for them to promote their brands and raise money. But a video that Pete did for one particular gamer caught the eye of Fiverr, who believed that Pete was participating in a credit card scheme for his client. That got Pete suddenly banned from the platform. Pete was left with thousands of dollars in orders on Fiverr and no income.
When his son broke the news to him, he was working in the studio and it was caught on live video. It came as a shock to Pete, who was forced to figure out how to gain his livelihood back. As a result, Pete dipped into his background of sales and marketing once again, and with the help of his son, used their Youtube channel and Patreon to rise above the controversy.
The issue with Fiverr caused gamers like PewDiePie and Ninja to rally behind the voice, which caught the attention of their millions of followers, many of which now follow VoiceoverPete. Pete has managed to amass a huge number of paid followers on Patreon who he charges up to $150 a month to get two videos of him. VoiceoverPete has taken off as an internet sensation and is the subject of countless memes online.
Why I Wanted To Meet VoiceoverPete
The average voiceover person knows nothing about VoiceoverPete. I certainly didn’t. But if I told them there was this guy who made 10k+ a month on subscriptions and never auditions, it would perk up some ears. At least it did for me. So I wanted to meet Pete and talk to him about it. At first it was hard to track him down but I did and eventually, I had a chance to meet him at his home studio in Tampa and found him to be very fascinating.
Navigating the difference between the online subject of memes and gamer trash-talking VoiceoverPete vs the Christian, calm, cool, Spin instructor who is Pete Accetturo was interesting. Pete Acceturo is a serious business person who discussed marketing with different platforms with me and offered to teach me how he does it. VoiceoverPete is the fun guy who laughed and joked with me at various times of the day.
Our conversation was a mix between the two worlds of VoiceoverPete and Pete Accetturo. And Pete expressed to me how his world and way of earning a living have clashed with the traditional voiceover world, and how that has been hurtful to him. He told me the stories of his appearance at Voiceover Atlanta several years ago and how other talent were hostile towards him because he was earning money on the Fiverr platform.
The Lesson I Learned From Pete- Be Creative and Think Outside The Box
All in all, I found Pete to be one of the most fascinating people I have interviewed. His marketing strategy and his ability to pivot and think differently than other talent was interesting enough for me to drive to Tampa to interview him. And it was worth the trip. My hope in this interview to show the traditional talent that there is more than one way to skin a cat. And even if you don’t like the VoiceoverPete way, you should still be inspired to think differently and do it YOUR WAY!
A colleague of mine once said to me “The job of a Voiceover Talent is to wake up every day and voiceover audition.” Well, I’m terrible at my job. I do not audition often. My career as a voiceover talent has never been about auditioning. It has always been about marketing, personal relationships, and internet sales. But I do voiceover audition from time to time. And I do land some of those auditions. This was one of those times.
Sometime in May (2019), I auditioned for a voiceover for Publix. I have auditioned for Publix many times in my career. I have landed one and been put on hold for several more. As with all auditions, I recorded it in my home studio and forgot it. A few weeks later I received an email from my agent in Atlanta, Jeffrey Umberger, that I was on hold for the job. (On hold means that they are considering multiple talents that may fit what they are looking for.) I let Jeffrey know my availability and again went back to marketing and promoting.
Auditioning is very different from the style of marketing that I do. While some talent have found success in both auditions and marketing strategy, for me, who is not much of a multitasker, I prefer marketing. I feel more assured when I can speak to people and find out exactly what they are looking for as opposed to sending my voice off into the interwebs and hoping that what I said and how I said it was exactly what they want. Auditioning is a guessing game and a numbers game at the same time. It’s definitely a competitive sport also, except in this competition, my livelihood is at stake.
Also, I have always thought of what I do as a business and not just me being a freelance talent. 95% of the work I have gotten in my career was based on business and not doing some voiceover audition or relying on agents. Had I had to rely on agents, this voiceover thing may have been reduced to a hobby. I guess that’s why I never felt comfortable betting on auditioning, in spite of the fact that I am a talented capable voice actor.
My 7 Step Voiceover Audition Process
When I do audition, I have a process. I have shared this process in classes that I have taught but I will share some of it here for free. I start with a dry read. Having never seen the script before, I read it out loud. Having done voiceover for 15 years now, my dry reads are pretty darn good and usually have no errors. Also, my experience in live announcing also helps. For me, the purpose of saying it out loud for the first time is just to get it out of my head without prejudicing myself about what it should sound like. At this stage, there is no perfection.
My second read is to iron out any kinks in my dry read. It’s kind of a dry read but better. Throughout this process, I am recording these reads and I listen back to all of my reads as they get better. My goal is to reach 7 reads before I take any of them seriously. On the road to the seven reads is the 3rd and 4th which I use to help me memorize the lines.
Memorizing The Lines In The Audition
Memorization helps me feel that I am doing more than just reading lines. When you don’t know the material, it shows in the read. By my fifth read, I remember the lines and give it another try and I often have what I call an “AH HAH Moment.” This is not to be confused with a “Haha Moment.” The Ah Hah moment is when you have a realization about the script. It’s when you start to see the interpretation of the script differently.
My Ah-Hah Moment
My sixth read is where I lay down my Ah-hah moment read. It’s where I play with the words. After memorizing it and seeing it differently, I begin to own the copy and inject my personality into it. By the 7th read, I perfect the audition. This is the one I should go with. Sometimes I do more than seven reads though. Some scripts are more difficult than others. Other times I have more playing to do with the copy and have even more Ah-hah moments.
And sometimes I just project myself with different moods. Maybe a sad mood read or a read where it is really outrageous sounding. It’s not that I think they will pick that read, but they will see that I can read copy well in case they need to make changes in the script when we do the real record.
Don’t Obsess Over Your Voiceover Auditions. Edit & Send
From there I start editing. I don’t second guess myself in the editing process. Whatever I have already recorded is what I am going with. My process does not include re-recording. I only edit at this point. I use some lite compression and other tools that clean up the sound a bit but never anything that is too noticeable.
There is a lot that goes into voiceover auditions and the number of steps for me is just one of them. Figuring out how to connect with my target audience is important too. But this kind of thinking is how I landed this voiceover audition and others in the past. It probably doesn’t hurt that I have a great voice too.
Listen To The Voiceover Audition That Got Me The Job Below —–>>>