Monthly Archives: July 2012

Tool Box Tips: Controlling Mouth Sounds

Well, lately I’ve had an issue with mouth sounds. It’s been a little troubling. There are causes: eating too much sugar and not rehydrating among others.

Voice actors have to edit mouth sounds and this can be time-consuming. I’ve read from other posts what other voice actors do to prevent mouth sounds:

  • Drink luke warm water
  • Snack on a green tart apple
  • Drink cranberry juice (luke warm is best)
  • Practice mouth exercises via Paolo Balestri from Bologna, Italy in one of my LinkedIn VO Groups. See below:

“…And, last but not least, you have to exercise yourself in articulations:
is a gym, but as you practice, you can practice to properly hold his tongue and cheeks to use the best.
klee klee klee …
Glee glee glee …
sDA (with A as Amore)
and others, almost one minute for each one.
During the exercise, you can ear if you are making noises or not and you can exercise yourself to avoid….” 

I’ve read other fixes like drink apple juice and drink water with a little olive oil in it. (hmm) I’ve seen the bottle Propolis Throat Spray as well used for sore throats that has vitamins in it.

I’ve personally used the four items above and that helped tremendously. Try the other options as well to test. It may work for some and not for others.

Let’s control mouth sounds.


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Posted by on July 20, 2012 in Voice Overs


The Best Vacation Ever

Yeah, I can say this for a fact. I’ve spent a lot of money in my lifetime. We all have but I’ve done some damage. Expenses went to paying for college at NYU, traveling overseas, a home, instruments, voice over expenses with a new business, etc. I’ve spent a lot of money over the years. Yet, the best expense was staying at home, saving my money and my sanity.

This has been “The Best Vacation Ever” by staying at home and working from home. I’ve learned more about me than I dreamt possible. Yeah, I worked on Saturdays as a drama teacher (for one hour) but I essentially worked from home. It was hard. I’ve done some major improvements and still have more to do. I’ve practiced on my voice over reads, worked on the acoustics in my recording studio/office. Worked on an acting scene with my partner at the union conservatory, went to some choral workshops, exercised but I mostly stayed home and worked on me: What works, work doesn’t work. Worked on being a full-time voice over actor for once. It was hard because I got the cold hard truth many times and it’s humbling several times. I’ve sought improvements from the Edge Studio, Pay to Play Sites, and EWABS, and I’ve made adjustments accordingly. It’s tough as an entrepreneur to hear what YOU need work on, and it was true. Money can’t make you into a better talent, only you can. Money can help but only you can improve your skills, acoustics, knowledge, and experience by DOING it! Practicing is best: not just practice but perfect practice.

Today, I have a Nancy Wolfson webinar. It will be hard to hear. She tells it like it is. God bless her. As a younger kid, I would have cussed her out (in private mostly) since my youth was to react to folks in that way. Yeah, she’s tough but I want to hear what she has to say. Most people don’t want to hear the hot or cold truth so they don’t improve. Stubbornness doesn’t improve your skills just keeps you stuck turning your wheels.

It was a tough summer also since I had many repairs that cost me upwards of 4K. That was hard. Hell, life is hard many times.

I’ve started reading my Biblical devotions again. It’s nice to enjoy a cup of joe and read silently in the early mornings on your back patio. Sounds like heaven? It was. Hence, this summer was The Best Vacation Ever: Discovering, Growing, Learning and Enjoying the Simple Pleasures in Life.


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Posted by on July 18, 2012 in Uncategorized


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Family Memories: Caretaker Roles

From time to time, I will write about my family memories. This has nothing to do with voice overs but includes the “me” in GVOS and Me. Sometimes, a reflection heals the soul and I don’t mind sharing from time to time.

My grandmother, Eunice “Shug” Geter’s visitation was today with my parents. Grandma is 95 year’s young. Although, she is so ready to go most days that we don’t always as the younger generation (I’m talking 72 and under with my parents and myself without some of those aches and pains) don’t see it that way. Grandma has a good mind and mentions without hesitation what the workers do and what they don’t do. Food with the older generation (mind you that grandma was highlighted for her cooking in Better Homes and Gardens in 1973) constantly is an irritation. Each sentence was punctuated with the phrase, “…and I left it on the plate.” A person can’t help but to laugh, however, it’s truly not a funny matter. Grandma could always get under dad’s skin. Saw some tough arguments on occasion with them that made me glance a second look but there was always love (of course). Dad helped his mom with everything while my mom would aid as best she could. Both my parents took on family: my uncle when he underwent surgery for prostate cancer: my great-aunt Aunt Jessie when diagnosed with dementia; and my grandmother when my Uncle wasn’t able to help due to health issues. My aunt (her step-mother) didn’t share a good relationship.

Family dynamics are interesting. My parents are care givers. I will help my parents although this gene wasn’t really found in my DNA but I will be there for them.

For me, this is an interesting topic. I didn’t mean to write this particular topic, but others will follow from time to time. This is a snapshot of family memories of my parents in a caretaker role.

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Posted by on July 15, 2012 in Family, Recipes/Exercise


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SAG-AFTRA Talent in a RTW State

SAG-AFTRA Talent in a RTW State


Let’s get to the heart of the matter! The SAG-AFTRA Atlanta Branch worked with me amazingly well before, during, and after the merger. I was able to visit the office and get the low-down on how to break down the contracts and negotiate a pay directly with clients as easily and simply as possible.

I must say that the union has been outstanding in support of its actors. The Muriel Moore/Danny Nelson SAG AFTRA Conservatory in Atlanta, GA has been awesome. Bi-weekly contributors have included casting directors Alpha Tyler, George Pierre, and Shay Bentley- Griffin. Actor Clayton Landey facilitated a scene-study workshop that I worked in. There was also a monologue workshop with Della Cole from yourACT studios.

For better quality standards as a union actor, I have improved the acoustics in my recording studio/office with help at East West Coast Audio Body Shop; considering different VO coaches from VOICE 2010 & 2012; updated my marketing skills; attended webinars called The Great Debate (union vs. non-union memberships pros and cons) via VoiceOverXtra; and focused my energies bringing non-union clients to hire union (myself) while speaking personally to future clients via my DeKalb Chamber of Commerce and Georgia Chamber of Commerce luncheons in my area.

This is hard work. Exactly. If I was booking consistently early in my career as non-union, I will have to refocus and energize marketing and improving consistently as a union talent as well!

The learning curve was steep, but I’ve adjusted well considering the late March merger and re-learning contract negotiations as a union talent. Every talent has to make this decision. I made mine pretty early although I had acted for years. As a VO talent, it was decided early in my career. If I had decided to stay non-union and gain a respectable non-union client base which I was forming at the time, I would have lost those clients if they were not willing to hire VO union actors for their projects.

I remembered what Deborah Richards told me from Creative Studios in Atlanta. You have to decide if you want to be union or non-union early in your career if building a recurring and consistent client base.

Do I remain available as an on-camera actor? You betcha! I’m still honing my skills in drama and singing going back to private coaching, although as an arts educator, I’m limited to projects on weekends and during the summertime. I still continue to teach at the Alliance Theatre on weekends. I’m also considering offering my services as a union session singer in the studios if needed. Work also includes classes in choral conducting with the American Choral Directors Association – ACDA, since I work in choral programs as well. I will attend the national ACDA convention in Dallas, TX in 2013.

Well, the journey continues. It’s been a tough journey, a humbling journey, but a wise journey. I’ve lived in Atlanta, GA since 1988 and will consider the East Coast market as a residence in New York City as well. I prefer Los Angeles, CA; however, my parents are on the East Coast and I need to fly quickly and talk via EST with them.

Do I have regrets? None. Nothing was ever handed to me on a silver platter. Coaches, teachers, actors warned me about this career, and I’m fine with it. However, my work in music, drama, and VO talent / business person remains my focus. I’m not considering other skill sets. This is it! It’s the only career that I know as well. Fortunately, I’ve supported myself solely as an artist / arts educator all of my life.

Education never stops so that I can improve my work and do excellent service with my clients and my students. It’s a new chapter that continues the journey. So, I’m proud to have joined the SAG-AFTRA union and support it.

I would do these jobs for free, but I can’t since I’m in the union. lol

If you are a client reading this blog, please consider paying talent health and retirement benefits along with the regular service quote. Union actors guarantee their work, we’re fast, accurate, and “reasonably priced” and receive first class VIP service with your personal project! Consider hiring union before going non-union. We care about quality and your economic bottom line as well!

Whether union or non-union. Make a wise decision as a talent and don’t look back!


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Posted by on July 9, 2012 in Voice Overs