One Night in Charlotte

Saturday night my band, Folk n’ Stages (which consists of Jeremy Folk, my cousin Bob Stage and me…thus “Folk n’ Stages”) played at Markham’s Saloon in Charlotte, IA.

The bar has only been open a few months…so, it’s got that new bar smell…but man, it’s a great little place!  It’s an old time saloon, complete with swinging doors and guns for toilet paper holders…which I assume is period accurate.
IMG_3606

And the food!  I was afraid my drummer would be in a food coma before we played, but we made it through!

I invented a new drinking game, that I hope catches on at Markham’s.  The bathrooms are barn doors.  So they don’t swing…they slide!  Being on stage is great when you’re a people watcher like me…so every time someone would use the restroom…they would pull on the door and be confused until someone yelled “Don’t Pull…Slide!”.

Drink!

Our buddy John Doyle & his wife Jenny who both play in Barncore Betty (great band!) came out & John put together this little wrap up video of the night!

 

 

Cropduster Buzzes “Stage Tower”

The family & I were rockin in the garage this weekend.  My wife & I were painting some boards for our porch wall and the kids were riding bikes & begging the adults to stop being so boring.

We had the music cranked, so we weren’t anticipating what came next.  A cropduster buzzed our garage!  I literally ducked as if that was going to help at all if we really were getting a new roof ornament.

I don’t know what it takes to become a crop dusting airplane pilot…but I know I don’t have it.  These guys have some incredible skill to be going up & over wires….the near misses of the houses & barns have to make the blood pressure skyrocket.

No VO was getting done whether I wanted to or not, but we appreciated the show!

Cropduster

Cropduster

Cropduster

 

My Cousin, The Meme

In 2014 my Aunt posted a picture of a bunch of my cousins from 25 years ago or so. The normal “awe look at how cute they were” comments were made.  But the stand out was my cousin Jenna, who we know to be a smiley, funny, lovely soul…seemed to be having a bad day.

 

So of course I went right to work adding “grumpy cat” sayings to her picture.

and my personal favorite….

Then more people jumped in…

The very simple but effective…

Even a comparison shot…

But somehow…she never turned into a famous meme.

So I thought I’d try again with VO related meme’s

Feel free to take the original & make one yourself to post in whatever comment thread you’re currently arguing on.

voice over studio

Bill Stage Interviews VO gal, Amy Jeffries

Ever since college, I’ve known the name “Amy Jefferies”.  She was in a broadcasting program I was in at AIC…a small college that’s since changed names…but Amy graduated a year earlier.  And we all held her in high regard because she got a job on the radio. She was doing exactly what we wanted to do.  She was a legend!

Amy Jeffries has been an incredible wealth of knowledge ever since I started…really, since before I actually started doing VO.

http://amyjeffries.com/
amy@amyjeffries.com

 

Bill’s Browser History

 

bills-browsing-history-log

Every so often I take a look in my browser history to see if I missed anything important.  Could be an interesting story that I can pass on to friends or a marketing idea that I’d like to implement in my business.

Sometimes, I just make a video and narrate some interesting pages I’ve visited recently. Read more

Old School Equipment

BS/VO

BS/VO

Do you have any old school equipment in your studio or at home? A reel to reel, cassette player, record player?  Or have you evicted all your analog?

Those poor tapes….

It’s super rare…only has happened twice in the last 10 years, that someone has come to me with a reel. Their facial expression clearly anticipating a negative answer, but transformed to shear joy when an affirmative answer arises!

My wife’s friends know I dabble in the realm of audiophiles & brought me a cassette with her grandmother talking into it. She had recently past away and it clearly meant a great deal to her that I was able to transfer the audio to a CD.

That being said, I’m happy I have my digital set up.  I can just “roll tape”, as they say, and let my kids riff. Every once in a while we get a gem, like this incoherent babbling I edited into a lemonade stand commercial.

We’ll call this…my son’s first voice over gig:

Coca Cola Rebranding

I am very proud to have been chosen to be a voice over for Coca Cola’s new “One Brand” unification strategy in Mexico City.

In the 80’s, starting with Diet Coke, they opted to market each individual flavor as it’s own brand with it’s own logo. But now, they will all share a similar look and be proud to be apart of the Coca Cola ‘family’.

That similar look?  The red disc.  It’s been quietly a part of Coca Cola’s marketing since the 30’s, but you probably haven’t even noticed it.

Coca-Cola

Now…along with that red disc, they’ll have 4 distinct brands.  Coca-Cola, Diet Coke, Coke Zero & Coke Life (which is lower calorie & sweetened with Stevia)

coca-cola-4-bottles-logo

 

 

DIY Studiohacks

When I first started doing voice overs, I would study every blog, every YouTube video and listen to every so & so who had something to say.  The general consensus was that closets were the best studio to start out in due to the small area in which to treat…and the treatment (clothes) were already in place. Read more

E-Learning Demo

libraries

 

Much of my work comes in the form of e-learning.  I can tell you all about common core.  I can teach you how to run the new Papa John’s point of sale system. I can walk you through your utility company’s new website.

As long as I have the script in front of me, anyway.

I don’t claim to know everything, but with the right words in front of me…I can make it sound like I do!

Whether it’s a whiteboard animation, a powerpoint lecture or a simple “how-to”, let me add clarity to your message.

 

      1. BillStageElearningDemo
Voice Over Paper Craft

That One Time I Made Myself Into A Paper Doll

Voice Over Paper Craft

Voice Over Paper Craft

Marketing is something I’ve struggled with as a business owner.  I think we’ve all wondered what we could do differently to increase sales and stay “top of mind” when it comes to our clients.

Not all of us are as dorky as I.

Cold calling?  I’m no stranger to calling strangers.

Postcards?  Sure.  I’ve sent out my fair share of postcards.

Emails?  Yes.  It’s possible you’ve gotten an email from me.

Paper doll cut out of me, some equipment & different hair styles? Perhaps.  Actually,  that is a distinct possibility.

You may think I’d be embarrassed about this fact, and you may be right…but the fact remains, I am trying! You got that right!  I am trying my damnedest to get in front of past and potential clients with the hopes that they find me talented/charming enough to work with.

Please feel free to download your very own Bill Stage Voice Over Paper Craft and post a picture of the results in the comments below.