I solicited some advice via Twitter a few days back on what radio producers look for when it comes to audio file types and the like. Conn O’Muineacháin of Edgecast media was kind enough to spend about ten minutes chatting to me on the phone about the radio milieu and was hugely helpful, and complimentary. Benjamin Chesterton of Duckrabbit was another.
I’ve mentioned the Duckrabbit crowd before. They do some great value multimedia training and produce some lovely material. Largely thanks to them, and other similar groups I’ve found through them, I’m really digging audio slideshows and video at the moment. Check out, for example, Slowcoast, and go meet Hans the Cyclist.
Benjamin sent three emphatic tweets about radio production (The most emphatic saying: NEVER MP3 .. NEVER EVER EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!”) This one made the most immediate difference to my own output so far.
I’ll be doing a lot more of this stuff, and what’s clear is that while the photos have to be good, the audio just has to be crisp and clear. I’m not gonna go into detail about the ins and outs of this recording below, but I love how the full richness of my grandfather’s voice comes across. It takes over the whole thing. (I recorded it in .wav, Benjamin)
I’ve been putting together more and more podcasts recently, and I’ve found inspiration for that from the RadioLab podcasts from New York’s WNYC. Theirs are without compare the most exquisitely edited podcasts and radio documentaries out there. If you haven’t listened to them, seek them out on iTunes. After that, if you want to know a little more about how they layer up their podcasts, look in particular for one entitled ‘Making the Hippo Dance‘. It’s awesome.
In the video below, I sought out some nice ambient noise to warm things up. My first love is pictures and so audio slideshows rather than plain audio will always make more sense to me. And although I tried hard with pictures, Granda’s voice just takes this over. I blame Benjamin.
In total I spent an hour with Granda, nothing more. When I arrived, he was half an hour from finishing up in the garden, so I had to be quick with the camera. I’d been up in his house a while back and seen the light in his potting shed when the idea struck me to put this together. Granda’s Garden is his sanctuary. It’s what keeps him looking about ten years younger than he is. His lawn is like a thick, rich carpet. When you walk on it you want to just kick off your shoes and feel the satiny green scuff between your toes.
So here it is, anyway, Granda’s Garden. Enjoy.