Another day in voiceover, another obstacle: roofers.
Let’s back up to last month when a middle-of-the-night thunderstorm blew through my town. I woke up to what sounded like the loudest rain I’ve ever heard. But it was hail. A previous thunderstorm had knocked down one of our trees onto our neighbor’s boat, and my wife and I wondered what kind of damage this storm would cause. The neighbor’s boat was fine, by the way, it just needed a tree removed. This hailstorm sounded bad. It sounded like an airplane had dumped a cargo load of marbles on our roof in the middle of a thunderstorm. When we woke up the next morning, all our trees were still standing and the hail had melted. By the next day, the “storm chasers” were canvasing our neighborhood in an effort to capitalize on insurance settlements and replace everyone's roof. An insurance adjuster and our contractor agreed: we had roof damage due to hail.
As a voiceover talent, I’m sensitive to any noise that can bleed into my recording. When you’re paying for a voiceover, you probably don’t want the sound of scraping shingles and hammering in your recording. Unless it's a construction-related piece, and then you probably want to add those sounds in after the voiceover recording is done. Besides, I don’t often book for construction-related voiceover projects because I don’t sound like a gritty construction worker. I do sound, maybe, like the architect who makes the plans for the construction workers.
The roofers started yesterday morning…which meant that I had to rearrange my schedule to be sure my clients got their recordings in a timely fashion. Any recording would have to wait until the evening, unless it could wait until today. I was waiting for one script in particular. I’m not a night person, but I’ll record in the evening, as the project demands. My wife likes to say I “turn into a pumpkin” at 10pm. It’s true, I'm useless in the evening. I wake up early, and go to bed early. Recording a script at 5:30 am might wake up the rest of my family though, so I use that as my quiet time. Just this past week, I recorded a health plan open enrollment script in the evening while my family watched “Toy Story 4.” Since most companies do open enrollment for their health plans in November, it’s critical that these scripts get turned around so that the production company can get the video to the client. I told my family I could watch the movie another time, but my seven-year-old insists I have to watch it with her so she can help me through the scary parts. She's thoughtful like that.
The roofers finished in one day, so it was only a minor obstacle. However, every roof in my neighborhood will likely be replaced either this fall or next spring once the "storm chasers" line up their schedules.…so I guess I’ll need to clear my evenings, unless my clients want the sound of hammering in their recording.