Well, it looks like I’ve made it to the beginning of the end of my Bachelor of Communications (Media) degree. This is the home-stretch. I felt an overwhelming nostalgia (even though it’s only been under three years that we started) entering the seminar theatre we’d spent a lot of Media 1 in. There were several familiar faces, very few I didn’t recognise or hadn’t interacted with. It was a good feeling to see all of us all together again, rearing up to get that damn $19,917.84 piece of paper framed. Oh, boy. Bet your bottom-dollar I’ll be putting the precious parchment on my wall and replicating it for the entirety of my family to put on theirs too. As a central feature for their homes. Jokes aside, I’m absolutely stoked to have pushed through this far, whilst juggling several jobs, deaths in the family, interning and living in a sharehouse. I reckon I need to pat myself on the back. Because, go me! Go all of us! We’ve done well.
During the hour-long mini lecture, we were introducted to the course outline for the semester. There are two major assignments called Future You (40%) and Future Media (60%). Future You is an individual task regarding each student’s personal direction into the field of media. Future Media will be a group task, where we have to collaboratively create a media object and present it to some head honcho media mavericks! Scary, but I’m excited. I also don’t have any ideas yet. But I’m sure they will reveal themselves during the planning process and lead up.
Last semester was really stressful for me, for a multitude of reasons. But I have a really good feeling about this semester. Aside the more personal aspects which led me into an absolute state last semester, a lot of my stress was from me not being sure which direction I’m headed in after this degree. I considered the idea of doing Honours, but then I realised I need a break. The thought of it alone made me stressed. I convinced myself I needed to do it. But I don’t need to do it, not right away at least. Maybe not at all. No one’s forcing me to AND it’s an ungodly amount of money. I mean, is it really worth it? I want to break-free from the racket of the tertiary education system and do stuff for me. I don’t want to rely on my family for financial support. I want to do my own thing and be even more independent than I already am. I want to work on projects with friends and creatives. I want to explore. If it comes to it, I don’t even mind working several hours in a retail job that isn’t relative to my degree – because there’s no point beating myself up about not being where I invision myself because there’s still so much time in life to find something. It will present itself and I will remain diligent, but I have to learn to give myself a break. Because it’s something I’ve only recently been able to recognise after often pushing myself at uni in to an extremely anxious state because I convince myself I won’t do well in the work I complete for my classes. I’m just ready to get some things in my life, in order and then go from there. I need to save money. I want to fix my sweet little surface-rusted navy blue 1998 manual Toyota Starlet with no power steering, that’s been sitting in my driveway for about 2 years, untouched… (now with a battery that needs a jump-start as well). I took photos of the blue jean baby preparing to sell it. But I just don’t have the heart to do it. Most of all though, I want to travel! I haven’t been anywhere asides New Zealand and Australia. Oh, and more recently, Fiji with some of the family… So, it’s time to start getting serious about that.
In our tutorial which followed the lecture, every student had to tell the class where they see themselves in 5 years time. Last semester that question would have panicked me beyond belief. Now, it was fine. I didn’t feel like I needed to prove to anyone that I had a straight-and-narrow plan. I’m currently interning at Encapto WiFi and learning more tech-based information which I never imagined myself doing, it’s been super interesting so far. I’m working at Scavengers secondhand store which I love, I’m managing their social media too. It’s a small business, but I really enjoy having the ability to improve their business by doing something which even mildly incorporates my degree-learnt (possibly also generation-learnt, more generally) skills. So, I told the class that I want to continue my relationship with secondhand store retail and build on that social media aspect as well. I also am able to utilise their stock for photo and video shoots which is a really wonderful opportunity to help them but also myself. I am feeling positive about how things are going at the moment.
As it’s all about the future of us here in Media 6, I think that’s really reassured me too. It’s helping us develop and apply ourselves into the media workplace. It will make us build a portfolio and prepare us for the real world (really had to suppress the pun-mindframe in me from writing ‘reel world’ just then. Sue me).
Our radio feature assessment has been a fun experience. It was definitely a bit of a stressing process, as we had the second live show on Monday the 22nd. A lot of us were sick for the duration we spent working on the piece, or had dramas occurring in our personal lives. It was not ideal, but we’ve soldiered on together. Everyone still put in effort where necessary, despite the circumstances. The majority of us were good at communicating with one another constantly – which is so important in group work. I cannot stress that enough. As a result of persistent Facebook messaging and updates, we were understanding of each other’s situations too.
So, we looked at YouTube as a platform and its utility in society, it ended up being a particular focus on the use of YouTube among millenials. Where it has been a place for youths to grow and express their creative ideas. At first after we decided on our topic of YouTube involvement more generally, I was kind of concerned about the angle we were going for. Once the editing began, things started coming together and there were clear common themes among the content from the subjects involved. This was a relief. I also found that there was just the right amount of contrast in opinions. For example, Beth, assures the audience that Facebook as a vehicle for connectivity to her audience, was the least favoured mode of choice. Whereas both Robbie and Andrew explained it was the best. This was interesting as the content which Beth creates is experimental and Robbie and Andrew’s work is comedic. Perhaps connoting the differing communities which can be found among certain social media platforms.
Dr. Ben Byrne
I contacted Ben asking for his aid by participating in our radio feature. He was keen, organised, a great speaker and well versed in the area we were discussing. I had him as a tutor in first year of my degree and remembered creating video blogs as an assessment task in Popular Culture in Everyday Life. This lead me to deem him as someone with knowledge of our topic. Surely enough, he was able to speak about it all rather eloquently. Not to mention, Sammy and I spoke with him in the recording studio for almost an hour! I feel he was a perfect subject for our feature.
I suggested we study some of his applicable articles to understand and explore the areas which Ben could share insight into. I found this was really helpful, and I made sure the group knew that I found it important they read some of his work to get a good grasp on what he’s studied and how we could utilise this knowledge. As of course, this would (and did) help inform the curation of questions.
Compiling questions for Ben was initially slightly daunting as I was freaking out a little, thinking to myself “oh no… we’re going to be talking to AN ACADEMIC WITH A DOCTORATE, WE’VE GOTTA SOUND WELL-READ!!!” In the end we were well prepared due to my ability to freak out and push myself into over preparation…
We got some really good audio clips from our extensive conversation with Ben. The teaming of his introduction saying he’s a lecturer and following with Helena and Pippa (Leftovers, Andrew spoke on behalf – he’s also involved) in a clip from the show where they discuss that they’re “…going to go to all classes this semester…” was really clever.
Robbie Nicol from White Man Behind A Desk
Robbie is an acquaintance of mine from when I lived in Wellington, NZ. He started White Man Behind A Desk with Sally and Elsie Bollinger in the time I have been living in Melbourne – so I’d never spoken to him about it directly. I had only seen his online performances online through my friends linking the team’s content to their Facebook pages.
Organising to record this one was a challenge. I initially arranged to speak with him on a Monday after our class, but something came up and he wasn’t available. So we rescheduled for the Tuesday. I got into a phone studio at RMIT… at 8:30am. Only to find that RMIT doesn’t allow international calls (surely the $21,000 degree I’m completing could cover a half hour call to New Zealand?! Ridiculous). This threw a spanner in the works and I had no money to get a calling card and I had a class to attend soon after. In the end, I had to send Robbie a list of proposed questions for him to answer. It was a shame, because I was looking forward to talking to him about it, and thought it would sound much less personable if it were one sided. I told him it would be fine for him to use his iPhone as a recording device. It was going to be on a phone line anyway, after all. I think this added texture to the piece, he also states he’s in New Zealand in the feature so our audience can piece together that it wouldn’t have been able to be super high quality. Despite my concern that the answers would not seem conversational, he did an awesome job of making it sound seamless. He also has a very distinctive voice so it was really great aid in creating variety within the feature.
Their show has transcended from the realms of purely YouTube, and managed to gain a place on the stage at Bats Theatre in Wellington as a live performance!
Beth Morrison of Beth BLVD
Beth was amazing to use because her content is so different to Robbie and Andrew’s work. It’s more experimental video. This was great because it made the piece more inclusive and recognised differing audiences. Her videos are beautiful and she was such an awesome speaker as well, and had some insightful words to say about YouTube as a platform. She was a very vital role in the piece!
Andrew Mills from Leftovers
I was very stoked that our group managed to nab some time from a person involved in Leftovers because I LOVE the web series. They’re such hilarious people. It’s fantastic. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to attend this interview as I had a class. But, Olivia and Rose interviewed him at Triple R after our second live show. He definitely had some interesting input to the interconnectivity of Facebook and YouTube; that posting videos to Facebook gained more traffic opposed to YouTube links. Whereas, Beth said she wasn’t into Facebook posting for videos because the community isn’t the same. The juxtaposition made an interesting remark on the nature of content and their audiences, and which platforms they come to, to share thoughts.
I had this grand idea that we would have vox pops and people would actually do them… but they didn’t. I wanted the content to be varied in accents etc. because YouTube is used in so many different countries and it would have made it more inclusive. This meant sending out questions to people (as they were in other countries) and them sending us the audio file… but no one got back to me with the answers after saying they would…
But, we didn’t have space for them anyway! So it was fine.
YOUTUBE VIDEO AUDIO GRABS
Initially I had suggested that we use an audio grab from the first ever video uploaded to YouTube (below) on April 23rd of 2005. I felt this would be a warmly nostalgic clip to include as the initial introduction to our feature. Whether people recognise the video audio or not was an issue however – Olivia decided on taking it out as she knew not many people would recognise it. I think it was wise to take out as it may have seemed a little random.
The video audio grabs we ended up going with were far more recognisable for your average YouTube surfer!
THE FINAL PRODUCT
THE FINAL PRODUCT
Although I’d have liked a more equal balance of women to men, I am so pleased with the variety as it is. Both in terms of (relatively) diverse video content genre, the subjects and their differing involvement with YouTube and their contrasting vocal tones. Overall, I thought we did an awesome job on the piece and put heaps of hard work into it. I stand by expressing that we work really well as a team.
Starring Robbie Nicol, Beth Morrison, Andrew Mills and Ben Byrne Narrated by Olivia McDonald Edited by Olivia McDonald, Dusty Johnston, Jenna Angouragas and Sammy Beniac-Brooks
Questions compiled by
Olivia McDonald, Dusty Johnston, Rose Zwagerman and Sammy Beniac-Brooks
Interviews conducted by
Olivia McDonald, Dusty Johnston, Rose Zwagerman and Sammy Beniac-Brooks
Holy moly, we’ve got to make a radio feature. Also, we’re going to air for a second time on the 22nd of May! Well, Olivia and Rose are hosting this time round. JJ will be panel operating. Sammy will control the social media feeds and I shall be producing. This time it’s not assessed, but it’s going to be pretty stressful for us to juggle that with the feature coming up. But, we’re a fan-bloody-tastic team, so we will get through it.
For our radio feature piece, we had been deliberating together over Facebook chat since just after the submission of our individual interview assessment. We roughly outlined our topic, aims and possible interviewees to present to the class on Monday of this week. You can see that initial outline by clicking here ———. We’ve decided on looking at YouTube’s utility for creative output. I thought it would be good if we involved an academic who’s studied film / digital media and/or cultural media. I initially thought Rohan Spong would be a good option as he is a filmmaker and very charismatic. But, turns out he is off filming somewhere far far away and isn’t teaching at RMIT this year! Ben Byrne is my next choice as I remembered being in an introductory Pop Culture class in my first year where he was my tutor and we made video blogs as part of an assessment. I have a few contacts who make content for YouTube channels, so I’ve been curating a list and getting feelers out.
I’ve sent out a bunch of emails and messages. Hopefully they’re all interested!
Interview with James Shaw: Lemons Ceramics A Reflection
For my individual interview, I decided on speaking to a person I know who is a ceramicist. His name is James Shaw.
You can view the pdf document which details a little of his background information in ceramics and a basic script outline I conjured up for the entire interview, by clicking here.
I thought the interview went well, I was still nervous though, purely because I get anxious about any kind of presentation at all. I tried really hard to not respond vocally, with colloquial language. But, still caught myself doing it. I feel it’s so unnatural and almost feels rude for me not to respond verbally. I was trading vocal responses for gestural ones more so than usual but probably not enough still. I suppose that the beauty of this being a pre-recorded interview is that I was able to edit some of this responsiveness out of the recording. I feel I am generally, an erratic speaker when talking to people. All the thoughts pile out at once and I struggle to articulate anything properly because of it. In turn, I have a lot of trouble listening over my voice and editing clips because of that. It makes me feel like I slip into sounding unintelligible. However, I do try to remain aware of this and fix the habit as I speak. I suppose I have been working on my “radio voice.” I feel I did a good job of following on from James’ answers, giving my input and tying these topics into the next questions I decided I wanted to ask. I make sure to make an effort to engage with the subjects and not rush into other questions too fast, so I don’t sound dismissive. I feel I have always made sure to do extensive research on my subjects for this class, so I don’t run out of relevant information to discuss.
Technically, the interview went smoothly. There was some background noise (probably not actually as noticeable as I think), but that was due to people being really loud in the Greenroom – unfortunate. Other than that, I thought the sound levels were really good. They came up equal and the audio didn’t clip during the recording. I made sure to get the microphone levels right before I recorded any audio.
As I hadn’t done any panel work before and had only seen the basics at the very beginning of this studio, I had no idea how to switch the headphones to hear the studio audio rather than what was playing on Triple R. Luckily I managed to find someone who had just finished up her show and was still in the building. It was a very simple fix, so I felt silly. But I genuinely could not remember which buttons to trigger. I will need to get some practice in before operating the panel (if there comes a chance) for any other shows we do.
I saved the WAV file of my interview which at first didn’t play on my laptop, so I had to delete a miscellaneous blank audio line section from Audacity and export it again. It worked after I did that, thank goodness. After the Lucky Threes (lack of) luck with our audio which we have had, I made sure to triple check it exported properly and that it worked on my laptop – this actually proved to be really stressful as well because there were a group of people coming into the studio directly at 3pm after my booking to go live to air. I was mucking around with my audio-to-hard-drive situation from 2:50pm and narrowly avoided chewing into their air time.
In regard to the edit, I did have to cut back quite a bit of it, as it ended at 25 mins. I just made sure to ask more questions than 7-10 min worth to make sure I definitely had enough content. I probably could have cut this interview down a bit more, as it was a little waffly at times. I had already cut out quite a lot of the content which trailed off a little, as James is quite an explosive talker I would say – a bit like me, everything sort of comes out at once sometimes. As much as there is a natural feel to the piece, it probably could have been chopped a little more to take out a few of the less important moments. I also did try to find some kind of music to incorporate… but I couldn’t seem to find anything which worked with the interview theme.
Here is the final of the interview, with accompanying annotations:
Ever since we have discussed the assessment of the individual interview, I have not been able to come up with an idea of who to speak with. I’m not really sure why I can’t think of someone at the moment, it’s as if my mind has totally blanked. I think perhaps I have a thought of someone come to my head and then I start thinking that it might not be that interesting, or it may not be the right kind of content for Triple R. I don’t think it necessarily has to be worthy of going live on Triple R, as it may not actually get to go to air anyway. I would like to speak with someone who I find really interesting and they’re doing something I will engage well with and mainly, enjoy doing the research for it. I’ve also been finding it difficult because Bruce has always said to stay away from people you already know for the interviews we have been conducting in class, but that’s frustrating because I do know that I can have an adult conversation with a friend about their topic of discussion / cause and I have several friends who do really awesome things! I suppose it’s supposed to be approached more broadly, where the idea of an interview comes first and then a person involved is contacted. I know we’re meant to take this approach for all interviews in this class, but with the time constraints for assessments it’s kind of necessary to pick reliable subjects, who you can get in touch with and will be willing in the time frame. I understand the fact that the idea is paramount, but it also needs to be doable. Otherwise, you could end up pitching 5 really great interview ideas to Elizabeth, have them all accepted and then not be able to find anyone involved in the proposed idea who is willing to participate. It’s just a world of stress no one needs when juggling their uni/work/life schedule. Particularly in our case, as we were airing first, we needed reliable sources! But,
PS. We were lucky because Elizabeth accepted all of our interview ideas and we scraped the barrel with only having two of the five willing! Two interviews was our minimum for live interview content! These two were also people that Olivia and I (separately) knew vaguely, but well enough to get them on board.
Hosted by Sammy and Dusty
Panel operation by Rose
Produced by Olivia
Social media run by JJ
On today’s gloomy, rainy Monday morning our group met at Triple R at 10am to prepare for our first live to air show. Naturally, I had uncontrollable nerves in the lead up to airing. I was also very shaky and beaming with signs of anxiousness at the beginning of the show, but it soon settled and I was far more relaxed as the show progressed. JJ was manning the social media deck, live Tweeting our each and every move. Pictures of Sammy and I with our behind the scenes team and with our guests were shooting into cyberspace left right and centre over the hour. Everything was appropriately communicated and organised within our team, and for that I am extremely grateful. I felt we worked so well in our little radio show cohort.
THE WARM UP
Sammy and I ran through our script outline / running sheet in both the greenroom and in studio one with Rose practicing her panel operation, in the lead up to our 12pm takeoff. This was really helpful for us, as it made Sammy and I work together to adopt a natural flow with this new content, and to smooth out anything that we hadn’t realised didn’t quite fit with our dialogue or content.
As mentioned, initially, I was pretty nervous. I was really trying to calm my voice in the first part where I spoke. I was focusing quite a lot on taming them, because I knew the nerves were so unnecessary. As we finished up our introduction, Fortunes.‘ song Focus arrived. At this stage, I felt a huge weight off my shoulders, the beginning was over. I managed to relax a little after that, I think this is where my body realised that ‘actually, it’s not so bad after all, Dusty!’ The beauty of having these moments during a song to speak with your radio team, is that you can all reassure each other that everything was and is going to be totally fine. Because, we all managed to nail our roles thus far – even if it was only a few minutes in. Asides the comfort we gained in finishing up on the introduction and spreading kind words, I also found that the Lucky Threes live show was definitely sounding better than the (all three) demo introduction(s) already. I suppose this is mainly because we actually had interesting content to speak about for the real show and we were all much more comfortable in our roles.
LIVE INTERVIEW CONTENT
What made our show interesting was primarily, its diverse interview content (along with music choice). We looked at climate change, medieval role play and the conservation of birdlife. Issues around climate change effect everyone and the basic ideas around it are understood by a lot of our population, the other two were more community-based or niche subjects of discussion but were interesting as a result. It seems we had a good mix of spreading both social awareness and entertainment in our show.
CEO and founder of the Less Meat Less Heat initiative
I thought that this interview went really well as Mark was articulate and easy to speak with. Sammy and I had managed to split the speaking time between us fairly evenly which is not absolutely necessary, but I feel that it definitely sounds better as a listener if there is some ping-ponging between hosts. To be textural, seems to give a better chance of engaging with the consumer. As I was getting into the discussion, possibly I broke a little in accidentally talking over either Sammy or Mark. It’s quite hard to stop yourself from being conversational and adding your thoughts into someone else’s thread of discourse (particularly when you’re the one at the receiving end with the feeding of information). I thought that both Sammy and I were getting really into the discussion, which was good as we would have sounded genuinely engaged to the listeners. I made sure than both Sammy and I downloaded his Climatarian Challenge app about 5 days or so before we went live, to monitor how much meat we consumed. This was so that we were able to discuss the app (a major element to the Less Meat Less Heat initiative) with appropriate knowledge of its inner-workings. I also made sure to read up on him as well as watching his TEDxStKilda talk video on YouTube (above). Both Sammy and I had done quite a bit of research and were interested in the cause, which meant the interview did go a little too long as a result (however, this was lucky due to our technical trouble which occurred later in the show). We had so many questions which we had planned to ask. Perhaps it would have been a good idea to have less questions written down in our outline, we had definitely over prepared in order to reassure ourselves we wouldn’t run out of points of discussion while live to air. However, definitely better than not having enough main topics. Because it did turn out to be so natural (and we weren’t sure what the “vibe” would be) it meant that we filled a lot of the time with conversation which stemmed from these questions, leaving us with a few quality excess questions which we didn’t manage to get to.
Member of Swordcraft, Melbourne
This was definitely my favourite interview of the two. I feel that was evident in how much I communicated during the segment too. Possibly more of the questions were coming from me because I was so interested and had done quite a lot of research on the concept of live action role play. It was not just because I had picked this interview topic either. Once the show was over, Sammy had mentioned I lead that interview more so and I agreed. We both thought it was okay that it had happened this way though, because Sammy’s pre-recorded interview was involved in our show as well.
I was initially quite unsure how this interview would go due to not having close ties with the selected interviewee. I had only recently met Oliver, and it was only through one encounter where we were sitting next to each other in the same lecture theatre earlier in this semester. All worries of the interview’s potentiality to fail, had flown out the window as soon as the interview began. Oliver was a really engaging subject and so passionate about Swordcraft and medieval history. As a result, he was able to articulate so much for discussion. It was really great that he brought his helmet and sword which he plays with, to the studio. Despite this being an audio interview, it was great for our promotion pictures for Room With A View‘s social media accounts. Also, was ideal for some helmet-tapping sound effects in between our discussion around the attire one sports, when partaking in live action role play.
Again, this segment was another case of wanting to talk more in-depth with the interviewee, but we ran out of time.
(as a pair)
I would say that Sammy and I had a cohesive dynamic going together, her “radio voice” is quite exuberant in nature and mine has a more low-key, lazy Sunday, quality to it. I think the contrast gave the show necessary texture. It allowed the audience to differentiate between the two of us. It is evident in our live show, that I took in the constructive criticism from our team, by speaking louder than I had in the demo recordings.
During the Swordcraft interview I seemed to have taken the lead, and had my fair share of discussion time throughout the rest of the show too (I felt, at least). It’s a tad ironic because after the demo practices I had reflected on our demo piece and mentioned that I felt like I was not speaking enough during it, this time it was not the case. After the demo I had discussed with Sammy that the live show should be more equally divided, we both agreed this was important. I think I really gained more confidence by the time we went to air, I just felt more prepared as there was finally substantial content for us to form discourse around.
We made sure to be super thorough and consistent in our running sheet and always had noted the appropriate moments (non-excessive) to announce the time, as well as detailed front and back announcements for our interviews and music. This was important, as people can tune in at any time. I always find it frustrating when radio hosts don’t remember to back announce songs – as this is the most important time to be told the song titles, as you’ve just heard the song and may have really liked it upon listening. I feel we did a really good job of doing this.
I think the fact I had included the upcoming gig announcements of both Yollks and Fortunes. worked well as it gave a sense that, as hosts, we were supportive of the music we were presenting. I’m not entirely sure whether we were meant to be promoting gigs that weren’t on the list which Triple R has for announcements in their shows, but I think it was really important to do for the aforementioned reason.
At the end of the show I mentioned April Amnesty which was to tell the listeners to subscribe to Triple R and why. Elizabeth (the ‘Talks’ producer) was really glad that we had done that for the station. I think it showed her that we did a lot of research and were really committed to producing informative content.
(and the pre-recorded interview dilemma)
I guess I have to address the elephant in the room (with a view… live show recording *cue slow clap*). The elephant, being a technical mishap with Sammy’s pre-recorded interview with Simon Starr which we were playing. Basically, Rose had the file playing from the Google Drive, which worked fine and dandy during our demo recordings. This time the file cut out around 3 minutes in. It was the only thing we had playing through the drive, too. We suspect that the internet may have cut out from connecting to the computer and halted the audio from the file. It was peculiar, because the track was still “playing” but nothing audible was coming from it. Sammy, Rose and I went still as this happened. We all looked at each other in a nervous panic. Sammy ran from Rose’s side and back to her chair, I straightened up my microphone and was preparing for a blabbering mess to explode from our (mostly my) mouth. Sammy swiftly began talking to save the day! I was still trying to figure out where we should lift off from on our running sheet document which was in the Google Drive and managed to confuse myself into thinking that Sammy was wrapping up the show, so followed suit. Oh well, these things happen! Rose and Sammy quickly gestured to me to announce a song to stop the awkwardness. From that, I finally managed to sort myself out. We both played it off smoothly once the songs finished up! We had recovered and Sammy reiterated that the full interview would be available online for the audience to revisit.
Because the pre-record cut out, we had to fill some time. We threw in and extra song which Rose had prepared earlier. Thank goodness for that!
Wise words of advice: always have back-ups and always play all your prepared audio from the CD player at Triple R, regardless of how much confidence you have in the station’s public ‘Greenroom’ wi-fi.
With Rose’s panel operation and CD preparation, I think she did an incredible job. She recovered from the prerecord cut-out technical glitch so swiftly and I was really impressed with her ability to do so. She got our microphones back on and managed to successfully express to us that we were to go to another song while sorting out the problem as a team. There were a few moments of dead air, but it was mostly so slight and listeners would not have really noticed.
For our whole show, Sammy and I viewed the (very detailed and well-constructed) running sheet on our Google Drive document. This was possibly not ideal in terms of having our laptops out; just with their size, it can be a little distracting. But, it was so useful for Sammy and I to communicate which questions we should move to by making notes when we were not speaking to the interviewee. It meant we could interact with each other without interrupting the interviewee and the flow of discussion. We avoided paying too much attention to the screen, but it was certainly useful when we came to the technical issue. It meant we could rearrange a little of our outline to suit, and go from there. Ideally, an iPad would be best if this technique is used.
Despite the mixups from the technical difficulty messing with the flow of our music, our whole group seemed to agree that it was suitable for the Triple R audience. We kept it relatively local to stick to the non-mainstream, community vibe which Triple R is all about. I think the song choices alone were good because most were Australian or New Zealand musicians and there was an eclectic mix. The only problem was that we flustered trying to mend our technical error by playing Earth Tongue‘s Portable Shrine and Melody Pool‘s Mariachi Wind after, they clashed a little too much. One was heavy and the other, much softer. All-round, we could have just arranged the songs so they were a little more fluid to suit the moods.
It was good that Rose managed to make the Fortunes. song quieter on the CDs she ripped for the live recording, as part of it was really loud in the demo.
LIVE UPDATES (social media)
JJ did a great job with the social media stream throughout the show. Sammy and I took pre-show pictures with our interviewees which were used to promote our interview content. JJ managed to keep live-Tweets going, letting the listeners know who was part of the discussion at different points. Sammy made sure to mention our Twitter handle at the beginning and end which directed audience members to stay updated with, or look back on any missed content (particularly important in the case of the pre-record only being half-played).
Here is the full show, in all its glory (and endearing, minor flaws):
If there were something that I would change about this live to air assessment, it would be to have an outsider’s reflection on the show. A listener who is not part of the course. Someone who is constructively critical. So you can grasp a better understanding of what you sounded like from the receiving end.
As it was the first radio show type thing I’d done before. I am very happy with the result. I feel Sammy, Olivia, Rose, JJ and I all worked so efficiently together. Very organised and on top of it, such a relief to have a group where everyone is like-minded and driven. Even though it was stressful to prepare everything as we had less time to do so, it was good to get it completed to deflate the balloon of stress a little and for us to be able to focus on other tasks in the course. Looking forward to deciding on, and conducting my individual interview and constructing our radio feature together. I’m really proud of The Lucky Threes!
As you may well know if you’ve been keeping up with my riveting blog posts about my life at university, my Room With A View studio group are going to air on the 10th of April. Which is the Monday coming up! And guess what? Yours truly is hosting. Look at me go. This is a bit of a scary leap for me. I’ve been shying away from being recorded since I was blessed with the opportunity to watch my cringeworthy high school drama class attempt of playing a drunken Tom Wingfield in The Glass Menagerie. But, I guess this isn’t acting, so it’s okay. Plus, university has handed out plenty of presentation assessments which I have managed to plough through with relative ease when it came to it. Perhaps I am more relaxed with the comfort in having a couple of small white cue cards grasped in my sweaty hand? Likely the case.
Before I bore you with a tangent of my high school history where I was buried in a pile of anything Tennessee Williams or William Shakespeare wrote (and all of their adaptations), I should probably mention where we’re at on the preparedness scale. Yes, that’s a thing now. If 1 were the lowest and 10 were the highest, I would say we’re at about 8.5 right now. Success! We just need to finalise our running sheet over this weekend, Rose is ripping our songs onto CDs, Sammy and I need to do a run through of the outline of our script on morning of the show and then we’re good to go!
I’m glad I have Sammy as my hosting companion as she is relatively versed in radio hosting (through Syn shows), makes me feel comfortable as I feel she’d think pretty quickly if something messes up.
PS. Shakespeare invented the word ‘bubble,’ and that’s all I remember of his work. (I jest).
An issue in me hosting, which I recognised in the three separate times we had been recording our demo… was the fact that I constantly verbally respond to people with “yeah” and some “aahhh” quite often. Which I kept doing all three times. Because when I listening back on the recording, I realised I was still doing it in that final demo recording! I’m annoyed at myself but I must keep trying to train myself to cut it out. I shall get better! I believe in me!
It’s currently about an hour since my group and I wrapped up our demo recording at Triple R for this studio! I feel like we are really organised and work super well as a team, which is amazing. But we had some serious technical difficulties when it came to our first and second initial demo recordings… yes, that’s right, we had already gone through our demo running sheet TWICE before actually maintaining the correct WAV file. I’ve already blogged about our initial demo attempt. Here I’ll be talking about our second failure, and our final success!
I can tell you’re confused and distraught right now, but you also see the glimmer of hope due to my mention of success at the end of that introduction to this post. You’re probably wondering “what could have ever gone wrong (again) with your recording when involved with such an amazing group of beautiful and intelligent women?!” Well, for this second round, again – it was not our lack of skill as a group in order to produce a fabulous demo show! Once again, it was the ridiculousness that is, technology.
We recorded our hour long demo, which went extremely well, from 12pm – 1pm on this day. Well, we thought we had at least! Turns out we were recording what was actually going live to air on Triple R for the entire time… Incredible… No one told us which buttons we needed to press on the panel to record the correct line, the mock-show we were making! Possibly somebody did, but there was already so much to process when being freshly introduced to everything that the Triple R studios have to offer. So really, if we had actually saved that .aup file correctly… we’d just have the live recording as well. So, never mind that either! Needless to say, we’ve managed to gain some really good practice in this spectacular ordeal. I’m going to unofficially name our group, the Triple R’s Third Time Lucky. For us, it stands for Record, Record, Record… aka Triple R. That third R, that’s the luckiest one.
Today’s initial recording went really smoothly we thought. So we were DEVASTATED to find we didn’t have it. Just like Monday’s run through, Rose did an amazing job operating the panel. I’m really impressed with her ability to control the outputs properly and be so organised and calm with everything that’s about to happen on the show. When I played around with the panel I found it confusing and didn’t manage to grasp it entirely, but had I had a bit more practice, I’d surely have been able to – I feel that Rose is a fast learner, problem solver and works well under pressure – which seems really important in panel operating, particularly because we’ve been a little thrown into the deep end with this studio. Obviously there were some blunders with both the panel transitions, and with Sammy and I hosting. But they were minor and we managed to recover from them smoothly we found. There were very few moments where Rose transitioned too slowly or out of time, despite her thinking she had! Sammy and I realised that in the first recording today, when we initially interviewed Olivia about her upcoming trip to Europe and JJ about her life and the green man pedestrian crossing debacle which came into place a day before International Women’s Day, that Sammy took the reigns a bit too much and I didn’t get to ask as many questions. However, we definitely worked on that a bit more in the second (actually recorded and exported to WAV file) demo and the talking got a bit more evenly spread. Also the fact we were discussing the pedestrian crossing issue was something that Sammy had actually already spoken about on a radio show she does with Syn – so she was really well informed and had a lot of content to use. When we’re actually doing the live to air show, we will obviously have a plan of which basic questions to ask, in order to lead into conversation with our guests and we’ll delegate these really evenly to run off if we’ve been stuck at a point with our guests where the answer to one of our questions has been appropriately covered.
With our actual recording, I found we were all far more relaxed, Sammy and I work far more naturally together now. Not that it was unnatural to begin with – but it was still a little unfamiliar. In many ways, our first and second recording incidents have been an absolute disaster BUT it has given us the opportunity to get more practice in – we feel like we’re really on to it with this project and are now currently ahead with our work which is a much-needed comfort for the Lucky Threes clan!
What an absolutely ridiculously silly situation we got ourselves into today… Our group recorded our demo-demo today… well, we recorded it and then we saved the project file, not the WAV file… BUT, it’s okay because this was after all, our practice demo. However, we did want to have the file so we could annotate that as well and see where we could alter our run-sheet to make a better demo. Basically, we don’t have much content and it’s more random conversation between Sammy and I with whoever we’re talking to from the group as our stand-in-interviewee. Apparently doing that is fine though, I’m just worried that perhaps I’ll be a little in-the-background throughout, as Sammy has experience in radio at Syn and I haven’t had any whatsoever. I’m sure over the course of our practice time and when we record the demo (and save it accordingly) I’ll manage to chime in a little more and have more of a say. I’m just a little nervous at the moment, perhaps?
Unfortunately, Sammy had to leave half way through our practice recording today. Olivia was the stand-in host part way through, so she got to have a little feel of that role too, for another show we do after the first! The switch-up did muddle up our run sheet a tiny bit, just because the basic scripting outline wasn’t as relevant, but it went fine we thought. Good to get some practice mixing things up anyway!