Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Rally Cry Guy

Derek Chappell. Besides being an Attorney and a die-hard Kansas Jayhawk basketball fan, he’s the ‘The Voice Of Your Business’; and definitely one of many talented Voice-Over professionals with a big online presence and a big heart. He’s known for bringing people together and ‘Using Social Media to Educate & Entertain about the Profession of VoiceOver'. He’s all about using his clear, comfortable and consistent  voice to successfully promote people's businesses. And he’s also what I call, a rally-cry guy. He rallies, encourages, motivates and supports people in order to build strong communities. He’s been doing this for quite a while now so it’s definitely time to hoot and holler over him with a Debby Barnes Voice-Over Rah-Rah!

The Voiceover Blog Talk he curated in order to ‘Scoop’ other talent’s views about the Voice Over industry is chock-full of insightful information. It also gives myriad others an opportunity to share their lives and their stories with each other. He recently raised-up a Google+ Voiceover Blogs community that offers fellow VO bloggers yet another stimulating forum of exchange. (…and there’s nothing quite like ‘comparing notes’ on issues we’re all thinking and/or working through, is there?) Allow me to give him a special mention for compiling his 'All Top Voiceover Blog Posts' each week. What a boon. And his Guest Blogger posts are a must-read as well.
We're also grateful for the timely article he just wrote: ‘Cast of Global Voice Talent Produces PSA For Philippine Relief Effort’.  It's an enlightening, powerful and urgent donations appeal on behalf of those suffering in and through the devastation and aftermath of the Philippine’s, Typhoon Yolanda.
Derek writes about the life-changing affect this had on Pocholo De Leon Gonzales, in particular, (…one of our fellow Voice Over Talents). According to Derek, Pocholo felt compelled to help his people by using the resources he already had available to him through his VO community. So he and his VO ‘brothers’ (Herb Merriweather, Andy Boyns and Mehmet Onur) got busy as ‘The Voice Of Help’ in order to produce an effective Public Service Announcement (PSA) video  message. They were determined  to open the eyes of the world by informing them about the intensity of the destruction. Pocholo explains, "I believe that as a voice over artist in the Philippines and the only one who's doing this, I have the responsibility and the will to do such a PSA to inform the world about what happened in my country, how the worst typhoon in the world affects my countrymen, and how the other people can help.”
There’s nothing quite like a catastrophic event somewhere else to make us feel helpless where we are, is there? We don’t think we can make much of a difference either, but Derek reminds us, ‘…there’s also strength in numbers. And there’s strength in the VO community, which time and time again has shown the willingness to get involved, roll up the sleeves, and support those who need it, with the time, talent, and resources we’ve been blessed with.’
He’s spot-on when urges us to: ‘Encourage the people of the Philippines and the aid crews on the ground, by showing them there is a global community who cares, and is willing to do what it can with the resources it has, to spread the word and aid in the relief efforts.’ (Surely, it's never too late to spread the word, pray and give what we can.)
And so to our rally-cry guy, Derek; and to Pocholo, his VO buddies, and all of those who stay mindful of other peoples highest good. Rah-Rah!
Read it through the link below. See and share the PSA video as well.


Give his VO site a stop, look and listen.


Tell me what you think!
Comment & Share.




Tuesday, 19 November 2013


This week’s enthusiastic Debby Barnes Voice-Over Rah-Rah! is for Rodney Saulsberry. Because we all need another kind reminder that blunders are okay. His October 1st, ‘Mistakes’ blog was not only encouraging, it was comforting as well.

I first ‘met’ this highly motivated, inspirational, gifted and upstanding guy through his bestselling books, ‘You Can Bank On Your Voice’ and ‘Step Up To The Mic’ He's a well-seasoned and successful premier Voice-Over Talent, so reading his proclamation, “I am declaring it in my life right here and now! It’s okay to make a mistake!” was almost palliative. I wholeheartedly agree with him when he states: “The fact is, you can’t succeed without failing.” (I’m actually counting on this one!) And he’s right, “Mistakes are our teachers.” 
He continues to make his welcome point by reminding us what the Jazz great, Miles Davis once said: "When you hit a wrong note, it's the next note that makes it good or bad."
It isn’t fun to relive my many faux pas’.  I’ve certainly stumbled and crawled through personal and professional slip-ups in life like everyone else. And it could’ve easily defeated me if I had let it. I still have to realign myself in order to remind myself that tripping-up isn’t the end of the world. In my humble opinion, it’s the beginning of more wisdom. In order to stay above and beyond my blunders I have to embrace this take-away. And Rodney’s right, "You're going to make mistakes from time to time, that is a part of life. How you handle them will be what matters most.” “The fact is, you can’t succeed without failing.”

So here’s to making mistakes and getting it right, inside and outside our studio walls. I think Rodney would agree with this affirmation. Rah-Rah!

Click the link below and scroll to Tuesday, October 1st, 2013  'It's Okay to Make a Mistake'


Comment & Share!



Tuesday, 12 November 2013

A Day In The Life Of...

I’ve been chomping at the bit to rave about Voicemaster International’s, Steve Hudson; the CEO and creator of the Hudson Voice Technique.  Why have I been especially excited? Because I got to spend some quality time with him recently after winning a Voices Pro / Facebook Competition Voice-Over contest. Steve was the vocal tutor who generously offered the coveted workshop prizes. 

Sipping tea with the dashing Mr. Hudson was a treat, as was the London Master Class I took part in. (…not to mention the Voicemaster e-learning home study course I walked away with.) He’s not kidding when he says: “Others tell you what to say, we teach you how to say it.” Steve's a savvy communicator who is also an international, award-winning Voice-Over Actor.  He’s also a BBC Trainer and a voice-consultant for major corporations and advertising agents. This charitable English gentleman is one that I felt honoured to get to know and learn from. He not only offers a sound technique, he works with you personally on it and follows-up with you afterwards. I was enriched by my experience with him. All this alone merits a huge Debby Barnes Voice-Over Rah-Rah!, but wait, there’s more!

Steve has begun to post honest excerpts from his intended 2013 book about proper voice communication. These short, colourful and comical little stories are not only fascinating, they’re true.  (…and I’m an absolute sucker for people’s true stories.) His recent October 23 post, “The Most Beautiful Green Eyes I’ve Ever Seen” is choice.  He starts-off by making us aware that years ago he’d been cast as a leading man in an ultra-glam TV commercial for a brand of chocolates. (FYI: Steve’s done a wealth of work as an on-camera and off-camera Voice-Over Actor.)  This job was posh (...and yummy), to be sure. It was going to be shot in two locations – one on a speedboat in the West Indies and the other in Pinewood studios, London. (Green with envy, any one?!)

“I would rather be a live coward than a dead hero and although the panther looked cuddly, I thought it best to close the door.” He recounts his unique experience with humour and in a way that’s easy to visualise. And it’s one of the many tales he’s lived to tell; especially because this particular tale involves security men, diamonds, and a black panther!

It feels good to celebrate you, your life and your stories, Steve. Yes, and give you a hearty Rah-Rah!

Read it here:
And in case you're interested:  www.voicemaster.co.uk



Tuesday, 5 November 2013

A Winning Formula

I have no problem letting everyone know I’m a huge Bob Gass fan. (He pens the UCB – United Christian Broadcasters daily devotional: ‘Word For Today’.) I’ve been a devotional devotee for a long time. I read his soul-profitable words every morning. It starts my day like a sunrise. The truths he shares have a positive effect on me. I'm continually inspired by what I learn. And when I apply what I learn, it leads to personal and professional growth, plain and simple. In my life, this  is a winning formula. It encourages me to be more of who I’m called to be.

Well, in late September I sat down to read Bob's: ‘Keep Growing’ series. And three meaningful messages later, I felt like I was given some bone-meal fertilizer. I also felt compelled to give him an official Debby Barnes Voice-Over Rah-Rah! 
You see, I consider every year of my life a growing season. Figuratively speaking, I’m always eager to ‘bloom where I’m planted’, so I can never get enough of the garden mulch that will improve me and my 'garden'. Bob Gass is one of those gracious ‘gardeners’ who freely offers rich 'mulch'!
The first truth Bob starts with is: “When you finish growing, you’re finished.” Too true. He also mentions what Robert Browning wrote, ‘Why stay on earth except to grow?’ Indeed. He continues into his second message by reminding us that we should, ‘Never stop learning.’ and ‘Never stop developing our talents.’ This really speaks to me as a growing Voice-Over Talent. In relation to developing our skills, he brings up a famous quote from one of the world’s best violinists. When asked as an old man why he still practiced six to eight hours every day, the violinist replied, ‘Because I think I’m getting better.’ Love it.
At the end of the day, practice makes perfect. Applying what we learn yields favourable results. So, my math will continue to look like this: Learning + Applying = Growing. And though it involves being stretched, challenged and a bit uncomfortable at times, this will ultimately produce the kind of results we need to see in order to accomplish the kind of things we need to do.

And lastly, Bob says...'Don't just grow in knowledge, grow in character.’ and ‘Always stay fresh.’ Rah-Rah! to that, brother. And ever let it be.
Read more here through the UCB site.

Note: Scroll to the bottom of the page for: Previous Word For Today.
Click: (Full Archive) - September 27, 28, 29