RUSH: We have Ace in Canfield, Pennsylvania, up next. Hi, Ace. Great to have you here, sir.
CALLER: Rush, thank you so much for taking my call. I am so elated to get through finally after all these years. I started listening right at the first Gulf War. So I cannot thank you enough for all that you do. I’m a black conservative, and I told Mr. Snerdley that I really liked the sound of his voice. I took a course, a correspondence course back in the sixties because I used to stutter.
It just bothered me to no end, and I was very self-conscious when I spoke.
I took this course. At the beginning of every lesson they would highlight a person who had a really nice voice that just made you want to listen. A couple of people that I can remember were James Earl Jones, Frank Reynolds, Ronald Reagan, and Bing Crosby. I think one of the reasons why I listen to you and never get tired of listening to you is ’cause I think your voice just makes people want to listen, like myself. So I just wanted to compliment you on that, because I think you have the type of voice that just makes people want to listen.
RUSH: Now, that is a first. That is the — and I appreciate that. I’m mulling this over. That’s the first comment or compliment like that that I’ve heard. I’ve had people say, “Well, your voice is good,” but nobody’s ever said specifically what you just said, that it has a factor in listenability. That’s very, very kind of you. I really appreciate that.
CALLER: Oh, you’re welcome. In fact, when you mentioned that you are hoarse, I thought that I didn’t even notice that, because I took a recent voice lesson. I’m a singer. I took some voice lessons, and my teacher told me what people hear is not what you think they hear. I mean, I never used to like my voice ’cause when I would listen on the recording to my voice it sounded like, “Yee’ah, yee’ah.” (chuckles) I don’t like it.
RUSH: That is right. He’s exactly right about that, folks. But there’s another reason why you may not be able to detect my hoarseness and that is that we have a lot of audio processing on the mike line here.
CALLER: Oh, okay.
RUSH: There have been days that I have had a very, very bad cold — really stuffed up and hoarse — and have mentioned it, and people say, “No, I can’t hear that.”
CALLER: Right. Right.
RUSH: It’s because of — and I’m not gonna explain it technically, but it’s because of compression that dates back. It was the way the AM radio signal was modulated back in the sixties, before FM when there were a lot of convertibles.
RUSH: If you go back and listen to Motown music that was played on the radio back in the sixties and seventies, it thumped. You go out and buy a Motown album today and listen to it. If you could get a 45rpm record that was given to radio stations back then compared to an album people bought, it would sound totally different because the albums were flat.
RUSH: The stuff on the radio was compressed, and the radio station itself added some so that the station could be heard over the wind and outside noise when people are driving around in their convertibles, and loudness when people were scanning the dial made people stick to that station as they were looking. There were all kinds of tricks.
RUSH: So we still use some of that here at the EIB Network, and it will mask such things as hoarseness in a voice.
CALLER: Ohhhh, okay. Okay.
RUSH: But nevertheless, you are right. People never hear themselves the way other people do. That’s just a characteristic, by the way, of the ear of the person speaking. You hear your voice ’cause you also feel it. The other person, the people listening to you don’t feel. Unless you know how to use your voice, they don’t feel it. They just simply hear it. But you, speaking, feel your voice.
If you become a student of your voice, you know how to use it and change it based on how it feels as well as how it sounds to you. You know, I grew up in southeast Missouri, and there’s a diehard accent in southeast Missouri. It’s called the “Southeast Missouri Twang,” and I had it, and the first time I heard myself on tape when I was actually trying to get ready to be on radio, I said, “That can’t be me!”
(impression) “Git, forgit, yirs,” nasal. “I mean, this is how people…” I can’t do it anymore because I literally spent hours teaching myself to breathe diaphragmatically and not from my throat so that I speak diaphragmatically not from the back of my throat, which most people do. But when I’m hoarse, I can only speak from the back of my throat, which is what I’m doing today, which puts an incredible strain on the cords.
The breathing diaphragmatically is how professionals talk. You talk about stage actors like James Earl Jones. You have to be able to breathe diaphragmatically in order to project and have a booming voice. Most people don’t get any voice training. But the next time you watch a movie, actually spend some time listening to the dialogue, especially if there’s narration. TV show or movie. Listen if an actor is narrating.
Listen to the absolute perfect quality of the voice. They all have training. Every actor undergoes professional voice training as part of the… Well, the people that have been classically trained. Some people have become actors by accident and have never had formal training, as is the case in any profession. But on a day like today when I’m hoarse, I’m putting a lot of strain on the cords.
Because I’m literally trying to cover it by speaking right from the back of my throat, and if we weren’t using audio processing and compression, you could tell that today, but that compression and audio processing will mask it, which is why I insist on it being used. I’ll bet old Ace (chuckling) had no idea when he called that he was gonna get all of that, but I appreciate your comment nevertheless.