Voice Coaches Radio #616: Batter Up! Special Guest, Brian Batter Chats
Is that how I see your last name? That's right. Okay, cool. Cool. Baseball, pancake. All the things. My whole life. Well, I know for, for us, like, you know, I had just, you know, one, one class with you. Uh, but the moment that you popped on, I was like, oh, damn. Uh, it, it's like, Uh, and I I hope in a good way. Yeah, no, it wasn't.
It was in such a good way. Uh, because, I mean, Every once in a while, we have somebody that comes in and there's just a natural ability. Yeah. Uh, you know, so it, and, and it's just like a natural, like, good quality, and there's plenty of people with great voices, and then you meet somebody who I just feel like, with you, it was like, well, yeah, he's meant to be in this industry, uh, there's no question in my mind, um, and, and some might think that I'm just blowing smoke, but I, I swear to God I'm not.
Hey, keep going, smoke it up, smoke it up. So. I know for us, you know, right now we're recording and it's a little bit before the new year is going to hit. So you haven't officially recorded your demo yet, but no, something that very rarely happens. This is what I mean. I know that the guy that is like the head of voice coaches.
is the one that wants to produce your demo. And I think that's why you, it, to me, it's like very evident that, you know, you are like a little bit of a different circumstance. And, um, Wow. Yeah, it is. It's almost like winning an award, if you will, to be taken seriously. But it's just, again, you have such a great quality that you've come in with.
So before we get into anything further, I would like our listening audience here for Voice Coaches Radio to be able to get to know you a little bit and hear the pipes that you come along with. It's so tough. Tell us a little bit about, you know, where you've been and, and what kind of background you have that has led us today to be diving into the voiceover industry.
Uh, you know, the, the, the first answer I prefer to give people is I've always been an entrepreneur. I've never done well with a boss, right? I guess you could say I'm unemployable that way. Uh, not that I don't follow instruction. I'm happy to take instruction, but I just never liked the idea of someone else controlling my time, telling me when I got to show up, what I'm worth, when I can be sick, you know, when I'm going to take vacation, things like that.
Um, so it's kind of a, a windy road to how I landed here, but I spent the last. 18 years now, as we like to joke, we call it one full Kanye, right? He said 18 years teaching people three basic ideas in the financial world, how to screw the lenders, how not to get screwed by wall street and how to screw the IRS legally, and A lot of fun.
It was very rewarding, not just because it was able to, we were, I've been able to help a number of, of, of clients and families, but I've been able to build an agency. And what that's done is allowed people to get out of dead end careers or pay off debt and build up the savings. It just. Give them a much greater sense of peace of mind.
Uh, and that's ultimately how, uh, I, for lack of a better phrase, I've been able to hone my speaking skills. Cause I've had to teach classes two or three times a week for nearly 20 years now and, and engaging with the crowd. Um, it was never anything that was scary to me. Public speaking, um, just kind of came naturally to me.
I was. This is kind of embarrassing to say, but I was the homecoming king. Oh, I can actually see that. Yeah, I can see a crowd. It's so, it's really silly to say, but it was, it was more of a talent competition. And I remember, you know, however many other guys there were, we were all friends. But the whole school, the town basically showed up to the high school and they handed us a mic and we had like a couple of things to do, sing and.
It was kind of weird, like we had to walk out in a catwalk and it, it was, I don't know. Anyway, I kind of felt You were a piece of man meat, that's what you were! Right! Yes! You know, exactly! So, but, I remember one specific moment where they asked me a question about growing up in the town that I did. I grew up here in Long Island.
And, uh, I just had to ad lib and come off the, you know, just make it come off the cuff. Like, just completely like that. Yeah. You've probably seen the movie Gladiator with Russell Crowe. No. No. I haven't. But I'll, you know, I will pretend I have right now if it's going to make you feel better. Just to set the scene, this is, you know, he's, he's someone who's been imprisoned wrongly.
It's a great movie. It's a guy's movie, but it's actually pretty good. Joaquin Phoenix is awesome. He's the bad guy. Um, but. At one point, the main character is in prison and he has to fight, you know, he's forced to fight as a gladiator and the, the, the, the owner of this, of him, if you will, it says to him, listen, if you win the crowd.
You'll win your freedom and this happened to me before the movie came out, but I remember like just getting this question and totally just ad libbing and, uh, uh, you know, reflexive response and the crowd went nuts. Yeah, yeah. And it was in that moment, like, Hey, that was kind of cool. Yeah. And I never had an opportunity to try and recapture that per se up until, um, I started.
Teaching, you know, building my business in, in what I do now. Um, so yeah, and, and like, I'm sure you've probably heard this a million times, whether it be for your own, you know, in your own world or, or, or dealing with students, people say, wow, you have a great voice. You should be on the radio. If we had a dollar for every time someone says I've heard that forever, but I never acted on it.
And I think honestly, for those people that are listening to this right now, obviously, if you're listening to this podcast. You have a certain intention. You're not, this isn't, you know, we're not talking politics, sports, crypto, you know, food. We're talking about a specific area of, of developed technique and expertise that you have to be super attentive to.
Like you really have to want to do something like this. It's true. Yeah. A hundred percent. So don't be afraid. You just, you have to give it a shot and see what you've got. Yeah, it's true. And you know, I, you're right. Like my, my favorite thing is, and I was really never told anything about my voice growing up.
It was once I started, once I started getting into all this and I think it was honing the craft. It was honing the skill and understanding the ins and outs of, of what it is to, in my case, be on the radio. Cause that's how everything started for me. And then it became commercial work and whatever, but how to be on the radio, how to be engaging.
You know, how to grab somebody's attention, how to be relatable, and like, all those things. And then, you know, it's like, anytime somebody finds out what I do, they're like, yeah, you do have a voice for that. Uh, and it's like, yeah, yeah, well, I've worked very hard at it, and I've, you know, been rather successful, so I hope that I'm, you know, I've got a voice for it.
Um, so, for you, like, that's the thing, is like, the moment that you came into the class with me, And, and we were getting ready to like dive into some scripts and stuff, I mean, you started talking and like, you told me just the fact that you've been public speaking for so long. I'm like, yeah, I can tell like there's, there's something about it that we have a lot of people that come through that are like that.
It's like they have to do a lot of speaking and presentations for work. And it's like, that's exactly why we tell people start with what you know. You know, and, and see, like, we all have these things that we've done in our past that can potentially be helpful for this as well. But so many people kind of, they look at this industry as something different.
It's like out of the norm. It's entertainment and it's kind of Hollywood like glitzy, glammy, whatever. And I, I have to always kind of put people right back to, you know, um, almost ground zero here and, and give them that perspective of like, Listen, it's just a different word. The word audition scares the hell out of people.
And it's like, how many job interviews have you been on? Like, you know, at the end of the day. It's just an interview is an audition. So it's like when you start changing your mindset about it, and you look at it like, oh wait, I have done that before. Um, you know, then it's a little bit less intimidating.
But, um, you know, I think, It's just so hard for some people to wrap their head around that. And I'm glad that you are, you're that, that guy that I knew, like when we got into class, it's like, I'm not, I, he, you have no fear. Um, and, but I think even though some people do presentations all the time, you know, you're talking in front of like bigger crowds and stuff that, you know, I know what that's like.
I mean, I used to be a super shy kid and stuff. So like people are always amazed with what I do, but I can go ahead and also get on a stage like over the summer. I, we didn't even realize it until afterwards. I'm like, this has to be the biggest crowd I've ever been in front of. Uh, but, uh, country artist, Laney Wilson broke a record at the New York state fair.
And it turns out. Opening night when I was on that stage. There was like 60, 000 people and oh, that's awesome And I got I got to make them freak out. You know, I'm like she can hear you She's ripe and the I'm telling you the scream that happened. That's that's how I knew not I couldn't see the end of the crowd.
It was the scream. It was so Piercing I got instant goosebumps and it's never happened before but you know, I think because You know, I have that for myself and like you have something similar. Like it makes it so the fear to do certain parts of this industry. It's not as heightened as it is for somebody else.
Um, you know, you were over there doing all sorts of different voices, and like trying to do some characters, and like whatever, and just like being silly, and sometimes that can be pretty scary for people. So, you know, like I said, um, at the beginning of this, like you haven't done your demo yet. But how are you feeling getting ready for that, that session?
Um, I'm feeling pretty confident. I've, uh, uh, you know, thanks to your guidance. I've, I've actually narrowed down what it was that I was looking to read. Um, and, and going through it so that I can, I can, you know, in your words, be carefree, you know, be more confident. It breeds, you know, practice equals confidence.
I love the old saying five piece proper preparation prevents poor performance. And I know from experience of hosting events, like putting on events, you know, hundreds of people, maybe I think the biggest event I've ever put on myself personally was over a thousand people. Um, I've spoken at events with, you know, not as big as 60, 000, but, you know, 10, 000 people.
And I've watched as the newer people were put on stage, how they kind of just door out. Yeah. Yeah. And, you know, I, I just remind him, Hey. Just imagine you're talking to one person in the crowd. Don't just ignore everybody else, just find one person. Now, don't just stare at that person, but because that's awkward, right?
Yeah, that gets weird, but the idea is you, if you're confident, if you're speaking about something that you're confident with, whether it's, Hey, I'm telling a story to my grandkid. Right. I'm selling to her to my, you know, my, to my toddler, you're going to put on a little voice. You're going to have some fun with it and you're going to be natural.
You're going to be carefree. And, and that is where the most emotion and, and information, if you will, is, is conveyed. It's when we try to pretend, try to act, people can see right through that. And so you're a hundred percent right. It's talking about things that you're confident with. You have experience with that.
You have an interest in you're naturally going to be more effervescent. You're just, you know, there's going to be more, there's going to be emotion, um, and, and information, if you will, if there's one thing I would encourage people as they're considering this seriously, obviously, if you're listening, you're already considering this, but there's something to understand about communication, there's three parts.
There's your body language. Which is more than half a communication, but in this world, your body language isn't necessary. People aren't going to see you if you're in a booth. Right. But you still have to stand up straight, you know, shoulders back, you know, do the right thing physically. So you can project your voice the right way.
38 percent of communication is, um, your tone. And that's where a lot of times I think speaking, especially trying to grab someone's attention and maintain and hold it for a little bit. All too often, most people get wrapped up in the, in the words, which is only about, it's less than 10%. It's about 7 percent of communication is the words.
The silly joke is to help people understand is if you're thinking about this as you know how I'm interested in learning this. I want you to imagine a scenario where you and your sweetheart about to go out to dinner and they come down the stairs and you're sitting there on the couch ready to go and they ask you, honey, how do I look?
You've got a choice. Now we're going to use one word. We're going to go about it two ways. The first time they come downstairs, they ask you, honey, how do I look? You look up at him fine. Now for the guys listening, you know, out there, you're like, yeah. And for the ladies, you're like, Oh, dude, you know, I got to go change.
Right. No, bad, wrong answer. Wrong answer. But mind you, I'm going to use the exact same word, but I'm going to change my tone a little bit. So honey, how do I look? Fine. All of a sudden it's like, okay, let's go.
It's the same idea when you're talking to your kids. Like we all had this experience with mom or grandma. We're in church. We're at the mall and we're acting out. And they just look at us like. Right. No, that's like a caveman grunt. You know, we all probably a hundred thousand years ago, we could be walking out in the Savannah and a crow Magnum grabs his saber tooth.
You know, like. So I think so many people get lost in the sauce about, I got to read my script. I got to practice this. And yeah, that's true. You do need to know the words, but they're less important than the, the, the tone, the confidence, the more you practice it, the more confident you feel, the more carefree and you start to, you, you, you bring some energy into it.
You bring some life into it. You, you know, it's like, uh, you put some flavor, if you will. Yeah. I think, you know, I've had plenty of students that, cause you know how the program unfolds. And it's like, We, we always go into the fact of like, you know, you're you, you're talking to somebody you care about. And like, you know, really that's like the, the major part of this, but then we, we start layering other options to do and people get so focused on that, but you know, I always go back to and, and, and relate it back to how I started because all I ever had was you're you, you're talking to your best friend.
That's it. That's all I ever had. So it's like, you get a script in front of you, and you can totally overthink the process of like, Oh, well, I'm supposed to do this, and I'm supposed to be emphasizing this, and I'm supposed to Cool. How about you just do what I always did, which was, Alright, I would potentially never say this, but I have this script, these are now my words, how would, how would I say it?
And how would I say it to my friend? Because when I was looking at stuff, especially like commercial work, it's so weird. Um, you know, that's exactly how I started. And it's like, of course it's not going to be perfect at first, but the more that you play around with things like that, and start tweaking things that you're doing, and listening back to what you're doing, it's like things really start to come together if you're putting that effort in.
So, For you, I know, like, you've got some big goals, um, you know, I, I realize, like, we, we decided for you, it's like, we're gonna be focused on, like, narrative stuff to, to start with, but I knew that you're a guy who can literally probably do just about anything that you want, just because of, of your mindset that, I mean, clearly, I think anybody that's listening right now can tell you're just, you're that go getter kind of guy, um, and I, I feel like I'm, I'm very much that way as well, um, you know, so it's like, yeah.
You wanna do it, you're gonna achieve it. But what for you in 2024 are gonna be the big goals, um, or, or the little goals to get to the big goals. What do you think, how do you wanna start all this for yourself? Well, the first goal is, is literally just to, to land the first job, to do the first work, um, to break the seal, if you will,
Um, but honestly, I, I look forward to leveraging the relationships that I've built. You know, we've all. In our lives, we've all dug a well. If you will, some are not as deep. Some are a little shallow. Some are much deeper. And that what I mean by that is we've developed relationships with people. And if we're people of character, we've done right by our sphere, our community and our work in, in, uh, you know, our, our business, when we go back to them and say, Hey, by the way.
I'm also doing this. If you have someone who, uh, is, is looking for that kind of work or knows someone who's in that type of field, let me, please let me know that's ultimately what begins the cascade. I know that's it's what happens in my business as I train and develop people in my world. That's exactly how it starts.
And it's very organic, natural process. So that's what the first thing I'm looking forward to do. A goal I would have for this year is I'd love to land a book. I'd love to be able to read a book. Um, I, that, that to me, I, I've, I like to drive, I've driven cross country seven times. Oh my god, that's so much.
Well, it's not gonna do it in a week, you know, it's over the past, what, 24 years. Um, I love it, I love it, but only this last time, which I did, uh, two years ago, my last drive out there, but, um, I, I didn't I didn't know of audio books. They didn't books on tape. Weren't really a thing for me when I drove cross country the first time in 99, I had a CD player and I listened to AM radio, right?
I'm weird like that, but I just, I, I'd listened to a couple of books on the ride, the left, but the drive there and the drive back and just listening to the, to the reader, I just kept thinking myself like I could do that. Yeah. Not only could I do that. I want to do that. And not only do I want to do that, I know I could do it well.
I think we're all going to love this. I'm going to go into the bathroom. And man that's something, would you find that sweet spot? You're like, I think I could really do this. Like, this is a natural gift. It's a God given talent. And for some people. It might not be their voice. It might be there. They have unique patients and you know, they're, they're incredible in therapy and social work.
For others it's, it's their, they have an incredible ability to stay calm under pressure and they do phenomenal as emergency room, you know, doctors and nurses and. One thing I wish more people would pay attention to is what they're good at and play to those strengths as opposed to comparing to somebody else.
I mean, comparison is the thief of joy and they, they, they look at someone else like, Oh, they're, I need to be like that because they're winning. It's like saying, yo, they're left handed and they succeeded. I gotta be left handed too. No, play to your strengths. So, for me this year, my, uh, the big goal would be to land a book.
And I firmly believe that's gonna happen. I don't know what kind of book, uh, but that's not relevant, to be honest, because the goal is to read a book. They get hired to read a book. And, you know, we'll go from there. I'm gonna, I'm gonna stop for a second, because if you couldn't tell, I can keep going. Oh, no, you're fine.
I like I said, I like hearing you talk. So I mean, that's what that kind of the whole point. But no, I think it's good to have. It's good to have small goals. It's good to have big goals. I don't even think like somebody else might be like, well, that's such a big goal. But if for you, I don't think that is.
It's not like. It would be like a national book to me. That's like, okay, let's, let's calm it down. Let's get, you know, get you on a smaller scale. But, you know, I don't think that is out of the realm of possibility and it will probably happen, you know, even quicker than you think it will. Um, so, you know, it's a good goal to have.
Um, so are you on any form of social media or anything at all right now? Uh, I, I'm, I, yes, however, I, I don't necessarily, uh, put out a lot of content one just for the nature of my industry, um, that, that I'm, I'm somewhat limited on, on what I'm able to really communicate about. So my social media has been more just fun.
Um, I will say though, I've become a little bit more active on Twitter. Uh, for no other reason than I find that there's, there's real like news content. So if I were, as I do, let me phrase that as I do get more involved in social media and start to promote myself, that's the forum that I would see myself really, uh, putting content on.
Okay. And I, I believe if not by. The time this episode comes out, um, shortly thereafter, cause you get a website through voice coaches and you might not know what the address is off the top of your head, but I have it right in front of me. Uh, just so people can go ahead, they can find you, they can hear what you've done.
Uh, Brian batter. So B A T T E R dot I can voice. com is going to be like, if anybody wants to check out the audio that he's. Then it will be up. If it's not up this moment, it will be up in the next week or two because usually it's about it. We are, I always tell everybody it's about a month from the time you do your demo and then we got the holiday in between here, too.
So, um, but yeah, I mean, I, I see you doing some really amazing things and I really appreciate you taking the time to be here with us today and chat about you know what you've been up to and your mindset, because I think it's it's it's challenging. something that is for, it's refreshing, honestly. Um, and it might really be inspirational, I think to some who are a little less confident in what they're doing than, than you or I, um, you know, so it kind of can give them maybe a little motivation here to start the new year.
Uh, but I'm wishing you all the best and you better not be a stranger. Uh, I'll tell you that. Absolutely not. I'll be up in Albany. I'll come by, say hi. And I look forward to speaking with you again and whatever new forum we might find ourselves in for real I mean like the moment that you get any anything.
I mean you've got my email hit me up I want to hear it. I want to hear the demo. I want to just don't be a stranger All right But I like I appreciate you taking some time this morning to talk to me and uh, I wish you all the best in the New year You got it. So thanks so much Visit voice coaches. com for more voiceover news and information
This week on Voice Coaches Radio, to start the New Year, Marissa sat down with former VC student, Brian Batter who has an incredible background in public speaking. Before he was even on the podcast, Marissa knew this is the guy to potentially inspire and motivate your voice over journey as a great kick off to 2024!