Last night, before going to bed, I made a little chart to help explain what a mixer does. Today I sat down to write a post for the chart, and… blah. Nothing was working. Everything that was coming out was plain and boring. Dry, like saltine dry.
I want to help people make better podcasts. I’ve been a sound tech / engineer / guy / whatever you want to call it since I started working in theater when I was 15. I know how daunting this stuff can be when it’s you creating the shows, or spending money on gear, or when you are the one who has to fix things when things go wrong. When I was an engineering assistant in radio (basically, I’d do whatever tech stuff I could aside from working on transmitters), we would say it was ‘hours of boredom, seconds of terror.’ Because it’s the pressure situations when you are the one who has to fix things that really get your blood pumping.
So the struggle right now is making this fun. Trying to write about gain, and levels, and EQ, and sample rates in a way that doesn’t sound like Ben Stein is delivering it is proving harder than I thought it would be.
To me, it’s exciting to show people this stuff. The things you can do with audio to make it more alive, more real, more creative and bring an emotion out of people. To be able to tell a story, or get across an idea, or even to just have an opportunity to speak to people you wouldn’t have had the chance to before, to open up the doors to a world you didn’t have access to. To follow your own path, and make something you are truly proud of. That’s what gets me excited.
‘Show, don’t tell’ is the rule most quoted in storytelling. And it makes sense here as well. When I try to just tell you what something does, it’s dry and dull. I would rather show you what I’m talking about. So I’m going to work on that, and see how it goes. It’s been hard to figure out what I should be doing here, but things that are worth doing are often hard, and that’s just the way it goes. Hard isn’t a bad thing. It just means you have to figure out what works for you. It’s as individual as your voice, and your shows.
I’ll be getting to the mixer post soon, but for now, here’s the diagram, sans explanation. It might not make a ton of sense right now, but I will show you what I’m talking about.