Authentic Voice Panel at PAB2007 with Bob Goyetche (moderator), Cathy Bobkowicz, Adam Gratrix, Scarborough Dude and Melinda Mason explore the role of drawing on personal experience, feelings and thoughts to express yourself using your own authentic voice.
Photo by Dave Delaney.
Mark Blevis: I’m Mark Blevis.
Bob Goyetche: And I’m Bob Goyetche and welcome to the Canadian Podcast Buffet with our special presentation continuing with Podcasters Across Borders audio.
Mark Blevis: This episode is brought to you in part by TD Canada Trust.
Bob Goyetche: Our next session is a panel which I had the pleasure of moderating “The Authentic Voice Panel” featuring Cat from the “Catfish Show”, Scarborough Dude from “DicksnJanes”, Adam Gratrix from “Suburban Transpondency” and Melinda Mason from “My Marilyn”.
Bob Goyetche: Well welcome. This is Authentic Voice and I feel a great deal of sense of ownership about this panel. First of all, my wife is on the panel. And also because it was a topic that, after looking deep into my soul, Mark assigned it to me. What is Authentic Voice?
Mark Blevis: Is this pick on Mark day today?
Bob Goyetche: Every day is pick on Mark day. What is your Authentic Voice? What is the Authentic Voice? The voice you’re using for your podcast. And some people play characters in their podcasts, some people are themselves but don’t put as much of themselves out there as they would in real life. There’s all degrees to which we expose ourself through our shows and through our blogs and through our podcasts. And I think we have a great representation of people here from the stream of consciousness to current daily life events, to people who do shows in character and out of character and about passion, something they’re passionate about. So I’d like to maybe ask each panelist, we’ll start with Cat and work our down. Say who you are, you know who you are, don’t say who you are. But tell me what voice you use for your show and…’cause your voice is your Authentic Voice and why did you use that voice? Why do you, why are you the person you are on your show?
Cathy Bobkowicz: That’s a really good question because I have no idea how to answer it. Why do I use my voice? ‘Cause it’s mine, and I don’t have any talent to make up any other voice. That…it would just not be very good. What makes it authentic is that it’s real, that what I talk about and what goes on within my podcast is me. So whatever you hear that’s going on is me.
Bob Goyetche: Great, that’s perfect. Adam?
Adam Gratrix: The way I approach…I do multiple podcasts with multiple approaches to them. And one of the main ones I do in a character is an ensemble cast of friends. And we get together and we party and we talk and we go out, we stay in, we do anything possible, we say anything. And having these kind of…they’re like masks that we put on in order to let loose a fraction…the little fractions of ourselves that sometimes we don’t show other people, we’re able to explore them comfortably. And often times, we end up falling in and out of these characters that we created for ourselves. Because even though it’s a characterization, it is still a real element of our personalities. So the lines get blurred and often because you’re doing a show, other people in your lives look at you in a strange way, like why are you acting like this? Well, I’m just pretending but really you’re not because you’re saying things that are coming from inside. So to have that confidence sometimes the mask is appropriate.
Melinda Mason: Well for me, when I first decided that I wanted to try podcasting, I actually sat down and I thought to myself okay, Mel’s World, that sounds cool. And I did about a half an hour show and I talked and I listened back to it and I thought, wow a good half of that’s about Marilyn Monroe, ‘cause that is who I am. That’s my big passion in life and I thought, you know, let’s just focus on that. So it is my authentic voice, but it’s not really me as a whole person. And that’s what I kind of struggle with, you know. I listen to all these great shows and it’s people who are talking about their lives and, you know, and I envy that because I chose such a narrow focus. But it is totally me, it’s totally authentic. But kind of the subject picked me ‘cause that just is mostly what I’m about. So that’s how I kind of chose the voice I do my show about.
Scarborough Dude: And I’ve already forgotten the question. I’m not going to even try and answer it. But I would like to speak to you in my authentic voice now and say that I feel like absolute shit right now, ‘cause I fell in with a bad crowd last night and went out drinking. So if there is anybody out there…excuse me…who has to speak tomorrow, watch who you drink with tonight…okay, that’s my word of advice. But basically that’s an example of what I would use as my authentic voice. And sometimes I don’t know if that’s Ken or if I don’t…if that’s his alter ego who likes to drink and indulge in dope and do those other things. And I sort of jump between the two of them. Whatever one feels comfortable for that particular day or that time, that’s the one I go with.
Bob Goyetche: On one of your recent shows Ken, you said, okay, on this episode I’m not Scarborough Dude, I’m Ken. And there’s also “Prick” you’re other character that you bring in once and awhile to be your, you know, little devil on the shoulder or whatever. Is any of those voices less authentic?
Scarborough Dude: I don’t know about “Prick”. I have no control over him. He just sort of shows up every once in awhile and I have the feeling he’s telling the truth quite often. It’s just something I don’t particularly want to hear. It’s a little bit of a game, but it’s something that sometimes you need a reminder to keep you on the track. So if ever I feel…I found what’s bothered me the most about this is my ego was getting really big. I want to be the Scarborough Dude, I want to be famous, I want people to like me and like my show. And it bothers me. So every once in awhile this other character will come along and just prick that just a little bit and let me know that I’m just talking a lot of bullshit out there. And it’s really not all that important and to just deflate me just a little bit. So he serves a purpose. And comes pretty much and goes as he chooses.
Bob Goyetche: Do any of you find anything limiting about the voice you’ve chosen? Marilyn, you mentioned…Marilyn, see…it’s the hair…Melinda you, you mentioned that you limit yourself, you obviously limit yourself to Marilyn Monroe and that it doesn’t let you explore things that are around that. Do you regret that? Do you wish that you could just break out of that and…?
Melinda Mason: For sure, for sure, sometimes I do. Like the whole Marilyn thing right there, you know, I’m pretty much type cast that that’s all I’m about. And, you know, I’ve really, I’ve been wanting to do something else. But on the other hand, I have such a large audience that knows me as, you know, the Marilyn person. I don’t want to, you know, jump into a, you know, here’s my drinking alter ego and everybody who knows me as the Marilyn person will be like wow, she’s a real bitch and she, you know, she drinks too much. Or she, you know, I don’t want to tarnish kind of the image of my Marilyn Monroe fans with…if they catch who I am in my other podcasts. If I could do it completely anonymously, that would be kinda cool.
Bob Goyetche: Okay.
Melinda Mason: Yeah, for sure.
Bob Goyetche: So Adam. you have multiple shows. You have one where you’re playing in character and you have one where you’re playing more yourself, right?
Adam Gratrix: Well, even that…even trying to play myself in the context of like me in my bedroom playing music and talking about whatever comes to mind, compared to when I’m with a group of friends and we’re trying to be controversial and crazy. And I can’t step into that because that’s not…it’s, it goes along with the context theme. It only works within its own context of what’s going on. Having an ensemble cast allows you to play off of other people’s dynamics, so that instils kind of a, you know, you play off each other and you end up growing into this character. And this persona kind of takes over and you become that thing. We’re going out on the town, we’re going to be this thing. But when you’re alone, you’re playing against yourself. And so I struggle with how I’m dealing with who I am in the context of me and a microphone talking into the void and not really having a conversation, just kind of talking to myself. So in that way, I end up creating an imaginary character that I’m speaking to and I’m like shouting at or talking to. And we’re friends and then I create this, so this totally separate persona. As I say, you know, then I do my show and then I go to work and then I’m all this different person that people perceive me as.
So it’s a matter of how you want other people to perceive you and how you perceive yourself in the process. It’s a constant struggle really to try to understand really who you are. Because we’re, everyone is so…we’re like our podcast is like a prison that kind of splits us off into different colours and we can focus on those different colours. And, you know, when we’re just ourselves, you know, we don’t get to explore the individual pieces of ourselves so much. But having different podcasts, you know, you might be able to do that, which can be kind of fun. It’s almost like a self-exploration thing.
Bob Goyetche: And Cat you…I don’t know why, but I tend to know your show pretty well. But what I wanted to ask you, you talk about life events. You’ve, in the last year, talked about your Mom passing away, your undying love for your sister…
Cathy Bobkowicz: I have not talked about my sister…do I talk about my sister?
Bob Goyetche: Never.
Cathy Bobkowicz: I don’t talk about my sister. I don’t like my sister.
Bob Goyetche: Doesn’t matter, move on…but how do you know, or how do you know what to leave out because you put so much out there? So how do you know what to leave out…
Cathy Bobkowicz: That’s a double-edged question.
Bob Goyetche: …and, but is it limiting to have that much out there? In that you…does it make it harder to hold things back when you do put so much out there?
Cathy Bobkowicz: Alright, for those who don’t know, Bob doesn’t let me say a lot of stuff. So when I do my show and I love talking about stuff…
Mark Blevis: Am I going to have to separate you two?
Cathy Bobkowicz: No, no, no, no…
Bob Goyetche: I think I’m working on that actually.
Cathy Bobkowicz: What limits me is you.
Mark Blevis: This is good, keep it going, keep it going.
Cathy Bobkowicz: But what makes me is you. So there’s been many times where I’ve said stuff where it would make me sound like an absolute idiot. ‘Cause it’s personal. So I just go on and I have a big mouth sometimes and I say really stupid things sometimes and he’ll edit it out. Or he’ll say…he won’t even say anything, he’ll just like…and then he gets his pen and he looks at his thing, and he goes oh, that’s a time okay, I’ll cut that one out. And you protect me that way, which is a good thing. Because there’s some times, you know, you don’t want to…yes, I talk about my life, yes I talk about everything that’s going on in my life. No I don’t talk about everything that’s going on in my life. I don’t go into our marriage, I don’t talk about problems that we might have, I don’t go into negative things. I always try and just, you know, if there’s funny things happening or great things happening, we’ll talk about it. But I don’t go into, like my sister, okay, I can’t stand my sister, I don’t talk about my sister on the show because it’s a negative and it’s a…you know, I try and keep my show positive, happy, relaxed, enjoyable time. So for limiting me, I can be a very negative person. So it’s a huge struggle for me not to be negative on my show. And that’s my limiting factor.
Bob Goyetche: Any comments…
Cathy Bobkowicz: Does that make sense?
Bob Goyetche: You seem to be nodding like you wanted to say something or you’re interesting or…
Scarborough Dude: I was gonna answer a completely different question from whatever you’re going to ask.
Bob Goyetche: Go, go let’s just go. So do you miss having the Expo’s in Montreal?
Scarborough Dude: Pardon me…do I miss…no I don’t miss the Expo’s. I miss Expo ’67, great year. Listen, I do want to be serious for a moment. I’m coming at this from the background of an ESL teacher. That’s how I’ve made my living for quite awhile now and I love teaching. But I learned a very good lesson on a day when I was hung over exactly like today, just over twenty years ago. I walked into a class of senior students, who were not particularly bright. This was in Japan. They do have some of them there too. And they didn’t really want to learn English and they didn’t wanna learn it from me anyway. And I walked in and I was feeling really, really hung over. I didn’t know how I was going to hold it together, whether I was just going to throw up right there and then. And it was a problem, and they were sort of looking at me. And I had the lesson, I knew what I had to teach them and get your books out, do this. And instead, a little voice just said no man, just scrap it. And I just looked out the window. I could see the water actually, ‘cause they were in Kamakura, near the beach. And I said you know, I wish I was at the beach today. And there was this stunned silence and suddenly every girl looked up and they were listening. I said I really…I don’t want to be here. And I started speaking in what I called an authentic voice. I started speaking from the real me and what I was feeling. And it was the most incredible breakthrough with that class because it wasn’t about English, it wasn’t about the lesson, the grammar, the language. It was about, gee they’re communicating with another person, a different language and they’re seeing part of that person who they didn’t know before. They’re seeing him as a human, not just this Gaiijin teacher coming in. And I’ve never forgotten it. And it’s something that stayed with me. To me, that’s what authenticity is, being your real self, and being the real person. And it was a breakthrough and I think it changed from that point on. I mean, it didn’t mean I went out and got drunk every night. But I realized the lesson from there is be true, be honest, tell them how you’re feeling and be yourself and put yourself out there, if you can.
And for me, the podcasting has just been this most amazing tool that allows that kind of experimentation, allows that kind of fun, allows that kind of play, and allows you to reach people in a different way, so.
Bob Goyetche: Open question. Do any of you think you can be too authentic? Because there…we do have control of the content we put out, right? We try to control to a certain extent the image people have of us by what we say or don’t say, even though it’s authentic. But by omission, we can do things. Do you guys think that…can you be too authentic?
Scarborough Dude: Well I think I’ve already gone over that line. I have a fifteen year old and a seventeen year old. And I’m…I just realized today that while they know their Dad does podcasting, he loves it and they think that’s cool, they don’t want to listen, they hear enough of me already. But it just hit me today when I was trying to recover from this that gee, what if…now that I’m on Facebook, and I’ve sort of dropped this Scarborough Dude persona, and there’s a real name out there. What if one of my teenage son’s high school friends says hey, I heard your old man the other day talking about jacking off or something, what’s all that about? My poor kids, you know, this is horrible. So I have crossed over, and I can see that I have, so I’ve taken off my first hundred shows and they aren’t there anymore. And I’ve tried to re-invent myself from podcast number 107 are kid-friendly, almost, well, not quite.
Bob Goyetche: Depending on much you like your kids.
Scarborough Dude: Yeah, but it is…it can be a real problem.
Bob Goyetche: Anything else to add to you guys, or? We’re going to open the questions up to the floor after this?
Adam Gratrix: When you want to talk about your life and you want to talk about serious issues, there’s always the threat of stepping on somebody’s toes and upsetting someone and saying something that you may not mean at the time, but you’re expressing that emotion, you’re getting that emotion out. And then you just let something go. And it’s so mean, it sounds so mean and nasty. But when you go back and you have time to think about it, you know, oh well gees, I really didn’t mean it that way. I was just angry. And when you get into a podcast that you allow yourself that freedom to say whatever you want, you can go back and edit that out if, you know, later on you feel, oh my god, I’ve just, you know, alienated an entire race of people by that comment. Or you say okay, I have to work on the next show to redeem myself. Or I have to start another podcast so people won’t think I’m evil, you know, so.
And then when you talk about family members and this is something that podcasters do a lot. And it must be…it’s the most therapeutic thing for the entire community of peoples. When you talk about someone who’s passed away, it is such an emotional thing. And even just mentioning it on the show gets people’s heart just clinched up whenever you here someone talk about it in whatever context it is. If it’s a real event that happens, you can connect with it regardless of what…like, it just cuts through everything and everyone identifies with it. And it’s those type of things that you can just be free to say and you’re scared to say. You don’t know what the response is but it’s always pure, genuine, authentic love back to you. And it’s the ultimate form of therapy. So that’s as authentic as it gets and feels.
Cathy Bobkowicz: I’ll agree.
Melinda Mason: I agree.
Melinda Mason: The one thing I struggle with a little bit with being authentic is also the commercialization kind of aspect, you know. I’m passionate about Marilyn Monroe but then when I’m on the show and I’m pitching products, which is what, you know, some people could say, you know, I am. I’m talking about a product and I’m, you know, saying buy this, this is really good. I struggle with that a little bit, you know, that…how authentic am I being when I’m, you know, basically infomercial part of the show, right? Talking about things and then the other side is, you know, part of it is, do I like the attention that I get from this? Hell yeah, it’s great. I mean who doesn’t like getting e-mails, you know, “I love your show”, “you’re great”. You know, it really kind of builds you up, you know. I know Yahoo podcast is kind of gone away but I got an e-mail today that I’m on the front page as a staff pick. Woo! So I’m very excited. So, you know, like things like that and then part of its like well, am I not doing this just for the love of Marilyn Monroe? And I was when I started, you know. And then you get that kind of burn out. I was doing it every two weeks, so a bi-weekly show. And you do get that burn out, right? Like how do you not get tired of it? So I’ve gone back to just a monthly show and I find that that kind of, you know, it keeps it going so I keep the fan base there and I don’t lose them. I’m the only Marilyn Monroe podcast, so I gotta keep going or somebody’s gonna take my spot. But it’s hard, you struggle with that. You know, I do it because of the love of it, but then there’s parts of it that people could say well, your just, you know, doing it for the attention or some kind of money that people think I’m making which I’m not at this point. But someday, maybe.
Bob Goyetche: Do you think your chances of making money are better or worse because of the voice you’ve chosen?
Melinda Mason: I think its better. Like I said, I haven’t put anything out there where people are not going to think I’m a very good role model or, you know what I mean? Like I think I’ve put it out there where my chances are pretty good. Whereas if I had opened up about everything about my life, then maybe it wouldn’t be so much, so, yeah, for sure.
Bob Goyetche: Right. Any questions from the floor? We’re going to walk around a bit ‘cause it’s into the afternoon and people are falling asleep. And Tommy’s going to make me walk, that’s good.
Tommy Vallier: Tommy from Talkshoe doing musical chairs and moving around. Question for Cat specifically. You mentioned you try to keep your show kind of upbeat and positive. Do you find your scheduling then is hard because if you’ve had a bad day, do you find that reflects on the show? Or if you’ve had a really good day, do you find the value of your show is better to your listeners? Or do you reschedule your taping because of, you know, a bad day, a good day, that kind of stuff?
Cathy Bobkowicz: Well within the last little while probably since I did talk about when my Mom had died, the schedule is gone, I have no schedule. If I have a bad day, which in the last few months has been many, yeah, I can’t do a show. I can have content. I have my list. I have a book that I write notes whenever something comes up. I write it down and throughout the week I’ll keep writing stuff. And if I’m having a bad day, no, there’s no way I can do a show. If I’m in a really great mood, does it affect my show being better? Not really, because the show depends on me and Bob. So, if the two of us are okay, we can do a fantastic show. If I’m really high and he’s not, it’s not a good show. But I don’t usually reschedule if the day’s going okay, then yeah, we get a show out and it’s great, so.
Mark Blevis: Since Cat brought up the point that if one of you is high and one of you is low, you’re not gonna do a show…
Bob Goyetche: Mark, could you say your podcast please?
Mark Blevis: Oh I’m sorry, my name is Mark and I do the Canadian Podcast Buffet…I’m sorry, I’m Bob Goyetche and I do the Canadian Podcast Buffet…you mention that if you’re high and Bob is low…I can understand that…you said that you wouldn’t do a show. But is that not an authentic voice if one of you is low? Is that not part of life, part of reality?
Cathy Bobkowicz: Yes, it would be part of life. It’s not part of my life I wanna share, ‘cause it’s not really nice.
Bob Goyetche: Also there’s a reason our brains work the way they do. And if you have an argument, it fades over time, right? But if you record the argument you’re having…oh yeah…well hang on, let me back it up two minutes. Look what you said there…doesn’t work, on July 14th, 2004 you said…no.
Mark Blevis: Hey, you know, that’s a good idea.
Bob Goyetche: I don’t think any marriage could survive that.
Julien Smith: Hi, I’m Julien Smith. So I’ll be everybody eventually. This might not be as much for you guys because all your shows are your…yeah, well they’re your lives, right? Like they’re your reflections on things and whether it’s Marilyn or whether it’s just crazy jacking off whatever. But you guys, of course, are welcome too. Do you ever find with any of the kinds of stuff you’re doing, and you eluded to this a little bit around commercial content, that your authentic voice actually gets in the way as far as the content you’re trying to…I think about when I was doing the Toronto Music Show. And I actually really tried to stay the hell out of the way and play the music and not make it about me. And do you ever find like, at the moments where you don’t have to make it about you, that it’s hard and that’s for anybody else to?
Bob Goyetche: Well, I can answer part of that one. When we started the Buffet, Mark and I, we made a decision to not editorialize. So any promo that we got, we’d play. Any link we’d put up. And we were about the Canadian community and we were just a conduit. And what happened is at first, if you listen to those first episodes of Buffet, it is like listening to a piece of plywood, it’s so stiff, right? Because we took all the emotion right out. And then we realized that we could show ourselves without showing what, you know, like, without going too far in editorializing. So there’s a balance there. There’s times we’ll get an audio comment or we’re both in a particular giddy mood. We record at night, late usually, our shows. And so, you know, the audio comment will be playing and, you know, we’re Skyping to each other and like oh, what a tool. You know, but we never say that, you know. So be careful. You don’t know what we’re saying about you during…but, you know what I mean?…
Mark Blevis: I have no idea what you’re talking about.
Bob Goyetche: But you know what I mean? So we still…we’ve used more of our authentic voice but we don’t bring our opinions into in on the Buffet. But you’re right, you can really…you can go too far the other way.
Mark Blevis: Question over here.
Bob Goyetche: Stand up please.
Tod: I’m the bastard love child of both Bob and Mark. There’s a great website for those of you who want it. It’s called radiodiaries.org. And they’re, I think, masters at authentic voice. And what they do is something that I would love to hear you guys comment on, if you’ve done it or if you’d be willing to do it. And that’s, you know, they…these people will…they’re often given recorders by public radio producers and they’re usually kids. And at the moment that something happens in their life, they capture it right then. As opposed to coming back home and then later on talking about it. Like, they’re literally if someone says something that pisses them off…are you coming over here to shut me up?…I always get worried when a fellow CBC’r walks over to me…stop talking Tod. So…but they’ll like, they’ll grab the microphone when it happens and they’ll record into it what happens, you know, and that becomes the show. And it’s, I don’t know if you’ve…I want to know if you’ve done that or if that’s something you’d be willing to do? Because that sort of…it sounds great, it sounds super authentic. But it might cross the line that, you know, Cat, you were talking about and stuff.
Melinda Mason: I’ll just say one thing. Once, too bad, you know, Ross and Karen aren’t here, but I remember they were talking about something. And I was just really upset about something they were talking about, I won’t go into it. And I remember I thought okay, I’m going to record…I just happened to be at the computer and I thought I’m gonna record something in response to it. So I recorded this message. I sent it off to her. An hour later I thought to myself, wow, I wish I hadn’t have done that. You know, that’s same with the e-mail, you know. In the heat of the moment, as soon as you hit that send button, it’s out there, right? And I e-mailed her back and I said, you know what, would you mind not airing that ‘cause I’ve just thought about it and, you know. So doing that in the heat of the moment, depending on what it is, I don’t think I would be personally comfortable doing it because, you know, I think you need to process it, depending what it is. So that was my experience with it.
Bob Goyetche: Do you think it was less authentic because you did it in the heat of the moment or more authentic, or?
Melinda Mason: You know, it’s more authentic, but you have to make the decision. Like Cat said, what are you willing to share? You know, what do you want your persona to be out there on the internet, you know. And if that’s what your gig is, then let it go at the moment it happens. But I just chose for myself that that’s not how I want it to be, so.
Cathy Bobkowicz: I’ve had a little bit of a different experience that I really wish I would have either my iRiver or a recording device somehow. For those who listened to my show in the last two years maybe, I have been mistaken for a man about five times. And I swear to god…
Bob Goyetche: Not by me.
Cathy Bobkowicz: …no, for some reason it’s always in Quebec. But it’s like, I’m shocked when it happens. And I wish I had a recorder to say “that guy or that woman just called me a guy again”. Like it’s unbelievable that it happens. But the fact that it’s happened so many times. I’ve opened the door to my house and the guy goes “bonjour monsieur”. It’s like oh, whatever, whatever. But I get so frustrated and so upset about it ‘cause, okay, I don’t think I look like a man but I don’t want make-up. I’m not like this big fancy female chick. But if I did a recording right on the spot, it would have so much emotion. And it would have…it would really be great content because it would be like right there. The whole emotion of how I’m feeling. Whereas later, when I try and explain, it’s like oh yeah, yeah, guy whatever, oh okay, sucked. So if…for me, it would give a lot more if I did it right there on the spot, if I had the microphone with me or the recorder with me.
Scarborough Dude: I think the kind of things that would upset me would probably be just dealing with my two teenage sons. And I think if something happened, I really wouldn’t want to put them through that and expose them. But I would probably within maybe an hour of whatever the fight was over, go into my car and turn on the recorder. And I don’t allow myself any prep time to think about what I’m going to say. I vent. I let it out. I find for me, this is the therapy of podcasting. That’s why I’m doing it. It really is a wonderful form of therapy. And it actually works and it does give me time to actually think about it, digest it, and reflect about what’s going on and share that with the listeners. But I wouldn’t want to do it right in the moment when I’m screaming at my son. I don’t think that would help anybody. But within that very short time frame, yes, it’s good.
Adam Gratrix: I see podcasting as kind of an adventure when I go out. And I love it when things just happen. We can tell as many stories as we want. But when the story’s happening right then and there, it’s great. My co-host fell down a flight of stairs and we had to phone the hospital. He was like having heart palpitations, because he has a heart problem. And so we phoned an ambulance and the ambulance guy came and I left the recorder running. And we got to hear, you know, “are you okay?” And he was joking around and he’s wearing these big boots. And they were talking about hooker boots and, you know…we’re out on the town…oh la la…you know, I get mistaken…you know, oh, are those your hooker boots?…I don’t know, it was awhile ago. It was a crazy moment where everything was just happening right there and that was the story. And we could’ve talked about it later but it was there, it was raw and real and that’s what I love about podcasting. And having that recorder with you at all times and doing the show, especially out and about when you’re, you know, going to a show or something. You’re out having a smoke and then something happens and it’s beautiful. And it has this weird poeticness to it, you know. And you listen back. And like Dry Shave, when he was talking to this guy on the street, you know. That’s a moment that you can only capture if you have your recorder with you at all times.
Mark Blevis: I wanna call Scarborough Dude on something, but it’s a good call which is, you released probably one of the most compelling pieces of audio, honest audio, I’ve heard in the last year which was an argument with your son at the Go Train Station.
Scarborough Dude: Oh that was so painful. God, that was awful. But yeah, yeah, I’d forgotten about that, thank you. And that was at the moment, yeah…I actually hope there’s going to be more as we’re moving closer. Like I’m right now, I have these two selves.
Bob Goyetche: You’re hoping for more arguments, is that it?
Scarborough Dude: Yeah, and open discussions. I’d actually like to eventually bring them into the show, but I’m just not ready to cross that line yet. My son’s claim was I’ve ruined Facebook. Now that I have a Facebook account, I’ve ruined it for him and everybody. So we’ve got a ways, we’ve got a ways to go in this, and the fact that they might know I was a hippy and smoked pot but they sure don’t know their father does it now. And we’re not ready to cross that line yet. But eventually it could be wonderful.
Bob Goyetche: Does your son know that you put out that argument as a podcast?
Scarborough Dude: Uhmm, I don’t we’ve discussed it.
Bob Goyetche: Okay.
Scarborough Dude: He may find it someday, or his friends may.
Bob Goyetche: Okay, they’ll deal with it.
Scarborough Dude: Well, I’m trying to bury that first one hundred shows so…
Bob Goyetche: Any other questions from the floor? How much time we got Mark?
Mark Blevis: 8 minutes.
Bob Goyetche: 8 minutes. Anybody have a 7 minute question to ask?
John Meadows: Smoky Times. A lot of this presentation so far has been, I’d almost call it psychological about sort of inward motivation, where the authentic voice comes from. On a somewhat different tack, do any of you in the panel or anyone in the room consciously do other things in the production process to try and get a podcast that the sound of it reinforces what you feel your voice to be? Either from choice of equipment, choice of recording venue, the atmospheric stuff? Like to follow up on what Mark was talking about earlier today. Is there any kind of conscious effort to try and build on your authentic voice with that kind of stuff?
Scarborough Dude: I pay minimal attention to the technical side of things. I have an iRiver and a microphone, turn it on, shut it off and…but I’ll carry it with me in all places but…
Bob Goyetche: But there are topics that you feel more comfortable discussing when you’re at that park and in your car, right?
Scarborough Dude: Yeah, location has a lot to do with it. You know, I have certain locations that I’ll go there to free my mind. The one thing, I’m a writer. I come at this from writing. I’ve got twenty years of doing a zine before there was such a thing as podcasting. And really my background is coming from…I’m one of these people who used to write twenty page letters to their friends ‘cause I was lonely and sad and wanted to share something. And I had friends who would actually treasure and read these long letters and keep them. I still have them or they do. So the…I found when computers came along, I can’t write any of my feelings at a computer. It’s just the worst possible place to express myself. So I have to get away from this box and the technology that just interferes with any kind of emotion or feeling I have and go to a spot like my…I have a Sunday Sermon spot that I took Adam to. And a little park. I have a favourite graveyard I go to all the time when I’m in a quieter mood. So the location has an awful lot to do with it for me. And the iRiver is beautiful for that.
Melinda Mason: As you can imagine, I record mine in the Marilyn Monroe shrine so…you bet, just picture it and yeah, I’m always in the mood then.
Adam Gratrix: I always try to record at as many locations as possible. Many, you know, unique places. We usually end up in the car because it’s a good place to…for acoustics. And you’re all huddled around one little mike that I’ve got. But also you were talking about like maybe post- production type stuff. I always try to put in where I bridge different segments, I try to put something that kind of adds either a comedic level to what’s being said, something poignant or, you know, something to bring…instead of just having like a music segment, you know, with a do-do-do-do-do-do-do, now we’re on the next segment. You know, I’ll put something from my…a favourite movie, like a quote or something, and I’ll put that in there. And it kind of, I think, it adds to the thing. But it might take it away. A lot of people just skip all that nonsense and I just want to hear you guys talking. But I often feel compelled to add little clips. And I spend half my production, post-production time, like searching the internet for something that’s juicy and that just fits right in, so.
Cathy Bobkowicz: We’re so opposite. We can never record in our car. We’ve tried it. It’s so loud we can’t record in our car. And I always have the exact same intro and the exact same outro and it’s all talk in between. So there’s nothing else to it. We’re so opposite.
Mark Blevis: Again, I would argue that some of the stuff that you guys did in your car was fun to listen to. Like when you guys were on your way to Vermont once, you did some recording. I never heard the drive-thru one.
Cathy Bobkowicz: Yeah, a date one.
Mark Blevis: Oh yeah, when you went on the slide. You guys went on that slide. That stuff was fun.
Bob Goyetche: Oh right yeah.
Cathy Bobkowicz: Yeah. We haven’t been on a date lately.
Bob Goyetche: Yeah, what happens a lot of the time though if you go out somewhere and, you know Cat and I being married, we do a lot of things together, it’s like, you know, like you have these people at weddings who take so many pictures, they actually miss the wedding, you know, or conferences or whatever. It’s all good to take a few pictures here and there, but at some point you’re not there to be the photographer, you’re there to participate. And I find that recording can get in the way of enjoying the event. It’s like okay, I’m about to go skydiving…wait…levels are good…okay, no, it’s a mountain now, I can’t…but if, you know.
Cathy Bobkowicz: And winter scenes are really hard ‘cause you’ve got jackets. And with the microphones, it’s really bad.
Audience Member: Speaking of microphones, if you’re having trouble, if it sounds awful recording in your car, that’s a microphone issue.
Bob Goyetche: No, it’s a Plymouth Voyager issue.
Audience Member: Bob, is this on?
Bob Goyetche: Mark, can you jack that mike a bit?
Audience Member: Okay, Bob, I just wanted to make a point about what you were saying before in terms of the microphone ruining the experience. That is something that is talked about a lot in photography, where people are like the camera is ruining the experience of the actual event. And what people say for photographers, and I think this goes for podcasters as well, is to make the recording a part of the event. And just to be like you’re recording this, yeah, it’s important, you know. It’s different when it’s a snapshot versus film. Film is obviously much more about life, more complex in a certain way. But that’s what photographers do. Photographers bring the cameras around and they do their best to make the actual camera and the taking of pictures a part of the experience, not something that divides you from the experience. Now as to how to get by that, get through that, I have no clue. But I’m just saying that this is already discussed in photography and they’ve gotten through that problem.
Bob Goyetche: Okay.
Audience Member: So we hopefully would to.
Bob Goyetche: Right. And I’m sure radio, experienced radio people have probably conquered that beast as well, as Tod Maffin springs to his feet.
Scarborough Dude: I think the microphone really does get in the way. My best conversations I have with friends after the conversation at the end of night I thought man, I wish I had recorded that, I wish we had have caught that. But I know, had I brought a microphone out at the beginning, we would not have had that conversation. That would have been the end of it. And it’s not worth it. The conversation with your friend is far more important than the damn podcast will ever be.
Bob Goyetche: Yeah.
Scarborough Dude: You know the time is the real people, it does count.
Bob Goyetche: Well I think we’re out of time, Mark?
Mark Blevis: We’re out of time, yeah.
Bob Goyetche: We’re out of time. So I’d like to thank our four friends for participating. Thank you very much, guys.
Bob Goyetche: This episode of the Canadian Podcast Buffet featuring Podcasters Across Borders audio is brought to you in part by TD Canada Trust.
Mark Blevis: Thanks to all of the PAB2007 Sponsors: Rogic Podcast Conglomerate, Third Storey Productions, TD Canada Trust, Thornley Fallis, StartCooking.com, Marion McDonald, Don Edwards, Freddie Litwiniuk, Bill Deys and Christopher Penn.
Bob Goyetche: For more info on Canadian Podcast Buffet you can go to our website www.canadianpodcastbuffet.ca.
Mark Blevis: For more information on Podcasters Across Borders visit that website www.podcastersacrossborders.com.
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Mark Blevis: Of course, you’re welcome to join any and all of the Rogic forums including the Canadian Podcast Buffet forum, and Podcasters Across Borders forum, and there’s a link to that at www.rogic.com/forum on the Canadian Podcast Buffet website.
Bob Goyetche: Canadian Podcast Buffet and Podcasters Across Borders are proud members of the Rogic Podcast Conglomerate.