Veteran voiceover and sound expert Nick Sanabria of Radio City Recording & Audio has employed his rich “1950s Don Pardo announcer voice” in a new audio app that he and notable programmer Jeff Faust created for iOS devices, like the iPhone.
The app, Your Personal Announcer, featuring hundreds of handy and humorous one-liners, quips, comebacks and sayings, was launched Nov. 1. It’s available for 99 cents at the Apple App Store.
Your Personal Announcer offers five different categories: Classic Announcer, At Home, On the Road, Out on the Town, and In Your Face. It also has a user-customer Favorites category.
Users can shake their Smartphone to hear a random one-liner and also view liner text transcripts.
“There are over 300 lines, in categories from traditional announcements, like ‘Please rise for the singing of our National Anthem,’ to ‘The following program is not recommended for younger viewers,’ which is perfect type of liner for groups who want to get a meeting off on a lighter note, for example,” says Sanabria.
Grocery store inspiration
Sanabria came up with the idea after standing in a grocery checkout Express Line, behind a woman with a cartful of items and people behind him were grumbling complaints.
“I suddenly decided to announce in a faux-friendly, comical, old-school announcer voice, ‘Math alert! I clearly see you have more than 15 items in your basket. Please move to an appropriate checkout lane!’ Everyone within earshot laughed,” he says.
Thinking the new media approach could help enlarge his voiceover scope, Sanabria connected with Minneapolis-based designer/programmer Jeff Faust of Faust Logic, Inc., and within two weeks they jotted down many ideas when Faust suggested “adding some silly liners for kids,” Sanabria says.
When all the liners were refined, voiced and recorded by Sanabria and sound effects added, they submitted the recording and a written transcript to the Apple Store app committee for approval.
“They gave it an ‘over 12 years of age rating,’ like a PG 12, just the market we were looking for,” Sanabria says, and added the app as a sale item.
“Everyone’s favorite liner so far, especially among kids, is a silly one,” he notes, going into Don Pardo mode to intone the putdown, “Well, aren’t weeee Mister Poopy Pants.” He notes that everyone reacts to the ‘50s announcer voice “because it’s funny today.”
Sanabria’s Radio City Recording business
Sanabria is a 30-year voice, musician/composer and recording veteran, who is weathering a changed industry, “due to lowered budgets, shorter lead time, and a diverse spectrum of media platforms,” he notes.
Realizing he neither needed nor could afford it, he closed his downtown, multi-room Radio City Recording & Audio studio in August, 2010 and reopened a downsized studio in his Aurora home. Business continues to be good in all genres – voice, music, production.
“Home studios are now a given,” Sanabria says. “Most of my collaborators, including other voice talent, clients, and musicians, just send files back and forth” and connect via phone patches.
Sometime next year, Radio City will have Skype video, Sanabria adds.
Reach Nick Sanabria at 630-340-4949.