Talking in the Dark

For this, Blog post #10, I am choosing to touch on the importance of Radiolab’s: Behind the Scenes making of a podcast. I view myself as being a good listener in the traditional sense, but had never listened to a podcast up to this point. This podcast appealed to me because I feel as though it preps the inexperienced listener, and gives some background on the genres creation. 

My preconceived notion of a podcast had relegated this genre of digital composition to being strictly spoken word. I now know that that couldn’t be further from the truth. In the case of Radiolab it begins by meeting with ‘some guy’ who wants to meet with them. The audio is recorded, usefulness is determined, and then the clips are arranged. They then record (and often re-record) they’re prepared inputs on the topics being discussed. Jad described the creative process as being one which treats the clips as musical objects that need to be arranged properly and scored. I can’t help but make a comparison between scoring a podcast audio track, and scoring a movie. In my eyes, or rather my ears, the two have some distinct similarities. The primary goal is to elicit the desired emotional response, whatever that response may be.  The varied sounds and music that are used really propel the project forward, and aid in preventing boredom or confusion. Proper scoring may be even more vital in a podcast because there isn’t any clarity provided from a visual representation of the words being spoken.

There is substantially more that goes into the creation of a podcast than I had originally thought. Carefully planned choices seem to be of paramount importance in this genres creation. Another important learning experience I gained from Jad and Robert was through the polished, yet informal vibe of it all. Everything was edited precisely with its accompanying music or sound, but all the while never lost its conversational tone. In order to accomplish this, there must be a certain level of comfort between those who are speaking. I can imagine that nothing would be more boring than a stiff podcast which lacks authenticity.

Overall, I want my audio documentary to portray ‘me’ in as accurate a light as possible. How can we create documentaries on ourselves which are both intriguing, and objective? Does the recording device need to be left running in order to better produce authentic content? Careful reflection is needed to come to these creative decisions.




One thought on “Talking in the Dark

  1. The point you bring up that held the most resonance with me was the conversational aspect of the podcast. I love your choice of word ‘authenticity’ used to describe it. It seems so easy but I feel like it’s going to be so difficult to evoke and authentic conversation.
    – LH

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