VAM 029 | Q & A Session 01 – Vocal Health & Voice Matching

VAM 029 | Q & A Session 01 – Vocal Health & Voice Matching

Welcome to episode 29 of the Voice Acting Mastery podcast with yours truly, Crispin Freeman!

As always, you can listen to the podcast using the player above, or download the mp3 using the link at the bottom of this blog post. The podcast is also available via the iTunes Store online. Just follow this link to view the podcast in iTunes:

For this episode, I thought I would play some of the voicemail questions that I’ve been getting from my listeners and do my best to answer them. For those who don’t know, in the last episode I gave out a phone number where you can call in and leave me a question as a voicemail. From time to time, I’ll pick the most relevant questions I receive and answer them here on the podcast.

For this round of Q & A, I answer two of my listeners, Kimberly from Bernie, CA and Wes from Palm Springs, CA.

  1. Kimberly asks me how she can know when it’s safe to use her voice again after she’s recovered from being sick.
  2. Wes asks me if I could give him some tips and tricks for how to do voice matches.

I think you’ll find the answers very helpful.

As a reminder, the number where you can call in and ask your question is:


Please don’t forget to include your first name and what city in the world you’re calling from. I’m looking forward to hearing from you!

If you’d like to purchase the tea I recommend, you can find the Throat Coat Tea on

To rip audio from DVDs you own, you can download the Handbrake program here.

Thanks for listening!

Download Voice Acting Mastery Episode #29 Here (MP3)


26 Responses to “VAM 029 | Q & A Session 01 – Vocal Health & Voice Matching”

  1. Pat says:

    So, a person gets roles pretty easily as a voice-match once they are established, but there are only so many viable people to voice-match. As such, there’s probably a lot of competition among the voice acting community to perfect a person’s voice immediately after a new talent enters the public awareness (for instance, when RDJ starred as Iron Man in 2008), right?

    If nothing else it sounds like a great party trick.

    • Crispin Freeman says:

      I don’t think anyone gets a role in voice acting because they are “established”. I think someone gets a role in voice acting because they’re talented. If you’re “established” that just means that people are more familiar with your work so you are a known quantity. Being “established” raises someone’s reliability quotient, but it doesn’t ensure that people are going to hire them.

      I don’t know if there’s a race to voice match celebrities. I think most voice actors are just fascinated by vocal flexibility and so it interests them to be able to mimic all sorts of voices. You don’t know if they’re going to need a celebrity voice match for Robert Downey Jr. Many times I don’t work on a voice match until I actually get handed an audition. But that’s just me. Other voice actors may work on voice matches more obsessively because they find it satisfying.

  2. Kimberly Michelle says:

    Hey Crispin!

    I just wanted to say thank you so much for answering my questions! You’re the best!

    Kimberly Michelle

  3. Kalyn McCabe says:

    Yay! Lovely podcast as always. I’m so glad you’re taking viewer questions.

    Much love!

  4. Eric Rivera says:

    Interesting episode. I’ll try to see if I can call sometime soon.
    Until then I wanted to get your opinion on my Daily Speech and Diction exercise. It was designed by my Speech professor but edited by me.

    First I use the warm-up exercises that I got from Tara Platt and Yuri Lowenthal’s Voice Over Voice Actor website.
    Then, after I’m warmed up, I do a few pages of tongue twisters, sometimes with a pencil in my mouth.
    Lastly I take out the lyrics and try to sing a few somewhat difficult songs like “One Week” by Barenaked Ladies and “Life is a Rock” by Reunion.

    Your thoughts?

    • Crispin Freeman says:

      Glad you enjoyed the episode!

      As far as your daily exercises go, if you like them and find them helpful, then that’s the most important thing. Everyone needs to work out their own regimen for warming up their voice. Some people find certain exercises more useful than others. If you’ve developed a regimen that you like, then good for you.

      The only way I could give you more specific advice is if I actually worked with you in class. Then I could evaluate where you are and be more detailed in my feedback.

  5. Angelican Marcos says:

    Health is very important especially learning about vocal health it’s nice to have some knowledge about our health and well being. Thank you Mr. Freeman for a wonderful podcast keep up the good work teach. 🙂

  6. Terance says:

    Another great episode Crispin. Like Kimberly, I’ve gotten something new out of your podcasts each time I listen to them and I can honestly say I’ve gotten better at my voice acting since you started them last year. I have a couple of questions pertaining to voice matching. How do you know which people you are potentially capable of voice matching? For example, how did you figure out you could do voice matching for Orlando Bloom and Ben Stiller? Also how exactly do you get voice matching work? Is voice matching work something you need an agent to get you into or is it a big audition that everyone can try out for?

    • Crispin Freeman says:

      So glad you’re enjoying the podcast!

      As far as voice matching, I never “know” that I can voice match someone effectively until I try doing it. My agent sent me auditions for Orlando Bloom and Ben Stiller voice matches. I auditioned for them like everyone else in LA and the producers hired me. Later, I was asked by Disney to voice match my friend Jack Davenport for the Pirates of the Caribbean movies (Jack played Commodore Norrington). Initially I said I would be happy to voice match him. Unfortunately, after trying to attempt his voice, I realized that I couldn’t do it. Jack has smoked a lot of cigarettes and subsequently damaged his vocal folds. I couldn’t mimic that vocal damage effectively so I had to call Disney back and tell them that his voice was out of my range. But it turned out all right. I did plenty of voice matching for Orlando Bloom.

      Most voice matching comes through agents. I don’t know of any “cattle call” auditions for voice matching, but you never know what might happen in the future.

  7. Bishka says:

    This was quite an intersting episode, thank you. I am especialy interested in creating different voices for different characters and would love to hear about the techniques used. Many years ago the BBC did a program on voices and accents, they explained how people from different locations and countries speak. For example Ameriacans have a wide-mouth accent. There is also a narrow-mouth accent. Poepole from some countries lift there toung when they speak, othere push there toung forward, backward or downward. I would love to know more about this side of things. regards Bishka

    • Crispin Freeman says:

      I’m sure I’ll cover creating characters voices in a future podcast. Most importantly, however, is the ability to act. That’s why I’m focusing on it so much. Being able to do a crazy character voice is worthless without solid acting ability underneath it.

      It’s true that one of the main elements in creating a believable accent is mouth placement. David Alan Stern in his “Acting with an Accent” series stresses this a lot. You might want to check out his work:

      Hope that helps.

  8. Victor Aguilar says:

    Hey Crispin, This is unrelated to the podcast topic but I was wondering if it would be possible to have a professional career as well as a voice acting career in terms of time management. By career I don’t mean waiting tables but with shifts or hours that still give time to pursue voice acting. Thanks!

    • Crispin Freeman says:

      I think your question in very much related to the podcast!

      I’m not sure what you mean by having a “professional career”. Do you mean a 9 to 5 office job? Do you mean being a medical doctor? Do you mean being a real estate investor? Do you mean running your own business? Voice acting is itself a professional career and it can be hard to juggle two careers. I am all for creating multiple streams of income, but you do have to figure out how to manage your time so that you can actually do the things you’d like to accomplish.

      I don’t know of any medical doctor that has the time to work regularly in voice over. The two careers have very different time requirements.

      Voice acting requires you to have a flexible schedule and to be available on short notice. You need ot take that into account when you’re considering having a professional career in addition to a professional career as a voice actor.

      • Victor Aguilar says:

        The career I was referring to was being an emergency medical physician in a hospital. These types of doctors work differently as in that they work 8 hour shifts such as the night shift from 5pm to 1 am. This is what I was interested in and I know of a few of these kind of doctors who pursue secondary careers like writing online columns and music. They also are not on call and do not have to manage any business aspects of the hospital. They essentially work their shift and go home.

        • Crispin Freeman says:

          I guess it would be possible to work in voice over as long as you are available during the day for gigs and for auditions. However, if you’re up all night and you’re trying to voice act during the day, that doesn’t leave any room for sleep. An 8 hour shift is an 8 hour shift and voice over requires your voice to be well rested, focused and ready to perform. Sleepy voice actors don’t get rehired.

  9. Angelican Marcos says:

    Hello Mr. Freeman sorry to bother you but I have question that might be similar to your confidence podcast I think… But i was wondering if the many people in the world have fears like phobias. How would they bring confidence to themselves? Or to throw away any phobia they have? I mean having a phobia is quite common throughout our society. Sometimes people live in fear everyday through trauma as a cause for being secluded and introverted in one. But I’m not talking about our average stage fright nonsense I’m talking about something that people put up with everyday and every moment of our time. I mean as I also may recall you “were” introverted once or so you say you “were”.

    • Crispin Freeman says:

      I am not a professional psychiatrist or psychologist so I don’t know what are the best techniques for trying to eliminate phobias. I don’t know how common phobias are, but I am fortunate enough not to suffer from one so I have no personal experience to draw on in discussing them either. If you suffer from a phobia, I suggest you seek professional medical advice for your condition.

      As far as being an introvert, I have always been and still am an introvert. Most people think an extrovert can interact well with people and an introvert can’t. I don’t subscribe to that definition. For me, what determines your introversion or extroversion is where your psychological batteries “recharge” so to speak. If you tend to feel relaxed and rested when you are alone, but you feel like you have to expend a lot of energy to be around other people, you’re probably an introvert. If the reverse is true and you feel run down and lethargic when you’re alone, but you feel vitalized and excited around other people, you’re probably an extrovert.

      I am an introvert who has learned how to function well in social situations. However, I don’t seek them out. I am much happier being quiet and by myself or with just a couple of loved ones than being in a large group of people. I interact with large groups of people all the time at conventions and other events, but I’m usually happier when I’m by myself.

      • Angelican Marcos says:

        Then i guess we’re somewhat the same i suppose usually as i am still a introvert i don’t tend to be a party type. Even 2 years ago i had a panic attack now that would be a different subject. Is just i couldn’t let my feelings out because i was a timid and modest girl when i was growing up. And i couldn’t express my feelings through my father because i thought he might think of it the wrong way. And usually exercising is somewhat a way to get rid of someone’s phobia. I on the other hand only have 3 or 4 phobias but i tend not to get deceive by them. Usually i stay in my room draw anything i can think of and think alot to myself alone. Usually i can’t be relaxed or in sanity if someone comes into my room and ruins everything and then shows me something that i don’t even care about. And that makes me feel tired and school is like 11 days away and i have to be prepared or otherwise i become tardy or absent. And it’s just hard and i may not like life the way it but sometimes I just have to get used to it. And another thing i might want to add though it may sound idiotic but do voice actors like you for example have enough time to go to sleep in a rigid or a normal sort of way for you to sleep in some time of the day or at night? Or you don’t get sleep at all?

        • Crispin Freeman says:

          Voice actors do have time to sleep. I don’t know anyone on the planet who goes without sleep for any substantial length of time.

          • Angelican Marcos says:

            Heh! They have to be vampires if they don’t sleep but thanks for answering my question Mr. Freeman and have a nice day. 🙂

  10. Taya says:

    Greetings from London Sir!

    Thanks so much for doing such a wonderful podcast. I couldn’t find an appropriate post to add this comment to, but since it’s almost on the subject of vocal health/technique I was wondering if it’s something you may be able to answer.

    I suffer from the dreaded mouth clicks and come rain or shine, water, apples, lemons, green tea alike I can’t seem to reduce them! I hydrate frequently and drink around 3 litres of water a day and I get extremely self conscious because of these clicks.

    They are certainly not the worst I’ve ever heard but they are still there and I’m auditioning with people who probably don’t have this issue to worry about!

    Any advice you can offer on how to reduce mouth clicks would be so greatly appreciated!

    All my best,

    • Crispin Freeman says:

      Hi there Taya! Great to hear from another listener from London!

      I’m sorry to hear about your mouth click problem. If you have tried all the normal remedies for your situation, I’m not sure what I can offer. There’s really no way to know exactly what’s going on except by having a coach listen to your vocal production and point out what might be happening. I can’t possibly evaluate your voice via a blog comment.

      I suggest you approach a vocal coach or speech therapist and see if they can listen to you and see what you might be doing that’s giving you so many mouth clicks.

      Hope that helps.

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