Do networks have staff announcers anymore?

Discussion in 'Now Playing - TV Show Talk' started by danderson400, Jun 5, 2019.

  1. Jun 5, 2019 #1 of 21
    danderson400

    danderson400 Member

    185
    1
    Mar 5, 2015
    Do networks have staff announcers anymore, like for example, Mel Brandt(well known for being the announcer on the daytime drama The Doctors) or Bill Wolff(well known for announcing the daytime drama Another World). Both were NBC staff announcers.
     
  2. Jun 5, 2019 #2 of 21
    mattack

    mattack Well-Known Member

    24,281
    493
    Apr 9, 2001
    sunnyvale
    I'm guessing not. I recently read the story about Don Pardo when he died.. (yes, I read old newspapers..) It said something like he was one of the last who (my term) went into the office to be a day to day voiceover guy.
     
  3. Jun 5, 2019 #3 of 21
    That Don Guy

    That Don Guy Now with more GB

    3,350
    86
    Mar 13, 2003
    Benicia, CA
    You would think that if they did, they would be used for things like special reports (like the CNN "Breaking News" voice), but on the only network special reports I have seen recently (CBS), usually they just flash a countdown, then the "CBS News Special Report" screen, and the newsman who reads the report does the voiceover introduction.
     
    TishTash likes this.
  4. Jun 6, 2019 #4 of 21
    Steveknj

    Steveknj Lost in New Joisey TCF Club

    49,632
    2,283
    Mar 10, 2003
    New Jersey
    I always felt that the big three networks all had voiceover guys with very distinct styles that, no matter who they got to do them were all similar. CBS had a man with a fairly deep voice. ABC's guy sounded excitable and hip, and NBC's had a more causal sound.
     
    Family likes this.
  5. Jun 6, 2019 #5 of 21
    Jon J

    Jon J Curmudgeon TCF Club

    7,865
    128
    Aug 23, 2000
    Music City USA
    I was a staff announcer at a mid-market station in the 60s and we worked live announce booth shifts signon to signoff. (Remember when TV stations actually left the air at night?) Only at certain times on weekends were we allowed to prerecord breaks using a complicated system that inserted start-stop tones on reel-to-reel tapes and in recording we would follow the log to know what to do next. Cart tapes were common in radio but in our instance the tone system allowed the master control engineer to mount the single reel tape and not have to mess with a stack of cart tapes.

    Today I suspect all VO work is recorded and mostly not even at the broadcast studios but sent digitally to the station by the VO talent where computers pick an choose the tracks to run.
     
    waynomo and tim1724 like this.
  6. Jun 6, 2019 #6 of 21
    TonyD79

    TonyD79 Well-Known Member

    11,849
    1,555
    Jan 4, 2002
    Columbia, MD
    Soon to be “powered by Siri.”
     
  7. Jun 6, 2019 #7 of 21
    trainman

    trainman Nice to see you

    10,994
    713
    Jan 29, 2001
    Sherman...
    When I interned at a big-city UPN affiliate in 1996 (WPWR in Chicago), a big part of my duties was writing the voiceover promo copy that would play over the closing credits of various shows -- stuff like "Mitch is in hot water on 'Baywatch,' next on UPN Power 50." The woman they employed as the announcer would come in to the station about once a week to record all those promos (onto carts). Even that was fairly rare -- many stations would have their announcer do their recording in a remote studio, connected via an ISDN line.

    There was a video I've seen on YouTube that was a great example of a local station booth announcer during their waning days -- it involved ABC News special reports on the 1982 Air Florida crash repeatedly interrupting an Elvis Presley movie on WLS in Chicago -- but I can't find it anymore, so it might have been removed.
     
    tim1724 and gweempose like this.
  8. Jun 7, 2019 #8 of 21
    MScottC

    MScottC Well-Known Member

    1,119
    303
    Sep 11, 2004
    As far as I know, all the voice over artists at CBS TV in NYC are freelance hires. With the advent of not so new technologies, announcers can pre-record all of their tracks from anywhere in the country.
     
  9. danderson400

    danderson400 Member

    185
    1
    Mar 5, 2015
    Like for example, "Today on Another World, Lahoma learned from Sam that he's taken the job and they will be moving to Somerset. What lies ahead in Another World: Somerset, next in color on NBC"? Those would be voiceovers over credits.
     
  10. MScottC

    MScottC Well-Known Member

    1,119
    303
    Sep 11, 2004
    When I first started at CBS in 1982 they must have had at least half a dozen staff announcers. Some would sit in booths adjacent to the "PC Rooms," the on air control rooms 24/7. Some would be assigned to specific divisions, such as sports or news and be ready to work the announce booths for their shows. Others would float from session to session for promos, soap operas or other assignments.

    These guys were incredible. I used to cut promos for sports and news and the local WCBS-TV. These guys (and yes they were all men) would come in after the promos were cut, and read to the spots. If you told them "Hit the word (halfway through the spot) about half a second later, they would, without screwing up the timing of the rest of the verbiage.

    They all had recognizable voices, and people would know when an announcer was changed for whatever reason.
     
    tim1724 and Mikeguy like this.
  11. getreal

    getreal postcrastinator

    4,484
    128
    Sep 29, 2003
    Earth
    I recall the staff announcer character from “Soap” back in the day ... that sorta’ thing?
     
  12. Steveknj

    Steveknj Lost in New Joisey TCF Club

    49,632
    2,283
    Mar 10, 2003
    New Jersey
    They all had recognizable voices, but you could tell they were CBS' voices. They sounded different than NBCs voices which sounded different than ABCs voices. The only voice over voice that sounded different than the others was Don Pardo.
     
  13. Jon J

    Jon J Curmudgeon TCF Club

    7,865
    128
    Aug 23, 2000
    Music City USA
    CBS threw their affiliates a curve in the 60s when they switched the program audio out cue from "This is the CBS Television Network" over the CBS eye (an almost perfect five second roll cue) to just "This is CBS". Telecine where the commercials were run had to learn to anticipate the out cue or we would be sitting on the CBS Eye or black for a few seconds. This was tough on the tape guys since few if any VTRs would lock in less than five seconds.
     
    tim1724 likes this.
  14. trainman

    trainman Nice to see you

    10,994
    713
    Jan 29, 2001
    Sherman...
    I think Ernie Anderson on ABC was also very distinctive.

     
  15. mattack

    mattack Well-Known Member

    24,281
    493
    Apr 9, 2001
    sunnyvale
    I'm amazed an intern wrote those, and that they were even done locally. I guess I would've expected those to be provided with the rerun tapes?
     
  16. trainman

    trainman Nice to see you

    10,994
    713
    Jan 29, 2001
    Sherman...
    The syndicators provided episode descriptions, which is how I wrote the promos, but I don't remember having any suggested scripts or anything like that.

    Syndicators do provide video promos for stations to tag with the airtime and station logo, but audio promos are much easier for stations to produce from scratch.
     
  17. danderson400

    danderson400 Member

    185
    1
    Mar 5, 2015
    I've seen one such promo for "On Scene: Emergency Response" with such a tag- for KMSP(then a independent station in Minneapolis, whose ID was put under the "On Scene" logo.). Network promos, like the one i saw once for "China Beach" the station adds in its logo to it.

    If you ever watch the NFL on CBS, the'll often give the episode description for 60 Minutes or on the earlier years the Sunday night movie. I've heard Jim Nantz do this during NFL games on CBS. But that's different from actual promos in breaks, no?
     
  18. Craigbob

    Craigbob Well-Known Member

    1,241
    45
    Dec 1, 2006
    Land of...
    I forgot Taxi was on ABC for some reason I thought it was on CBS or NBC. Ahhh the Pre Disney days.
     
  19. Michael S

    Michael S Member

    480
    15
    Jan 12, 2004
    It was on ABC because that where it began. After they axed it HBO would have picked it up but NBC ended up picking it up.
     
  20. mattack

    mattack Well-Known Member

    24,281
    493
    Apr 9, 2001
    sunnyvale
    interesting.. do you have a news article about that or anything? I thought that was before HBO had original series. (Though I watched the relatively early series like Dream On and Arliss)
     

Share This Page