Latin Music And Bilingual Voice-Over:
It's A Marriage Made In Heaven
October 30, 2019
By Brian Amador
Voice Actor & Musician
You may know that my wife Rosi and I were professional Latin musicians long before we began our careers as bilingual voice-over actors.
Music used to be our full-time gig, but these days it's mostly voice-over work that puts food on the table and supports our music habit.
We recently celebrated the 25th anniversary of the band we founded, Sol y Canto, and the 35th year that Rosi and I have been playing together.
To acknowledge these important musical milestones, we held a concert and live recording in Boston. See the preview below!
We were overjoyed to be joined by our very talented daughter Alisa. The last time she recorded with Sol y Canto was over 15 years ago, and Alisa was a small child, singing along with her twin.
MUSIC, MEET VOICE-OVER ...
In the 1990's, circumstances conspired to give us a taste of bilingual voice-over work, and we liked it.
It had quite a few advantages over making a living as musicians. We could live at home instead of on the road. We weren't constantly organizing tours and rehearsals.
And we had our first experience of something else we've come to appreciate a great deal: using our voices for a business that's creative and sustainable for our family!
But the music wasn't going to let us get away that easily. We've never wanted to give it up altogether, and it's still a huge part of our lives.
COMBO BECOMES A TRIO
And now there's an extra-special benefit. After spending much of her childhood touring with us, our daughter Alisa has grown into a phenomenally talented singer/songwriter. (She's also become a great voice actor, which is a great way to make ends meet as she develops her musical career.)
In the last several years, we've had the good fortune to be able to sing with her, both on our repertoire and on her beautiful songs.
The recent anniversary concert highlighted our family trio, and it was powerfully moving.
VOICE-OVER, MEET MUSIC
I'm not going to lie. Sometimes there's a tension between our musical and voice-over careers.
Sometimes I wish I could spend more time composing and practicing.
But there's also a lot of happy overlap. I get to compose and record music for a lot of projects, especially many of the children's audiobooks we've narrated.
Recently I was commissioned to write a Puerto Rican-style holiday song to be "sung" by a puppet (in Alisa's voice) for a video produced by a national food and entertainment chain. That's the kind of job that makes me pinch myself to believe I'm getting paid for having that much fun!
MUSIC TUNES OUR VOICE-OVERS
Aside from the direct music work that sometimes accompanies voice-overs, music has also seeped into our work as voice actors in subtle ways.
All the years of singing have made both of us very aware of our voices, how to modulate them, and how to take care of them. The vocal warmups we do for singing are also great preparation for a voice-over session.
And I find that awareness of melody and rhythm definitely applies to the spoken word as it does to music.
Tuning in to the melody of a character's speech or accent helps me in developing character voices.
Our voice-over and music careers are a bit like our marriage. Sometimes there are little disagreements, but both sides support and love each other, and we work it out. It's a marriage made in Heaven.
ANNIVERSARY CONCERT CD
Our Sol y Canto anniversary concert in Boston was a huge success! Enjoy this preview ...
Now we're documenting the concert with what we anticipate will be a wonderful CD. The recording captures a very special moment before Alisa's career takes off and she leaves the nest.
I invite you to listen to our music and consider taking it a bit further. We've launched an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign for this album, and we've reached 83% of our goal. We hope you'll join our musical journey by sharing and contributing to our campaign.
For your contribution we're offering some fun perks, including your own copy of the music (CD or digital download).
This campaign expires November 7. Please help us raise the $10,000 we need to make this dream a reality. Thank you for your support!
Originally from Albuquerque, NM, bilingual and bicultural voice-over actor Brian Amador specializes in instructional e-learning narration, industrial and character voices in English and Spanish as well as commercials, children's audiobooks (recording both narration, character voices and original music) and museum and travel audio tours. He is particularly adept at voicing content related to Hispanics and the Spanish language, using his voice to bring their messages to life, recording top-quality evocative narration and voice-over in the AB VO private studio. Brian frequently records Latin American country Expedia Travel videos and specializes in medical narration.
ABOUT THE AMADORS
The Amadors' goal is to use their voices to inspire, motivate, educate and entertain, making it easier for important information and messages to reach today's increasingly diverse population - and helping producers of content for and about Hispanics, or those teaching the Spanish language, to reach their target audience. They're particularly committed to using their voices for social good. In their private studio, Brian and Rosi record flawless, accent-less, native, neutral Latin American Spanish and in North American English, as well as Hispanic-accented English for AB VO's global clients. They are often joined by their 23-year old daughter, bilingual voice-over actor and emerging singer-songwriter Alisa Amador. Her bicultural roots enable Alisa to use her voice to build cross-cultural bridges worldwide, whether it's with spoken word or singing.
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