This Podcast is about voices and the power of the human voice. A long
time ago I was fooling around with my CB Base Station (a home not mobile
CB radio transmitter). My soon-to-be-friend, George the Book Bandit, plucked
my tiny voice out of the atmosphere. He could hear the most amazing things.
George once picked up a human voice transmitting from the Marshall Islands
in the western Pacific. Skywave propagation, also referred to as 'the
skip' relies on refraction of radio waves in the ionosphere. Depending
on conditions, it can relay signals from far away.
Later on, George helped me put up a 'Big Stick' antenna in the backyard.
CB radios need pretty big antennas when not mounted on a car.
I spent about a year fooling around on the CB radio. I went to CB 'coffee
breaks' and bowling meets. I joined the club George belonged to, the Voice
of Canada (V.O.C.) . We weren't that big but we could call ourselves by
a big name. Broadcasting myself, I listened to many other amateur broadcasters
and found that certain voices have the power to almost hypnotize.
Mike, a fellow that I met over the CB, had a real 'radio voice' , deep
and reassuring. He had followers. There are a bunch of channels on CB
radio. When he came on a Channel the word would spread and people would
throng on to that channel. If he said something nice about someone that
was a big deal.
I started a Dungeons and Dragons game on the CB. The power of the voice
knit us together in a medium where there was nothing but voice. I once
ran a live D&D game in our Anglican church hall. What I noticed, there
and later on the CB, was that the shared fantasy had a profound effect
on the players. You had to be kind of careful. If a person got hurt in
the game in a vivid way or in a way that was emphasized by the Dungeon
Master, it could be reflected in real life though an accidental injury.
This suggests that there were some elements of hypnosis involved. I became
careful not to create such self-fulfilling prophecies.
If you tell someone in the game You have a wound that will not heal
and carry it with you wherever you go. You have sought healing and found
none. You have a wound that will not heal. Sometimes that was enough
to give a player a limp. Strange but true.
Guys, and ladies too, who are radio announcers will tell you that fans
out there think of them as friends because there's a one to one quality
about radio. It is as if the presenter were talking only to you. People
become mesmerized by the voice of the presenter and tune in every week
for a nice visit.
I am not immune to this phenomenon. I was taken with the voice of a radio
announcer, Danny Marks, who has a well known blues program called Bluz.fm
here in Toronto on http://www.jazz.fm It helped that I was a long time
fan of blues music. We began an email conversation and I ended up running
his website and I've done 32 guest spots and counting on his Show. I specialize
in blues history which I research mainly on the Internet. I would review
his Show every week because entertainers need feedback. In the beginning,
before I came to know him, I was just simply mesmerized by his voice.
Voice in the Dune novel was training originated by the Bene
Gesserit, permitting an adept to control others merely by selected tone
shadings of the voice.
There was a fellow, early on in my online Guild Wars multiplayer war game
who had this power of the voice. He built a team of accomplished players.
He was a very good player himself because he pretty much spent his life
in the game. Later I found out that, outside the game, he didn't have
too much of a real life but in the game he was a towering figure.We had
something called Teamspeak that let us use our computer microphones with
headphones to talk to each other while the game was in progress. Without
Teamspeak our fearless leader was just another player. With Teamspeak
and the power of his voice we would follow him into the most terrifying
depths of the Underworld. He had fatal flaws which became evident as time
went on. Even the veneer of his mesmeric voice could not hide these flaws
over time. I ended up leaving that guild but for a while, oh God, I just
lived to follow this fellow and fight things with the rest of the team.
We all had our roles and our special armor and we were good at the game.
In another Guild now, I have been invited to use this microphone and headphone
capability. I have refused. I've learned my lesson. I guess I have a suggestible
personality and, knowing this, I am careful. Addendum: I have switched
to World of Warcraft now but the same cautions apply. I use Skype to role
play with my sister in British Columbia but that's safe enough. We're
I have received an occasional piece of fan mail from listeners to my Podcasts
in England, the USA, Brazil, Mexico and even Australia. Something in my
voice and the stories I tell has reached them there. We all have, to one
degree or another, this power of the voice and with power comes responsibility.
© Sonia Brock 2008