Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Open Mic Stand-Up Comedy CLICHÉS

I go to a lot of open mic comedy nights in & around London, quite often I'll do a bit of stand-up either as myself or as some character act or other, heck I've even been known to MC an entire gig or two, I enjoy it and the London open mic scene is a vibrant and never ending social life as well as a hobby for a great many people (probably 300 active regulars) and indeed a career springboard for a select few who go on to get paid for doing what they love

There's a plethora of comedy courses available in and around London too,  they all seem to sell out and they pump out 50 or so new contenders every other month, in the few years I've been taking notes I'd say that for every 40 comics who quit the open mic circuit there's 50 along to replace them so it's a growing scene with several gigs to choose from practically every night of the week

I've done a couple of stand-up courses myself, one of which I thought was really very good and I've got to the stage where I can more or less tell what course a given act has been on by looking at the structure of their set and the nature of their material, anyhow comedy courses is another subject and a pretty big one too!

As an exercise in OBSERVATIONAL COMEDY *fanfare* I have compiled a set list for a clichéd open mic performer fresh out of comedy school, hope it gives you open mic folks a few laughs of recognition

hello ****town are we well? .... Oh that was perrrthetuck! ****town are you GOOD???? (mumbles)

It's great to be here!!! (mumbles)

Lovely basement, just like FRITZL'S! (attic, just like Anne Franks)

My name is Fred Bastard like the compere just said, big round of applause for your compere...yay whoop whoop isn't he ace?


I LOOK LIKE the illegitimate love child of (Ho Chi Minh & Mary Whitehouse)

I'll tell you a bit about myself...... (because that's my favourite subject)

I'M SINGLE!!! haven't had sex for ever, wank a lot, use a sock (desperate for a shag hey isn't this like speed dating?)

I come from Shitborough, you know Aldi, inbred chavs & Liebfraumilch, Chlamydia capital of Europe

GIVE ME A CHEER IF... (several questions with 50/50 answers e.g you're gay?'re straight? .... you hate fucking cheering?)

Gag one, NIGHT BUS


Gag three, FACEBOOK! (what's that all about hey?)




Here's my impression of some WIGGA YOOT

I'll finish with this..... MY GRANNY'S SO RACIST....

OK that's my time, I've been Fred Bastard, I don't get paid for this so you can buy me a drink, YOU'VE BEEN A LOVELY AUDIENCE (all fucking three of ya) Thank you & goodnight!

Ahhh yes the footnote! I sketched out the rough draught of this on a Facebook group called "The Comedy Collective" my pal Simon Caine was saying he was writing some new set about clichés which is what lead to my post, poor Simon  tried a gag about "something like that only funny" and he got ONE thumby uppy likey bless him, ten less than me so far *Smug, self satisfied grin*

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Video Game Character Voice Actor - James Mason Impression

OK so I've just had an exciting gig doing voiceovers for multiple characters in the same video game, I was pretty confident with nearly all of them, Scottish, Cockney, Street Yoot, Movie Trailer Guy (Don LaFontaine) Yorkshire, Deep South USA, West Country, a parrot voice LOL a female (Python pepper pot) Mexican wrestler, Camp Old Wizard....all well within my comfort zone, they also needed a James Mason Impression and I have to admit that I struggled for some time to get his voice right and couldn't quite work out why, I kept sounding more like Prince Charles who has a very similar manner of speaking, I tried hard to drift out of the Prince Charles Zone and in doing so I drifted into Tim Shishodia territory, Tim is a lovely man and a rising star of the London stand-up comedy circuit, he won a few major competitions and was New Comedian of the year in 2010, here's a video of him performing at the awesome TNT Comedy Club when I was MC'ing there, his hilarious stage persona has quite a hint of James Mason in the voice at times

Oddly enough I find it easier to learn a new voice not by listening to the subject themselves but by listening to an impressionist mimicking them, I could barely find any inspiration on this front either, I watched a couple of old James Mason movies, his voice was very rich and he had quite a range, I struggled to find many videos of decent impressions of him though, there were only two half decent examples on Youtube who's attempts I would say bettered my own by only a tiny margin

Interestingly I found an Eddie Izzard routine where he uses Mason's voice as the voice of God, I was comforted that Izzard can't do a better Mason than me and he's mega successful ; o )

So, after sweating on it for quite some time I think I managed a noble attempt in the end, I won't be adding it to my voice reel as it's not as awesome as I'd like it to be, the client feedback has not mentioned it and I can rest in the knowledge that my effort, whilst a slight disappointment to me personally is better than Eddie Izzard's and certainly in the top 3 James Mason impressions I can find on the tubes

UPDATE June 2013 the game in question has now been pre-released in alpha mode so I'm permitted to talk about the voice acting and character development I did during the earlier stages of this video games development, I voiced all the character roles helping to develop an audio story board, flesh out the characters and build the narrative, below is the video showing a prototype cut scene from the development stage where I voice all the characters, a miner (South Yorkshire accent) Lumberjack (Deep South USA accent) Bernard, the games protagonist (Gruff cockney gangster a la Ray Winstone or Bob Hoskins) and Stone Mason (James Mason impression) The clip contains an interview with Games Foundry's project lead Simon Dean who speaks very highly of my talents, bless him

You can download and play this awesome new game on steam early access

Thursday, 5 January 2012

Sean Ruttledge OFFICIAL BLOG! Comedy voices 2012

Hi I'm Seanie, well known as "The man of over 9000 voices" welcome to the first ever post on my OFFICIAL SEAN RUTTLEDGE BLOG

I'm a voiceover artist & character comic from the UK, my new years resolution is to blog frequently about the major passions in my life which are

  • Comedy
  • Impressions
  • Voiceovers
  • Character voices for cartoons, animations, video games etc
  • Accents & Dialects

My comedy goals for 2012 are to perfect 3 new 7 minute comedy routines based on my ability to do impressions, accents & character voices, I will be perfecting these on the London comedy circuit and you may even see a couple on TV later in the year, I'll keep you posted