If you're new to my blog, I play the guitar. Last weekend the band I'm in had a great gig. Why? Because we played an outdoor gig, and it rained. What?
It's true. We setup at 2 o'clock. It was raining and we had nobody in sight. By three o'clock we had a handful as we started playing music. The interesting thing is these people sat up front, and they were there to listen. Typically this venue has lots of people who stroll through and their audience is maybe interested in the band. With the weather being poor, these were people who really wanted to hear some music.
With an audience who was actually into the band, we put on a show. This lead the audience to start to whoop and holler. Which lead to use taking our energy up a notch. At one point I ran into the audience and played my guitar right in their faces. It was cool, and they loved it. It was also some of my best playing. The more they gave, the more we were inspired to give. The more energy we put out on stage, the more energy they gave back.
This energy was legitimate. It was honest. It was sincere.
We had close to 30 people who said, “We came in for one song and we stayed for three hours.” It was an amazing day all around.
This was not the sports guy on the eleven O'clock news who (for whatever reason ) has to scream the latest news at me. “Well it's time for NFL preseason WHICH MEANS THE FACTORY OF SADNESS THAT IS CLEVELAND BROWNS STADIUM WILL SOON BE OPEN.”
Why? There is a volume knob on the television, and this enthusiasm seems forced. It seems fake, and because it's always loud, it loses it's power.
Today I went through a McDonald's drive-through for breakfast and the girl who took my order as humming and dancing (remember the theme song at the end of the Jeffersons? Like that). She was obviously happy, and enjoying her job. Its not something I typically see when I am pulling food through my driver side window. It made me smile. I brightened my day. In other words, her energy rubbed off on me.
While I don't understand the SPORT ANNOUNCER! mentality, I do know you need to bring some energy to the microphone. You want to radiate the energy you would like you audience to mimic. Here are some tips:
Do you best to talk in an annoying DJ voice. Now back it off a notch or two so it's genuine, but probably more energy than if you were talking to your mother.
Smile. I didn't believe this, but try this experiment. Record the same line twice. Once while smiling and once when you're not. The smiling version will showcase your passion.
If you're not interested in a topic, then you're audience will here this – and mimic your energy (and not be interested in YOU). I used to do a podcast call the Music News Podcast. I got tired of talking about Britney Spears and Amy Winehouse. I just had no passion. Rather than make my audience sit through that, I cut off the show. If it's not interesting to you, it's not going to be interesting to your audience.
Finding the right amount of “up” to be will take some practice, but the best kind is authentic enthusiasm for your topic.
What Does Authentic Look Like?
I love this video (being a teacher) by Taylor Mali on “What Teachers Make” video. His energy goes from 0 to 60 dripping in passion and it moves me every time I watch it.