• Drake Donovan

Are You Saving For The Future?


An imaging producer I work with told me about the project on his desk this week. The annual awards submissions are coming up for various state and national awards and he has the unenviable task of trying to curate highlights from the past year from all of the jocks. And as expected, no one saved anything. To which he asked one young jock, “So if you were fired tomorrow, what would you have for a demo?” Her reply, “Um…”


When we had cassette skimmers in the studio it was so easy to aircheck yourself and have a daily record of some of your best work if the axe should fall your way. But with today’s digital loggers, most air talents just assume that things are now “in the cloud” and can be retrieved later. However, engineers aren’t willing to fill up terabytes of drive space to save your daily blathering, so the onus of archiving your best work falls on you.


As an imaging guy, I save everything. Every script, every project session, every final mix and every voice session goes into a backup file that is archived to both a 25gb Blu-Ray-R and a multi-terabyte hard drive. This way I have two versions of the back-up should either the hard drive fail or the disc gets scratched. Cataloging those back-ups is another task.


I make sure that each disc is archived in a searchable spread sheet with the date and short note of what’s contained on it. This way I can type in “Kenny Chesney” and find every Kenny Chesney Contest or Concert Promo I’ve ever done and have a good idea of which disc/drive it’s stored on. I save tons of time recalling old production that can easily be refreshed and updated in just a few minutes as opposed to re-inventing the wheel every time a certain artist comes to town or an annual national contest is rolled out.


So back to you, what’s your plan for backing up your work? Can you be prepared to create a fresh aircheck or demo of your latest & greatest work? Because as Jean Shepherd remarked in the final act of ‘A Christmas Story,’ ”Sometimes at the height of our revelries, when our joy is at its zenith, when all is most right with the world, the most unthinkable disasters descend upon us.” Grab your show every day and skim it for the best stuff. Then compile that at home. Cause, ya just never know.

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© 2020 by Drake Donovan Creative Services, LLC.  Voice-Over For Radio Imaging, TV Affiliate, Commercials, Narration and On-Hold