At The Speak Easy

A couple of months ago on the Twitter Machines, I had one of those “what if…” thoughts that always seem to be the origins of my strangest stories. I admit that it’s a bit eccentric on my part and I honestly am trying to curb it. For now, I suppose everyone has to live with my random observations and it’s my hope that someone does get a kick out of even the most mundane and borderline asinine tweets I manage to churn out.

For that particular day of tweeting, I entertained the thought again of what life would be like if we all had a narrator. I asked if we would be more self-conscious of our actions if we had a familiar voice talking ABOUT us instead of TO us. It would probably be the same as having a life bar over our heads or an HP/MP indicator outside of the LARP playing area. I still don’t know what others think, but I for one believe that life will get more exciting, not restrained, if we all had a narrator in our lives. Just having this voice that isn’t yours going with you on your adventures, both high and low points, will never make you feel alone at all. Or if you’re one who likes to keep to themselves, “thinking out loud” would be a pretty sweet experience if “out loud” meant Elvis singing every passing thought that you may have.

I try to celebrate artists as much as I can and I always want to give credit to the underrated as much as possible. I figured that it would be so easy to spout off obvious choices like Morgan Freeman, James Earl Jones, George Takei, Stephen Fry, Alan Rickman or Jeremy Irons because those guys are just fantastic. If you’ve ever wanted to watch a movie that was two hours of a phonebook reading, those guys will make it the best two hours of your movie going experience.

So what follows here are my own Top Five choices for people I’d want to narrate my life. They’re not necessarily Morgan Freeman famous but they have the voice that can make them stand (or talk) side by side with everyone’s favorites.

5. Will Arnett

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Sample

I think a lot of us became GOB fans (and more importantly Will Arnett fans) because of the voice. We first heard it in action when he read appetizers to Lucille 2 and in various voice overs, all of which I was pretty psyched to hear. When you take Arnett’s comedic stylings, I assure you that everyday life will sound mildly entertaining on your worst days. Especially since the guy voicing your misfortunes and problems is wasting his day wearing a $3000 suit.

4. Sam Elliott

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Sample

My ever growing fascination and interest with Americana will need one hell of an American character. Known more to me as the Cowboy that befriends The Dude, Sam Elliott’s deep resonating voice fits everything I’d dream of hearing. Whether it’s a small town, the open road or a cool night in the desert, my exploring and adventures would be maybe about 20% cooler if all put into an audiobook narrated by him.

3. Penn Jillette

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Sample (and bonus Penn and Teller magic trick)

I grew up on the idea that Penn was a big guy like me but who did magic. Years later it dawned on me that the reason he was so loud had something to do with his height. Still, I’ve heard many stories told through his booming voice for many years and Penn’s expressiveness always made me want him to be a personal storyteller (or narrator.) Okay, so maybe he was Comedy Central’s voiceover guy for awhile, but his appearance on podcasts all told me that the man can tell a great story. Even the most messed up ones can sound interesting because of him. His intelligence can also help me when I try to be smartish as he.

2. Seth MacFarlane

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Sample

Though it is “cheating” to a degree, who WOULDN’T want to have a talented voice actor as a narrator, let alone Seth MacFarlane? You have one “core voice” for certain days, which can then change depending on the time of day. In the case of Seth, I’d love to have some of his characters chime in on my life once in awhile. What’s great though is his default voice is already a treat to have as a narrator and who knows? Maybe he might bust out some Singing In The Rain.

 

1. Mike Rowe

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Sample

The dudeliest dude on TV today. Whether it’s voicing his own show or serving as The Ultimate Fighter’s narrator, Mike Rowe’s voice commands attention. I talked to a friend one time just around the time both Dirty Jobs and Bear Grylls’ Man Vs. Wild came out and I still believe to this day that if I met Bear Grylls, I would love to have him just sit down and have him tell his stories over some wine or something akin to a fireside chat.

Mike Rowe on the other hand is the sort of guy you just want to have a cold beer with and shoot the breeze on anything. The man can tell a great story just like Bear Grylls probably would, but his voice feels more down home and probably the same as someone you know in your town. Just a hard working blue collar guy living the dream and whatnot. Despite dabbling mostly in these said blue collar jobs, Mike Rowe is more intelligent than he seems on TV and I’m sure he can hold his own in any of those deep thought situations I find myself in. I’d like to have someone of Mike Rowe’s vocal prowess to straighten me out occasionally. I’m pretty sure also that he can make my said mundane thoughts be the manliest thing you’ll ever hear about today.

And like Seth MacFarlane, he sings!

 

I know I’ve skipped over a few great ones and I’ll probably come to regret their omissions later. The most I can do is pick one of those five voices and have them read my thoughts that say “Nah. It’s cool that you missed a few. They at least have your respect just by simply considering them.”

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  1. May 8th, 2012

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