I recently received the following email question from “Melissa” about Voice talent credit. Melissa’s a reader in this blog community and I thought, why not give it a shot by answering her email here.
Hi there, I have been reading your blog and I really enjoy it. I have a question that I have not seen addressed and as a newbie would like to know how to address this situation. I have a company that uses voice talent and I also am a voice talent myself. My question is, when I hire other language voice talent to record the audio that I have written , how to I actually give credit to that person I have paid by the hour? For example, I have spoken-word audio CDs (guided imagery CDs) that I have created and produced professionally. In order to enlarge the market, I hired someone to record them in Spanish (I had them translated professionally first of course). All copyright is mine but when I go to sell them, who’s name should I put on the CD as the artist? I was thinking that it should be my name but credit given to the voice talent on the physical CD. What is the normal protocol for this? I am very thankful for your input. Sincerely, Mellisa
Melissa, I’ve worked with a number of voiceover talent folks whom I’ve hired and who’ve hired me. In all cases, I believe it’s a good idea to give credit where credit is due.
You can obviously maintain the copyright to the materials and content, but I feel your CD’s should list the voiceover talent ‘s name associated with the voice the listener is going to hear on a specific track, such as Joe Schmoe, Spanish Voice, Voice artist, female voice, Voiceover talent, etc.
I don’t think there’s any type of law forcing or stopping you provide voice credits unless you are contractually bound either way. But I do feel it is important to the voiceover talent to have the recognition on your packaging. Not only is it a courtesy that doesn’t cost you a thing, you have much to gain in credibility as a producer of content that is clear, to your listeners and to those you hire.
And for many of those voiceover talent who do perform a voice for the CD, it’s a thrill to receive the credit and recognition in writing as something substantial to add to their resume. And I would not only have the voice talent’s name on the physical CDs , but on the printed packaging as well.