AND THE STETCH MALDONAY: SCISSOR SHARPENER SKETCH CHALLENGE WINNER IS…
We listened to many, many entries and every one had at least one great moment or interesting take and it was incredibly difficult to choose. For that reason, we’ve included a runner up and an honorable mention. But Blake’s entry just seemed right in our hearts and quite in our parts. Well done, Blake!
RUNNER UP: Jesse Gilsinger.
Jesse made a strong showing as well so we wanted to give his entry its due.
HONORABLE MENTION: by Russell Akerley and Aaron Duffield. (At least we think that’s his name. It’s what it says on his email.)
Now this one’s over 12 minutes so listen at your own peril. It’s so long it’s bold.
Thanks again to all those who entered the fray. We really appreciate the work you did and loved listening.
STETCH MALDONAY: SCISSOR SHARPENER
Edit your own Superego Sketch! Stetch Maldonay: Scissor Sharpener was recorded on December 13, 2012 with Jeremy Carter, Matt Gourley, Mark McConville, Paul F. Tompkins, Paget Brewster, Ben Zelevansky, and James Bladon. That’s right, it was a real party. So much so that we had way too much fun, recorded way too long, and got way too loose. The running time comes in at just under a ridiculous 40 minutes. We always refer to Stetch as one of the weirdest sketches we’ve ever recorded. Now, it’s time to see if we can make anything out of it. Try your hand at editing this train wreck and if we like it, we may feature it on an episode of Superego. Wouldn’t that be a victory?
Here at the Superego Clinic for Analytical Pscience we strive to put our special stamp on every case study sketch. Since the Stetch Maldonay recording is SO long and goes SO off the rails, here are some helpful things to consider if you would like your edit to be featured in our show. We put no restrictions on ourselves when recording, but in editing certain things almost always apply.
- Listen all the way through before you start editing. This particular sketch does not go where you think it might. Knowing the full arc will help you choose what might work up front. Then again, maybe not.
- A lot of people think Superego is vulgar! Actually, it’s not really that vulgar. Whenever possible, we try to swap out a gross bodily function or cheap body part name with something more original and weird. The editing should probably reflect that.
- We try relatively hard not to go for the obvious joke or overused character.
- ‘Keep it tight Dwight, unless some air gets you somewhere.’ That’s from a plaque hanging above the front door of the Superego clinic and just means to keep things moving unless it’s on purpose. If that means taking some space out between words but still having it sound natural, so be it.
- You’ll need to cut out the other tracks completely when one track is featuring a voice. We use vocal reflectors and super-cardiod microphones to minimize bleed, but as you can hear the other voices still get through. It’s painstaking but hey, think of what Matt goes through on just one episode.
- All guidelines null and void if the joke in question is funny.
- Email us an AAC or MP3 at goSuperego@gmail.com.
- Make sure your final edit can be exported as individual .aifs or .wav files, including SFX and music tracks.
- Make sure that all tracks can be exported without any effects or filters. If we choose to include your edit in the show, we may need all of these for final tweaks.
- All rights reserved and all material copyright Superego, 2015.
- We reserve the right to make any and all further changes to your edit.
- DEADLINE: How about May 1, 2015?
These are how all Superego tracks start out. Raw, uncompressed, messes.
- A little pass through Levilator wouldn’t hurt.
- Some basic EQ and processing will certainly be needed.
- Just click the little download arrow at the top right of each of the 3 play windows below.
Thank you and good luck. You’re going to need it.
On May 25th, 2014, Drs. Matt Gourley, Jeremy Carter, Mark McConville, and Paul F. Tompkins gathered in Orange County, California for the Superego Season Four photo shoot. While the final imagery was left in the trusted hands of photographer Eric Macklin, the good doctors couldn’t resist taking some candid behind-the-scenes shots of the day.
On May 25th, 2014, Drs. Matt Gourley, Jeremy Carter, Mark McConville, and Paul F. Tompkins gathered in Orange County, California for the Superego Season Four photo shoot. News of our fourth season of Superego was still shrouded in secrecy, so the excitement was palpable.
For our fourth season, we wanted to portray a refined and elegant Superego clinic; A place where subjects could come for an extended period of time, experience luxury, and have their maladies treated with no expense spared. With the help of Matt’s Uncle Bill, we found a location and a vehicle that exemplified that very elegance. The final imagery was left in the trusted hands of photographer Eric Macklin.
SUPEREGO IS BACK! AND PACKED WITH ACTION-SATISFACTION!
And what’s more, we’re bringing Paul F. Tompkins with us. That’s right, he’s joining the Superego Clinic For Analytical Pscience™ as a regular member. It’s time you got ready to get ready.
Why just look at the the way we’re living:
But that’s only the half of it. On September 1, 2014, Superego will return for a fourth spectacular season. While past seasons have seen episodes arrive on a monthly basis, Season Four will dole out these ear-candies more slowly, prolonging the utter majesty.
But wait, there’s another half of it. Beginning August 1st, we’re also dropping lap-loads of bonus content your way.
You’ll see the release of two new Behind The Bonus episodes, showcasing several sketches that until now, have been locked deep in the Superego vault. Case studies featuring Erinn Hayes, James Urbaniak, John Hodgman, and more. And in the coming weeks, point your eyeballs toward our YouTube page for a series of never-before-released Superego Supershorts.
But really, here’s the whole of it. When September rolls around, get ready for a bevy of brand new guests as well as the return of some your favorites: Andy Daly, Colin Hanks, Thomas Lennon, and none other than Neko Case.
-The B’s in Apartment 23.
In December of 1989, Shunt, Mutt, and the Journeymen reunited for the 41st time with legendary producer Jimmy ‘James’ Bladon. The result was a legendary charity album entitled ‘The Journeymen On Ice (And Speed).’ After a barn collapse where the tapes were stored, only one track survived. ‘The Season Of Giving’ hit the Billboard charts at 1,312 and by noon the same day was already at 1,310. Now, remixed, remastered, and remembered, the song is presented to you here, free of charge and free of apologies. God bless us, everyone.
Here’s a clean version too, in case you’re a radio DJ or religious person with delicate ears that are prudish.
Words and music by Matt Gourley & James Bladon (BMI)
Mutt Taylor: vocals, guitar, and banjo
Shunt McGuppin: vocals
Jimmy Blades: back up vocals, bass, drums, bells, piano, Hammond B3, keys
George Bladon: back up vocals
Charles Bladon: back up vocals
Angela Bladon: back up vocals
Produced by Jimmy Blades with Mutt Taylor
The Season of Giving ©Superego/Gourley/Bladon 2011
This just got real. (Boring.)
We often get asked about our recording equipment and creative process. What follows is a definitive guide to The Superego Sound. Beware, this is meant for podcasters and gear-heads only. If you’re looking for romance, please see The Superego Embrace.
As of season 3, we use 4 Sennheiser E 845-S Dynamic Super-Cardioid Microphones with Stedman Proscreen XL Pop Filters. — I’m already bored.
Each microphone is mounted on a Shure A55HM Half-Mount Isolation and Swivel Snap-In Shock Stopper Mount. — That name is ridiculous.
The stands have Primacoustic VoxGuard Nearfield Absorbers mounted on them to guard against ‘microphone bleed.’ — A 70’s radio DJ torture technique. It’s real.
It was a long process in finding what worked best for us. Since our situation is different than most podcasts in that we need to be able to isolate each microphone’s channel as much as possible for editing purposes, we chose a mic that has what’s called (Praydayder) a lot of ‘off-axis rejection;’ which just means it records what’s directly in front of it as opposed to a normal cardiod pattern or condenser mic which records a greater all-around area. — Nice sentence, Joyce.
We used to use a hodgepodge of cheap dynamic and condenser mics. — Were we ever so naive?
Our microphones go into an SM Pro Audio PR8E 8-Channel Microphone Preamp, followed by an S-com 4 – Four Channel Compressor/Gate, then a PreSonus FP10 FIREPOD firewire converter, and finally an iMac G5 or a MacBook Pro depending on whether we’re recording at my house or, ‘In The Field.’ — That’s a badass journalist term, but I think it applies.
The compressor/gate component is vital if you are recording anything that might go from a whisper to a scream. Dealing with this problem was a great source of frustration for us. Peaking vocals cause distortion, and distortion, as you know, is the enemy. — Not to Oasis though. Christ, lay off for a song.
The three main pieces of hardware are rack components that fit into a portable rig/bag.— Which makes it compact enough to travel and heavy enough to not travel.
When Superego began, it was recorded on a Roland VS 880X digital recorder. I had to edit by ear, instead of with visual waveforms like we all do now. — Can you believe there used to be ears?!
For most of season 1 and part of season 2, we used a small Behringer Eurorack UB802 mixer. — It’s European, so that’s why those episodes sound a little fancier.
Superego is recorded on GarageBand. It’s simple to use but still has a lot of pro features, like the ability to record separate channels simultaneously. It also easily integrates with the PreSonus FP10. — I’m considering moving to Logic, but it intimidates me.
We used to record and edit everything on a two channel (stereo L & R), buggy little program called Sound Studio. I would pan my mic to the far left, and Jeremy’s to the far right to isolate the channels for editing. — This limitation led to a lot of background bleed, which you can hear quite a bit on season 1.
We begin each recording extravaganza with a quick whiteboard pitch-session. We usually try to start with something simple and go from there. All of our sessions are improvised with a little discussion beforehand. If there is a special guest, we provide a vegetable dip and Mother’s cookies. We typically record 4-6 ideas a session and maybe two to three are worth editing down. — One.
After we’re done, we usually watch religious television. — That’s where Leroy Jenkins came from.
This is where most of the labor of love goes. The nice thing about GarageBand is it allows you to save effects and EQs. Once the content editing is finished, I apply a basic EQ with speech enhancer and just a smidge of reverb. The next step is very important. Every podcaster should be using Levelator, or its equivalent. It’s free and it normalizes your recording so the listener doesn’t get shocked by horrible spikes in volume. Most people run the final track through Levelator, but I run each individual track of every sketch through and then further tweak the volume for dynamics. — The Superego quality guarantee.
GarageBand has an impressive library of sound effects and royalty free music. So good in fact, that it’s popping up everywhere. Not a pharmaceutical commercial goes by where I don’t recognize a GarageBand jingle. I’ve used just about every one at this point, so it’s time to look elsewhere. YouTube is a good source if you don’t mind borrowing. I use Audio Hijack for Mac to pull from YouTube. This site is also a great resource for sound effects. — So is that Police Academy guy, if you can get him.
The other nice thing about GarageBand is that it has a built in podcast category. You can take your audio file(s), add artwork and chapters, and enhance the podcast so that the image changes while the podcast plays. This enhanced podcast is exported as an .m4a as opposed to a standard .mp3 file. Some players aren’t compatible with .m4as. — They are pussies.
Hunker down, publishing is by far the most frustrating part of podcasting. In my experience, podcasting is still a medium that is figuring itself out. We’re no doubt in the puberty of podcasting. Between iTunes, your server, or another server like Blubrry or Libsyn, there many things that can and will go wrong. We’re almost 5 years into this thing and I’m still weeping regularly. — Like puberty!
We used to use Podcast Maker for Mac — it’s a great all-purpose tool for publishing podcasts to iTunes. I switched to manually editing our XML file because PodcastMaker was messing with our enhanced format. You can find the basics of XML here and here. I would go through it all but it’s better left to the experts and I still only 49% know what I’m doing. — And I would no doubt weep again.
We use Blubrry to host our files because when we ran into the wonderful problem of having excessive downloads, our server hit us with huge overage fees. When you host your files on a server like Blubrry or Libsyn, you pay a flat fee for unlimited downloading bandwidth. You may not need it immediately, but get ready to switch on a dime if your podcast becomes popular quickly. — Like Soledad O’Brien’s ‘3 Dicks Talking!’ podcast.
Hope this helps. God knows I could have used it. I may still use it. Feel free to comment if you have any questions and I’ll try to respond.
HOST: Paul F. Tompkins
GUESTS: Kaitlin Olson from ‘It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia’ and the boys from Superego.
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Photos by Joffs Crocks
Photos by Aubrey Denzer
Photos by Sammy Primero
Photos by Sammy Primero
That’s right, we got a double 5-star rating on Edgy Podcast Reviews. It’s about 14 minutes in if you’d like to skip ahead.
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