You might know him as Sidey or “Sideshow” Mike Andersen. He is the Imaging guy for Triple M in Sydney, a VO artist and since a few an oscar nominated actor :)…
Like you see: HE is Mr. Triple M! I am thrilled to present you the multi award winning Michael Andersen. I met Sidey when I was hanging in Sydney in 2005 and he was one of my big influencers in what I call content related or creative radio imaging. He had that special something in his writing, his production and as a person. Sidey to me is one of the best writers and creators in the business. His style is ultra creative, surprising and really really funny.
1. which production system do you use at station Triple M and why?
Pro tools. It’s just the industry standard in Australia. Very fast. Very easy to use. And I’m always learning new things.
I also use a Control 24 desk. It’s awesome. Just like working on an old school desk, riding faders and pressing buttons.
2. what are your favorite plugIns?
Filter bank, Super tap delay, L1 and C4, Renaissance Axe, Lofi, D-Verb. All the basics. Nothing too fancy here.
3. how do you schedule your work (priorities…..)?
I work in 1 hour blocks. Never work on something longer than 1 hour before moving on to something else.
So in an average day I’ll work on at least 8-10 different projects. But may not finish any of them.
Next day I revisit stuff with fresh ears, fresh ideas. Maybe complete a job, maybe move on again. Unless there’s a tight deadline.
But since I create my own workload (not programming) I can control it better.
Writing all scripts, recording all voices, some scheduling and the final production I can really control my workload.
4. what do you love about being the head of production @ MMM
Firstly, the rock. I can’t imagine working without riffs and screaming vocals.
Triple M is also a relaxed, tongue-in-cheek, rock station. So there’s room for lots of fun.
90% of my work is based on a stupid idea I’ve had. The other 10% based on strategy from programming briefs.
I’ve been here at Triple M Sydney for 16 years and still love it. It’s just a lot of fun. I even got to star in the latest TV ad…
5. what is the best protools or production trick anybody should know
Learning to work in grid mode. And use the snap to grid feature. Apple-I.
I do everything in grid mode. Even when I’m not beat mixing. I find it also works for comic timing.
6. a)how do you get inspired and what do you use as source of creativity? How do you create scripts?
Inspiration comes listening to music, watching TV, movies, the news.
I write around an original starting point. It could be a TV grab, a riff, song hook, or stupid line I’ve thought of.
Then I build from there. I always like to try and link the end of the promo with the beginning somehow.
So if you’ve had a load of info in the middle you come back to the gag at the end if you can. Doesn’t always work.
6. b)what is key to create content based imaging like you doo and how did you developed your style our better said your vision of sound for Triple MMM?
The key is to always be writing stuff down. I write down loads of ideas and scripts and many never get used.
If you get EVERYTHING out of your head the good ideas are more likely to come out too.
Comic timing is very important. Direction of voice overs is too.
The style at Triple M is irrelevant. Triple M is the larrikan of the Aussie market. Nothing is too serious.
My production style is a mix of rock, beats and loads of quirky stuff like big band, opera, cheese, etc.
When cheesy jingles meet cool beatmixed rock promos and scripts that take the piss – that’s Triple M Sydney.
7. who were your radio production idols, who influenced your work as a producer?
Jeff Thomas was the imaging producer here at Triple M Sydney, so he’s obviously someone who inspires me.
Simon Hicks (Slash) was the guy that hired me. I worked close with him for a few years. He was my immediate influence starting out. Legend!
Then I discovered other styles of production and started getting ideas from OS, like KROQ and the Jack (similar personality to Triple M).
In Australia there are loads of great imaging guys to take inspiration from – Kacey Baker, Matty Dower and Matt Nikolic
Are the guys I’ve stolen most of my new production techniques from over the years.
8. what would be your 3 key advices for me as a youngster?
Get Pro tools and practice at home (a home studio is a must these days).
Always monitor your radio station, and other radio stations. How does your work sound on air? And what are other people doing?
Listen to a shit load of music and always have an arsenal of beds, beats, riffs, etc ready to go.
Sidey was so kind to sent one of his latest production in a full to stripped down version, so you can see how he built it form scratch. He also sent through screencaps of this sessions.