Queens & Kings of ASMR
I used to fall asleep to Bob Ross videos. His soothing voice as he painted "happy little trees" calmed my mind and end-capped my day, even after listening to voices for hours.
But I didn't really have words for what was helping me fall asleep - that lulling feeling of a beautiful voice creating soft sounds. Now, this phenomenon is trending big time, and it's called ASMR. A recent piece by New Yorker (see below video) profiled several popular ASMRists and their soundscape journeys, and I'm so glad we're talking about it!
Wikipedia defines ASMR as Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response. In more abstract terms, it's that "tingling" running down the spine when hearing specific sounds. ASMR isn't voice over in the traditional sense. It's not always recorded in a pre-treated room or vocal booth, isolated from any outside noise, and it doesn't necessarily sell things or promote an outside concept. With ASMR, sounds within a space, or "room tone" are part of the appeal. All the little imperfections and blips that we in the 'professional' recording world work to eradicate from our day-to-day recordings are key to an ASMRtist's success.
Types of ASMR
Staged - a person faces the camera with a background in a setting of their choosing, used to fit the mood of the video. (example, WhispersRed ASMR channel)
Accidental - a voice or channel which happens to bring about ASMR simply by being or having the qualities aforementioned. (examples: Bob Ross, this delightful woman who runs a bat sanctuary!)
ASMR Artists to check out...
Find channels you love, subscribe to support creators, and start falling asleep to amazing voices...!
Video credit: The New Yorker