So You Wanna Be a Podcast Star?
In case you weren't aware, you can use the blog on your Hideout page to post your very own podcast. If you do, there's a chance that we may include it in our main feed that feeds the podcast player on the Main page of this site, and will also appear in the "Podcasts" tab... but only if it meets the following guidelines (and we really like it, natch).
First and foremost, it really helps if you fully understand exactly what podcasting is before you decide you want to produce a show. The Wikipedia entry on podcasting is a great source of info. If you haven't read it, please do. A little edumacation never hurt nobody...
If you're unfamiliar with the basic how-to's on creating a podcast, please take a few minutes to read the Beginner's Guide to Podcast Creation. This tutorial will give you all of the information you should need in getting started. Further information, tips, and resources can be found in the podcast forum at Podcast Alley.
We also highly recommend using a program called Audacity for recording your shows on a computer. Audacity isn't the best, but it definitely is the cheapest solution—especially for someone just starting out or experimenting—since it's FREE. You can import audio into Audacity and cut and paste it into other tracks and mix them, turn them backwards, process them, add soundbytes and FX, etc. It is also available for both Mac and PC. Another highly recommended program is PodProducer (although it is strictly for PCs). If you're a Mac user, and you've got GarageBand, you're in luck because it comes with excellent podcasting tools built right in and is easy and fun to use. Fuckin' A!
Of course, if you want to do everything live and not have to edit anything—probably the most fun way of doing it (for the listener as well as the podcaster)—you'll need a slightly more complicated setup. There are complicated ways of routing sound from one program to another on your computer, but the easiest thing to do is to get an external mixer, a microphone, a turntable, tape deck, mp3 player, CD player, live band or whatever you want to use and plug it all into the mixer, run it into your computer, and start recording. So you would be mixing everything "live" on the mixer and just recording a single signal in Audacity or whatever you are recording to.
We won't accept mix tape-style shows (music only with no show host giving song info). We will only accept hosted (meaning you have to open up the mic and talk!) programs and we prefer these to be in English. Yes, we have a couple in other languages, but 90% of our listeners are from English-speaking parts of the world. This, of course, doesn't mean you can't do a mix tape-style show in your own native tongue and post it here; it just means we probably will not add it to GaragePunk Pirate Radio.
Here are a few guidelines for submitting shows:
1)All shows should be recorded as MP3 files. Please make sure your podcast show is ripped with the following specs before submitting (this is so they all sound consistent from one show to the next):
The general rule of thumb is to try and keep your file size down to around 30mb. It's important to remember that doing your show in mono sounds WAY better when ripped at 80 kbps than stereo at the same rate. That's because 80 kbps mono is equivalent to 160 kbps stereo. Yep, it's true! And besides, this is primitive rock'n'roll, not Yngwie Malmsteen, or Korn, or Huey Lewis, or Celine Dion, or... you get the idea. Just like your old '60s garage 45s, the mono ones sound better, anyway. There are a couple of ways to get your files 80 kbps mono. First, you can just set your export settings at that (from Audacity, GarageBand, etc.), or you can export the file at a higher bit rate, and then use iTunes to rip it down to the proper specs. To do that, in iTunes, go under Preferences and create a custom import setting using a 160 kbps stereo bit rate, but then select MONO under "Channels." This will give you an 80 kbps mono file once you find the file in your library and re-rip it.
2) If you are already a DJ at a radio station (commercial, public, college, Internet, whatever) we must ask that you please do NOT submit shows that were done live over the air or pre-recorded for that station. Doing so would require explicit written permission from the station for redistribution (since that station actually owns the rights to that production), and it's just something we don't want to mess with. Plus, we're trying to encourage people to produce shows independently, on your own. So please submit unique shows that you produce specifically for GaragePunk Pirate Radio only.
If you do not join Mevio, a good alternative is to set up a Posterous blog and just use that for your podcast (see my Noise Annoys blog as an example). Posterous is absolutely free, you can upload media attachments to your posts (such as a podcast MP3 file), and there are no bandwidth or storage limitations.
6) Show frequency: We ask that each producer only post shows a MINIMUM of every two months, and a MAXIMUM of every-other week (in other words, please don't post a weekly show and don't let three or more months pass between episodes). And find ways to promote your show outside of the Hideout, too, such as by creating a Facebook page for it, and/or use Twitter, Google+, your own personal blog... whatever.
7) After your show is posted, please try to remember to revisit the blog occasionally to check and see if anyone's left comments about your show(s) so you can respond if ya want. You are also free to post the show's playlist in the body of the blog post (recommended).
8) Another thing we recommend show producers do is to tie in specific topics (bands, labels, movies, jokes or other discussion threads) that come up on the Hideout's Discussion Forum into your shows. This isn't required, but we think it would be cool to keep some kind of dynamic between the Hideout and the podcasts. It also helps encourage a sense of community that be conveyed through the podcasts.