How to Make a Podcast Bumper in Audacity
- Difficulty Medium
- Time required 30 minutes+
What is a podcast bumper? A podcast bumper is a short piece of music and audio that helps ease transitions between different segments of a podcast. It can also be used as an intro or outro for an entire podcast. A typical bumper includes some background music and an announcement: “You are listening to the ‘Hardly Hangry’ podcast with your hosts, Andy and Ollie!” before fading out. Using bumpers in your podcast allows for smooth transitions and adds a touch of professionalism.
Download and open Audacity on your computer. Audacity is a free audio program that allows you to record and edit single audio files as well as mix and arrange multiple audio tracks together (multitracking).
Similar programs: Garageband, Pro Tools, Logic, Ardour, Mixbus, Reaper.
Create or find a music loop to use for your bumper. Always double check the copyright and licensing requirements of any third party audio you wish to use! We have provided a few music loops collected from Looperman.com, a popular website that hosts royalty free music loops. File > Import > Audio to insert your music loop into a new track. If you need to extend the loop you can do so by selecting the audio and going to Effect > Repeat.
Decide on a name for your imaginary podcast. Write a short script introducing the podcast and the hosts (feel free to use nicknames, i.e. Franky Feline aka Fluffy Face). Decide who will read each word or line – it can be one voice or multiple voices reading lines. Keep in mind a bumper should be very short – around 15 seconds or less.
4. Create a new track in Audacity and set the input to mic input. Hit the record button and speak into the microphone. Make sure the audio level is not too loud otherwise it will sound distorted due to digital clipping. To reduce background noise: Effect > Noise Reduction
Use the selection tool, move tool, and envelope tools to arrange and clean up your recording. If you’d like, you can also add audio effects such as reverb and echo.
|Zoom In||CTRL + 1|
|Zoom Out||CTRL + 3|
|Zoom Fit||Highlight selection then CTRL + F|
|Split Delete (delete without moving clips)||Highlight selection then CTRL + ALT + K|
Mix the audio together by adjusting the audio levels of the individual tracks. When you are done go to File > Export > Export as WAV to save your mixdown.
- YouMedia Studio Basics
- Microphone types: Dynamic vs. Condensor
- Cable Types: unbalanced (TS), balanced (TRS, XLR)
- Audio Interface: Standalone vs. USB microphones
- Recording software: Audacity, Garageband, Reaper, Ardour, Mixbus, Logic, Pro Tools
- Podcast hosting: Soundcloud, Buzzsprout, Transistor.fm
- Sound absorbing panels: Moving blankets, quilts, pillows, Bonded Logic recycled denim panels, O.C. 703 Rigid Fiberglass Panels
- Looperman: Royalty free music loops
- Freesound database (collaborative database of Creative Commons Licensed Sounds)