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How to Make Basic Beatbox Sounds

Try beatboxing to make percussion sounds using only your mouth.

Instructions

  • Step 1: Create a kick drum Make the kick drum sound by expelling pressurized air through your mouth. At the same time, pronounce the letter b without using your voice box. The effect should be punchy while you mouth the "b" sound and expel air simultaneously. Use only the air in your mouth.
  • TIP: Vary the b sound by mouthing the letters "bf," "bs" and "bsh" intermittently; combine for an interesting rhythm.
  • Step 2: Create the hi-hat Clench your teeth and expel short bursts of air while making the "t" sound. This is called hi-hat. Keep your tongue against the roof of your mouth and the back of your teeth, maintaining the pressure inside your mouth. Use your tongue to regulate air flow.
  • TIP: Experiment with variations like "ts," or by drawing the air for longer periods of time to create a "tssss" sound.
  • Step 3: Be a snare drum Build on the kick drum sound to mimic a snare drum. Expel pressurized air using the same technique, only mouth the letter "p" instead of the kick drum’s "b."
  • TIP: Vary the snare drum with "ps," "psh," or "pf" sounds. Emphasize the variations by elongating the sounds: for example, "psssshh" or "pssssffff."
  • Step 4: Crash like a cymbal Use the word ''chish'' to replicate the crash cymbal. Repeat through clenched teeth, without the vowel sound, for a duller crash. Keep your teeth clenched.
  • Step 5: Make a reverse cymbal sound Keep your tongue pressed against the roof of your mouth where your upper teeth meet your palate. Clench your teeth and inhale quickly to create a reverse cymbal. Close your mouth to stop the sound.
  • Step 6: Get hip-hop inspiration Listen to old school hip-hop and try to replicate those beats.
  • Step 7: Develop your sound Develop your own unique sounds by putting all the elements together. Timing and breathing techniques are the secret to impressive beat boxing. Have fun!
  • FACT: Standard Beatbox Notation (SBN) is a special set of musical notations created specifically for writing beat box songs.

You Will Need

  • Rhythm
  • A mouth

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