In your hunt for new sounds, you may have missed out the most unique of all: Your own voice!
Beatboxing is an art that can go from simple adlibs (Timbaland’s sound is full of his own special brand of percussion) all the way to fully realised multitracked sets.
My personal favourite Faith SFX’s LP Man or Machine is a prime example of what a little (probably a lot, on balance) of dedication can achieve, just listen to this for proof:
The best thing about beatboxing is that all you need is a microphone… and possibly somewhere you can practice without driving your friends and family bezerk. Humanbeatbox.com is a great resource for all things beatbox, including tips and tutorials on how to create all kinds of sounds, and we’ve pulled together three free plugins that’ll really add a little something extra to your home made sounds…
Solid State Logic might be best known for their jaw droppingly expensive professional mixing consoles, but they’ve got a sense of fun too – this Mac/Win plugin adds a little bit of that halloween sheen (I know that doesn’t really make sense, I just liked the rhyme) to your sounds, and it’s designed specifically for vocals. Download here!
One of our favourite free plugin providers, Togu Audio Line, provide a very handy plugin for your vocal aspirations: TAL Vocoder. Admittedly you’ll be going outside of the confines of just your voice with a vocoder, but it’ll still give you your very own sounds! A vocoder essentially modulates a synth tone with a vocal performance, which allows the synth to take on the percussive elements of the voice to allow you to ‘play’ your own voice. Download here!
Ohm Force Frohmage
We looked to Ohm Force for the last of our free plugins that we’ve hand picked to help you tweak your own vocals into exciting sounds for your productions, and Frohmage’s filtering and distortion is superb for giving just about any sound an edge; feed some beatboxed drums through this puppy and you’ll love the grit it can provide! Download here!
- Try recording simple one shot samples as well as full loops
- Experiment with layering your beatbox sounds with more conventional drums and samples to give them an edge
- Play around with pitch, effects, and even direction to get crazy sounds
- Drink some water – and try not to bite your tongue!