How to Learn Beatboxing at home: Beginners Tutorials

 Beatboxing is a popular genre of music. It is called "the fifth element of hip-hop", but the technique of imitating musical instruments with the mouth has been known for a long time. Vocal percussion, or lip singing, is found in many cultures. Today beatboxers are not limited in their styles, and regular battles show a growing interest in this "music without instruments". Since you can learn beatboxing at home from YouTube videos, it is especially popular among young people.

General information about beatbox: what it is

To create and perform songs, only the mouth and voice are used here, and from the instruments you only need a metronome and a microphone. Often, beatboxers do not need musical accompaniment, limiting themselves to their voice, claps and other improvised instruments.

Beatboxing: the history of the emergence

Beatbox analogs are found among African tribes, and medieval musicians also loved it. Imitation of musical instruments is familiar to us from films and TV shows.

As a form of performing arts, vocal percussion or lip singing has always attracted interest. However, an explosion in popularity awaited beatboxing on the American coast, in Chicago in the 1980s.

Beatbox came to Russia in the early 2000s. The first championships were held in Moscow, but for the last few years the official Russian beatboxing championship has been held in St. Petersburg. The winners are not only young people, but also girls.

How to learn beatboxing:

basic principles and rules
Most performers start beatboxing at home, and improvisation is one of the main skills. However, if you are learning beatboxing from scratch, there are some rules to be learned.

Algorithm of actions

From the outside, it seems that everyone can be a beatboxer: you just need to make different sounds into the microphone. In fact, beatbox, like any lip singing, is a combination of vocal prowess and composing music.

Anyone can really learn beatboxing, even a girl, and it's easy to do at home. However, mastering beatboxing requires certain skills, systematic practice and patience.

Preparation and development of the speech apparatus and respiration

A quality beatbox means good breathing, clear diction, a sense of rhythm and an ear for music. Beatboxers compose music in real time in the same way that jazz musicians performed their improvisations. To do this, you need to know the "tool".

Important ! Although beatboxing comes from hip-hop, where rhythm is more important, the ability to convey a melody with your voice, without the aid of an instrument, greatly enhances skill and develops an ear for music.


Beatboxing is much easier if you've done music and can pronounce English sounds correctly. However, all the necessary skills can be developed at home:

  • good breathing - inflate regular balloons and sing while dancing or walking;
  • clear diction - speak tongue twisters and read for a while;
  • a sense of rhythm - tap any melodies with your palms and feet;
  • ear for music - sing any tunes without music.

Special exercises will help to develop breathing. Professional musicians breathe with a diaphragm: this allows them to draw more air into their lungs and draw sounds longer. To learn how to breathe properly, place one hand on your stomach, the other on your chest, and take a deep breath in your stomach. At the same time, the chest should remain motionless. Exhale slowly.


In addition to tongue twisters, you can do various language exercises, but it is better to master English phonetics. It doesn't take long, but you can develop your vocal apparatus and learn how to read all the basic beatbox sounds correctly. Good articulation is the hallmark of the best beatboxers.

Learning basic sounds

The beatbox we are studying originated in the USA, among English-speaking performers, and the pronunciation rules of this language directly affect the performance. Many consonants that are involved in the creation of beats are pronounced aspirated or vocal burst in English, that is, softer and less clearly than similar Russian sounds.


English will help you master the basic beatbox sounds.

By the way: beatbox sounds are sometimes referred to as instruments in a drum kit. If you can play drums, it will be easier for you to master beatboxing.

Kick . This sound is called "kick" or "kick drum". It is based on English [b], which is pronounced with a strong aspiration: you need to open your lips and forcefully push out the air. Biting your lips slightly can diversify the sound.

Clap. This sound mimics a clap of hands and is based on a combination of [kch], which actually looks like an exaggerated [l] with a vocal burst. It is as if you are pronouncing [l], while you need to press your tongue to the palate, inhale and exhale sharply: you get something like [khl].

Snare. The last basic sound is based on the combination [pf]. Both sounds are explosive. [p] is pronounced in the same way as its paired sonorous sound [b], but the sound [f] must be pronounced quickly and sharply. Snare is similar to a snare drum in a drum kit.

Hi-Hat . "Open hi-hat" is also called "cymbals". It is based on the sound [t]. Whisper “here”, stressing the first letter “t”. When you memorize the correct sound, pronounce only "t", without an auxiliary word. For correct pronunciation, you need to sharply push off your tongue from the upper front teeth and release a wave of air.

Creation of simple beatings

At first, repeat the beatboxes offered in their videos by the beatboxing masters.

1.repeats of one sound:

  • b bb b bb b;
  • kch kch kch kch;

2.mix the sounds:

  • btbtb;
  • bt kch t.

Beats for Beginner Beatboxers:

  • bt-pf-t;
  • bt-pf-t-bb-b-pf-t;
  • bt-kch-ttb-kch-t;
  • bt-pf-btb-pf-t;
  • b-tk-pf-tk-tk-b-pf-tk.

In the future, as you master the sounds and their combinations, start improvising and coming up with your own beatings. Remember beatboxing is music without instruments. As you hone new sounds and beatings, you will gradually begin to "play" not only drums, but also wind and string instruments, and even imitate a DJ console.

Skill upgrade

Once you have mastered the basic sounds and learned how to do beatings, it is time to speed up. The metronome, a device that produces a certain number of beats per minute (BPM), will help you with this. It is widely used in playing musical instruments to learn how to play rhythmically. There are many videos of Russian and foreign performers on YouTube, which show how to work with him.

Don't try to start with a high tempo right away. Pick a pace that you can breathe and improve gradually.


By the way: there are free online metronomes with graphic visualizations on the Internet.

There are more basic sounds in beatbox than we've covered here. Therefore, an important stage in skill development is listening to recordings, battles and regular lessons and exercises.

Mastering the microphone

Before your first performance, it is advisable to work with a microphone. The main thing to do is to learn how to hold it in the way that suits you, and in no case breathe into the microphone! Correct breathing and the ability to hold it will help a lot here.

Helpful Self-Study Resources

There are numerous free self-paced beatboxing video courses on the internet. Below we have listed the lessons from the best Russian and foreign beatboxers

How to beatbox with a pen


Want to beatbox but don't want to make strange sounds? Start beatboxing with a regular pen! And if you add a pencil, a glass and use different surfaces, you can create complex compositions.

Try these sounds and beats:

  • horizontal or vertical drop of the handle to the surface with a click;
  • repulsion from the surface;
  • imitation of grinding;
  • knob hitting another handle or surface.

Try combining a beatbox with a voice and a pen for a curious mix.

Anyone can learn beatboxing. Gender and age are not important here. If beatboxing is your passion, just start learning the basic sounds and techniques, do your beatboxes, compose compositions - and, perhaps, soon they will start talking about you in the world!

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