I was watching the Chris Brown/T-Pain video for “Kiss, Kiss” and it made me think of how dope that effect is that they use to make their voices sound all futuristic and robot like. T-Pain has totally become the go-to guy for a hit record in rap/r-n-b/pop these days largely off of his use of a pitch corrector to make that sound. However, the way he does it seems to stay in the recording process, so he can’t replicate it during a live performance.
Thus, I think the talk box is in need of a comeback. Wikipedia defines it as: “a musical sound effects device that allows a musician to modify the sound of a musical instrument. The musician controls the modification by changing the shape of his or her mouth.” Basically, its a device that plugs into a keyboard or guitar. The musician can give his or her voice that “robot” sound by singing into a mouth tube. The results are fuckin awesome.
If you need further convincing, go out and listen to anything by Zapp and Roger. Roger Troutman was the king of the talk box in my opinion. Peep this live version of “Computer Love”:
Tell me thats not dope as hell. Roger was so damn talented to begin with that in combination with the talk box he would hit some ridiculously funky sounding high notes. And what’s this? Snoop Dogg damn near sings the whole time on his new single, “Sensual Seduction” using a talk box mouth tube. Gotta love it. If The Cheddar Box could talk, it would hopefully sound like a talk box.