MRI scan of beatboxer performing
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Beatboxer sees his 'big tongue'

Brain scans of a professional beatboxer, who performs by imitating electronic instruments vocally, suggest the skill is an expert behaviour.

Scientists compared the brain activity of UK champion, Reeps One, with that of a novice, while they both beatboxed.

Reeps One, the stage name of Harry Yeff, mostly used two brain areas, including the cerebellum - responsible for learning complicated movements.

The novice used many more brain areas, suggesting a need to plan each sound and a lack of automatic processing.

Take a look at the magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans taken by Dr Carolyn McGettigan, a neuroscientist at University College London.

Find out more about Reeps One

  • 01 Jun 2011
  • From the section Health