The best rappers have a way with words and can roll strings of lyrics off of their tongues seamlessly!
When we hear it, we attribute it to that rapper's "flow".
The thing is, not all rappers can do this, and stumble on their words (both embarrassing and inconvenient, especially if you have paid for studio time or performing in front of people!)
If this is you, there is no shame in it, and I am glad you are here, looking for ways to improve!
I have put together this resource of tongue twisters for rappers and also give you tips on how you can create your own tongue twisters to recite - this is where your Grade 3 literacy lessons finally get to shine.
Remember alliteration? Tongue twisters are all ALL about that.
They are an under-utilized lyrical device that can improve your rap skills and take your rhymes to the next level.
So, if you are ready to become as fluid as Eminem... keep reading!
What Defines A "Tongue Twister" and How Do They Improve Rap Skills?
Rapping in itself, is a tongue exercise, but lyrics are not tongue twisters.
Tongue twisters are phrases or sentences that are difficult to pronounce quickly and accurately.
They often contain similar sounds or words, making them challenging to say without stumbling or mixing up the words.
Tongue twisters can improve rap skills by:
- helping rappers develop better diction
- improve enunciation,
- get more in tune with rhythm and stay on beat
Practiced regularly enough, rappers can improve their ability to clearly and smoothly deliver their lyrics, making their performances more engaging and dynamic.
21 Tongue Twisters For Rappers
- Red Lorry, Yellow Lorry (repeat forever)
- She Sells Sea Shells By The Sea Shore
- How Can a Clam Cram in A Clean Cream Can?
- The Seething Sea Ceaseth and Thus the Seething Sea Sufficeth Us.
- Round and Round the Rugged Rock, the Ragged Rascal Ran.
- Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers. A peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked. If Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers, Where's the peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked?
- How Can A Colourful Cow Crown A Cow
- The Cows In The Cowshed Chew Cud
- The Ripe Red Strawberry Sits Serenely In The Strawberry Stand
- A Proper Copper Coffee Pot
- Betty Botter Bought Some Butter
- I Wish To Wish The Wish You Wish To Wish
- She Sits On Her Suitcase
- I Slit A Sheet, A Sheet I Slit
- How Can A Cannonball Curl In A Can
- A Box Of Mixed Biscuits
- The Big Black Bug Bit The Big Black Bear
- Three Grey Geese In A Green Field Grazing
- The Leak In The Dike
- Silly Sally swiftly shooed seven sheep.
- She Threw The Thatch On The Thatched Roof Thick
- Can you imagine an imaginary menagerie manager, imagining managing an imaginary menagerie?
How to Use Tongue Twisters to Improve Rap Skills
To use tongue twisters to improve your rap skills, start by choosing a single tongue twister and focus on mastering it.
Practice saying it slowly and clearly, then Focus on enunciating each word and avoiding stumbling over the tricky sounds.
As you become more comfortable, try speeding it up and repeating it non-stop, while still maintaining good diction and pronunciation.
You can also try saying the tongue twister in different rhythms, such as a beat or a melody, to develop your sense of rhythm and flow.
My favorite one to say to a beat with a bit of a flow, is the lesser-known: Can you imagine an imaginary menagerie manager, imagining managing an imaginary menagerie?
Say it out loud and you will soon see why!
Tips for Making Your Own Tongue Twisters
If you want to create your own tongue twisters, here are a few tips to keep in mind:
- Use similar sounds or words: The key to a good tongue twister is to create a phrase or sentence that contains similar sounds or words.
For example, you could use alliteration (repeated initial sounds) or rhyme (repeated ending sounds) to create a tongue twister that is challenging to say quickly and accurately.
- Keep it short: Tongue twisters are more effective when they are short and concise. Avoid using long, complex sentences that are difficult to remember and pronounce.
- Make it fun: Tongue twisters are meant to be challenging, but they should also be fun. Try to come up with tongue twisters that are playful and engaging, rather than boring or repetitive.
Fun Tongue Twister Challenges for Rappers
Once you have a few tongue twisters to work with, you can challenge yourself or other rappers to see who can say the tongue twister the fastest and most accurately.
Here are a few fun tongue-twister challenges for rappers:
- The tongue twister race: Choose a tongue twister and have each rapper say it as fast as they can. The rapper who can say the tongue twister the fastest and most accurately wins.
- The tongue twister freestyle: Choose a tongue twister and have each rapper use it as the basis for a freestyle rap. The rapper who can incorporate the tongue twister into their freestyle the most creatively and skillfully wins.
- The tongue twister challenge: Choose a tongue twister and have each rapper try to come up with their own tongue twister using the same sounds or words. The rapper who comes up with the most challenging and creative tongue twister wins.
Study Other Rappers
At the start of this article, I mentioned Eminem. You are going to need to study some of the more seasoned rappers to improve in this area as this ability is not a feature of mumble rap!
Busta Rhymes is known for his old-school and insanely fast flow. If you can bring up some of his lyrics and recite his bars to one of his songs, you will start to see how beneficial these exercises can be.
Lastly, Papoose puts this all into action really well with his classic "Alphabetical Slaughter"