Twistr – a little tongue warm-up tool

I’ve been unable to record for more than a week, while a perfectly average-looking cold took out the best part of my voice and left me with an depressingly-unsultry growl. So, I’ve been grumping around the house being largely unproductive. A shining exception to this was putting together a web page to pop up tongue twisters which I’m trying to get into the habit of reciting before starting to record. I collected together over a hundred of them from various sources, and grouped them according to the letters they were emphasising, along with a group that I just love for the sound of them (The epitome of femininity! Ed had edited it!) I then stuck them into a quasi-blog page, with some code to make the list change randomly when clicked. You can have a play at:

The aim was to have a manageable, fun exercise to put my mouth through before starting to record. I’ve not noticed much benefit in the past from general warm-ups (though I should probably still do them, just as good practice) — but limbering up the tongue, jaw and lips, definitely makes the recording process feel easier to me. The same tongue twisters will appear from time to time since there are only 10-15 in each of the seven categories and they appear in random order, not sequentially, but I hope that’s enough to keep the exercise fairly fresh. We’ll see; I can always write more if needed.

Hopefully tomorrow I’ll be back to recording — and before I start, I’ll play twistr with my tongue.


    1. Thankyou, Bryan! It’s no longer at all uncomfortable to record, but I can still hear a difference in my voice to usual (very small, but perceptible to me, since I’ve spent so long listening to myself go on!) Amazing how much effect a little cold can have.

  • Dear Cori
    I listend to at recording by you yesterday, “The beetle hunter” by conan doyle. I just wanted to comment, that you have a very pleasant voice and I enjoyed being read to by you.
    I live in Denmark and enjoy listening to sound books while I work on my computer.

  • Hi.
    I began listening to “The Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri”, which to my delight was read by you (canto 1 – 5). I’ve listened to many LibriVox recordings, but never have I heard a more eloquent, articulate and beautiful voice than yours. To my dismay (horror), canto 6 -10 was NOT YOU! I stopped the player! (Have you heard that recording!?)
    Anyway, I just wanted to say that had Longfellow heard your beautiful voice, I’m sure he would have insisted it be read by none other- ever.

    Here are a couple of TTs I learned many years ago:
    (1) A skunk sat on a stump. The stump thought the skunk stunk. The skunk thought the stump stunk.
    (2) I’m a sheet slitter, I slit sheets; I’m the best sheet slitter that ever slit a sheet. (be careful with this one… don’t start with “sleet”! 😉

    Should you ever record the rest of ‘The Divine Comedy’, I will then listen to it- not before!

    1. Thankyou ever so much, Ron — recording a solo of The Divine Comedy is very high up my list of things to do in 2011. I confess I’ve not yet read it all the way through, but am looking forward to it. The combination of Dante’s imagination and Longfellow’s sympathetic rending of the words is a powerful one.

      Thanks also for the additions to the tongue-twisters … the skunk one is marvellous. I may have to create a new mini-tool for the sheet slitter … I found a similar one about a pheasant plucker’s son a while back, but want to avoid encouraging my tongue in that sort of mistake (also, laughing at myself is kinda distracting when it happens so often 😉

  • Cori,

    I am truly thankful that I have found some medium with which to express my utmost gratitude for your work. I came across you whilst engaging in my scandalous indulgence of horror fiction, listening to “Tales of Horror and Mystery.” Your voice is lovely, and enchanting. I found an attraction to it and I can only say that your blog posts are indicative of what I suspected the moment I heard your voice — that the possessor of it would have a reasonable internal counterpoint. I must say that your wit is a perfect balance to it.

    That that effect I shall sign myself,

    – Your Fosco, of sorts.

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