Russia’s Number One female beatboxer gives tips on how to be resourceful with gear to make top notch videos.
Nastya Maslova’s YouTube channel is packed full of creative looping and beatbox videos combining street style and classical music training.
What was it that drew you into the world of YouTube?
Beatbox started gaining popularity in Russia in 2009. Many beatboxers were filming tutorials to spread beatbox as the new art for young people. I was also among them and that’s why my first video is a tutorial.
What tips would you give to singers who are posting videos online for the first time?
If you have something to say, sing or show – throw away all your doubts! Just take the camera and start filming! If the first time wasn’t quite what you wanted, don’t worry about it. Continue your efforts and grow better! And next time, be better than yourself! YouTube is a great machine, carrying us forward. You’re posting a video and viola! – YouTube is working for you.
A tip on the technical side of the process?
Don’t forget about the quality of your video and audio! When you shoot the video make sure that the room was quiet. Close all windows and doors and get rid of any in-the-house noises. Also, many people watch videos with headphones, and any of us would be uncomfortable hearing the raw audio track. When you film a music video, remember that the sound quality has a great role in the viewer’s perception of your content. Of course, we should not forget about the lighting and the resolution of your camera. But if you don’t have an expensive camera, make it important to organize good room lighting.
Do you do live performances as well?
Yes! Now performing live with a loop station is my primary job. I sing and play different instruments at various events, in restaurants, at festivals, corporate parties and love to perform on the street!
How do you “perform” with YouTube viewers in mind?
It is important to present information quickly, to keep good tempo and to avoid losing the audience’s interest. Keep any conversation short, the song will do everything for you. If you shoot a live looping video, it’s important to structure the arrangement so that the intro is not prolonged and the composition develops rapidly.
Your videos look great – what equipment do you use?
RC-505 loopstation, TC-Helicon VLT2, KP3+ MPC Fly, Boss DB-90, Mackie 802 VLZ4, Shure Beta 87A, AKG Beatbox Battle, Shure se425. For the best sound I record sound through sound card, I have Steinberg Cl 1, and I use the program Sound Forge.
What advice would you give to people who are lusting after all of the equipment you have?
I didn’t always have the expensive gear I use now. For many years I shot videos with a simple camera, and my first loop station was the simplest (Boss RC-20 XL). As I made more money I bought additional hardware, wires and microphones to improve the quality of my sound. Often I bought used tools and devices because I couldn’t afford to buy expensive new ones. Don’t wait! To get started buy simple second hand gear and get practicing!
Nastya Maslova is one of Russia’s leading lights in live looping performance. She is also a multiple beatboxing competition winner and has held champion titles in both looping and beatboxing. The mix of her classical flute, sultry pop vocal style and mean beats makes for some compelling YouTube content. Her album, ‘Looping at First’ is out now on iTunes.