A talk box is a device that allows a musician to create words through the sound of an instrument. It is what made Peter Frampton’s famous talking-guitar sound possible.
It is not the same as Auto-Tune, wah-wah pedal or even a vocoder.
The talk box is a simple device that drives an instrument’s sound through a tube into a person’s mouth. Movements of the mouth can then manipulate the sound to come out as decipherable words.
The device dates back to at least the 1930s, when it was used in Big Band music and was later used in a Gold record country music hit in 1964. It finally reached a peak in popularity in the 1970s, when it was used in several rock music hit songs.