I would like to know how the Horse hooves sound is recorded and played in the above songs URL?

What are the sound recording & playback techniques to achieve this?

Is it possible to extract only the music played in the songs excluding the vocals?

  • 4
    Horses don't have paws, but hooves (indeed, paws are usually silent or nearly so).
    – phoog
    Commented Sep 18, 2020 at 14:08
  • 1
    Sound can be obtained with outward click roll in beatboxing. It's so unlikely it was done this way. I just wanted to put an alternative and valid method of production, one that does not need tangible objects; is portable and a sound production method that could be argued to supercede the other two (more valid answers) by many years and probably before written language.
    – user70304
    Commented Sep 19, 2020 at 3:13
  • 5
    You've got two empty halves of coconuts and your bangin' 'em together. Where'd you get the coconuts? King Arthur: We found them. Guard: Found them? In Mercia?! The coconut's tropical! King Arthur: What do you mean? Guard: Well, this is a temperate zone Commented Sep 19, 2020 at 13:02

3 Answers 3


In the old days, someone woud have two halves of a coconut shell, and tap them on a hard surface. As pointed out by Tetsujin, this was back in the day - 1957, so I suspect here, it's produced in that way. No synths to turn to then, and horses weren't allowed in recording studios, usually.

Nowadays it would be made electronically, and the sound either synthesised or sampled, and made to work rather like a metronome.

Horses' paws tend to be known as hooves.

  • Thanks. But the Hooves are heard continuously throughout the song. How this is achieved? I mean any keyboard, synthesizer musical instrument can produce "Hooves"? Commented Sep 18, 2020 at 12:15
  • 5
    The clip is dated 1957 - it was coconut shells in those days, synths wouldn't really be around for another 20 years or so. It's a percussionist's job to be able to play in time. Sounds like somebody's got some sleigh-bells going too.
    – Tetsujin
    Commented Sep 18, 2020 at 12:44
  • 8
    If horses had paws no-one would hear them coming. Commented Sep 18, 2020 at 13:53
  • 7
    Coconuts for horse hooves: youtube.com/watch?v=JHFXG3r_0B8
    – Yorik
    Commented Sep 18, 2020 at 14:28
  • 3
    If he was the guy galloping round yelling "The British are coming!" I doubt stealth would have aided his cause on that night :P [though we might now still be in charge, negating your need for a President… imagine that, huh?
    – Tetsujin
    Commented Sep 18, 2020 at 14:57

There is no attempt in this video to made an authentic clip-clop sound as is done with coconut shells.

This sounds to me like a wooden percussion block.

enter image description here

You can hear the various sounds they can make here.

Schlagwerk Woodblocks Percussion Blocks


Yes - it's woodblocks. Temple blocks are often used - especially in pantomime - but not here.

There IS an attempt to make them sound authentic: the player has two sticks in each hand and they strike the woodblocks with a slight flam. In other words there ARE four hooves! (Ker-lip Ker-lop) It would work better if the pitches of the two blocks were less similar, but using four sticks was a good idea.

It's not as good as using coconut shells, which have an inbuilt randomness of pitch: it would be difficult to make exactly the same sound twice in a row. Horses have exactly the same problem! And the wonderful thing about coconut shells is they can walk, trot, canter and gallop. In the film the horse is trotting, but on woodblocks you wouldn't be able to imitate it walking.

  • Thanks. Is it possible to extract only the music played in the song excluding the vocals? Commented Sep 24, 2020 at 15:28

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