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  #1001  
Old March 29th, 2012, 3:21 am
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

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Originally Posted by yorkiedoodle View Post
I have a mate who lived for 9 years in Bootle and then moved to the North of Scotland. Later she returned to Liverpool to study before settling in Edinburgh...

Her accent is best described as a hybrid one...
Some people seem quicker at picking up an accent than others. We're from Yorkshire and my son has lived in Scotland for about 20 years and hasn't the slightest trace of a Scottish accent. Unlike me - I holidayed in Southern Ireland for a week and by the end of it was being taken for a Dubliner - ie, not local but definitely Irish! I think I reflect back some of what I'm hearing without thinking about it.


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  #1002  
Old August 30th, 2012, 11:05 pm
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

I'm pretty good at distinguishing accents and reproducing them I used to be in a boarding school in South England and we got all sorts of people there, so I picked up accent easy (like Carribbean and Australian), even distinguishing Ozzy and Kiwi . But have you guys thought of not the 'native' accent but also accents like French and Russian

Oh yeah, I'm actually from Eastern Europe .

The best accent I've heard though is from this Moldovan girl, who studied in Scotland for two years. It's the most hilarious thing to hear someone say in a Russian accent "a wee bit o' a pickle"


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  #1003  
Old September 1st, 2012, 1:45 am
Temery  Female.gif Temery is offline
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

for all of you (us) from the west coast of the US (Cal, Ariz, etc...) please know that we do in fact have an accent even tho we can't tell.
proof you ask, well here's a story, on a tour of Itlay one of my bus mates was from Australia and she knew instantly that I was from California. We loved eachother accents and would say the most normal of things to eachother that would have us cracking up laughing, we would even try to copy eachother's accent or say back what the tour guide was saying just to see the other one laugh at the accent.

here's a thing about accents I've always wonderd, why do some people not sing/record in their accent, why do they try to "flatten" it out? (thinking specifically of Adele, love her music but when I saw an interview and heard her accent I was bummed that the songs are not sung in the same accent)...back waaay a bit on this thread it was touched on that some journalist training for news broadcasting was to "flatten" out the accent but that ended around 1940 ish, if it ended then why is it still being done?


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  #1004  
Old September 1st, 2012, 11:34 am
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

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Originally Posted by Temery View Post
here's a thing about accents I've always wonderd, why do some people not sing/record in their accent, why do they try to "flatten" it out? (thinking specifically of Adele, love her music but when I saw an interview and heard her accent I was bummed that the songs are not sung in the same accent)...back waaay a bit on this thread it was touched on that some journalist training for news broadcasting was to "flatten" out the accent but that ended around 1940 ish, if it ended then why is it still being done?
I'm not sure, but I think British people who sing in certain genres of music (especially those genres which originate in the US, like blues, jazz, rock etc) often do veer into a midAtlantic accent when they sing, even without trying. If you've been singing along to American records since you were around 8 years old, it just becomes instinctive to switch to a slightly American voice when you sing music in that style.

I don't think it's the same as the impulse to lose regional accents that used to pertain in news broadcasting (in the UK that went on way later than the 1940s) - that was to do with class and being ashamed of one's background, which I don't think singers are, especially if they retain their natural accent when they're speaking.

Except in folk music, where retaining your natural accent is considered important, I think most people do sound a lot less regionally accented when singing than speaking.

Although people whose natural voice is RP tend to instinctively roughen it up into a more Cockney/estuary accent when singing in genres like punk and indie.



Last edited by Melaszka; September 1st, 2012 at 11:42 am.
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  #1005  
Old October 23rd, 2012, 6:48 am
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Temery View Post
for all of you (us) from the west coast of the US (Cal, Ariz, etc...) please know that we do in fact have an accent even tho we can't tell.
proof you ask, well here's a story, on a tour of Itlay one of my bus mates was from Australia and she knew instantly that I was from California. We loved eachother accents and would say the most normal of things to eachother that would have us cracking up laughing, we would even try to copy eachother's accent or say back what the tour guide was saying just to see the other one laugh at the accent.

here's a thing about accents I've always wonderd, why do some people not sing/record in their accent, why do they try to "flatten" it out? (thinking specifically of Adele, love her music but when I saw an interview and heard her accent I was bummed that the songs are not sung in the same accent)...back waaay a bit on this thread it was touched on that some journalist training for news broadcasting was to "flatten" out the accent but that ended around 1940 ish, if it ended then why is it still being done?

I think Mumford and Sons have done a good job of singing in their accents.


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  #1006  
Old October 24th, 2012, 9:10 pm
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

[Quote:
Originally Posted by Temery
for all of you (us) from the west coast of the US (Cal, Ariz, etc...) please know that we do in fact have an accent even tho we can't tell. proof you ask, well here's a story, on a tour of Itlay one of my bus mates was from Australia and she knew instantly that I was from California. We loved eachother accents and would say the most normal of things to eachother that would have us cracking up laughing, we would even try to copy eachother's accent or say back what the tour guide was saying just to see the other one laugh at the accent.

here's a thing about accents I've always wonderd, why do some people not sing/record in their accent, why do they try to "flatten" it out? (thinking specifically of Adele, love her music but when I saw an interview and heard her accent I was bummed that the songs are not sung in the same accent)...back waaay a bit on this thread it was touched on that some journalist training for news broadcasting was to "flatten" out the accent but that ended around 1940 ish, if it ended then why is it still being done? ]


I live in Virginia ( for the last 42 years) and although I use some local colloquialisms I have not picked up the accent. I made sure to raise my children without it also. This was mainly due to the belief that if you have a strong Southern accent you are in some way inferior to the rest of the us who do not speak that way. And, Yes! There is such a prejudice, at least when I was raising children long ago.

I do not hold with that prejudice because I have lived here for so long. But I am from California, born in San Francisco and, when I hear the West Coast accent spoken, I am sincerely homesick. I think that the Southern prejudice in California came from the fact that in the 1940's many people left the South to find work and WWII engendered many jobs on the coast. But those people were mostly lower class, black, or both and so the accent became associated with lower classes that did not have the cultural finesse of the white upper crust. (They had a culture but it was different.) And No, I am not a racist. I have black grandchildren. I raised my children to see no color, but to see a person. And incidentally, none of my grandchildren, black or white, speak with a southern accent. You learn to speak from your primary care-giver. So If they have an 'accent' you will likely speak that way.

I have said before, there is nothing wrong with any accent except that, if it is so strong, others cannot understand you. Then it becomes a hindrance. I love accents. They make a person more interesting.

I can understand almost anyone from anywhere who speaks English, French, German, Spanish or Italian. If you speak English with any kind of accent I can make it out. It is kind of sad that when someone from India or Africa, Ireland or Scotland, etc. is speaking English in a television documentary, the producers feel that they must put in subtitles for Americans. Do they think we are that ignorant?

Incidentally, one of the funniest things I ever heard was a recording in a language class when I was in school. It was of French being spoken by someone with a very strong Texas-Southern accent. We laughed so hard we ached. Oh, my goodness!


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  #1007  
Old October 25th, 2012, 2:26 pm
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

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Originally Posted by Melaszka View Post
Except in folk music, where retaining your natural accent is considered important, I think most people do sound a lot less regionally accented when singing than speaking.
I noticed last night at a worship group practice that I was singing in a more southern accent than my usual Yorkshire - eg I sang Master as Marster. Seemed easier.

I did once hear an inner city school choir singing Silent Night in deep Yorkshire and it was hilarious. "Sahlent naht, ooly naht" etc.


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  #1008  
Old October 26th, 2012, 1:43 am
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

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Originally Posted by horcrux4 View Post
I noticed last night at a worship group practice that I was singing in a more southern accent than my usual Yorkshire - eg I sang Master as Marster. Seemed easier.
How do you normally pronounce master? I'm trying to imagine the difference between those two pronunciations in an English accent, but I thought they would end up sounding the same (sorry, accent-ignorant American here ). Isn't the 'a' in master usually pronounced like the 'a' in father? I thought that that would make the same sound as /ar/. To me, they'd both be /ah/. Of course, in my natural American accent the difference between master and marster is indisputable because I would pronounce hard Rs. I guess the difference between those two pronunciations is a subtlety lost on my American ears. In the same vein, for the longest time I couldn't comprehend the difference between Hermione's "Wingardium Leviosa" and Ron's "Wingardium Leviosar." I guess the 'a' in Hermione's Leviosa is more like /uh/ and Ron's Leviosar is /ah/? It's confusing to me because American accents don't have all of the nuances of pronunciation that British accents do; they're flatter, I think.

As a side note, when you say "southern accent," I automatically think of a southern accent in the U.S., like a thick Texan accent. (I actually live in Texas and hear a good bit of it, though not as much as people would assume). It's so interesting to me to wonder about the different regional accents in other countries, especially the UK. I'm most accustomed to the usual RP British English. Or stereotypical representations of Irish and Scottish accents. It's sometimes hard to identify a particular British accent because I get it in my head that, "Oh, Scots always roll their Rs," or something when that's not always true.


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  #1009  
Old October 26th, 2012, 2:57 am
Overdose  Undisclosed.gif Overdose is offline
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

In the north in the UK, they don't pronounce it MARSTER, (like father etc)


more of a MA-STER (A from bad, sad, glad etc)

closer to the US pronunciation in fact. (It's hard to spell these things out without the phonetic alphabet). The same is true of words like path, grass, bath etc

Here's a northern English accent example:
Ned Stark

and another
Steven Gerrard

As opposed to a Southern England accents,

Hagrid

Prime Minister David Cameron (second man to speak)


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  #1010  
Old October 26th, 2012, 6:37 pm
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

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Originally Posted by Overdose View Post
In the north in the UK, they don't pronounce it MARSTER, (like father etc)

more of a MA-STER (A from bad, sad, glad etc)

closer to the US pronunciation in fact. (It's hard to spell these things out without the phonetic alphabet). The same is true of words like path, grass, bath etc
Yes, that's how we pronounce it in Yorkshire. Oddly I remember my son when small asking me if I was giving him his bath (pronounced with a short a) and then asking his Dad who came from Essex in the south if Daddy was giving him his barth (Southern style) - he had picked up on our different pronunciations.

By southern accent I was really meaning received pronunciation although the long a is typical of many southern accents.
Quote:
Here's a northern English accent example:
Ned Stark

and another
Steven Gerrard
Steve Gerrard is from Liverpool and their accent is very distinctive - I recognised it as soon as he spoke. If you want to hear a Yorkshire accent or even a Sheffield accent (where I live) listen to Sean Bean being interviewed.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SUEmbQVo6Yc


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  #1011  
Old October 26th, 2012, 8:05 pm
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

Woohoo! I guess it's time for my quarterly post about how we could all learn and use the International Phonetic Alphabet with ease! The advantages of having a phonetic alphabet are several, but primarily that orthography would no longer be an obstacle to understanding exactly what sounds are being discussed, and second that in learning the phonetic alphabet we would (just as I have) gain a much deeper perception of the specific sounds people make when they speak. What I mean is, rather than trying to reconcile spelling with pronunciation and vice versa (which in English is simply impossible), by learning a phonetic alphabet which encodes only sound and not meaning, we can cut to the quick and avoid those endless meta-conversations--I've had many of them--about exactly which sound is being discussed, and we can all probably learn a bit more about what makes an accent an accent.

To that end, I wanted to share a link or two. Courtesy of the International Phonetic Association: IPA Chart, http://www.langsci.ucl.ac.uk/ipa/ipachart.html, available under a Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0 Unported License. Copyright © 2005 International Phonetic Association.

I would also point out that Wikipedia has a pretty comprehensive range of articles about phonetics, including separate entries for just about every sound on that chart complete with recordings of pronunciations. I promise you all, it only takes about a week of casual study to get the hang of it, or a couple hours of intense scrutiny and practice. (ETA: although Wikipedia does at time use nomenclature that differs from what some linguists use... I'm not 100% sure if they adhere to IP Association standards, or what, but you'll eventually see some variation about how the "tense/lax," "high/low," and "open/close" dichotomies are used, and some differences in how affricates are treated.)

ETA: On second thought don't use that link I posted. Either the association had radically changed things since 2005, or every linguist I know uses the older version.



Last edited by canismajoris; October 26th, 2012 at 8:17 pm.
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  #1012  
Old October 27th, 2012, 8:20 pm
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

All these English (UK) accents being mentioned brings to mind that in all these areas people used to have different words for the same idea or item which led to Chancery English being formatted by the government in the last part of the 16th century. The government needed a common English, written anyway, that could be understood by almost everyone. It still amazes me how many languages there are in a small area like Europe.


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  #1013  
Old November 11th, 2012, 1:27 am
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

When I was a teenager I went to an overnight camp that was attended by kids from all over the U.S. More veteran campers could usually identify the regions from which other campers came by their accents, but they could never guess my accent because I had the tendency to echo their own accents. I can't put on an accent on request, but when I hear one, I tend to answer in the same way.


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Old December 29th, 2012, 2:45 pm
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

I'm a Finn, so English is not my native language. I have to say that I can't stand American accent D--: (Sorry, Americans!) It just sounds so fake to me, but I guess it's because I watch mostly British tv-series and movies so I don't hear American English so often.

I hate my own accent, it's so Scandinavian... I'm trying to practice British accent but it's not so good yet



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  #1015  
Old December 29th, 2012, 8:57 pm
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

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Originally Posted by Sofiakingi View Post
I'm a Finn, so English is not my native language. I have to say that I can't stand American accent D--: (Sorry, Americans!) It just sounds so fake to me, but I guess it's because I watch mostly British tv-series and movies so I don't hear American English so often.

I hate my own accent, it's so Scandinavian... I'm trying to practice British accent but it's not so good yet
Which American accent?


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  #1016  
Old December 29th, 2012, 9:00 pm
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sofiakingi View Post
I'm a Finn, so English is not my native language. I have to say that I can't stand American accent D--: (Sorry, Americans!) It just sounds so fake to me, but I guess it's because I watch mostly British tv-series and movies so I don't hear American English so often.
It's fine to hate American accents, but there is nothing fake about the way we speak. We are speaking just as naturally (for us) as our British cousins are (for them).


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  #1017  
Old January 2nd, 2013, 7:07 pm
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sofiakingi View Post
I'm a Finn, so English is not my native language. I have to say that I can't stand American accent D--: (Sorry, Americans!) It just sounds so fake to me, but I guess it's because I watch mostly British tv-series and movies so I don't hear American English so often.
It goes the other way too. (I'm an American, btw). Sometimes when I watch a movie, and a person has an English accent, it sounds so fake to me that I'm almost positive that the actor is actually American in real life and is just faking an English accent. Then when I look it up, they're actually from England. So it goes both ways. American accents sound fake to you because you're accustomed to British dialects of English, but sometimes British accents sound fake to me (not as often, though, because I do watch a lot of the BBC and whatnot) because I'm used to American dialects of English. American accents never really sound fake to me because that's the way I naturally speak.
Quote:
I hate my own accent, it's so Scandinavian... I'm trying to practice British accent but it's not so good yet
Don't hate your accent! It's part of your identity, your heritage, your culture. Trust me, there was a time when I hated my accent to because to me it was boring and flat and very un-Irish or Scottish or English or whatever I wanted it to be. And I knew there were a lot of people like you who didn't like the way it sounds. But I've just learned to accept it now because like I said, it's part of who I am, it's representative of where I was born and how I was raised, and I'm not ashamed to be an American. Other accents will always sound better to you, but you should just accept your own accent because it's yours.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ccollinsmith View Post
It's fine to hate American accents, but there is nothing fake about the way we speak. We are speaking just as naturally (for us) as our British cousins are (for them).
Yep.


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  #1018  
Old February 16th, 2013, 6:47 pm
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Re: English Accents (American, British, Irish, etc...)

I've got a Southern Drawl to my accent. The "drawl" is different from the "Southern Belle" accent, at least if you're from down here.

I spent some time living in both London and California and it seemed to get some attention in both places. Had to repeat myself every so often in London if I let my dialect run off with me. Hah, fun!


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