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'strong' British accent

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Postby BillyB » Tue, 05 Apr 2011 3:57 pm

JR8 wrote:
unrevealed wrote:Ah that speaks something! Nah myself can't tell whether or not I have a UK accent to be perfectly honest! It's that people keep asking mentioning the adj 'strong'. Apart from some obvious regions say Midlands, I can hardly tell what accent you've got. Although some people I know from cities say Birmingham or Manchester asked if I lived in London but I am 100% sure my accent is nothing related to it. How can a person speak London accent whilst she has never stayed there for more than a week? Not to mention she never tries to imitate the accent, no way! That's why I found it confusing! Seriously, if you're from the UK, isn't it true that you can recognise any UK accents? Perhaps not? e.g. In my home country, we can distinguish between regions like the North or the South but can't really name the cities though.


Without knowing where you originate from, and whether you have spent time in the UK or immersed in UK culture it is a little hard to judge. But if you are say Indian then I go back to my original thought that you are speaking better ‘British English’ than peoples’ preconceptions expect from an Indian.

Two of my SGn nieces-in-law seem to have perfectly mastered California accents. It is quite shocking. It is not something they ‘put-on’, that is how they speak 24/7! Too much TV I think.

I have heard it said (don’t know if it is true, but it sounds as if it might) that there are more accents in the UK for the distance travelled than in any other country. For example you will see a distinct change in average accent from London to Oxford and that is only say 50 miles. But you have to be careful as as someone else suggested you will even have different accents within London. It’s tricky as you will have diverse cultures and classes that influence accent, but over time people tend to pick up localised geographic identifiers (like how you can identify Canadians vs USA by how they pronounce ‘about’ as ‘aboot’ ))

So yes, it is not that difficult to pin many Brits down to within 50-100 miles by their accent alone. What is surprising is that maybe only 300 miles from London you can hear accents that are so heavy they are difficult to understand. An extreme version I once heard was some west coast of Scotland trawlermen... had no idea what they were saying, none, and yet they were speaking English! :o

Enjoy :)

21 accents. Think the bird is a voice-coach or something.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3UgpfSp2t6k

24 accents. For an 18 year old he is impressive, some cracked me up (caution: it is very sweary!).
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dABo_DCIdpM

edit to add:
A very amusing TV as that played on English pronounciation...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Z_3AhZh8Y0


The guy in the second link does a p*ss funny Nigerian accent!!

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Postby unrevealed » Tue, 05 Apr 2011 4:10 pm

AminoAcid wrote:If I may, what do you guys make of LeeKY's accent? Born in Singapore (to immigrant Chinese parents, according to wikipedia), given the 'English education' in Singapore and attended universities in Britain.

Is his accent supposed to be what the Singaporean accent should sound like? I find his ministers taking after him too when they speak in public. Granted, the rest of us speak in real Singapore accent, (yes the sort that draws sniggers from you guys) :) I was once served at a McDonald on my very first day in Singapore, one of the guys (Singaporean I guess) at counter sniggered at me cause' I didn't understand a word of what he was saying, plus a Singaporean I suddenly bumped into the other day, who has an American accent, says he doesn't like Singlish himself-> An actual fact that anyone can throw a laugh at other for their language if they think that one speaks something unusual to them, not specifically towards Singlish though, I personally think.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GVDE0KPMaeY

How strong is his 'British' in his English?

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Postby JR8 » Tue, 05 Apr 2011 4:54 pm

unrevealed wrote:
I didn’t spend long enough in Britain to improve my English to the extent that can not be distinguisable from the natives, instead I would sincerely rate my English a little over average. I myself do love British accent in whatsoever form it is as long as I can understand what you’re saying :D. I have no reasons behind it all but apparently I was fascinated about it by my former manager from Yorkshire. I didn’t know how Yorkshire accent really sounds but my ex boss had a very pleasant voice that even when he got on my nerves (rarely, well 2 or 3), his voice calmed me down at once :D.
Reckon it doesn’t matter what accent you have as long as you can make people understand you, true? (to add, body language comes in handy at some points doesn’t it?)
Thank you for sharing the videos, btw, can you tell me what accent this pinky lady is speaking http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uLd3-cfLlvU


Ok, so I stand by my original thoughts then! :)

A Yorkshireman with a pleasant and calming voice. Are you sure? :wink: Better ask Barnsley about that!

Agree, accents are no big deal*, it's being understood that matters.

Pinky Lady is Vicky Pollard from Little Britain. Lol... very funny to watch. Her character is from Bristol. You can tell that from the pronunciation of certain words in the sketch, good examples are :
Racist at 0’26”
Last edited by JR8 on Tue, 05 Apr 2011 5:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Saint » Tue, 05 Apr 2011 5:14 pm

I spent my first 7 years in North Hampshire, next 14 years in West Country Gloucester, and then back to North Hampshire, but have never picked up an accent. Having a non descript British accent does have it's advantages especially in the office when I'm having to speak to the regional offices as they all say they find it so much easier to understand me than others in my office, and we've got a complete and varied bunch of nationalities and accents here!

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Postby JR8 » Tue, 05 Apr 2011 5:16 pm

BillyB wrote:The guy in the second link does a p*ss funny Nigerian accent!!


Yup agree! I was left wondering how such a young amateur guy could have the worldly experience to able to 'get the take' on a good number of those accents. Apart from the UK accents the South African accent was also a classic IMO, he gets the Cantonese one pretty well too. The Indian one made me laugh as well, as did the French one. Oh... all in all he's got a talent there!

I was trying to work out where he is from lol. Maybe south east London ?? ...

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Postby Barnsley » Tue, 05 Apr 2011 5:43 pm

JR8 wrote:
unrevealed wrote:
I didn’t spend long enough in Britain to improve my English to the extent that can not be distinguisable from the natives, instead I would sincerely rate my English a little over average. I myself do love British accent in whatsoever form it is as long as I can understand what you’re saying :D. I have no reasons behind it all but apparently I was fascinated about it by my former manager from Yorkshire. I didn’t know how Yorkshire accent really sounds but my ex boss had a very pleasant voice that even when he got on my nerves (rarely, well 2 or 3), his voice calmed me down at once :D.
Reckon it doesn’t matter what accent you have as long as you can make people understand you, true? (to add, body language comes in handy at some points doesn’t it?)
Thank you for sharing the videos, btw, can you tell me what accent this pinky lady is speaking http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uLd3-cfLlvU


Ok, so I stand by my original thoughts then! :)

A Yorkshireman with a pleasant and calming voice. Are you sure? :wink: Better ask Barnsley about that!

Agree, accents are no big deal*, it's being understood that matters.

Pinky Lady is Vicky Pollard from Little Britain. Lol... very funny to watch. Her character is from Bristol. You can tell that from the pronunciation of certain words in the sketch, good examples are :
Racist at 0’26”
Life is short, paddle harder!!

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Postby JR8 » Tue, 05 Apr 2011 5:47 pm

unrevealed wrote:I was once served at a McDonald on my very first day in Singapore, one of the guys (Singaporean I guess) at counter sniggered at me cause' I didn't understand a word of what he was saying,

JR8
Yes, I've had this a few times. It is embarrassing having to ask a person to repeat themselves for a 3rd time as you have no clue what they are saying!


plus a Singaporean I suddenly bumped into the other day, who has an American accent, says he doesn't like Singlish himself-> An actual fact that anyone can throw a laugh at other for their language if they think that one speaks something unusual to them, not specifically towards Singlish though, I personally think.

JR8
Ah yes, good old SGn snobbery. Spend a couple of years abroad and suddenly they're sophisticated and above their fellow SGns. This involves mocking Singlish. We've seen a couple here in the last year who are almost frothing at the mouth in their disdain for Singlish and those who speak it :o :)





p.s. to Saint. I'm similar to you, moved around and as a result have an accent that no one can pin down at all (aka I have no accent)...

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Postby BigSis » Tue, 05 Apr 2011 9:51 pm

I'd possibly describe anyone who had a distinctive regional accent in the UK as having a 'strong' accent..........and not just British either, you can get strong accents all over the world, it's just that I imagine that you'd have to be sufficiently fluent in whichever language it was to be able to hear it properly. I can pick out strong accents in English speaking countries such as Singapore, Australia and the USA but I don't speak any other languages so find it hard to hear them in anything other than English.

Perhaps some people might think that to describe someone's accent as strong is derogatory, but I think that to describe it as 'harsh' would be worse.

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Postby Brah » Wed, 06 Apr 2011 12:11 am


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Postby unrevealed » Wed, 06 Apr 2011 10:02 am

[quote="JR8"][quote="unrevealed"]


Ok, so I stand by my original thoughts then! :)
After having read all this through (with lively illustrations, very much enjoyed the 18 year old boy’s ‘show’), now quite sure I have no British accent at all. As you put it, ‘strong’, uhm I was also convinced that there is nothing bad about it (despite some embarrassing moments in the street when someone pointed it out with curiousity on their face. When I came back to it with my mates, no obvious answers! They were too gentle to discuss my negatives as they always are) but well now I think I got the answer.

A Yorkshireman with a pleasant and calming voice. Are you sure? :wink: Better ask Barnsley about that!
My manager, haha, he was just similar to you, moved around thus having no distintive accent I suppose.

Agree, accents are no big deal*, it's being understood that matters.

Pinky Lady is Vicky Pollard from Little Britain. Lol... very funny to watch. Her character is from Bristol. You can tell that from the pronunciation of certain words in the sketch, good examples are :
Racist at 0’26”

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Postby JR8 » Wed, 06 Apr 2011 5:53 pm

unrevealed wrote:After having read all this through (with lively illustrations, very much enjoyed the 18 year old boy’s ‘show’), now quite sure I have no British accent at all. As you put it, ‘strong’, uhm I was also convinced that there is nothing bad about it (despite some embarrassing moments in the street when someone pointed it out with curiousity on their face. When I came back to it with my mates, no obvious answers! They were too gentle to discuss my negatives as they always are) but well now I think I got the answer.

JR8
Well it happens all the time. Name a western country on earth and I’ve probably been asked if I am from it (except France, thank heavens lol). Crikey last time I flew into Germany the taxi driver at the airport, an Iranian, said that she had thought I was Dutch. My SGn kopi-susu wife gets confused for being every Asian nationality (so wherever we go on holiday in Asia I quite often get dirty looks from the local men for having ‘stolen one of their women’ lol... )


Little Britain, oh yes, I always had good laughs watching it even though I did not follow the whole series. Their new series Come fly with me, if you watch, the voices of the two reporters are immensely irritating regardless of their accents.


JR8
Ah no alas I have not seen it. I wonder if I can see more than little clips on Youtube... hmmm.


No offence but I am personally averse to hearing Mandarin (but I might as well pick it up some day as this language seems to be overwhelming in Singapore). Funny that wherever I go, random people just wave to me and say Hello in Chinese. I know people are judging me by my Asian look, not particularly Chinese appearance though.


JR8
See my earlier comment about by wife. But you know, I don’t think you have said where you are from! What nationality do you think you look like, tell if you are comfortable, otherwise no problem


His accent sounds a bit German to me


JR8
Nah I’m not expert on Scottish accents but he sounds to me like very refined Scottish background, probably around Edinburgh. But in any case his accent is very minimal. The only other person I can liken that to is Alasdair Darling, the previous UK Chancellor of the Exchequer.


Studying languages is really fun isn’t it?


JR8
Sure is, I find it all quite fascinating, just hope I'm not boring too many people to death with my ramblings :)


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Postby unrevealed » Thu, 07 Apr 2011 8:10 pm

JR8 wrote:
unrevealed wrote:
JR8
Well it happens all the time. Name a western country on earth and I’ve probably been asked if I am from it (except France, thank heavens lol). Crikey last time I flew into Germany the taxi driver at the airport, an Iranian, said that she had thought I was Dutch. My SGn kopi-susu wife gets confused for being every Asian nationality (so wherever we go on holiday in Asia I quite often get dirty looks from the local men for having ‘stolen one of their women’ lol... )
We women (almost all) are wise enough to go for the ‘real’ man. If a man does have that thought in mind, he’d be better off proving to be a true man than sitting around and being that sulky. Remember, I’m being objective here, not speaking for either expats or locals :D. But perhaps the local men are giving you admiring looks who knows : P

JR8
Ah no alas I have not seen it. I wonder if I can see more than little clips on Youtube... hmmm.
heres the link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nNR28nVF ... playnext=5
Funny to watch although I don’t like the fact that sometimes it’s being racist to the utmost. Still, you may take it as your new cup of tea then.


JR8
See my earlier comment about by wife. But you know, I don’t think you have said where you are from! What nationality do you think you look like, tell if you are comfortable, otherwise no problem
Why not? Surely I look perfectly like human lol.
Well I am Vietnamese to the bone and from top to toe inclusive of my old fashioned black hair lol. I am pretty sure it’s not likely to figure out if someone is from our country.



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Postby JR8 » Thu, 07 Apr 2011 8:58 pm

Thanks for the link.

No of course that show is not in the slightest 'racist'. That's the difference between western and Eastern humour I think. Asians (Excl EV-D) are uptight and have none :wink:

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Postby JR8 » Sat, 09 Apr 2011 3:36 am

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qX58bjwI ... 346A324338

Ting Tong meets Ivanka


Hi UnR

I'd be interested to know who you think is, if any, the victim of the humour in a sketch such as this...

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Postby ev-disinfection » Sat, 09 Apr 2011 9:32 am

JR8 wrote:Thanks for the link.

No of course that show is not in the slightest 'racist'. That's the difference between western and Eastern humour I think. Asians (Excl EV-D) are uptight and have none :wink:


:oops: Just saw that, and it is a "1 in a million" feeling,
can't buy you a drink here, so i will send a 6 pack to you. :D


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