American accent makes singing easier, says Oz study

August 3rd, 2010 - 2:43 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Aug 3 (ANI): A new study has suggested that singing in an American accent comes naturally to most singers, as it is easier to sing the song that way.

Big names in the British music world have since the 60s been accused of faking their style to become stars in the US, but the study found that people just drift into the accent naturally.

Researcher Andy Gibson said that the American voice is easier to sing with and is so commonplace that it should be called the “pop music accent” instead.

Gibson, of the Auckland University of Technology, had made the claim after he carried out tests on New Zealand singers.

He found that even though they spoke with a distinct Kiwi accent, these same people would automatically sing the songs in an American accent.

“There were huge differences between the sung and the spoken pronunciation of the same words,” the Telegraph quoted Gibson as saying.

“Consider the difference between ‘I’ (spoken) and ‘ah’ (sung), ‘girl’, pronounced without the ‘r’ in speech and with the ‘r’ in singing, and ‘thought’ with rounded lips in speech versus ‘thart’ with unrounded lips in singing.

“Studies in the past have suggested that non-American singers wilfully put on American accents but my research suggests the opposite - that an American-influenced accent is the default when singing pop,” he stated.

Gibson says his findings also explain why so many of end up sounding like cheesy rock stars when singing their favourite songs in private.

“We do it automatically; it doesn’t require any effort to sing with an American-influenced accent,” he said.

“The American-influenced accent is automatic in the context of singing pop music, and it is used by people from all around the world.

“It actually requires effort to do something different. The American accent doesn’t stick out in singing because we are so used to hearing it.

“To sing in a New Zealand accent takes awareness and effort, and it is usually quite noticeable because it is so uncommon.

“The American accent doesn’t stick out in singing because we are so used to hearing it,” he said.

He also explained that the accent people use when they are singing depends more on the style of music rather than where they came from.

“For example when we sing reggae we are more likely to use a Jamaican accent but even someone from Jamaica might use a southern American accent when they are singing country and western type songs,” he added. (ANI)

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