T Nation

What does english sound like?


I've always wonder what english souns like to someone who doesn't speak it.....

I'm sure a lot of people here didn't learn english first or may have just picked it up recently....so, what does english sound like?


I've been holding onto that link for a long time hoping I would get the chance to share it with someone.
And surprisingly, if you don't REALLY try and understand what they're saying, it sounds like it could be English.


^that's awesome


That's what English sounds like to me half the time as my hearing gets worse with age. You run a fan or a photocopier and that's what I'm hearing except for the awesome drums and harmonica.


This reminds me to watch re-runs of Mind Your Language.


This is what a lot of rock singers sounded like to me growing up. This just proves that it's really in the phrasing... or the WAY something is said, and not what is said specifically that makes it. I have no idea what Robert Plant, Steven Tyler, or David Lee Roth were singing half the time, but they sounded cool as hell singing it.

Interesting thread, Ct!


I understood more phrases in that video than any Bob Dylan song I've ever heard.


bob dylan sounds like he has a bag of dicks in his mouth when he "sings"

on a different note, that video was the shit


This is what I hear all of the time.


Apparently, when we are fluent in a language we put the pauses between words in ourselves when listening to others. If you were to take a recording of someone speaking and measured the pauses between each word you would find that they are negligible if they exist at all, even when they seem long and drawn out.
When we listen to a language that we do not understand we don't do this, hence why it seems that speakers of foreign languages do not stop for breath.



Like a traffic accident.

But then, I speak German, who am I to talk...

Disclaimer: traffic accident is not quite true.


There are a few reasons for that. It's a carryover from American troops being stationed in Europe from WW2 onwards. They brought American music (mostly blues) with them and it eventually spread to music halls, inspiring Led Zep, Clapton, and the Stones...so the vid is an example of a familiar musical style performed in a foreign language...

Then there's the body language: watch the vid on mute and you'll get the underlying sentiment of the song....

Lastly, there's the fact that English is a mongrel language so the gist of a language could be understood by a non-fluent speaker if there's enough to listen to...as long as their root language was absorbed into what we know as English..


I learned English when I turned 5...I remember thinking that it was a pretty language and it used lots of r's. It was REALLY hard for my older sister to learn.



My German teacher in middle school was from near the border of France and had such an elegant pronunciation of the language.

Jet black hair and awesome curves didn't hurt either.


He sounds awesome


^^^ lol

I've learned a bit of Mandarin Chinese now and so even when I can't understand what someone is saying i still know where each word stops sort of thing.
Now if I listen to someone speaking Thai or Malay it sounds like one long chicken squeak.


American English sounds like victory.


American accented English sounds like robots to me. I think it is because all the robots on TV have American accents.

I enjoy deep Southern accented people speaking Hebrew. For whatever reason, they have a pretty speaking pattern. They use correct grammar, but the pattern is not traditional.