Really, Elaine doesn't have a New York accent? Who would you say does?
American accents, Bette Midler, Clinton, Rick Fearon, Strathclyde, Morningside
- I love Matthew McConaughey 's voice mostly because of his accent.
This is a great thread!
I pretty much agree with DUNEDAIN with respect to New York accents.
I think there is a kind of "generic" NY accent that overspreads the city and at least northern NJ. That's the accent I have.
Then there are places where the NY accent seems much stronger. As DUNEDAIN mentioned, the Staten Island accent is different, but I also think that the Brooklyn accent is different than SI. I'll add to this that I think the strongest of all the NY metro accents is the Queens/Long Island accent.
If you're interested in American accents, you'll find that the greatest number of different accents occur in the Northeast and Mid Atlantic states, and there are historical reasons for this that are really interesting.
As far as Seinfeld, I was never really a fan (I like what I've seen of the show, I'm just not a TV person) but from what I remember, Jerry (who is from Long Island in real life) really doesn't have a LI accent; it's more of the "generic" NY accent. From my recollection, Elaine had a pretty light, generic NY accent. Her accent would fit well into northern NJ. Jerry's parents, however, had solid Brooklyn accents (from what I remember).
In regards to the "caught/cot" distinction mentioned my SNUGGLEBUNNY, that is entirely regional. I would NEVER pronounce them the same way.
The vowel sound in "caught" would sound like "awe," ("cawt") and the vowel sound in "cot" would sound like "hot" or "pot."
- The coolest American accent I liked was John Wayne's accent. He had a strong manly American accent. Also like Matthew Mconaugheys accent which is a deep southern american accent if I am not mistaken? forgive my ignorance if wrong
I always liked Ben Cartwright on the American TV series "Bonanza".
He sounded so "sure" of everything he said and his voice was deep, rich and dignified.
Funny thing, I think he was actually Canadian maybe?
I've read that Rutherford had a strong southern accent is that true? What about Franz, Knorr, and the new GB any stand out?
He had a Southern accent, but it was not the Texas twang that many people associate with the South. It was more of the Missouri variant, similar to the, "Boy, I say boy..." of the cartoon character, Foghorn, Leghorn, if that makes any sense.
We have a variety of regional dialects here. In the city, I guess we sound like Californians (that's what people thought when I was in CA "are you from here? You have no accent,"). But we just watch too much TV, that's my theory, though I always wondered why we sounded 'just like those kids on the Brady Bunch'.
If you drive 100+ klicks south, the accent is thick, often hard to understand, with strong German influences (more what I would call a regional dialect, rather than an accent; ie, different words/terms.) . Go 100+ klicks in the other direction (my family home) and it's another different way of speaking.
Hop over the causeway to the island culture of my province, and you will 'stick out like a sore thumb' - everyone from The Hawk to Nart' Sydney will know you're a mainlander. Their speech is most colourful! : D
We don't say 'eh'; we end our sentences with 'right?' And i never heard the word 'hoser' before the McKenzie Bros. movie came out in theatres (Strange Brew). :P
There's French here (Acadian and just horrid to a Parisian - the dialect is hard to understand - France french is much easier - lol, probably because I studied it for 10 years)..
Aussies are the hardest to imitate. I'm somewhat of a mimic, and can do many 'accents', but not AU.
GB (the island) has so many accents & dialects! Even languages (thinking Welsh and Gaelic at least).. Would love to visit some day, and explore my Welsh & Cornish roots.
I can't recall anyone on Seinfeld that had what i'd think of as NYC accent, except for George's mother, Estelle Costanza "George! What are you doing, George!" in that screechy voice. hehehe
Oh, and we are the home of the Trailer Park Boys, which is a good representation of the local culture. hehehe