Saturday, January 28, 2017

Thoughts on the voice

Thank you Our ABC for a terrific Australia Day awards evening programme. I thought it would be tedious, but it was not. It was hosted by Myf Warhurst, always competent, and Jeremy Fernandez. Jeremy has a voice like liquid chocolate. You just love it as it is poured down your throat. That he has nice looks is a bonus. Can you do much about your voice to make it nicer? Well, yes, the late English PM Maggie Thatcher had voice training to reduce her shrillness and to make her voice deeper.

But some people just naturally have great voices. I don't think I am so gifted, although once at the gay bar Jocks or later as Gay Trade Bar, the barmen asked me to repeat my order. I thought I spoke clearly enough when I ordered two Carlton Colds, and apparently I did, as the barmen then said, I just wanted to hear how you say Carlton Cold again and your accent. I thought, What? I am Australian and I speak Australian. I don't have an accent. Of course, not in the last shower did I come down and instead of a customer trying to pick up a barmen, the barman was trying to pick up me. He was nice, but I did not respond. Oh, life's missed chances. R might have have had something to say about the barman and me going to heaven but then I might have something to say about him and a chef going to heaven.

I remember meeting Jayne and Lance Hattat in Budapest and Marie in London and they did not seem to have accents to me. Nothing about the way they spoke distracted me from what they were saying. R's rels in the north of England certainly do. A segment of his family have retained very strong Geordie accents by way of R's youngest sister's husband who is very proud of Geordie history. But even in Geordie land,  accents are diminishing, becoming more British neutral.

A few days ago I heard Nigella Lawson speaking in a radio programme, and oh, her voice is sounding old but I took little notice until she said the word cooker, stove/oven/hotplates for us. The way some British people pronounce cook and book is a curious thing. Is it class based? I don't think so as I can't imagine Queen Lizzie pronouncing the oo sound like that. But what would she know about a cooker.....well, she I am sure knows about books.

One day Fen put up a sound file of her speaking on her blog. I just loved her voice but I don't particularly know why. She just sounded great.

Our former Governor General Quentin Bryce had a voice that really grated on me, as did former PM Julia Gillard. Former NSW Premier Keneally had the most curious voice and accent, but former PM Howard and Abbott had the most horrible voices, the latter with an awful way of speaking.

Current PM Turnbull is fine, as is Leader of Her Majesty's Opposition Shorten,. I don't like Pauline Hanson's voice/accent, nor Christopher Pyne's very much, but none too other in the political world bother me much.

But Jeremy's deep voice and liquid brown eyes makes me think of all sorts of possibilities, in spite of him being a married man with children. Just need to gay up his hair a bit to make him a gay icon.



Funnily, after checking if I had mentioned Jeremy before, here is snip from my last year's Australia Day post. Everything old is new again.

What could have been very tedious, the Australia Day Award announcements on our ABC TV, was very well done. Jeremy Fernandez has always been a favourite ABC Sydney person for me and he was a good choice as the host. 

24 comments:

  1. Andrew definitely handsome man. Happy Australian Day

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    1. Thanks Gosia, perhaps sending you to the dictionary, but drunken bacchanalia might be more appropriate.

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  2. Ive never gayed up my hair
    Quelle surprise!

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    1. Quelle non surprise, John.

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  3. Voices matter. You are so right about Julia, and Tone too. I liked a lot of what Julia did, but loathed her voice.
    Dave Gahan from Depeche Mode's voice makes me think of chocolate and sex. Sinfully rich versions of both.

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    1. EC, that sent me off googling. Interesting character, somewhat larger than life, and I see what you mean about his voice.

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  4. Anonymous9:21 am

    Everything old is new again.
    Life imitates art imitates life. You need to be careful of running around in circles. That leads to the headless chook syndrome. - Ian

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    1. Yep Ian, all that. It disturbs me about how I forget what have written, and only a year ago.

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  5. I love BBC accents but they would appear a bit pompous and silly in Australia. My goal would be to sound as if I lived in Hertfordshire for the years of school and university, but that I have been in Australia for the last 40+ years.

    What is more irritating than crappy accents is crappy vocabulary. I will scream if another adolescent says "Where would you ..like... prefer to buy.. like... a dress like? This shop is.. like... lovely".

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    1. Hels, there is a kind of generic London accent that the aforementioned in the post speak and I rather prefer that to a BBC accent. While this is not the accent I mean, I rather like his accent and manner of speaking, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4SyetdjWMuw
      I like your goal. The battle has been lost with like, but it may still disappear. The one I hate the most is 'oh my god', used multiple times in one sentence by teenage girls. Awesome is another; no, what I just did for you was not awesome. I mere thank you will be adequate. It seems extreme words and phrases fall into frequent use. Another two I do not like is bud and dude. Someone called me a dude the other day. Please, I am nearly a sixty year old man rapidly turning into a grumpy old man. A dude I am not.

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    2. Anonymous3:53 pm

      The other day I was on a bus going through our leafy western suburbs (we are the opposite of you t'othersiders), eavesdropping on a group of teenagers who were saying "OMG Trump is going to build that wall OMG OMG!!!!!"

      They started discussing, in a riddled with OMGs way, what this might mean, all in their private school accents.

      I thought to myself "I bet they say 'my dad says' and start spouting some entiTled right wing views any moment" BUT they continued the discussion for the next few minutes, all Anti Wall.

      As they got off the bus, I checked them out. Eight of them, 4 boys and 4 girls, 5 of them various Asian looking and 3 Caucasian looking, vehemently and OMGedly discussing politics and ethics. From the accents they were all born here. I felt very cheered by all this although a bit embarrassed by my preconceptions. Oh well you know what we middle aged Labor types are like.....

      Cheers Marie

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    3. Interesting Marie. I too have overheard private school talking as you describe and I was pleased but I have heard the opposite too. They are quite often the ones who will offer a seat too.

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  6. There is only one time I have liked the voice of Pauline Hanson and that was in the Pauline Pantsdown song. I love the way they took her voice and clipped it together in ridiculous sentences. My shopping trolley murdered, my groceries just gone kills me every single time. ;)

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    1. Snoskred, I must listen to it again. Am I correct in that it actually made the music charts? It was a ripper.

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  7. I heard a beautiful male voice recently and can't for the life of me remember where. Real life? TV? No idea, but I could have listened forever.

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    1. River, that's a pity. A great voice is a wonderful thing to hear.

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  8. Dearest Andrew, you'll always be a studly dude to me.

    Damn my nose just grew 3 centimetres!

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    1. Jah Teh, I was almost excited until your denouement.

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  9. You had me at liquid chocolate 😊 Do you only watch ABC Andrew?

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    1. Grace, pretty well only abc. R watches more TV than I do and so watches some commercial tv.

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  10. I agree that Fernandez has an interesting speaking voice that is well suited to broadcasting. I don't agree about Shorten whose voice I find to be irritatingly 'sing song'.

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    1. Victor, next time I hear Shorten, I will actually listen to him.

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  11. I too enjoyed the Australia Day Awards. To me Jeremy seemed a lot more comfortable in the roll of hosting than Myf.

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    1. CM, Myf admitted to being very nervous. I don’t think she is comfortable with live tv.

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