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Hi,
how are "he", "she" or "we" pronounced? Ok, I know the vowel is /i/ like in "see", but when you combine those pronouns with other words...

He'll, she'll, we'll ---> these should be pronounced either with /i/ as in "see" or /ɪ/ as in "bip".

But are those the only exceptions? That should be true for "we're" too, but are there other exceptions? Other cases where "he", "she" or "we" are not pronounced with /i/ as in "see"?
...
He's/She's going there.
He'd/She'd had enough.
He/She would kill you.
He/She lives in Africa.
...


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I lax the /i/ before /l/ in those words.
If you want a very close transcription, you'll have to invent new symbols for sounds that are part way between the tense and lax versions of the English vowels. The presence of an r, and to a lesser extext, an l, after /i/ (in see), creates a vowel that is somewhat more lax than /i/ but not as lax as i in sip.

CJ
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Thank you.
So that only happens when an L sound (He'll, We'll) or R sound (We're) follows, right?
That means "He's" is always "heez", "We'd" is always "weed"... right?
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>> Thank you.
So that only happens when an L sound (He'll, We'll) or R sound (We're) follows, right?
That means "He's" is always "heez", "We'd" is always "weed"... right? <<

Indeed.
Very interesting, thanks.

By the way, do you think a similar phenomenon applies to "I"?
For example, "I'll" can become /aɪl/ or /aəl/, instead of /ail/. Does that only happen when am L sould follows, so that "I'd" is always /aid/?

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>> For example, "I'll" can become /aɪl/ or /aəl/, instead of /ail/. Does that only happen when am L sould follows, <<

Yeah, it seems common to occasionally monophthongize the /aI/ in "I'll" and "while" in all dialects of North American English. Some Southern dialects and even some Southwestern dialects take it even further and always monophthongize /aI/ before /l/.

>> so that "I'd" is always /aid/? <<

Yeah, except in certain speakers of the Southeast. The only other thing that can happen to /aI/ is in dialects in Canada and in the US in places near the border, is that the nucleus of /aI/ is raised to /@/ before voiceless, so "I'd" and "ite" are [aId] and [@It_}].
So that only happens when an L sound (He'll, We'll) or R sound (We're) follows, right?
That means "He's" is always "heez", "We'd" is always "weed"... right?
Yes.

And I don't make any change in the I sound in I, I'm, I've, I'll, or I'd.

But just as the /i/ becomes half-tense before R (and to a lesser extent, if at all, before L), so does the other high vowel /u/ become half-tense under the same conditions. Thus, you're has a less tense vowel than the "oo" in "moon", while you'll undergoes the same detensing effect less noticeably (in my opinion).

I don't make any change in the OO sound in you, you've, or you'd.

In short, in my speech and in that of those around me, the slight detensing effect occurs almost exclusively for the high vowels /i/ and /u/ when these are followed by R or L. (There may be other cases that I haven't thought of, but I think this more or less covers it.)
In the case of the R's, the effect is not restricted to contractions like we're and you're: beer, poor.
In the case of the L's, the effect is probably only heard in contractions like we'll and you'll. Otherwise word pairs like fool and full or pool and pull would be pronounced virtually the same.

CJ
>> Otherwise word pairs like fool and full or pool and pull would be pronounced virtually the same. <<
Full and fool are merged in parts of Pennsylvania and Indiana.

>> In the case of the R's, the effect is not restricted to contractions like we're and you're: beer, poor. <<

Hmm? But the vowels in those are different. We're [ wr\= ] your [ jr\= ] beer [ bIr\ ] poor [ pOr\ ] . Interestingly enough, in careful speech, "we're" for me has a different vowel than beer: [ wir\= ] [ bIr\ ] . How do you pronounce those words?
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