I've been away from this forum for a while, and meantime I've enrolled for a five-year (gulp!) degree in English (which includes grammar, literature, linguistics, and so on) at a distance university. Right now I'm starting to delve into English phonetics (using "Gimson's Pronunciation of English", which is the recommended textbook), and while I like the subject, I find it very hard. I don't think it'll improve my pronunciation at all, not having an 'Enry 'Iggins to hand, but I'm doing my best. I suppose the internet's got many resources, but having no internet connection at home and not much time to search, I cannot take much advantage of them.

I've written down a list of doubts I've already got, with a view to browsing the forums calmly looking for answers. But for now I'd like to ask you a question. I am trying to figure out the differences among the different English accents so as to be able to tell one from the others. I am listening to Tom Jones and trying to make out whatever there is of Welsh in his accent. Does he really sing I'm not talking about his speaking accent, which I don't know with a Welsh accent? All I can say is I can understand him pretty well (that's not very common in me, I'm afraid), but I couldn't tell what characterizes his accent for all the tea in China! I only notice something that sounds strange to me in the final sound of words like "give" or "live", but I cannot tell what it is (and I've found no explanation about that in my phonetics book).

Thanks a lot in advance.
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Comments  (Page 2) 
KooyeenIf you have such major problems, then maybe you could start with an accent reduction course.

I'll look it up. I'd never heard of them. I'm more interested in British English, so I'll google a bit. Thanks!