Ozzy Osbournes accent

sirrah   Fri Sep 15, 2006 6:11 pm GMT
I watched the Osbournes yesterday and I noticed Ozzys weird accent. I wonder what accent it is. I have never heard this accent before in America.....
Tiffany   Fri Sep 15, 2006 6:27 pm GMT
It's not American. They are British. Couldn't tell you exactly what British accent though (I am not British).

Adam   Fri Sep 15, 2006 6:43 pm GMT
He speaks with a Brummy accent.
Adam   Fri Sep 15, 2006 6:46 pm GMT
He speaks with a Brummy accent, which is a strange accent, and even British people make fun of the brummy accent -


Brummie (sometimes Brummy) is a colloquial term for the inhabitants, accent and dialect of Birmingham, Britain's second-biggest city, as well as being a general adjective used to denote a connection with the city, locally called Brum. The terms are all derived from Brummagem or Bromwichham, historical variants or alternatives to 'Birmingham'.

Other Midlands English dialects

Black Country (Yam Yam)
Potteries dialect (North Staffordshire)


Brummie is a prominent example of a regional accent of British English.

Examples of celebrity speakers include comedian Jasper Carrott, historian and broadcaster Carl Chinn, BBC financial presenter Adrian Chiles, Soul singer & model Jamelia, Goodies actor and TV presenter Bill Oddie, rock musician Ozzy Osbourne, broadcaster Les Ross, politician Clare Short, and SAS soldier and author John "Brummie" Stokes.

It is not the only accent of the West Midlands, although the term is often, erroneously, used by outsiders to refer to all accents of that region. It is quite distinct from the traditional accent of the adjacent Black Country, although modern-day population mobility has blurred the distinction. For instance, Dudley-born comedian Lenny Henry, Daniel Taylor, Walsall-born rock musician Noddy Holder and Smethwick-born actress Julie Walters are sometimes mistaken for Brummie speakers.

Birmingham and Coventry accents are also quite distinct, despite the proximity of the cities. To the untrained ear, however, all of these accents may sound very similar, just as British English speakers can find it hard to distinguish between Canadian and USA accents.

As with all English regional accents, the Brummie accent also grades into RP English. The accent of presenter Cat Deeley is listed by her voiceover agency, Curtis Brown, as "RP/Birmingham".

Note: This page contains IPA phonetic symbols in Unicode. See IPA chart for English for a pronunciation key.Below are some common features of the Brummie accent (a given speaker may not necessarily use all, or use a feature consistently). The letters enclosed in square brackets — [] — use the International Phonetic Alphabet. The corresponding example texts enclosed in double quotes (") are spelt so that a reader using Received Pronunciation (RP) can approximate the sounds.

The vowel of price (RP [aɪ]) can be [ɒi] or similar (so to an RP speaker, five may sound like "foiv").
The vowel of face (RP [eɪ]) can be [ai] or similar (so to an RP speaker, train may sound like "trine").
The vowel of mouth (RP [aʊ]) can be [ɛʊ].
The vowel of goat (RP [əʊ]) can be close to [ɑʊ] (so to an RP speaker, goat may sound like "gout").
The vowel of kit (RP [ɪ]) can be [i] (so to an RP speaker, bit may sound like "beat").
Final unstressed /i/, as in happy, may be realised as [əi], though this varies considerably between speakers.
The letters ng often represent /ŋg/ where RP has just /ŋ/ (e.g. singer as [siŋgə]). See Ng coalescence.
Both the vowels of strut and foot as [ʊ], as in northern England. See foot-strut split.
Short 'a', [a] as opposed to [ɑː] in RP, in words like bath, cast and chance (but aunt and laugh both have [ɑː]). See trap-bath split.
Final unstressed /ə/ may be realised as [a].
In a few cases, voicing of final /s/ (e.g. bus as [bʊz]).
Some rolling of prevocalic /r/ (some speakers; e.g. in "crime").
Recordings of Brummie speakers with phonetic features described in SAMPA format can be found at the Collect Britain dialects site referenced below.

Rhymes and vocabulary in the works of William Shakespeare have led Dr Steve Thorne and others to suggest that he would have spoken with a 'proto-Brummie' accent and dialect (Birmingham and his birthplace, Stratford-upon-Avon, were both within the then boundary of Warwickshire). His accent, however, is uncertain as Stratford lies on the isogloss separating the Midland/Northern English of north Warwickshire and the rural Southern of south Warwickshire.

According to Dr Steve Thorne’s 2003 thesis, Birmingham English: A Sociolinguistic Study, among UK listeners "Birmingham English in previous academic studies and opinion polls consistently fares as the most disfavoured variety of British English, yet with no satisfying account of the dislike".

Since, as he shows, overseas visitors in contrast find it "lilting and melodious", he argues that such dislike is driven by various linguistic myths and social factors peculiar to the UK ("social snobbery, negative media stereotyping, the poor public image of the City of Birmingham, and the north/south geographical and linguistic divide").

For instance, despite the city's cultural and innovative history, its industrial background (perhaps associated with the arm-and-hammer crest of its coat of arms) has led to a muscular and unintelligent stereotype: a "Brummagem screwdriver" or "Brummie screwdriver" is UK slang for a hammer.

Thorne also cites the mass media and entertainment industry where actors, usually non-Birmingham, have used inaccurate accents and/or portrayed negative roles. Examples include Benny from the soap Crossroads, a feckless character played by Paul Henry with a hybrid Birmingham-Worcester accent many viewers assumed to be Birmingham because of the setting, and characters played by Battersea-born actor Timothy Spall: for instance, the boring Barry Taylor in Auf Wiedersehen Pet and Andy, the sarcastic virtual reality attendant in the Red Dwarf episode "Back to Reality". The actor Mark Williams also specialises in amiable but stupid Birmingham characters. One of Harry Enfield's comedy characters, portrayed an exaggerated Brummie, whose catchline was "we are considerably richer than yow".