Overshooting Americanisation. Accent stylisation in pop singing – acoustic properties of the bath and trap vowels in focus
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The paper addresses the problem of overshoot involved in singing accent stylisation. Selected phonetic features indexed as “American” and “Cockney” are analysed in the singing and speaking styles of a British vocalist, Adele. Overshoot, understood as a greater frequency or an exaggerated quality of a given feature, is characteristic of staged performance (Bell and Gibson 2011; Coupland 2007). PRAAT is used to establish the acoustic properties (F1 and F2) of the BATH and TRAP vowels, as well as the presence or absence of the BATH-TRAP split. The results show that Americanisation regarding the BATH-TRAP split in singing is present and the Americanised vowel tokens are “overshot”, having higher F2 frequency compared with the regular British TRAP vowel.