Friday, September 02, 2005

Singing and Enunciation

On Malaysian Idol, we've seen Faizul, Daniel and Ejay being berated for their mumbo-jumbo English. But they aren't the only ones with bad English.

In the Korean soap now airing over 8tv, Love Story in Harvard, one of the lead actors, Kim Rae Won, speaks such unintelligible English that it sounds like gibberish. It doesn't even sound like Korean with its mish-mesh of god-sama-retan-kas. At least Ejay's English sounded like Chinese (Guest judge Nora had commented, "Dia nyanyi lagu Cina ke" when Ejay belted out Mariah Carey's We Belong Together.) FYI, that gibberish was Good Samaritan case sub-titled as kes St. Marrie by the tv translators. (If you'd like to know what the Good Samaritan Statute is all about, click here. Hehe, even tv soaps can be educational.)

Back to Malaysian Idols. Is pronounciation such an important part of singing? I mean there are lots of singers out there who sound like they're eating while singing. You can't make out the words unless it's something so inane like "Who let the dogs out?"

Ideally singers should be able to enunciate their words properly so that listeners can enjoy the song without having to guess if the lyrics were English or Chinese or Tamil or Arabic. But so what if we can't figure out that wen your or on my main, bor bee wor mak on tha ladio is actually when you're all on my mind, Bobby Womack's on the radio. At least you could make out Come back baby please, We belong together. After all, it's not an elocution contest.


Kak Teh said...

Lydia, for years I thought this song goes like this: Oh blah di oh bla go zonnnnn - and i wwonder what la go zon is. It is actually 'love goes on right?'
and why must singers be nasal? oops, alleycats excludedlah cos they are special.

Lydia Teh said...

Kak Teh

No, akcherlly it is 'life go zonnnn.." This afternoon I heard this song on the radio, How Bizarre and I've always wondered whether it's Help is On! Where got people come up with some strange songs one? Only today I know for sure it's How Bizarre because I heard the DJ announce the song title clearly. Help is On is more meaningful what.