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I’ve been constantly working on my American pronunciation.

I do a lot of spoken self-practice and I constantly try to mimic American English speakers on TV and YouTube.

A few days ago, however, I thought my American accent was getting even worse despite my frequent practice… You think I gave up? You think I thought – “Ah well, I keep at it for a long time, and yet my pronunciation even deteriorates? It’s just a waste of time!”?

Now way ❗

I persevered.

I kept practicing my American accent even though on certain occasions I was close to losing the faith in myself and my ability as an English speaker.

And then it happened.

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English Phonetic Transcription

I used to read and follow the phonetic English transcription for years, and I was pretty good at it.

I used to transcribe all new English words phonetically in my pocket dictionaries so that whenever I repeated them, I’d be able to read them just right.

I used to boast about my proper ‘TH’ pronunciation and I would show others how to pronounce this unique English sound which is probably the most difficult one for foreigners to get right.

All in all, my English pronunciation was quite good, and the phonetic transcription didn’t start bothering me up until I started running this website. You see – the moment I looked into details and intricacies of the American and British accents, I realized that…

…the traditional phonetic transcription is just too general and native English speakers don’t necessarily speak like that in real life!

Let’s take, for example, the following two English words: FAMILY and MEMBER.

If you look up any American English dictionary, the word FAMILY would be transcribed the following way:

/ˈfæmli/ or /ˈfæməli/

MEMBER, on the other hand, would have the following transcription:


Fair enough, but then I couldn’t figure out for quite some time as to why people were commenting on my YouTube videos where I was trying to speak with the American accent by saying that my ‘A’ letter pronunciation isn’t just like that of American English speakers!

I mean – I was trying so hard to get it right, and I was following the phonetic transcription to the letter, so why on earth would anyone say my ‘A’ letter pronunciation wasn’t quite right?

Guess what?

Turns out the phonetic transcription can’t always be trusted!

FAMILY should actually be pronounced as /ˈfɛmli/, and so should the most commonly used word AND – it’s actually /ɛnd/ instead of /ænd/ which you’d see in any English dictionary you can get your hands upon ❗

The moment I realized I should trust my ear rather than phonetic transcription, my American pronunciation started improving rapidly, so read the rest of this article if you’re also serious enough about your American or British pronunciation!

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When you work hard on your English pronunciation and somebody starts criticizing you for getting this or that sound wrong, or overdoing your accent, or still sounding foreign, you just have to IGNORE them.

Sure enough, its’ not an excuse for not working hard on your pronunciation improvement, and you have to keep working on your accent reduction and native-like speech acquisition just as hard, but the main thing is not to get emotionally affected by other people’s comments.

But what if…

What if that SOMEBODY who’s criticizing your American or British pronunciation is actually YOU?

What if you listen to a recording of your own voice during your spoken English practice session where you mimic a native American English speaker, for example, in a bid to replicate their speech, and you think to yourself – “I sound completely stupid… What’s the point in trying…”

How will you IGNORE your own criticism, and most importantly – what if you’re right? Maybe you’re no good at accent reduction and you’d better forget about all those stupid aspirations to speak with a native-like English pronunciation?


It’s only human to be too critical of yourself sometimes. Taking the fact into consideration that you’re trying to work on your speech which is a pretty delicate matter, it’s no wonder you can’t expect constant improvement and progress.

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7 English Words to Make You Sound American!

Check Out ACCENT GENIE – American Pronunciation Video Course!


Hello my friends from YearOfEnglish.com!

This is me – Robby from EnglishHarmony.com – but this time around you’re getting to see the other side of me which is Robby from AccentAdventure.com – a blog where I’m blogging and vlogging about English pronunciation and accent improvement related matters!

Now, if you watch the video above you’ll notice I’m speaking with the American accent, and I’ve been learning and practicing to speak like an American since last year (here you can check out my very first attempt to speak like an American!)

Over this time I’ve learned a thing or two about proper American pronunciation, and while I’m a foreign English speaker myself, it doesn’t really bother me because I strongly believe that ANY non-native English speaker is capable of sounding like an American provided you put some effort into it ❗

Want to try?

Well, I’ve prepared a few words for you that will immediately make you sound a whole lot more American, and I’m also going to provide a few tricks of the trade to help you pronounce all those words just right.

Now, are we ready to begin?

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Hello everyone who aspires to speak like Americans!

Today I’ve got great news for you guys, and I can’t contain my excitement anymore!

I’ve been working on a brand new project for a good while, but I can’t keep it just to myself anymore, I need to share it with you guys!

So, low and behold… (FANFARE SOUNDS…)


Accent Genie?

What the hell is Accent Genie?

OK, here we go!

Accent Genie is a unique American pronunciation development program developed by me which is going to enable ANY foreign English speaker – YOU included! – to speak like an American!

If you’ve been always dreaming about being able to speak like one, but you never really managed to drop your foreign accent and now you’re thinking that:

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5 Reasons Why I LOVE American Pronunciation

Love American Pronunciation

I’ve been learning to speak like an American for a good while now – since August 2012, to be more specific! – and one thing’s for sure – I wouldn’t be able to maintain my accent training routine if not for the love of the American pronunciation ❗

Yes, yes, I know there isn’t such a thing as just one American pronunciation; there are plenty of regional accents and even the Midwesterners whose speech is the closest to the General American Pronunciation don’t all sound the same.

I’m not too worried about it, however; first of all – I can’t afford being too specific when aiming for American-like sound and secondly – it doesn’t really matter if the accent in question is Californian, New York or Midwestern. It’s still going to be identified as American ANYWAY!

OK, here we go with a list of reasons why I LOVE the American Pronunciation, hope you share a thing or two from this list with me! 😉

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Final nail in the accent vs fluency myth coffin

To this very day I’ve been receiving comments and e-mails in relation to the same old Fluency VS Foreign Accent issue.

I’m being told by my English Harmony YouTube channel commentators that my accent is terrible and therefore I’m not speaking fluently – especially in my earlier videos.

I’m asked questions by my blog readers such as “How can I improve my English fluency and speak without foreign accent” as if it were the same thing – I mean, speaking FLUENTLY and speaking WITHOUT ACCENT.

I keep telling people“Look, fluency doesn’t necessarily mean your accent is going to be completely eradicated, it’s possible to speak fluently while at the same time retaining your native accent.”

I publish articles featuring celebrities such as Antonio Banderas and Arnold Schwarzenegger to prove that it IS TOTALLY possible to speak fluently and function properly in an English speaking society AND speak with a foreign accent.

And I also keep telling those who just won’t leave me alone that I’m not advising my fellow foreign English speakers to DELIBERATELY speak with a hard accent; the heck – I even started this blog to prove that speaking English with an American or British accent is one’s personal choice and there’s nothing wrong with it if one aspires to do so!

Ironically, not everyone is happy about that either – I’ve been accused of being a hypocrite because I’m telling people on my English Harmony blog it’s fine to speak with a foreign accent yet at the same time I’m speaking like an American or Brit here on Accent Adventure…

It just goes to show you can’t please everyone and there will always be someone unhappy about what you’re doing! 😡

Anyways, today I decided to write this article to put the whole Fluency VS Foreign Accent myth to bed once and for all, so keep reading my friends foreigners – and also all native English speakers who happen to be reading my blog! 😉

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Within the confines of this blog I’m learning to sound like an American English speaker and to be more specific – like one speaking with the so-called General American Pronunciation.

I’ve been practicing my American on and off for more than a year now, and to be honest with you, I’m quite pleased with the results!

You’re more than welcome to watch the video above where I’m discussing today’s subject in-depth while putting on the American accent, and you can see for yourself what it sounds like.

Well, you have to bear in mind I haven’t been doing a lot of spoken practice (which is crucial in order to develop one’s accent and also English fluency in general!) during the summer months while refurbishing my new house, so please don’t be too critical of the shortcomings of my American Pronunciation.

The point I’m going to make today, however, isn’t about that.

It’s about the following – when I’m saying I’m learning the General American Pronunciation, how SPECIFIC do I have to be about that?

If the resulting speech is a mix of Californian, Canadian and New York accents – have I failed as far as the accent acquisition is concerned or have I been successful?

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Advice for foreigners not to learn English accents is wrong!

In this article I’m going to reveal my honest opinion on all those “well-intentioned” pieces of advice shared by a lot of English language teachers on YouTube where they tell foreign English speakers not to learn this or that particular English language accent.

The reason for writing this article is a video I watched a few days ago where some English teacher of British origin is providing a thorough explanation on why the classic Received Pronunciation is almost dead in the modern day England and why you as a foreigner shouldn’t learn this particular English accent.

Fair enough, her representation of the different facts and realities of life makes quite a compelling argument if she wants to prove that RP as we know it is used less in modern times and its importance in determining a person’s status in society has almost disappeared.

At the same time I completely fail to see why foreign English speakers such as you or me shouldn’t choose RP as the basic pronunciation guideline if we aspire to speak like British English speakers but instead we should aim for something more popular such as the Estuary accent, for example.

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Foreign Accent Prejudice

Have you ever thought about the fact that people often equate fluency to correct pronunciation?

I mean – if you speak with a near-native pronunciation, people will say:

Yeah, this guy is really fluent in English!

Yet, if you say the SAME EXACT sentence in accented English, it’s not generally perceived to represent a fluent English speaker’s speech…

To me, it doesn’t make any sense at all!

Just think about all those heavily accented regional English language accents from all over the world – the simple fact is, some of them are VERY difficult to understand.

I live in the Republic of Ireland, for example, and some banks and utility companies have located their customer support staff up in the Northern Ireland. Guess what happened when I rang one of those support lines a few years ago and got to speak with a native English speaker who was speaking with a heavy Northern Irish accent?

That’s right! I couldn’t understand ANYTHING ❗

Over the years I’ve gotten quite good at understanding Northerners, so it’s not a problem now; however, it hasn’t alleviated the sense of injustice at the slightest.

Why is it that when a native English speaker speaks with an accent, nobody would ever think of accusing them of not being fluent, yet foreigners are judged by their accents the whole time and many of us are thought to speak broken English while in reality it’s not the case?

If this unfair treatment is bugging you, I warmly suggest you read the rest of this article where I’ve tried to shed some light on the issue!

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