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‘Vocal Fry’ Is the Hot New Linguistic Fad Among Women

A curious vocal pattern has crept into the speech of young adult women who speak American English: low, creaky vibrations, also called vocal fry. Pop singers, such as Britney Spears, slip vocal fry into their music as a way to reach low notes and add style. Now, a new study of young women in New York state shows that the same guttural vibration—once considered a speech disorder—has become a language fad.

Vocal fry, or glottalization, is a low, staccato vibration during speech, produced by a slow fluttering of the vocal cords (listen here). Since the 1960s, vocal fry has been recognized as the lowest of the three vocal registers, which also include falsetto and modal—the usual speaking register. Speakers creak differently according to their gender, although whether it is more common in males or females varies among languages. In American English, anecdotal reports suggest that the behavior is much more common in women. (In British English, the pattern is the opposite.) Historically, continual use of vocal fry was classified as part of a voice disorder that was believed to lead to vocal cord damage. However, in recent years, researchers have noted occasional use of the creak in speakers with normal voice quality.

In the new study, scientists at Long Island University (LIU) in Brookville, New York, investigated the prevalence of vocal fry in college-age women. The team recorded sentences read by 34 female speakers. Two speech-language pathologists trained to identify voice disorders evaluated the speech samples. They marked the presence or absence of vocal fry by listening to each speaker's pitch and two qualities called jitter and shimmer—variation in pitch and volume, respectively.

More than two-thirds of the research subjects used vocal fry during their readings, the researchers will report in a future issue of the Journal of Voice. The distinct vibrations weren't continuous. Rather, they arose most often at the ends of sentences. The patterns were "normal" variations, says co-author and speech scientist Nassima Abdelli-Beruh of LIU, because the women rarely slipped into vocal fry during sustained vowel tests—prolonged holding of vowels such as 'aaa' and 'ooo'—a classic way to assess voice quality and probe for possible disorders. Abdelli-Beruh says the creak is unlikely to damage vocal cords because speakers didn't creak continuously or even at the end of every sentence.

The study is the first to quantify the prevalence of vocal fry in normal speech, although other researchers have noted the pattern. The group is also the first to verify that American women are much more likely to exhibit the behavior than men, as its yet-unpublished data show that male college-age students don't use the creaky voice. The team's next steps will attempt to find out when this habit started—and if it is indeed a budding trend.

The researchers also plan to test students in high schools and middle schools to learn why young women creak when they speak. "Young students tend to use it when they get together," Abdelli-Beruh says. "Maybe this is a social link between members of a group."

Abdelli-Beruh also wants to compare the prevalence of vocal fry on radio stations. For example, she says that the popular-music station on her teenage son's dial features creaky announcers, but she does not hear vocal fry on National Public Radio, which targets an older audience.

The small number of subjects and the limited geographic focus of the study make these findings very specific, Keating says. But she notes that speech researchers suspect the vibrational trend is widespread in the United States. "I think there are generational differences," she says. "But it is common to mark the end of sentences [with vocal fry]. If the pitch falls, you get creak."

by Anonymousreply 21802/22/2016

Sounds like something immigrants or Yankee gals might do -- I don't hear it down South.

If I do, I'll be sure to use a water gun on the cunt and yell, "Stop that shit right now!"

by Anonymousreply 112/12/2011


by Anonymousreply 212/12/2011

Young American women, particularly college students, speak nasally. Very childlike and annoying.

by Anonymousreply 312/12/2011

It's that annoying sound of every female voice over in a commercial

by Anonymousreply 412/12/2011

Can you give an example r4? I don't understand what they're talking about.

by Anonymousreply 512/12/2011

I'm still not sure what it is.

Is it that annoying, faux hoarseness a la Zoey Deschanel?

I always want to tell those people to clear their throat.

by Anonymousreply 612/12/2011

Confused. I guess this has not hit the South yet or something because I have never heard this.

Is this when a lady forces her voice into a lower register but hasn't any inflections? Like the opposite of a Paula Prentiss or Kathleen Turner voice?

by Anonymousreply 712/12/2011

The worst linguistic fad that has plagued young females for the past couple of decades has been Valleyspeak - the high, fake voice, whiny-ness and statements that go up on the end as if a question is being asked.

I would embrace "vocal fry," whatever it is, as a subsitute for valleyspeak.

by Anonymousreply 812/12/2011

I just slap their faces repeatedly and send them to diction coaching

by Anonymousreply 912/12/2011

Is this kind of that Lindsay Lohan smoker voice, husky with sentences trailing off into a drone/rattle?

by Anonymousreply 1012/12/2011

I still don't get what this is as a speech inflection either. All the youtube videos are singing related.

by Anonymousreply 1112/12/2011

Soooo annoying. All the girls do this. They drop their voices at the end of a sentence and do a kind of creaky drawl that trails off the last vowel or consonant. It makes them sound like their talking down to you or like they are kind of disapproving snobs. I want to slap them everytime I hear it. Listen to a Britney Spears song, after she sings "baby, baby..." The last sound of the word "baby" will trail off into vocal fry. I can't express how much I hate this and hate her for singing that way.

by Anonymousreply 1212/12/2011

I got it!

It is tone deaf cane voice and I state that as a Lesbian, btw.

by Anonymousreply 1312/12/2011

When I read this I at first thought it was that faux-perky Sarah Palinesque "growl" that bad female country singers indulge in every other note. Is this part of it?

by Anonymousreply 1412/12/2011

Apparently, it is that Kim Kardashian, whiney drawl with associated "popping" sounds as you drag out the end of a word.

by Anonymousreply 1512/12/2011

I'm not sure I understand what it is either?

Is it the way Diana Aragnon from Glee speaks? Sort of whispery or breathy?

by Anonymousreply 1612/12/2011

here's an example of vocal fry

by Anonymousreply 1712/12/2011

Here you go.

by Anonymousreply 1812/12/2011

Richard Simmons has starting using the creaky voice. He combines it with his shrieking.

by Anonymousreply 1912/12/2011

The voiceover actress who says "S.E. Johnson. A family company" uses vocal fry in the syllable "fam". Drives me insane.

by Anonymousreply 2012/12/2011

Go to the Grammar Girl site and listen to any of her stuff. She is the classic vocal fry chick.

by Anonymousreply 2112/12/2011

Jane on the 90s cartoon "Daria" was another classic vocal fry voice.

by Anonymousreply 2212/12/2011

Forgot to include Grammar Girl link; just click on any of the episodes in this list and you'll hear all the vocal fry you want.

by Anonymousreply 2312/12/2011

The article says you won't hear it on NPR, but that's wrong. There are a few extremely annoying young female reporters who do this in their practiced, self important, "serious journalist" voice. At the end of every sentence they drop down to that low register for dramatic effect. It makes me want to slap them viciously.

by Anonymousreply 2412/12/2011

That's a perfect example R23. Thanks.

by Anonymousreply 2512/12/2011

This is the only style of speech employed in America by earnest young college women. It's definitely a way of conveying social class and of bonding. Get two or three of them together and it increases exponentially. It is a completely self-absorbed affectation and it robs these young women of all authority and credibility when they take it with them out into the work world. Among the worst offenders are young female public interest lawyers.

It correlates closely with hair twirling. I can't stand it.

by Anonymousreply 2612/12/2011

sounds like it would be great for generating resonance in a guy's cock while you're blowing him, also that aussie has great blowjob lips

by Anonymousreply 2712/12/2011

Sounds like "rattle" from the ghosts in the Grudge movies.

by Anonymousreply 2812/12/2011

Fuck R28, I hate you! My friends and I call it the grudge too. In fact one of my friends boyfriends is an annoying little valley girl twink and uses this when he says gorgeouuuuuuuussssss. He drags it out and since then we call him the grudge. I think we need to hang out. ;)

by Anonymousreply 2912/12/2011

Goddamit, I probably wouldn't have even noticed it if I hadn't known there was a name for it, but Grammar Girl's voice has always driven me insane. Now I know why.

by Anonymousreply 3012/12/2011

A relative of mine used vocal fry and needed speech therapy. It's used in Canada too, usually by women under 30.

by Anonymousreply 3112/12/2011

I think it sounds sexy

by Anonymousreply 3212/12/2011

That's how I sound all the time. For me, it's from depression and lack of energy. - Exhaustion.

by Anonymousreply 3312/12/2011

Examples of UK guys doing it, please.

by Anonymousreply 3412/12/2011

They really should just call it "Kardashian voice" and be done with it. Kourtney's use of "vocal fry" is actually even worse than Kim's.

Interesting that his has long been considered a speech impediment. Kourtney really DOES sound retarded when she speaks in that voice, which is all the time.

by Anonymousreply 3512/12/2011

I notice a lot of young females do this. Oddly, some of them are in professional broadcasting and get paid to sound like that. the habit is very grating.

Sort of an anemic, lazy, featherweight rattle-groan sound.

by Anonymousreply 3612/12/2011

My spoiled, princess sister-in-law (29 years old) has always used this voice in the 8 years or so we've known her. It's a cross between a whine and a drawl and meant to convey how very, very unhahppy and bored she is with everything.

by Anonymousreply 3712/12/2011

I don't speak cunt. I don't plan to try.

by Anonymousreply 3812/12/2011

Marge Simpson is the queen of vocal fry.

by Anonymousreply 3912/12/2011

Is this that sort of growly, raspy thing that Winona Ryder does? I've always hated her speaking voice.

by Anonymousreply 4012/12/2011

Lady Gaga does it. I can't stand to listen to her in interviews. I think she's the best example of vocal fry.

by Anonymousreply 4112/12/2011

From what I've read and heard via this thread, it seems that Vocal Fry is an affectation rather than a "natural" way of speaking. Is that correct? Does it not occur as one variation of a regular speech pattern?

I always noted it in Britney's singing, but thought that it was a studio-enhanced means of strengthening a weak voice. For Daria, it seemed to be a deliberate, character-specific means of conveying her dry, sarcastic outlook on life (and I never connected Britney with Daria). I don't recall noticing it in day-to-day speech. Now I'll be more observant.

by Anonymousreply 4212/12/2011

OMG, r23! I could get through about 10 seconds before I wanted SLAP THAT BEE-YOTCH.

HTH does one even affect that moronic "growl"?

by Anonymousreply 4312/12/2011

I get what this is now. Paris Hilton talked this way. It is a nasal cousin of valley girl talk. If you were going to do an impression of a vapid, fashion obsessed girl, this is probably where your voice would go without even trying.

by Anonymousreply 4412/12/2011

Holy fuck, I speak like this all the time. For me it was to get rid of my Antipodeon rise at the end of my sentences. I guess I have taken it too far.

Thanks I know how annoying I am.

by Anonymousreply 4512/13/2011

It kind of sounds like Kristen Wiig's Penelope character.

by Anonymousreply 4612/13/2011

Some of our younger female employees do this and it has a very negative effect on their job performance. Our organization is run by older females who wish to project a certain image and vocal fry makes these young girls sound less intelligent and insecure.

It seems they don't use their diaphragm in their breath control. They run out of air at the end of the sentence. To me, it communicates laziness.

by Anonymousreply 4712/13/2011

Please. Another example of a profession finding more uses for itself.

Who gives a fuck? Women used to be bitched at and demeaned for raising their voices at the end of sentences or turning statements into questions and now women are being analyzed and categorized and ultimately demeaned and ridiculed for lowering their voices.

People have plenty of vocal habits that are anything but deliberate. Why does everything one does have to be an act of something or the other. It's clear that too many people have been able to stay in school too long hence the overabundance of useless studies and the overanalysis of every fucking breath we take.

Fuck off, fuckers.

by Anonymousreply 4812/13/2011

My partner has always bitched about the young female reporters on NPR, that many of them seem to have an affectation of speaking in gravelly voices. He emailed me this article yesterday and said, "This! This is what I'm talking about."

by Anonymousreply 4912/13/2011

Finally, a name for this extreme annoyance. I associate it with the passive-aggressives in my life, so I'll just imagine them frying their vocal cords doing it.

by Anonymousreply 5012/13/2011

I clicked on R17's link, but I can't stand to listen to an Australian accent for more than 5 seconds. Sooo annoying.

by Anonymousreply 5112/13/2011

My 32 year old cousin does a worse (!) version of vocal sounds like she's on the cusp of crying. But she has sounded like this since she was a kid. I can't stand to listen to her for long periods of time.

by Anonymousreply 5212/13/2011

I had to listen to some of the voices in the links for 15 minutes before I could tell what you guys were talking about, and I can still barely detect it. Honestly, they all sound completely normal to me.

by Anonymousreply 5312/13/2011

There are quite a few women on campus who speak this way. One female in particular, who can't shut up in class, even though much of what she says is inane blather, speaks this way and I can see that it irritates the professor. It grates on my nerves. Glad to find it's not just me.

by Anonymousreply 5412/13/2011

LOL there's actually a male attorney I work with who does this and it drives me BATTY. He's in his early 50's. It is ridiculously annoying.

by Anonymousreply 5512/13/2011

Maria Menounos does it too, she is the SE Johnson voice BTW!

by Anonymousreply 5612/13/2011

[quote]I had to listen to some of the voices in the links for 15 minutes before I could tell what you guys were talking about, and I can still barely detect it. Honestly, they all sound completely normal to me.

You talk like that, don't you? Either that, or you're surrounded by people who do talk like that, because it is not completely "normal". There are a lot of places in the USA and Canada where people don't have this vocal fry thing going on. It's extremely common on the entire American west coast and in bigger cities in the rest of the country.

This vocal fry stuff was extremely uncommon here in Canada 20, 25 years ago. The only people I knew who talked like that back then were those in the fashion industry, where affectations of all kinds are pretty much standard. But then it started creeping into people's speech patterns in the mid-90s, men and women alike. And now in the last ten years, it's become an almost standard speech pattern among young Canadian women.

by Anonymousreply 5712/13/2011

I have no idea if I talk like that. Now that I sort of know what you guys are talking about, can anyone point to examples of men with "vocal fry"? My speech is probably considered odd anyway; I've been told I talk very low and when I speak at what others consider a normal volume, I feel like I'm yelling.

by Anonymousreply 5812/13/2011

For men, Charlie Sheen does it a little bit. It's more pronounced when he was in character on that Two and a Half Men show.

Also Owen Wilson does it to some extent, but his voice is much more nasal than average, so I could be wrong.

by Anonymousreply 5912/13/2011

Christian Slater does it.

by Anonymousreply 6012/13/2011

yes, I do think Owen Wilson does it (and I don't mean the nasal part)

by Anonymousreply 6112/13/2011

That is indeed exactly what Winona Ryder does when she reads lines. The only time I've heard her not do it was in "The Age of Innocence": I bet Scorsese beat her with a stick whenever she tried to do it.

by Anonymousreply 6212/13/2011

I'm not hearing it with Charlie Sheen and Owen Wilson at all. But like I said, I had to listen to those other clips for 15 minutes before I could hear it even a little bit. I still don't understand why it's annoying - it basically just sounds like the girls are speaking in a lower tone of voice than some people think they ought to.

Maybe you guys are just used to women shrieking at you.

by Anonymousreply 6312/13/2011

Ira Glass started this trend. High school girls idolize him.

by Anonymousreply 6412/13/2011

R64, he sounds perfectly normal to me. I think you guys just expect people to shout at you.

by Anonymousreply 6512/13/2011

Uh oh, R48 has vocal fry and doesn't know how to get rid of it.

by Anonymousreply 6612/13/2011

It indeed started with Valley Girl speech. Entire generations (younger) speak this way now. But you don't hear guys do it all that much unless their speaking voices are naturally high. The trailing downward in pitch, dropping the focus of the voice at the ends of sentences is very irritating to hear and it is ruining the younger generation of actors.

by Anonymousreply 6712/13/2011

no, I think Ira Glass just has a kind of nerdy-Jewish kind of voice.

Winnona Ryder: yes.

by Anonymousreply 6812/13/2011

[quote]The trailing downward in pitch, dropping the focus of the voice at the ends of sentences is very irritating to hear and it is ruining the younger generation of actors.

I don't even know what this means, and I suspect you don't either.

by Anonymousreply 6912/13/2011

[quote]Ira Glass started this trend. High school girls idolize him.

I hope you're joking and not just frighteningly out of touch.

by Anonymousreply 7012/13/2011

[quote]Ira Glass just has a kind of nerdy-Jewish kind of voice

Maybe I'm misunderstanding what vocal fry is. So it is only something that women do? I thought it was a kind of low pitched, glottal, almost growling sound. He does it all the time when finishing a sentence.

by Anonymousreply 7112/13/2011

Great examples start at 0:44.

Listen for the "popping" sound as they drag out the last word in the sentence.

It IS very "Grudge"-like!

Interesting that this speech pattern is supposedly used to signify higher social class-- I've always associated this way of speaking with skanks, for lack of a better word.

by Anonymousreply 7212/13/2011

See? I thought I was crazy but now I'm thinking you guys are just pretending to hear so you'll have something to make yourselves feel superior about. It's like the emperor's new clothes.

by Anonymousreply 7312/13/2011

R63, you have to listen to an eager young, female journalist tell a story with this affectation to really grasp how insanely annoying it is. It's meant to convey an 'oh so serious' sense of gravity and self importance. They could be doing a piece on last minute holiday shoppers at the mall, but when you hear that hushed, low, gravely tone, you'd think they were reporting breaking news from the front line of a war zone. It's actually pretty funny. Tune into NPR and you'll hear it a lot.

by Anonymousreply 7412/13/2011

No, sweety @ R73, you just hang out with a lot of Valley Girls, so of course it sounds normal to you.

by Anonymousreply 7512/13/2011

R75, you ignorant slut. I don't even know any valley girls.

by Anonymousreply 7612/13/2011

Yep, Ira Glass has it for sure.

I'm beginning to believe that anyone who's got this affectation can't even hear it themselves and that the posters who are claiming they can't hear it must do it. It's quite evident to me, but then I'm in Canada and only the young women talk that way, very few other Canadians have vocal fry.

So the people who claim they cannot hear it, where is your general location? I'd be interested to learn that.

by Anonymousreply 7712/13/2011

R69, I know what I mean when I say that younger actors' range and variety in playing characters, including period characters from other centuries, is totally limited because they all end their sentences with a vocal affectation that no one used in those eras. Actors have to come into characterizations as free of personal habits as possible.

That's what I mean by "ruining" a younger generation of actors, although it is the audience for those actors who is suffering the most.

by Anonymousreply 7812/13/2011

From reading these posts, it would seem that many of you don't have ears.

by Anonymousreply 7912/13/2011

R78, I have yet to hear any vocal affectations in any of the examples provided, except the Kardashian parody, which to me just sounded like they were just trying to mimic people who were strung out on benzos.

The only thing I hear is women speaking in a lower tone of voice than what some people are apparently comfortable with. I don't hear any "popping" sounds or trailing off at the ends of sentences.

by Anonymousreply 8012/13/2011

I'm sorry you can't hear it, R80. Maybe you live where it doesn't happen. I teach voice and I hear it 24/7.

by Anonymousreply 8112/13/2011

And even if they do have some vocal affectation that I am incapable of hearing, how is it any worse than watching Katharine Hepburn portray Eleanor of Aquitaine with Connecticut lockjaw?

by Anonymousreply 8212/13/2011

I think this is a good example. Winona Ryder has it throughout this interview, while Jennifer Connelly does not. Connelly's voice is easier to listen to, and clearer.

by Anonymousreply 8312/13/2011

It's mostly young white girls who do it. Although now that this thread has popped up I realize that I do it as well.

by Anonymousreply 8412/13/2011

Sounds like lazy stoner-speak to me.

by Anonymousreply 8512/13/2011

I wonder what would happen if an over 40 actress announced she was no longer going to do cheesecake roles that show off her body.

by Anonymousreply 8612/13/2011

r83's illustration is magnificent. it's got the british version AND the pioneer of american "fry," the lovely ms. winona ryder.

by Anonymousreply 8712/13/2011

Is there a consensus here that Winona Ryder in R83's clip is doing "vocal fry" and that Jennifer what's-her-name isn't?

If so, I can hear a difference in the way the speak - there's definitely a "trilly" quality in Winona's voice, but I probably wouldn't notice it if I wasn't listening for it.

Again, she just sounds like she talks in a lower tone of voice than Jennifer, which I actually think sounds more pleasant. Jennifer sounds a little brash to me.

by Anonymousreply 8812/13/2011

are you lost, R86?

by Anonymousreply 8912/13/2011

you can hear a croaking in Winona's voice - that's it!

by Anonymousreply 9012/13/2011

Interesting, because it the clip at R83, the very first scene where Connelly says, "You think you can touch this serve", is 100% vocal fry. Notice how the word 'serve' dips down and frys. It's at 0:02 in.

by Anonymousreply 9112/13/2011

R90, I'm sure I probably do that "croaking" thing, too (I'm a man, btw). I think it's likely just part of being a low-talker. Like I said, people constantly ask me to speak up, but when I speak at a volume they find acceptable, it feels like I'm yelling and I can't keep it up for very long - my throat gets dry and sore. It does that anyway if I talk for more than about 20 minutes at a time.

by Anonymousreply 9212/13/2011

R90 is correct. That is not vocal fry, it's her voice.

Vocal fry has to do with the cadence as well as the cracking at the END of the sentence and a bit of a trail off. Not just a gravely, cracking voice.

Connelly saying "serve" at the end of that sentence in that clip is the perfect example.

by Anonymousreply 9312/13/2011

Okay, then I officially have no idea what vocal fry is. Evidently, it's so subtle that I'm incapable of hearing it. Can you guys hear dog whistles, too?

by Anonymousreply 9412/13/2011

R94, Connelly saying "serve" at the end of that sentence in that clip is the perfect example.

by Anonymousreply 9512/13/2011

I had to listen to it about 4 times. Again, it's not something I ever would've noticed. It just sounds like her voice cracked. I can't believe people pay such close attention to things. You're like the boss I had once who reprimanded me for clocking out 30 seconds early one day.

by Anonymousreply 9612/13/2011

Truly do not think this has hit the south yet at all.

by Anonymousreply 9712/13/2011

R96, It's not just the cracking. It's the dipping down and trailing off. Kind of the opposite if Valley Speak.

Again,The new fad of speaking with a vocal fry does NOT mean a gravely voice. It's all about how and when it is used.

by Anonymousreply 9812/13/2011

I give up. You guys are clearly hearing something I'm incapable of hearing. No matter how many times I listen to these examples, I can't tell what in hell you all are talking about.

by Anonymousreply 9912/13/2011

Thanks, R91 -- I get it now.

by Anonymousreply 10012/13/2011

If you can't hear it, listen to those Grammar Girls tutorials that are linked. That is the perfect example of this.

by Anonymousreply 10112/13/2011

Katy Perry seems to do it a lot in her affected version of "White Christmas." It's so awful I thought it was a joke, because it sounds like someone singing karaoke while drunk and afflicted with laryngitis.

by Anonymousreply 10212/13/2011

Listened to the grammar girl clips again. I hear it now. But it's still not something I ever would've noticed on my own. It seems like a really minor affectation to me. Again, I am reminded of the boss who reprimanded me for clocking out less than a minute early. Who pays this much attention to things?

And I fail to understand the indignation for actors playing period roles and speaking this way, when I'm fairly certain that Eleanor of Aquitaine did not have Connecticut lockjaw.

by Anonymousreply 10312/13/2011

I agree, Connelly does it with the word "serve" in the acting clip, but she does not do it in the interview. Ryder does it in the interview - and as someone else noticed the British interviewer is doing it, too!

I agree the Grammar girl does it, too.

by Anonymousreply 10412/13/2011

I thought Leonardo DiCaprio's laid back contemporary Californian voice and body language was all wrong for 1950s East Coast lower middle class American in Revolutionary Road.

by Anonymousreply 10512/13/2011

Grammar Girl doesn't have it that badly - to me it just makes her sound wry and clever. But if it was more exaggerated it would make the speaker sound bored and would be very annoying.

by Anonymousreply 10612/13/2011

Maybe she *is* bored. God knows I would be.

by Anonymousreply 10712/13/2011

Check out who else is on the vocal fry bandwagon!

by Anonymousreply 10812/13/2011

[quote]Grammar Girl doesn't have it that badly - to me it just makes her sound wry and clever.

Oh my. No, no, no. She has it worse than anyone and it makes her sound like a spoiled college girl who is overly impressed with herself. Certainly not "wry and clever."

by Anonymousreply 10912/13/2011

they think they are sounding wry and clever

by Anonymousreply 11012/13/2011

Wow, Chelsea does have it bad.

by Anonymousreply 11112/13/2011

chelsea has it BAD.

by Anonymousreply 11212/13/2011

Strange that this seems to be done deliberately-- it makes the speaker sound so lazy. Is that the desired effect?

Reminds me of how I sound when I'm really sick and feel too rotten to try to disguise how sick I am ("I'll just croak this out as best I can because I'm too sick to care how shitty I sound.")

If you say a sentence aloud and strive for a smooth, mid-pitch tone, it takes a lot more energy than just lazily croaking the same sentence without making an effort at "smoothness."

by Anonymousreply 11312/13/2011

R113= MBA

by Anonymousreply 11412/13/2011

The worst example I've ever heard is a man - Zeljko Ivanek in "Damages".

by Anonymousreply 11512/13/2011

Some of you are still not getting it at all.

by Anonymousreply 11612/13/2011

I really don't find it unpleasant, and it's the kind of thing I wouldn't notice had someone not pointed it out. It's not just a "linguistic fad among women", either. Men do it all the time. Women get criticism no matter what they do, it seems. If they end sentences too high, they sound immature and insecure. If they end sentences lower, they are smug and snotty. Pinning this "trend" to women only is sexist.

by Anonymousreply 11712/13/2011

Aw, I hate the vocal fry but I do like Chelsea's story. Don't like her parents tho.

by Anonymousreply 11812/13/2011

It's SC Johnson, not SE Johnson.

by Anonymousreply 11912/13/2011

I wish I hadn't read about Vocal Fry. Now I'm noticing it everywhere and it's really irritating.

by Anonymousreply 12012/13/2011

Here is an example of vocal fry from "Family Guy." Virgil Mastercard does it.

by Anonymousreply 12112/13/2011

That was hilarious, R121 and spot on.

by Anonymousreply 12212/13/2011

It is an affectation(sometimes unconscious). It speaks of a mental laziness and a herd mentality. It is also popular with hipster girls.

by Anonymousreply 12312/13/2011

Is it possible to combine this with uptalk? I think that would be the cutest thing? Ever?

by Anonymousreply 12412/13/2011

'Uptalk', is that what they call it? It's a sure sign of stupidity. Ending a statement inquisitively as if you had asked a question is profoundly annoying.

by Anonymousreply 12512/13/2011

[quote]'Uptalk', is that what they call it? It's a sure sign of stupidity.

I think it's actually more of an indicator of insecurity, but I agree it does come across as profoundly stupid.

by Anonymousreply 12612/13/2011

Heath Ledger as the Joker was so mind blowing, that every other 20 year old on youtube can give the same exact performance! He must've infected all of them with his greatness!

by Anonymousreply 12712/13/2011

R127 here. Sorry, wrong thread.

by Anonymousreply 12812/13/2011

Ha, I as I was reading R127, I was thinking, "wow, did Heath's Joker have vocal fry??"

by Anonymousreply 12912/13/2011

Zooey Deschanel does this.

by Anonymousreply 13012/14/2011

I started noticing this beginning 2 or 3 years ago. The more self-focused (I'm sexy and I know it every second)the girl is, the more likely she is to speak this way. It seems to trend roughly, but not strictly, with the level of non-intelligence. It may be more to do with simply being self-conscious at every moment, too.

by Anonymousreply 13112/29/2011

I listen in the morning to women coming down to the breakroom to get coffee, and several speak in what can be described as "singsong": it's a kind of a mock-appalled retelling of whatever happened to them, and they go up and down the scales describing the exaggerated situation ("She screamed at me... and I'm like- ooooh-kayYYY", etc.).

I'd go insane if I had to hear that all day. No wonder their men tune them out.

by Anonymousreply 13212/31/2011

Check out the film Damsels in Distress when it hitz theatres. It's ALL vocal fry.

by Anonymousreply 13312/31/2011

Does Sara Gilbert talk with it? She always sounds like she's slow or lazy when she's talking.

by Anonymousreply 13412/31/2011

Rachel Zoe is a good example of vocal fry. So does her male assistant. It's kind of a bored monotone gravel.

by Anonymousreply 13501/02/2012

Natasha Leggero does this as well, yes?

by Anonymousreply 13601/02/2012

Now that I've read this thread, I think there are 2 separate, but similar, phenomena at work:

(1) faux hoarse, aren't-I-sexy-yet-so-sincere voice = vocal fry

(2) lockjaw drawl with "popping" noises = Kardashian speak = skank voice

by Anonymousreply 13701/02/2012

I have told three women I've spoken with on the phone (two with my banks, one with my phone company) that I can't listen to their bad, unprofessional speech patterns and need to talk with someone else who has professional, unaffected voices. That they combined this patterning with flippant and too-familiar rudeness made things worse, of course. All three were floored. Two told me to wait and I got men who were professional. One behaved badly and I instructed her to get a supervisor. She hung up on me. Naturally I already had her name so I called the bank president's number and took it from there.

Why do (mostly) young women mistake individualism and self-assertion with faddish peculiarity and outright unmannerliness?

by Anonymousreply 13801/02/2012

I don't know R138, I hate vocal fry as much as the next guy but it sounds like you sat on one of those pins you use to attach your doily to your couch.

by Anonymousreply 13901/02/2012

this proves that gay voice is learned,while sexuality,specially homosexuality is not a choice,effeminacy is indeed learned through exposure to the opposite sex.

gay guys with gay voices should look for professional help.I used to have a gay voice and I went to a speech coach and now I have completely eliminated my gay voice.It was hard at first but I learned a lot about the differences in pitch and tone in men and women.

It is definitely worth the effort.

by Anonymousreply 14001/02/2012

Absolutely R135. I was thinking the same thing when I watched her "Rachel Zoe Project" show for the first time the other night. It was very distracting.

by Anonymousreply 14101/02/2012

How can you not realize that when you place your voice so low that it sounds "fried" it's causing damage?

by Anonymousreply 14201/02/2012

it reminds me of Cindy Lopez,her voice is just awful

by Anonymousreply 14301/02/2012

I lot of women with naturally high voices use vocal fry to try and make their voice sound deeper because they believe it gives them more credibility.

A good voice coach will tell you that this is a major vocal flaw and results in significant vocal cord damage over the long run. A better bet for a deeper voice would be a few months on testosterone shots as long as you don't mind the extra facial and body hair...

by Anonymousreply 14401/02/2012

Is Vocal Fry any relation to Jud Fry? Or Fish Fry?

by Anonymousreply 14501/02/2012

Stop trying to make 'vocal fry' happen ....

by Anonymousreply 14601/02/2012

Is that Hyundai girl a vocal fry?

by Anonymousreply 14701/02/2012

I'm listening to Mindy Kaling narrate her new (and generally engaging) book, and she does it a lot.

by Anonymousreply 14801/04/2012

I was in a meeting yesterday and one girl spoke in vocal fry the entire time. It was so distracting.

by Anonymousreply 14901/14/2012

I think Jill Abramson of the NY times has done this for years.

by Anonymousreply 15001/14/2012

No thanks to this thread, I hear this damn Vocal Fry all the time now.

Is it weird that some vocal frys (fries?) almost makes me nauseous?

by Anonymousreply 15101/14/2012

No, R151. There was a guy on Chopped recently whose vocal fry made me a bit ill. He's the one who burst into tears recounting his troubled relationship with his now-dead father. I felt bad seeing his obvious grief and depression, but his general freakiness reminded me of why I don't work in restaurants anymore. Eeesh.

by Anonymousreply 15201/14/2012

Bitches, I've been doing that since 1970. Back then we called it moaning. And it came very handy when I wasn't able to hold a note because I was busy jiggling and shaking so much.

Later people like Donna Summer, Sylvia, and 3000 other Disco Divas got into it.

by Anonymousreply 15301/14/2012

I still have no idea what the hell sound you guys are talking about.

Can one of you write out a sentence phonetically in 'regular' and 'vocal fry', or isn't it something that can be written out? Is is just a vocal quality or an actual change in pronunciation?

by Anonymousreply 15401/14/2012

To me it sounds like a snarly noise that's supposed to be seductive. Yeah, it annoys me by women, because I'm not sexually interested in them and those kind of seduction techniques (including squinty bedroom eyes) don't work on me.

by Anonymousreply 15501/14/2012

I think all those public radio chicks with fry got it from Amy Goodman. She's sounded like she's broadcasting half asleep from under her bed covers for years.

by Anonymousreply 15601/14/2012

[quote]Can one of you write out a sentence phonetically in 'regular' and 'vocal fry', or isn't it something that can be written out? Is is just a vocal quality or an actual change in pronunciation?

I can't think of a way to write it out phonetically, but basically, it's women who normally have a higher-pitched voice trying to talk in a much lower register. But because it's unnatural for them, the voice winds up taking on a gravelly tone.

Also, instead of "up talking" (when a sentence comes out sounding like a question rather than a statement), women with vocal fry tend to "down talk". They'll speak in an unnatural lower register and at the end of a sentence, they lower their voices even more.

Plus, they also tend to drag out their words, and it's almost a drawl, and the drawl is emphasized at the end of a sentence.

by Anonymousreply 15701/14/2012

All you people asking for a sampling or for it to be written out -

Did you not read OP's link? Obviously not, or else you would have found this

by Anonymousreply 15801/14/2012

R154, are you deaf or just too lazy to listen to the dozens of examples that people have posted on this thread?

If you can't hear it in this example with the person actually explaining it while she does it, you're hopeless.

by Anonymousreply 15901/15/2012

R159, that is an excellent video -- kudos for posting it!

by Anonymousreply 16001/15/2012

I was watching a special about Facebook last night and I just realized Mark Zuckerberg talks in "upspeak." It was very distracting. I'm surprised he hasn't gotten voice lessons to make him sound more professional. He talks lie a Valley girl.

by Anonymousreply 16101/15/2012

[quote]I have told three women I've spoken with on the phone (two with my banks, one with my phone company) that I can't listen to their bad, unprofessional speech patterns and need to talk with someone else who has professional, unaffected voices. That they combined this patterning with flippant and too-familiar rudeness made things worse, of course. All three were floored. Two told me to wait and I got men who were professional. One behaved badly and I instructed her to get a supervisor. She hung up on me. Naturally I already had her name so I called the bank president's number and took it from there.

Aren't you your typical woman-hating sociopathic faggot? Jesus H Christ shoot yourself now.

by Anonymousreply 16201/15/2012

it sounds discusting.

by Anonymousreply 16307/30/2012

Goddammit. Because of you, all I heard was vocal fry during Anne Hathaway's performance in TDKR.

by Anonymousreply 16407/30/2012

I still don't understand what this is exactly. Are there any examples anywhere?

by Anonymousreply 16507/30/2012

It's that "creaky voice" that the Kardashians talk with. The girl in the video here talks with it too. Listen to the way she says "class" or "fry." Her voice gets really gravelly.

by Anonymousreply 16607/31/2012

I have a neighbor who does this! I never knew there was a name for it. lol.

by Anonymousreply 16707/31/2012

This is new? See Joan Greenwood, Elizabeth Ashley, Tallulah Bankhead, Lauren Bacall. Of course they had vocal training so it sounded controlled.

by Anonymousreply 16807/31/2012

Hardly new.

by Anonymousreply 16907/31/2012

Watch any episode of New Girl as Zooey Deschanel is a great example.

by Anonymousreply 17007/31/2012

I've always noticed it in the way the young female journalists on NPR speak, but I didn't know what it was, or have a name for it. I just knew that it was incredibly annoying. It sounds so smug and self satisfied in a way that only rich, earnest, over-educated, white girls can.

by Anonymousreply 17107/31/2012

Kathy Griffin does a great Kim Kardashian imitation in which she uses vocal fry:

by Anonymousreply 17207/31/2012

Ryan Murphy has vocal fry, right?

by Anonymousreply 17308/08/2012

Probably they don't like america because they say U-ASS instead ou US.

What else can it be unless they'r decedant of a goat.

by Anonymousreply 17402/18/2013

This seems to be something exclusive to young white women. I only hear this on black women if she grew up around white people.

by Anonymousreply 17502/18/2013

Cheryl Hines' daughter on [italic] Suburgatory, [/italic] Dalia Royce, played by Carly Chaikin talks with a very distinctive fry

by Anonymousreply 17602/18/2013

Why are people so hung up on bashing the voices of others?

by Anonymousreply 17702/19/2013

The little girl on Mad Men does it. It drives me batty.

by Anonymousreply 17802/19/2013

Wow, haven't seen a vocal fry thread in all of three minutes!

And this one bumped from two years ago!

by Anonymousreply 17902/19/2013

Young women are such cunts. Always inauthentic in their herdlike love for conformity, for histrionics, for false emoting, for pitching their voices like Alvin's chipmunks, for saying everything in quotation marks, and for crunching their vocal cords to sound intimate and intense, when all they are is vapid, envious and shallow.

It's a good thing that the heterosexual male sex drive is strong enough to overcome the contempt all men have for these things, and that men put up with anything so long as there's a chance they'll get to fuck it. Otherwise we'd be extinct.

by Anonymousreply 18002/19/2013

What's worse vocal fry or baby voice?

by Anonymousreply 18102/19/2013

R180, you do realize that those things you hate so much are usually for the benefit of men, right? Oh and that you're damaged? Probably too obviously to hide.

by Anonymousreply 18206/18/2013

no "listen here" available

by Anonymousreply 18310/04/2013

The term "vocal fry" is more annoying that what it describes.

by Anonymousreply 18410/04/2013

Why is it stupid? It's pretty descriptive.

by Anonymousreply 18510/04/2013

Kathy Griffin's Kim Kardashian Impersonation. Should be renamed "vocal cry" due to how it affects listeners.

by Anonymousreply 18610/04/2013

It's making NPR almost unbearable.

by Anonymousreply 18710/04/2013

Dalia Royce on Subergatory. Is that even on anymore? She's the perfect example of vocal fry.

by Anonymousreply 18810/04/2013

OMG @ R18 link

by Anonymousreply 18910/04/2013

Could it be something environmental? Thought it might be due to something like birth control pills with progestin, which deepen the voice, decrease the vocal range and cause breaks. But progestin pill have been around since the early 1960s. Some other drug? GMO foods? Food additives?

by Anonymousreply 19010/04/2013

Lady Gaga is the worst offender.

by Anonymousreply 19111/25/2013

yet it does not show up in her singing.

by Anonymousreply 19211/25/2013

Adele has that covered, R192.

by Anonymousreply 19311/25/2013


by Anonymousreply 19411/25/2013

Joseph Lieberman invented this fad.

by Anonymousreply 19511/26/2013

Vocal fry (crackly voice syndrome) drives me CRAZY. And it`s everywhere, among youngish women--you even hear it on NPR.

by Anonymousreply 19606/27/2014

Zoe Chace on NPR combines vocal fry with a very strange mid-western? accent. When she's on, you barely notice the topic because you get so caught up in her awful way of speaking. Google her name and it will bring up suggestions for awful voice, vocal fry, etc., etc. all dealing with how distracting she sounds.

Guy Raz is another vocal fryer on NPR. Google his name and you'll see "Guy Raz annoying voice." You get the impression that he's trying to sound "butch" instead of sounding like Ross Matthews.

by Anonymousreply 19706/27/2014

So annoying for us Brits to listen to sounds really lazy way of speaking too...,

by Anonymousreply 19812/22/2014

I've noticed this, and no it's not just a "yankee" thing, as one poster suggested. More a generational thing. It's the weird affectation of dragging out usually the last word in a sentence or phrase with a sort of "growl". It sounds pretty Valley Girl to me. Another recent affectation is putting unnatural pauses in sentences and even in the middle of words. A news reported today: "It's over. whelming." Very hard to describe this, but I hear it all the time, and it's phony and irritating. I just wonder who they're imitating (but they probably don't even know they are).

by Anonymousreply 19901/14/2015

Correction: A news *reporter* (not "reported").

by Anonymousreply 20001/14/2015

"I have told three women I've spoken with on the phone (two with my banks, one with my phone company) that I can't listen to their bad, unprofessional speech patterns and need to talk with someone else who has professional, unaffected voices. That they combined this patterning with flippant and too-familiar rudeness made things worse, of course. All three were floored. Two told me to wait and I got men who were professional. One behaved badly and I instructed her to get a supervisor. She hung up on me. Naturally I already had her name so I called the bank president's number and took it from there."

I hope you are making this shit up, you colossal asshole. I suppose you'd be ok with people requesting someone with a non-queeny voice to assist them? Because gay voice is SO unprofessional.

by Anonymousreply 20101/14/2015

Just heard it again on the news: "They're going to lower the gas price later today to one. 94."

by Anonymousreply 20201/14/2015

The v.f. affectation is incredibly annoying to hear. It's like these girls and young women don't WANT actual voices, but would prefer to sound like a robot.

News readers and actresses are the worst, given their "role model" category.

Maybe the term "dulcet tones" needs to be re-introduced to us.

by Anonymousreply 20301/14/2015

Blake Lively on Gossip Girl has this Vocal Fry voice.

by Anonymousreply 20401/14/2015

"I have told three women I've spoken with on the phone (two with my banks, one with my phone company) that I can't listen to their bad, unprofessional speech patterns and need to talk with someone else who has professional, unaffected voices. That they combined this patterning with flippant and too-familiar rudeness made things worse, of course. All three were floored. Two told me to wait and I got men who were professional. One behaved badly and I instructed her to get a supervisor. She hung up on me. Naturally I already had her name so I called the bank president's number and took it from there."

I feel dismayed by the seeming degeneration of speaking styles, but these young people don't realize they're speaking any particular way. It's just how speech patterns evolve. We're all emulating things we've heard, subconsciously.

by Anonymousreply 20501/14/2015

It's like a "I am so not bothered to talk but if I have to I'm just going to sound irritated that I have to open my mouth".

by Anonymousreply 20601/14/2015

I think we should bring back the affectated Transatlantic accent from old movies and newsreels.

by Anonymousreply 20701/14/2015

R207 that sounds British to me. Old British though.

by Anonymousreply 20801/14/2015

I haven't decided which is more annoying--Vocal Fry or when people put an uptake at the end of all of their sentences? Like this? Everything's a question? Ugh.

by Anonymousreply 20901/14/2015

Amanda did it a lot on "Ugly Betty."

by Anonymousreply 21001/14/2015

They sound like alley cats

by Anonymousreply 21101/14/2015

It sound like someone who's been talking all day and is just about to fall asleep.

It's very LAZY sounding...


by Anonymousreply 21201/14/2015

There's another style of speech you hear a lot these days...I think it's a California thing.

Not bothering to pronounce the whole word.

For example 'INDEPENDENT', pronounced indepe-d-eh.

It sound like an American cockney.

by Anonymousreply 21301/14/2015

it's what used to be known as JAPpy

by Anonymousreply 21401/14/2015

I actually remember when and how this started. It was in the early 2000s, after the dot com bust damaged confidence in the stock market (temporarily). People were skittish about investing and so investment commercials wanted to give the impression that they were giving expert, "insider" type advice which was dead on the money. "Don't worry, this is my life."

What better way to convey expertise then sounding like you're so "in the know" that you're almost bored? It was done for both male and female voiceovers. It conveyed the sense that an expert who has successfully invested and possessing great expertise is now sharing his or her savvy with you. An attitude of "yeah, pretty much, that's how it is," usually spiced with bemused whimsy.

I always thought of it as the "gravelly monotone." Soon it began to spread from financial investment commercials to spots for other products as well, mostly for things women buy. As a result, women began using it in conversation as well, much to my annoyance. This may be because women have a slightly harder time being taken seriously as experts, so they try to compensate by sounding like they've talked about this a million times before and basically know everything there is to know about the subject. Hence the frequency with which female broadcast journalists do it.

Before I stopped listening to the show because I couldn't bear it any longer, I heard the correspondants on Ira Glass's show "This American Life" do it all the time. Very often that show features smart, overeducated young coastal elites making fun of eccentric Middle Americans and so the gravelly monotone is the perfect attitude to cop.

The young Christian Slater is definitely one of those persons who was keen to demonstrate his superior knowledge and boredom with people who weren't on his level, so it's no surprise that the gravelly monotone was his default intonation.

by Anonymousreply 21501/14/2015

A girl in my office talks in vocal fry. It is truly painful to listen to.

by Anonymousreply 21602/22/2016

Vocal fry makes you sound a bit douche-y, perhaps high, but UPSPEAK is way worse, in my opinion. Upspeak affords you no power, respect, or command of any space you occupy.

by Anonymousreply 21702/22/2016

This threadddddddddd had gone an entire yearrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr without anyone postinnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnggggggggggg. And now some numbskulllllllllllllllllll has brought it backkkkkkkkkkkkkk.

by Anonymousreply 21802/22/2016
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