#learn-patois · 1 year ago

Are some patois accents harder than others?

I am not Yaadie, but I have been following dancehall-reggae music (and socca) since 2008 and roots/reggae even before that. My favourite artist and music camp is Mavado/Gully Side coz I relate to him and his story a lot. Anyways, around 2011 is the time I put effort to listen and learn patois from the music I listened to, and even though I still struggle with speaking (coz no one to talk to), I can hear, read and write quite a large part of the language. I also watch YouTube shows like Onstage TV and follow a few musical shows when I can (like Sting). Now, something I am yet to grasp with is the accents that I hear which vary from person to person and region. Sometimes, I can hear the person fluently and sometimes some words pass me, or even the accent from the person becomes hard to hear entirely, especially when they speak fast (like an interview I watched of a woman in the market). Mostly, since I follow the music, this is where I notice this a lot (even I do miss some words from my favourite artist, Mavado, in some songs and have to search the lyrics). For example, I hear (almost) everything Tony Matterhorn says, but I struggle here and there to hear what someone like Bounty Killer says (and his baritone voice does not help). I also notice that, even though I am a big fan of old school riddims, especially the 90s, the accent is even harder compared to, say, music past 2005. Red Rat and King Yellowman are another example of exceptions, and I would put them in the Matterhorn category. So my question is, for those in Yaad, does the accent vary between different places in Jamaica, and would any one area be considered to have a more deeper (and harder) accent than another?


Yeah just like every language it’s different from place to place lot of people in Kingston have a hard time understanding people in “country”

I’m fluent in French but have a hard time understanding people from France at times and it’s my first language lol


Short answer is yes. they’re different.

Accents vary depending on parish and other factors.

Then there’s the fact that our language is a continuum. You can read more here



>just nod and say “ a true enuh” (translation: thats so true)

Lol. I understand this. No need for translation. But that was funny! I think I understand Charly Black since he comes to come from Trewlany.


Yes some accents harder than some am Jamaican and when I say even I don’t understand when country people talk sometimes and yes their patois is different from the rest and maybe the hardest to understand


Anecdotally, yes, there’s a significant different in the accent around the island. I am not a native speaker, and the difference between the accents of the north coast and Kingston area is very marked. There’s also large differences with level of education and such in the same area. I don’t know about one known to be harder to understand/pick up than another, though, or if there has been any in depth study of regional differences.