How The Letter C Sounds In Music

Posted by Mike Schuck

Let’s look at some quick tips to learn how to pronounce the letter “C”. The most common way to say this sound is like the word “cookie” or “lick”.

As you can probably tell, it’s made of two parts: the first sounds like the English word “coo-kee” and the second one like the l ook.

The first part comes from the French word for claw which is our familiar “ch” plus the silent ee as in "bell." The combination of these phonemes makes a soft, gentle, nonthreatening sound that resembles someone else who cares for you — a cooey person!

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The second part comes directly from the Latin word for tongue which is “lingua” so it means something spoken (or lingual) that comes from the same source. This part ends with a -ka just like the k in cookie.

Examples of letter C sounds

how letter c sounds

The first sound we will look at is the voiced alveolar lateral consonant, also known as the voiceless “o” or close-open o. This o comes after a vowel and is not fully sounded like the word oh but rather it is mostly sounded like the o in dog.

The oral cavity musculature for this sound goes beyond just making an audible noise to include tensing of the jaw. Because it is not completely released, air is retained in the mouth, creating a feeling of fullness.

This sound can be found most frequently in languages that have a large amount of vowels and few consonants such as English. A famous example of this is the word father which does not contain any b, p, f, or v so it must use the lanceolate muscle group to make the voice happen.

Another way to recognize this sound is by how rapidly you are able to produce it. It is much more difficult to produce than the other two sounds mentioned here! (Too bad because you might win some language contest prizes for it.

Identify the letter C sound in these words

how letter c sounds

The most common way to make the C sound is by raising your voice one note up and then lowering it. This technique is called rising or falling an octave.

When you do this, we call it an octave rise. When you lower your voice one tone, we say dropping a whole step. Both are referred to as an octave drop/fall or a full step.

The reason why people use this trick for the C sound is because that is how the mouth works! You see, when air goes into your mouth, some of it moves through your tongue and lips. Your tongue also acts like a channel for airflow.

As you breathe out, the soft tissue in your mouth get filled with air, creating a vacuum effect. As the air escapes your lungs, it creates pressure in your chest and nose area. This makes your ears pop and your nostrils expand.

Identify the letter C sound in these words

The most common way to say the letter C is with the close your mouth position and then voice down, like a soft 'c' as you speak. This is called the voiced or oral c.

The unvoiced consonant comes from making an internal body movement before the word so that it sounds like there’s no breathing. For example, when you make a face while talking, there are no cheeks moving. You can feel this difference in tone in spoken English because there is none.

You will also notice that some speakers drop the e at the end of a word, leaving just the vowel sound. These people lose the effect of the word because there is not enough emphasis put onto it.

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