Kathryn Foote Kathfoote at AOL.COM
Sat Aug 25 00:03:59 UTC 2001

They _are_ singing the word "zoom" (i.e., graphemically).  It is spelled out
that way at http://www.mazdausa.com/ and the song plays constantly while that
page is open, for other people outside the U.S. who may be interested or
anyone in the U.S. isn't hearing  it in their sleep already.

I am no expert in African pop music but have absorbed a lot of it by osmosis
over the years.  Therefore the  pronunciation of the /u/ in the ad/song never
struck me as odd but as just the way that an "African pop singer" (to lump
together probably a million dialects) would sing that English word.

In point of fact, however, it looks like the dialect may be Afro-_Brazilian_
.  (The song appears on the soundtrack of "Only The Strong," which is a 1994
movie about an Afro-Brazilian martial art form, according to amazon.com.)

--Kathryn Foote
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