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Linguaholic

Learning Languages Through Music


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As a native English speaker, I have some difficulty understanding the lyrics of English songs and often have to look up the lyrics.  Funny thing though, in languages I am learning, I seem to be able to make out the words better.  Maybe we slur or slang too much in English, or maybe I am more attentive to the language I am learning.  Wonder if anyone else finds this to be the case.

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I think music is present in everybody's english learning methods since english/american music is very popular and alot of people want to know the the lyrics mean and so that pushes them to learn and go further. I use to listen to french music with the same purpose aswell.

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What I didn't take into account when I commented first in this topic is one fact; some language institutes have music expressly designed to teach a foreign language, whether based upon a popular existing song with arrangements to suit the purpose of the course, or simply those songs all of us heard, but "optimized" to educate students' ears.

Like I said, sometimes the wording of popular singers is not the best, but this material is re-recorded by singers that put emphasis in the right pronunciation.

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In the near future, I will probaby be getting some type of form of music, that will help me learn languages easier. I think learning languages through music, is awesome. It allows you to do something that is needed, in a fun manner.

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I disagree. I don't think listening to songs in a another language would help you to learn it. This is because with music there is just such a lot more to focus on, such as intro, vocals, rhythm, instrumental accompaniment, etc. It's really hard to learn a language by listening to songs. A better option would be if you decided to watch some movies a few times in that language, that way you can have subtitles in the same language and start to understand it a bit better.

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i think listening to music can helped English better most likely Jazz music! I've heard that Jazz is one of the best teacher in English language!:to good to be true try listening,I'm trying it today see where it goes!!!!amazed:

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I feel like that really depends on the music. As someone mentioned earlier, it would be difficult to learn English with Eminem primarily because he is quick with words so many can be missed. A would think jazz would be an easier genre to help with learning English. Slow and simplistic lyrically while being complex melodically and instrumentally.

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I have learnt a lot of things through music and i think that cultures and lifestyles can be transmitted through music. Music is the best way for you to learn something as a tune can stick in your head easily and this has happened to me so many times. I have learnt maths and history through music.

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For me, this is definitely the most enjoyable way to learn a language. I especially love when I find a song that I really like. Then I'll listen to it over and over again. And slowly the words will just creep into my head. It also keeps me inspired to learn. The little Spanish I know, I learned mostly from music.

But you're right, when it comes to grammer and sentence formation, that's the worst way to go. Also, depending on the type of song, the words used can be more slang / colloquial.

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I tried this with Japanese before but it was rather difficult. Even the slow songs are way too fast for me to keep up. The only way this could be effective is by reading the lyrics but then it wouldn't really be learning through music.

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Music is also an additional source of learning a language easily. Since I learned when I was a kid the English language up to now I am learning more when I do hear English songs and always tried to sing together with the music and its great!

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I've heard listening to music from the country of the language you are trying to learn can be very useful and actually help with pronunciation and overall learning.

I have tried to find some good Portuguese (Brazilian) music before but actually really struggled to find anything decent. Mainly because I have no idea where or what to start looking at.

So if you are Portuguese, feel free to give me some good artists and bands to listen to as it would much  be appreciated.

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Listening to music soothes me, it's like a therapy especially if i am tired and want to sleep. However, music is more appreciated if one can understand and feel the lyrics and emotions of the song. For example, i learned English in school and it is used as the language of instruction, songs in English are really music to my ears as i can easily relate to the message in the song.

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Ah, no, not intentionally, but I did try to translate a Stevie B. song that was sung in Spanish when I was a kid so that I would understand it because the melody is quite romantic. That was during the 90's, so since there was no internet yet that time, I used a Spanish to English dictionary, lol. Of course some lines of the song did not make sense at all since it was translated literally.

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I believe in this. I started learning Japanese through hearing Japanese theme songs to my favorite anime shows. The deeper I got into anime, the more I was exposed to the Japanese language and culture. This eventually made me want to pick it(the Japanese language) up as a legit area of study.

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Maybe with slower/more poetic songs it could work, but I've found that music and "media" in general, be it TV shows or radio talkshows are a horrible idea if you're just starting out. There's way too much "advanced" slang and accented speech, which makes it all sound like gibberish, sometimes even to native speakers of the language.

Heck, there are some English songs which I still don't know the lyrics of, because the singing is just too fast to comprehend unless you look it up.

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As a vocalist, I learn different languages from music. Every semester I'm given three pieces, all in a different language (German, Italian, and French). Sometimes it varies, but those are the three basic languages to receive. 16 weeks are within each semester, so I personally spend 9 weeks understanding the piece. This not only goes with pronunciation and interpretation, but also translating the language to English word for word. So when I am singing, I can understand where I am to interpret the piece efficiently.

Unfortunately, I can't remember translations as well, but I remember specific words such as:

GERMAN

Nicht - Night

Das Veilchen - The Violet

FRENCH

Elle a la mer - She to the sea

Beau - Beautiful

ITALIAN

Pieta - Pity me

acomperar a nelo - to buy me a ring

I may have misspelled some of the words, but nonetheless, whenever I now hear them in speech, my ears perk and I connect the words together easier. It's like I'm hearing it in my native tongue (English) than in theirs.

But overall, music is quite fascinating and an excellent way to learn languages. Granted, we use music to learn basics of languages anyways (alphabet, numbers, etc...) why not now use phrases? :)

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I think there are two different aspects you should take a look at. First, it is true that relaxing music might help us learn faster and makes it easier for some to impress things but that depends on a) the one who listens to the music and B) on the type of music as not every music genre will have the same affect on the brain. Second, listening to foreign music to learn pronunciation or how to use certain words in a sentence doesn't work for me personally because there are so many slangs and accents and songs don't always are grammatically right.

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Yeah I tried that, but not really to intentionally learn a new language in general, it's just that I liked the beat and melody of the song to the point that I got curious to find out what the singer is saying, so I decided to try to translate the language in English. So if I hear a song that I like and it's not in English, then I will research the English translation of the song.

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The idea of learning a new language through music sounds fun, but I don't see how it would work.

You would only grow to the level of the artist you listen too. 

And let's face facts, some of the music out to day is just a string of 'slang' or words best not spoken on a regular basis.

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Music is an AWESOME way of learning a language. Am not sure about this but I have heard that scientists have said that music is one of the best way to learn a language.

As long as you understand the lyrics, just sing to it and it should be perfect!

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