Results 1 to 4 of 4
  1. #1
    HaraKiriBlade's Avatar
    HaraKiriBlade is offline Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Korean
      • Home Country:
      • South Korea
      • Current Location:
      • South Korea
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    426
    Post Thanks / Like

    Question to any native speakers of English

    My question is this: can you sing along just about any song played on the radio without looking at the lyrics? I mean, can you understand (or rather, catch) every word in those songs without looking at the lyrics? I'm not talking about heavy metal or rap music whose lyrics tend to be harder to catch; I'm talking about everyday radio songs.

    It's just that my ESL teacher gave us an in-class assignment in which we had to listen to several songs and transcribe their lyrics, and I did very poorly on it. I just want to know whether nativer speakers of English would breeze through such assignments; if affirmative, I know that is the level I need to work toward. If negative, I know i'm not alone.

  2. #2
    mykwyner is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    2,047
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Question to any native speakers of English

    I'm not sure what an everyday song would be. Most Country and Western songs that I've heard were fairly easy to understand. Rock and Roll songs range from easy to understand to unintelligible, with most leaning toward very hard to understand. Rap songs are, by their nature, easy to understand if they don't rely too heavily on dialect and idiom.

  3. #3
    Ouisch's Avatar
    Ouisch is offline Moderator
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    4,142
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Question to any native speakers of English

    It depends upon the singer. I can't figure out any of Elton John's songs without a lyric sheet. (I'm talking about his mid-to-late 70s material, like "Benny and the Jets.") I have a friend who has a knack for easily understanding the words and being able to sing along to almost any song on the radio after just a few listens.

    If song lyrics were that easy to understand, we wouldn't have many web sites devoted to Mondegreens.

  4. #4
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Japan
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    44,191
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Question to any native speakers of English

    I read that a lawsuit against Public Image Limited for their song Analisa was thrown out of court because no one could understand what he was singing. I do hope it's true.

Similar Threads

  1. Personal question to teachers of English
    By HaraKiriBlade in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 02-Sep-2005, 11:56
  2. Speaking with native speakers!
    By Unregistered in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 22-Aug-2005, 04:25

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •