One great tool which I have found useful during my Spanish Language learning process was to listen to songs in Spanish. Initially I really struggled with this, even in English I don’t always catch all of the words. But I learned to enjoy listening to songs in Spanish when I understood how I needed to go about it, which is what I will explain here in just a moment. But first, just to mention one of the great things about learning songs in Spanish is not just the fact that you don’t feel like and idiot when listening to the song or when humming along with your Spanish speaking friends but songs are only a few minutes long and this makes them very manageable to learn and help improve your comprehension when listening to words in Spanish.
If you have a favourite artist who sings in Spanish great, start with their songs. If not here are a couple of artists which you may or may not like, but I will at least give you as a reasonable starting point; (all of these can be found in youtube.com)
Charly Garcia – los dinosaurios, influencia
Juanes – la camisa negra, a dios le pido, para tu amor
Manu Chao – me gustas tu, clandestino, desaparecido
Corazon Serrano – estupido, cuatro mentiras, con la misma moneda
David Bisbal – buleria, para enamorarte de mi
Here are the steps I advise to getting to grips with songs in Spanish:
1) Pick a song that like (always easier listening to something you enjoy).
2) Listen to that song a couple of times in a row. Close you eyes and focus on listening to the words.
3) Pull out a pen or pencil and a notepad.
4) Replay the song in 10 to 20 seconds bursts, pausing it each time so that you can write down exactly what you hear – IT DOES NOT MATTER if it is correct, you want to write down what you hear, this will help you later on identify patterns in Spanish.
5) Repeat step 4 a few times until you think you have got as much of the song written down as you can.
6) Search for your chosen song in youtube.com and add ‘con lyrics’ (with lyrics).
7) Now watch the video one time entirely without pausing it. Pay attention to the lyrics on the screen and see if you can identify them with the words which are being sung.
8) Watch the song with lyrics and pause it to correct what you previously wrote in your notepad.
9) Any words which are new to you or you don’t understand take the time to open a dictionary and learn them. Often you will find that it is just that particular verb tense which you were not used to hearing.
10) Play the song back several times singing the words along with the artist.
11) The following day try playing the sound back and writing down the words again – obviously don’t play back the song with lyrics on youtube this time
12) Repeat these steps for several songs and you will be surprised at how much your comprehension of spoken Spanish increases.
Good Luck and post your results below.