One of my favourite childhood memories is listening to The Beatles on my dad’s record player. He used to wake us up every Saturday morning shouting in what he thought was ‘English’. In Spain we call this guachu guachu (imitating the way English sounds in songs) and this is how my relationship with English started - by singing “She loves you...” guachu guachu style.
I believe the guachu guachu technique helped me familiarise myself with English words and sounds. Listening to music in the language you’re learning helps you absorb new words, get to grips with pronunciation and it brings you closer to another country’s culture. Here are four of my favourite Spanish songs for you to listen to, sing, learn and just enjoy!
1. Mi gran noche - Raphael
This is an all-time pop classic. Mi gran noche is about a young guy who goes out hoping to find the love of his life. Raphael is so big in Spain that he has Christmas specials every year on TV. Mi gran noche is also an essential anthem in Spanish indie clubs and it's a great song to see how to talk about the future in Spanish!
2. ¿A quién le importa? - Alaska y Dinarama
If you don’t know Alaska, go and google her. She was a staple of the Spanish 80s’ Movida movement and she definitely had the coolest looks of the time! I love this song because it was written by Carlos Berlanga (one of the best Spanish musicians) and because it's about being yourself no matter what other people say. It's also a good example of how we talk about hypothesis in Spanish.
3. Volando voy - Camarón de la isla
You cannot be interested in learning Spanish without knowing Camarón, one of the all-time greatest flamenco singers. He innovated and defied traditional flamenco music by introducing unusual instruments like the flute and the electric guitar.
Volando voy is about making the most out of life. It’s about having a fast-paced lifestyle but at the same time enjoying the beautiful things life has to offer - I can definitely relate to this!
This is also a good one to see how we talk about things that are happening at the time of speaking in Spanish.
4. Un buen día - Los Planetas
This is an absolute indie favourite in Spain and yet again a song about enjoying the simple things in life like waking up 10 a.m., meeting up with friends for cañas (drinks) and daydreaming!
Los Planetas is an awesome band from Granada, a city where music has evolved a lot over the years. This one is a good example of how we talk about the recent past in Spanish.
Elena is the Senior Spanish Language Expert at busuu. She is originally from Salamanca, Spain where she studied English literature and linguistics. Then she trained to become a Spanish teacher at the Instituto Cervantes in London . She is a huge fan of Swedish death metal and thrash metal but has a soft spot for flamenco and indie music. She'll also dance the Macarena (only on special occasions though!)