Foreign-language songs have a hard time making it big in the English-speaking world. There have really only been a few non-English breakout successes in the history of modern music. Very often in the 20th century, however, songs would be translated from their original language to English, and some of these became very successful. Check out these seven songs originally in a different language, and scroll down to the bottom to hear all of the versions together. It reached the top of the charts in Canada, as well as making it to number 14 on the Billboard Hot in the United States. The song was very successful across Europe, so the same year an English version was translated and performed by Jonathan King. This example is a little bit different from the other songs on this list, but still relevant. The English version made it to number five in the United States, leading Falco to re-release the original, but that never quite caught on as more than a novelty.
1958: “Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu” by Domenico Modugno
Bilingualism, until now, has been either a fact of life you live in a place where multiple languages are used or a uniquely fascinating albeit somewhat nerdy talent. There are just so many beautiful ways to look at it or, rather, listen to it : Multiple languages are respected as forms of expression, bridges are connected and people from different backgrounds can sing along to the same tune. By engaging in musical expression with multiple languages , bilingual songs are intrinsically more nuanced than monolingual songs. Not to mention, bilingual songs are powerful pieces which capture glimpses of bilingual culture. Bilingual music is also the best recipe for high-powered learning.
Why Bilingual Songs Are Great for Language Learners
There are many languages in the world, each and every single one of them unique in their own way, and there are billions of words and phrases you can use to express yourself, so why just stick to English? Have you ever wondered how different a song might sound when the lyrics are translated to another language? Would it hold the same beauty or will it turn out even better than the original? So what would happen if you took an entire song with loads of words, originally written and performed in English, and translated it to a completely different language? Just to show you the beauty that one language can hold, we have asked you guys to tell us some of your favourite songs, sung in another language. After adding some of our own ideas, we came up with a list of popular English songs and found their identical twins in other languages. Is it possible that this song sounds even more beautiful in Spanish?
A couple of caveats to this list: first, it actually includes more than 10 songs. Also, no songs sung in Spanish are on this list. Also, I could go 10 songs deep with those songs alone; so, no songs sung in Spanish on this particular foreign-language song list. You know, songs like these:. The band released a new EP, Hot Number , earlier this year.