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"A ready instructional reference; thoroughly 'user friendly'" The Midwest Book Review

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Entries in Latin Music (3)

Tuesday
Jun292010

Latin American Musician Spotlight: Alejandro Lerner

I am continuing to peruse the nominees and winners of the 2009 Latin Grammy Awards to learn more about popular Latin Music and Latin Musicians.

I select the artists and songs that I like and that provide good examples of the Spanish language in context through the song's lyrics. So far, the songs that are easiest to understand in Spanish for beginners are love songs or ballads.

Here's a link to a previous blog post which describes the way music can play an important and entertaining part in learning Spanish: 2009 Song of the Year 

Now, onto the spotlight artist, Alejandro Lerner. He is from Argentina and has been a successful Latin musician since the 80's. I found a biography you can link to which describes quite an impressive professional resume. He has maintained success for decades: Alejandro Lerner Biography from Artists Direct

Alejandro has also composed music for other artists, in many cases for the Latin market in the U.S., and produced award winning music for television. He has collaborated on albums for Paul Anka, Celine Dion, and the popular Latin musician, Luis Miguel. 

If my translation serves correctly, I found an interesting tidbit of information on a Spanish blog: he recorded an album in 2003 of children's songs which was only sold in gas stations in South America. The proceeds went to La Fundación Hospital Garrahan.

His album, "Enojado" (Angry) was recorded in 2007 which featured various guitar players from bands of other famous musicians such as Sting, Jeff Beck, and Eric Clapton. His song, "Verte Sonreir" (To See You Smile) from this album was nominated for 'Song of the Year' in 2009. Here is the YouTube video embedded below with a link to the Spanish lyrics for your learning and listening pleasure.

"Verte Sonreir" Spanish lyrics by Alejandro Lerner

 

Friday
Apr092010

Best Music of Latin America: "En Cambio No" by Laura Pausini

"En Cambio No" was nominated for a Latin Grammy for 'Record of the Year' in 2009. Of all the nominations it was my favorite. In the YouTube video embedded below, it is a "karoke" version with the lyrics running along with the song, which turns out to be a nice language in context lesson.

I also considered posting the Latin Grammy performance, but the male dancers were kind of distracting (not in a good way either). If you want to check out the official video (with a storyline), go to YouTube to view the best quality version from Warner Music Latina (I can't embed it here):

Click here for the official Warner Music Latina video of
"En Cambio No" by Laura Pausini

Click here for the English translation for "En Cambio No"


Thursday
Apr082010

Best Music of Latin America: 2009 Latin Grammy Song of the Year

Music has always been a huge part of Latin American culture, and listening to music in Spanish is a great way to absorb Latin culture. It made such an impression on me when I was a student traveler in Costa Rica. Going out at night to dance clubs was a totally different experience than anything I had ever known. People were seriously engaged in the music and dancing. It was enough just to watch everyone dance; like 'Dancing with the Stars' in real life.

Listening to music in Spanish is a fun way to feed your subconscious while studying Spanish. Having music playing in the background, even without understanding it, seeps into your subconscious. It's like preparing your cerebral grey matter for Spanish knowledge; tilling the soil to plant the seeds.

Just like when you were a child learning your native language, you were immersed in the language even though you didn't understand everything. Gradually you picked out words here and there, and eventually they added up to more comprehension. I clearly remember listening to music as a child and not being able to make out all the words. Do you remember that? Sometimes I would mix up the words, or make up my own. It works the same way with a second language. 

You are fortunate that there is a lot of great Latin music which is celebrated every year by the Latin Grammys. 2009 marked the 10th Annual Latin Grammy Awards. It's a perfect way to catch up with what's hot in the Latin music scene. I would like to highlight some of the Grammy winners and nominees in the Spanish Verb Mastery Blog to inspire you to check out some popular Latin music as a way to learn about Latin culture.

Today's featured song is the 2009 Latin Grammy Song of the Year: "Aqui Estoy Yo" (Here I am), Claudia Brant, Luis Fonsi & G. Reuben, songwriters; performed by Luis Fonsi, Aleks Syntek, Noel Schajris, and David Bisbal.

Here is also a link to the song lyrics and the English translation:

"Aqui Estoy Yo" lyrics in Spanish and English