By now we all know Despacito, but are you looking for something different to expand your Spanish music horizons? When you’re not immersed in the Hispanic world yourself, it can be so hard to find good music that you like. That’s why I’m here to help you find good songs to learn Spanish.
Music is a powerful tool not only to improve your Spanish but also to gain a greater understanding of the culture that comes with it. All the songs I’m going to suggest below are from different genres, so hopefully you can find at least one that you love! More importantly, though, they all have something to teach you about the Spanish world’s culture and language!
5 Great SONGS TO LEARN SPANISH
La Canción del Mariachi – Antonio banderas & LOS LOBOS (Mexico)
This song is technically by American and Spanish artists, but it comes from the film “El Desperado” which is set in Mexico. It was intended as a Mexican song, so we’ll treat it as such.
One of my favourite things to do in the clubs in Spain was take advantage of their “request a song” option to get them to play this song. It is so awesome to see how absolutely everyone gets excited and starts to sing and dance. Absolutely EVERY Spanish speaking person knows this one, and if it isn’t a banger! This is a powerful Spanish song, I tell you.
Ya No Sé Que Hacer Conmigo – Cuarteto de Nos (Uruguay)
Genre: Rap rock
This song is pure entertainment. The lyrics are really interesting, and it’s so upbeat, it just makes you wish you could rap in Spanish (is now a good time to admit I did learn the whole rap when I was bored one day? I might perform it for you guys one day, if you’re lucky…). If you can understand it all, congratulations – really, that’s quite an achievement. But in reality, it is fast, so don’t expect to understand everything at once. The goal is to learn Spanish with music, right? It’s no good if it’s not a little bit challenging.
Latinoamérica – Calle 13 (Puerto Rico)
This song won two Latino Grammys, one for video of the year and one for song of the year. If you listen to it, you’ll understand why. It comes with a serious political message about protecting and uniting Latin America. This message is portrayed beautifully, with several Latina ladies collaborating their voices. It even includes some Portuguese to incorporate Brazil, which is really nice. In my opinion, this song shows us not only the beauty of Latin America, but the beauty of the Spanish language as well.
La Bicicleta – Shakira & Carlos Vives (Colombia)
La Bicicleta is quite a nostalgic song which portrays what makes Colombia unique. Two of Colombia’s most renowned musicians collaborate to make sure we know how they adore their country. It’s a really fun song, and better still, it is full of typical colloquial expressions, so you can really test your Spanish. Overall, this is a great song to learn Spanish and to learn about Colombia’s land and culture.
La Gozadera – Gente de Zona (Cuba)
If you liked Despacito, you’ll love La Gozadera. This song is from the same genre of music (the rapidly rising Reggaeton), but instead of being about *you know what*, it is an innocent and upbeat song which is all for celebrating the vibrant latino culture. If you’re not latino, this song can help you to better understand the culture and if you are, it will make you excited about being latino. This is one of the best songs to learn Spanish and simultaneously celebrate the culture.
More artists and songs to learn spanish
1. Enrique Iglesias – Spain
Recommended song: Bailando
2. Estopa – Spain
Genre: soft rock
Recommended song: Me Falta el Aliento
3. DVICIO – Spain
Recommended song: Enamórate
4. Camila – Mexico
Genre: soft rock
Recommended song: De Qué Me Sirve La Vida
5. Maluma – Colombia
Recommended song: Felices los 4
6. Fonseca – Colombia
Genre: soft pop
Recommended song: Te Mando Flores
7. Luis Fonsi – Puerto Rico
Recommended songs: Corazón en la Maleta, No Me Doy Por Vencido
How to learn Spanish with music
So now you’ve got a list of songs to learn Spanish. You can listen to them and decide which ones you like, but then what? You can’t just listen to the songs and expect the Spanish words to be absorbed into your head like osmosis. There are practical things you can do to make sure you get the most out of the Spanish music you’re listening to. The first thing to keep in mind is to make sure you find music you like first, because you will be listening to the song many times.
- Look up the lyrics: Search the song’s name + “letra” on Google or YouTube.
- Look up the words or phrases you don’t understand: Go through the lyrics and search the meanings of anything you don’t understand using a Spanish dictionary.
- Listen to the song while reading the lyrics: If there’s anything you still don’t understand, make sure you look it up. Repeat this step until you understand the entire song.
- Stop looking at the lyrics: Listen to the song without the lyrics and see how much you understand. Look back at them if you need to but repeat this step until you understand without lyrics.
- Have fun with the song: Sing! Dance! Make up your own rendition. Music is fun so enjoy it and make the experience your own.
What are your favourite songs in Spanish? Let me know if I’ve missed any bangers in the comments!