SoundHound: music discovery, lyrics finder…

For quite some time, Musixmatch was one of my favourite apps, as it allowed you to play a song on a mobile device and display the lyrics to it (more about it here). Sadly, with the passing of time, the free version of the app lost many of its functionalities (although the extension for YouTube still works, and I still recommend it). Fortunately, I have found something which might replace Musixmatch, and add something extra.

The free app SoundHound (iOs, Android, Windows, Blackberry) is a mixture of the popular app Shazam + Musixmatch…with an extra twist. Just like Shazam, if you want to know what song is playing, you need to tap on the app and it will yield information about singer, song title, and album (in most cases, anyway).

The extra feature that SoundHound offers compared to Shazam is that you can also sing or even hum the song you’re looking for. The likelihood of the app recognising the song may depend on the user’s singing voice, maybe even pronunciation, and the degree of accuracy may not be as high as that of the original, granted, but it is well worth a try (even as a challenge or a competition among friends / students?).

Once the song has been identified, you can choose to play the song from Apple Music / Google Play, if you have a subscription; from Spotify, if you are a Premium user; or go to good old free YouTube (this can be set as the default option in the settings). As the song starts playing, the lyrics will come up, so you can listen and read.

I have tested it using songs in English, French and Spanish, and it seems to work. You can try it for free, anyway, for your own personal use, or as a recommendation to students. If you try it out, why not review it by leaving a comment below?

literary devices in pop songs

We’ve been discussing some of the literary devices you can find not just in literature, but also in pop music. You can watch the videos again to help you remember them:

Antithesis:

Allusion:

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Anaphora:

Alliteration:

Hyperbole:

Oxymoron:

Personification:

Simile:

Watch the whole song (Full of similes):

Unrequited love letter

The exercise below was created as part of our sessions on love and relationships. The objective of this particular exercise was twofold: first, we wanted to show our students that pop songs can be an excellent way to improve your vocabulary. So we came up with this “love letter”.

Besides, it can be done and self-checked by students on their own, in case they’re not able to come to class on that day, or want to do it again some time later to revise vocabulary. The quiz has been created using GoConqr, which teachers can use for their own classes, whatever their subject may be.

Click on the picture. Then, drag and drop the words to the suitable gaps to complete this love letter.

Most of the expressions have been taken from pop songs, which goes to show how useful they can be when learning English. Most of the songs can be found on the playlists in this post.

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Pronunciation practice /h/, /p/, /t/,/k/

You may watch the Alphablocks videos we used today here. Click on the links:

If you want to try the same phonemic chart I used in class, you may visit this website (scroll down the page to see the chart)

Homework: watch and listen to Adele’s song “Hello”. Spot as many words containing the sound /h/ as you can.

Please pay attention to the way she pronounces them. You may sing along to the song as well! (that’s why you have the lyrics)

 

 

Penny Lane

Yes, you were right! Penny Lane is a song by The Beatles, based on a street in Liverpool by the same name. It’s one of my favourite ones. So, obviously, when I was in Liverpool, I walked down Penny Lane, and had my photo taken next to the street sign.

Click on the picture to listen to the song.

penny-lane

 

On that same topic, one of the year 1 students was wearing this T-shirt today:

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That’s one sure way of keeping this teacher very happy!