We No Speak Americano

What’s the point of listening to music from another language when you can’t understand what the song is about? Well, just like falling in love, sometimes it is a feeling, an understanding and not all about the words. The words are only part of the music and although you want to understand them, it is about feeling the rhythm of another land … Music, without the words can make you feel happy, angry, sexy, full of energy … The notes are universal … anyone in the world can listen to music and feel it’s energy, despite the language of the words that correspond. It really is pretty amazing when you think about it that no matter where you are in the world, there will always be music of some kind … music that is important to the people around you. Music that is beautiful in it’s own way. Music, that if you let it, will touch your soul when you begin to understand the culture that surrounds it.

In April 2012 I traveled to Punta Cana, Dominican Republic to photograph a destination wedding. As on any resort, they have music playing all the time at various locations, the beach, the pool, the entertainment each night and the disco. Over and over and over we would hear the incredibly catchy ‘We no speak Americano‘.

I fell in love with the song, despite it’s over-play while we were there. Maybe it is a crazy assumption, but because I was in a Spanish speaking country, I just assumed this song, that was obviously not English, was Spanish. Well, I was wrong!

When I came home and looked for the song to check out the lyrics (and to continue to over-play it), I discovered it is actually Italian! This really drove the point home that music is a universal language. People from all over the world were staying at the resort and those same people were all listening to this music, regardless of their native tongue.

Playing the song reminded me of the Dominican; it picked up my spirits, got me dancing in my seat and on my feet. Regardless of the language, it had an upbeat feel.

I began looking through the hits charts for Italian music and listening to other Italian songs and I came across an artist whose voice is so beautiful that I feel like it squeezes my soul. Her voice is strong, confidant and haunting to me. Despite the fact that I am truly interested in Spanish culture right now and that I don’t understand any Italian (though the languages are similar), I fell in love with the music of Annalisa Scarrone.

The very first song I listened to by her is titled Sensa Riserva. Maybe I fell in love even more with the song because I also loved the video. Check it out below. You don’t need to understand the language when you watch the video. I’ll admit, I often blast this song … sometimes repeatedly.

I hope that next time you hear a song with lyrics you can’t understand that you’ll take a moment to listen to the music itself and get lost in it. Enjoy the beat. Then, if you like it, look it up on you tube and see what it is all about! Maybe you’ll find a new favourite artist, like I did!

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