How to Improve English Listening Skills with Music

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Why does it so often seem like English makes no sense? The words don’t always sound like they look. English has words where the letters sometimes aren’t pronounced. Words sometimes don’t contain letters that are pronounced. It can be very confusing and hard to figure out.


In this lesson, you’ll get a helpful tip on the best way to improve your English language skills. It’s about listening to your favorite music while reading the lyrics so you become familiar with the way the lyrics sound. She also explains that news website are extremely useful in learning how words are pronounced and used in context. Another excellent way to improve your English and learn pronunciation is to listen to audio books. This can be a great benefit as you travel and can listen without interruptions.



Episode transcript below:


Hello, and welcome to the Go Natural English podcast.

I’m your host, your American English teacher, Gabby Wallace.

In this episode I am so happy to be able to share with you an English learning tip that’s simple – it’s straightforward and I think it’s going to be fun for you to try out.

So, my tip for improving your fluency is … it’s one of the tips that I’m going to include in the Go Natural English eBook, the full length one that’s coming out later this summer and I’m going to talk to you a little bit more about that but let me just tell you the tip.

So, the thing is … the problem is that English sounds really different than how you read it, right?

So, some words have letters that we don’t say.

Some words have sounds but the letters aren’t really there.

So, the way English sounds can be really confusing especially if you’re used to reading or writing most of the time in English, or if you learned English from a textbook, or in a class where you just kind of read a lot, or wrote a lot, or talked about English in your native language.

So, if you haven’t listened to a lot of English, you really have to start listening.

You have to listen to English every day and that could be the Go Natural English podcast, that could be music, or it could be an audio book.

I personally love listening to audio books and I think that audio books could be a really interesting and fun way to improve your listening skills in English, especially if you can listen to the book and read the book at the same time.

Now, an easy way to start with this kind of learning – listening and reading at the same time – is actually going to a news site like Voice of America or Breaking News English.

Those are a couple of great sites where you can listen to the news and read it at the same time.

And that way you can relate what you’re hearing with what you’re reading.

And another really fun way to do this is to find music that you love in English, so you’re listening to the music and the lyrics in English as you read the lyrics.

So, find a song that you really like and it could be something classic like the Beatles or the Doors, or it could be something newer like Taylor Swift is really popular right now.

You’ll have to find music that you like and make sure you’re enjoying listening to it, and listen to the lyrics and find the lyrics online.

You can just search for lyrics to find the words of the songs and read along as you listen.

I promise you, this will help your English a lot because this is how I learned Spanish, and Portuguese, and some Japanese, and French just by enjoying music that I really love in those languages and reading the lyrics along with the music as I’m listening.

So, I think you’ll really enjoy this.

Remember there’s three different ways you could do it – music, listening to the news while reading, and listening to audio books while reading.

So, I hope that you try this out today or really soon, and you know what?

I promised to tell you about the Go Natural English eBook that’s coming out in August.

So, I am working really hard along with my team at Go Natural English to produce an awesome eBook that is full length.

It might be around 100 – 150 pages.

It’s going to be full of the best materials, resources, and advice for you to become fluent in English quickly.

My goal is to make English learning fun, interesting, and easy for the Go Natural English audience.

That means that I’m going to have to take a little break from the Go Natural English podcast here to work on the book.

So, for the next several weeks there won’t be a podcast for Go Natural English.

You can continue to watch the Go Natural English YouTube Channel if you can access YouTube.

And you can also visit the Go Natural English website and blog at, and to find out how to get your copy of the Go Natural English full length eBook, come to … b-o-o-k, and that is where you can order your copy of the book and I am so excited to share that with you when it’s ready in August this year, 2015.

So, thank you so much for listening and if you haven’t had a chance to catch up on all the Go Natural English podcasts or video tips, this is a great time to do it as we take a little break as we are working hard on the Go Natural English eBook.

So, thanks again for being an awesome part of the community and I can’t wait to share more with you soon.

Make sure that you let me know what you think at and you can also join the conversation on social media.

The most important thing is to find out about the eBook at … b-o-o-k.

Alright, have a wonderful day.

I hope it’s full of English listening, and reading, and awesome music.

So, have a good one and I’ll talk to you soon.

Photo Credit: Terry Freedman and Khalid Albaih

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