Hi



In Pakistan and India, very, very few people would be able to understand the wording of this song, including all English teachers. I just happened to speak to a well known Indian author and I asked her if she understood English songs (in general), and her immediate response was no. In a recent workshop of English teachers, the British presenter played this song and gave each participant the copy of the lyrics with a few blanks which he had deliberately created, and which they were supposed to fill as he played the song twice. Upon special request the song was played the third time. The result was—well, you can imagine what the result was. Pathetic!



My question is, will any native speaker walking down the street understand the wording of this song easily, regardless of his academic background?

OCAjmuA1HDk


Thanks for your interest,

Tom
Nope, this native speaker can't understand it -- and neither can my daughter. There are lots of songs that I can't understand unless I can see the lyrics written out. My kids don't mind listening to music that they can't understand all the words to, but it drives me crazy!
Many thanks, Khoff. Your post is so HEARTENING! Emotion: smile

Could I ask what percent you understood this song?

Tom
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With this particular song, I would guess that most native speakers would not get all of it. I've highlighted in red the bits I got until just now when I looked up the lyrics. But bear in mind, this song is about 30 years old and I was at college when it was released, so I've heard it lots of times.

Well, you can tell by the way I use my walk
I'm a woman's man, no time to talk
Music loud and women warm
I've been kicked around since I was born
And now it's all right, I'm OK
And you may look the other way
We can try to understand
The New York Times' effect on man

Whether you're a brother or whether you're a mother
You're stayin' alive, stayin' alive
Feel the city breakin' and everybody shakin'
And we're stayin' alive, stayin' alive
Ah, ha, ha, ha, stayin' alive, stayin' alive
Ah, ha, ha, ha, stayin' alive

Well now, I get low and I get high
And if I can't get either, I really try
Got the wings of heaven on my shoes
I'm a dancin' man and I just can't lose
You know it's all right, It's OK
I'll live to see another day
We can try to understand
The New York Times' effect on man

Whether you're a brother or whether you're a mother
You're stayin' alive, stayin' alive
Feel the city breakin' and everybody shakin'
And we're stayin' alive, stayin' alive
Ah, ha, ha, ha, stayin' alive, stayin' alive
Ah, ha, ha, ha, stayin' alive

Life goin' nowhere, somebody help me
Somebody help me, yeah
Life goin' nowhere, somebody help me
Somebody help me, yeah, stayin' alive
Sorry, Kate, did you understand the red part or you did NOT understand the red part? In other words, did the lyrics provide you with red or black?

Thanks a lot,

Tom
I understood the red bits.
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no bcz i m pakistani