I am not very good at speaking and listening English.

Can someone please suggest some songs, which have clear pronunciation of English words, to listen and understand the songs too and also I can use them to improve my vocabulary. Actually very fast music, especially those with too many and loud musical instruments never helped me understanding the lyrics.

  • The Beatles have a Brit accent, but reasonably clear pronunciation. Of course, by learning from song you're likely to learn poetic constructions rather than standard speech construction. – Wayfaring Stranger Dec 21 '14 at 13:56
  • Sorry to say it, but I don't think that you will learn much from songs though a lot of people think that is useful. – rogermue Dec 21 '14 at 14:11
  • @WayfaringStranger The Beatles had a Skouse (Liverpool) accent, perhaps no closer to Received Pronunciation than the American accent is. Some of the lyrics do fall a trifle short of standard English too. Y'think youh'lost yer luv, But I saw her yesterdayeyay, It's you she's thinking of, An'I doon mean that she mayeyay – WS2 Dec 21 '14 at 14:12
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    I don't think many enunciate(d) better than Karen Carpenter. – cornbread ninja 麵包忍者 Dec 21 '14 at 16:04
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    "The Sound of Music" comes to mind, especially "Do Re Mi". Not particularly fast, for the most part, and well enunciated from what I can remember, and most of the songs are quite "singable". The accent is very slightly British but "neutral" for the most part. – Hot Licks Dec 21 '14 at 16:31

To add on to the other excellent suggestions, I would like to mention Simon and Garfunkel's songs, which are often extremely moving and meaningful, with very deep (and often richly ironic) lyrics. An example: I am a Rock. Note that the vocals may not be exceptionally clear, so try to find videos with lyrics (like the one I linked).

Another great song is Don Mclean's Vincent, which is a tribute to the great painter Vincent van Gogh.

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In what we call "country music" (look for the musicians to be wearing cowboy hats) the songs are often "stories" being told - so the wording is pretty clear, and there is also a good context. The final "g" sound in verbs is often omitted: "lovin', huggin', kissin', goin', etc., but it's relatively slow-paced and easy to catch on. (US)

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I agree with Oldbag.

I've used the following songs in class:

We danced by Brad Paisley. The pace is slow and the words clear.

There goes my life by Kenny Chesney.

Love me tender by Elvis Presley.

The lion sleeps tonight. Just don't listen to it more than twice a day or you'll never get the sound oit of your ears.

Slower Beatles songs such as In my life and Yesterday.

Look up Linda Ronstadt and Norah Jones songs. The Carpenters.

Killing me softly by Roberta Flack (not other singers)

You can usually find related songs listed by youtube. Look for ones with lyrics.

Certainly, even handpicked songs cannot teach English in a systematic way. And you do have to watch out for things such as nonstandard usages.

Last but not least, Conjunction Junction and A noun's a person place or thing by Schoolhouse Rock! There are also songs about adjectives, verbs, etc by Schoolhouse Rock. And you might wanna watch these two just because they are classics:

How a bill becomes a law and, better, The Preamble

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  • Be warned a couple of videos have been deleted, but thanks anyway for the list. I'm sure there are other YouTube videos available with the same songs. Love the song "How a bill becomes a law" and very instructive as well! – Mari-Lou A Jul 3 '17 at 19:13

Modern Talking come to my mind immediately. They are a German "non nativ English speaking" group.

Most non native English music is IMO easier to understand since they learned the "correct" spelling in School vs learned the local dialect.

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