Can You Feel the Beat?

Music has always played an incremental role in my life. I was lucky to grow up with parents who appreciated cultural music. One of my favorite songs featured above, Barcelona nights, had me dreaming of Barcelona as a child. And ten years later my dream came true, walking through Las Ramblas, listening to street musicians scratch guitarras and shake tambourines. Whenever I miss Spain, I pull up my Spanish playlist on Itunes and let the music bring me back to the blissful cobblestone streets.

I was exposed to a variety of music during my time abroad. From the nightclubs in Portugal to the cafes in Spain, I was surrounded by colorful European sounds. Music is like a language, used as a form of expression. It has the ability to transcend language boundaries by invoking emotions through sound experimentation. The sounds are up to interpretation, just like an art form. Music is without a doubt a cultural product. Just like with language, genres of music vary from region to region.


If you are learning a language, listening to music can be help you develop an ear for unfamiliar sounds. To my surprise, in addition to cultural sounds, I heard many familiar American songs. I witnessed globalization in action.  Spain has even developed its own version of MTV (Music Television). But I was fascinated by Spain’s ability to adapt music and localize it. I can never forget the remix of “I love it” by Icono Pop. A well known Spanish artist translated the entire song and called it “Me Encanta”. I found myself happily singing along to the catchy beat. I was intrigued, by the American influence, in Spanish music and I had not expected to hear anything remotely American. It just goes to show how far American influence will reach.



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