Language Lessons

SPEAKING IN TONGUES: Pop quiz! In the past 50 years of popular music, how many songs have gone #1 in America that were NOT sung in English? You can count them all on both hands with a few fingers to spare*. Well, luckily Monkey School doesn’t give a gosh darn about such trivia. Good music isn’t a popularity contest, and you don’t need to know what a song means to enjoy it. So in the spirit of international brotherhood, we have assembled a cracking set of some of our favorite tunes in other tongues. Bon Appétit!

*”Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu (Volare)” (Italian) by Domenico Mondugno, Aug. 19-Sept. 22, 1958; “Sukiyaki” (Japanese) by Kyu Sakamoto, June 15-29, 1963; “Dominique” (French) by The Singing Nun, Dec. 7-28, 1963; “Rock Me Amadeus” (German) Mar. 29-Apr.12, 1985; “La Bamba”, (Spanish) by Los Lobos, Aug. 29-Sept. 12, 1987; and “The Macarena” by Los Del Rio, which spent 14 weeks at #1 in 1996–a remix of the original Spanish hit with English lyrics added.

Bananarama – Aie A Mwana
Mahotella Queens – Unculo Kawupheli
Mohammed Rafi – Jann Pehechaan Ho
Astrud Gilberto – Vocé Ja Foi Bahia
Juniper Moon – Sólo Una Sonrisa
Vacaciones – No Me Digas Que Me Quieres
Entre Ríos – Salven Las Sirenas
Puffy Ami Yumi – Planet Tokyo (Akai Buanko)
Shonen Knife – My Favorite Town
Les Calaités – Toutes Les Nuits
Belinda Carlisle – Contact
Stereo Total – LA, CA USA
[ingenting] – Släpp in solen
Björk – Pabbi Minn

Opening theme: The Mopes – Hula Hoop
Background song: Van Alexander – Way Down Yonder In New Orleans Mambo
Closing them: Wolfgang Kaltenbach – Party Shaker

Download: Monkey School 08

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