What does English sound like to beginners?

Prisencolinensinainciusol – what does English sound like?

In 1972 the Italian singer Adriano Celentano released a song entitled Prisencolinensinainciusol. Its lyrics were nonsense, but designed to sound like English does to a person who does not speak English.

In other words, Celentano deliberately wrote the “words” to sound as if he were singing English — except, of course, the song meant nothing.

“Ever since I started singing, I was very influenced by American music and everything Americans did,” he said. “So at a certain point, because I like American slang – which, for a singer, is much easier to sing than Italian – I thought that I would write a song… [about] the inability to communicate. And to do this, I had to write a song where the lyrics didn’t mean anything”, said Celentino.

If we listen to the song, we get an idea of what we sound like to beginner students who may hear well, but not understand.

 

Lyrics

Prisencolinensinainciusol
In de col men seivuan
prisencolinensinainciusol all right

Uis de seimciusnau op de seim
Ol uait men in de colobos dai
Trrr – ciak is e maindbeghin de col
Bebistei ye push yo oh

Uis de seimciusnau op de seim
Ol uoit men in de colobos dai
Not s de seimlaikiu de promisdin
Iu nau in trabollovgiaiciu gen

In do camo not cius no bai for lov so
Op opgiast cam lauue cam lov ai
Oping tu stei laik cius go mo men
Iu bicos tue men cold dobrei goris
Oh sandei

Ai ai smai sesler
Eni els so co uil piso ai
In de col men seivuan
Prisencolinensinainciusol all right

Ai ai smai senflecs
Eni go for doing peso ai
Prisencolinensinainciusol all right

Uel ai sint no ai giv de sint
Laik de cius nobodi oh gud taim lev feis go
Uis de seim et seim cius go no ben
Let de cius end kai for not de gai giast stei

Ai ai smai senflecs
Eni go for doing peso ai
In de col mein seivuan
Prisencolinensinainciusol all right

Lu nei si not sicidor
Ah es la bebi la dai big iour

Ai aismai senflecs
Eni go for doing peso ai
In de col mein seivuan
Prisencolinensinainciusol all right

Lu nei si not sicodor
Ah es la bebi la dai big iour.

Regular listening and speaking with native English teachers, tutors and language exchange partners

Advice: listen to native English speakers regularly

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