Love in any other language is still love

I woke up this morning with the urge to listen to a different flavor of music.  Do not ask me why, but sometimes I like to shake things up a bit and broaden my horizons.  This post isn’t really about writing or books, but learning about other cultures (and their music) can be beneficial to readers and writers both, so maybe it has some relevance.  It amazes me how the lyrics in other languages can be so romantic and (at times) more so than English.  I’ve heard this was true, but only after you learn a second language do you get a real feel for it.  Some say French is more romantic, but that isn’t my area of expertise so I’ll have to leave the speakers of that language to comment on it.

My exposure to Arabic while studying it years ago caused me to take a look at the music.  To my surprise, I discovered they have their own pop culture not too different from ours and anyone familiar with it would recognize the video I’m posting below.  It is by a well-known singer, Nancy Ajram, and is sung in Egyptian/Lebanese dialect (I understand little of it because I’m stronger in the Gulf dialects).  The good thing is that someone took the time to put English translations in this one so we can all understand it, though the video itself explains the basic idea of the song.  You will also see some sign language in there, but I’m not sure if it is the same as we use in the West.  Regardless, I think most of you might actually enjoy the song.  Nancy’s voice is beautiful and the beat to the music is one many people could enjoy.  Relating to the title of this post, it is a love song.

After you check this video out, if you would like to post your own favorite foreign song in the comments section, go right ahead.  I would love to see more.  Maybe we can all enjoy some music/singers we might not have otherwise seen or heard.  Just post the regular YouTube video link (not the embed feature) for it to show up.

As some background, the woman in the video (Nancy Ajram) is acting out the age-old story of her family engaging her to one man while she wants another.  Yet she doesn’t know much at first about this mystery man she is so interested in, and that changes as the video progresses.  It’s a sweet video I hope you all will enjoy!


~ by Suzie on February 4, 2012.

8 Responses to “Love in any other language is still love”

  1. I loved the story in the video. I just finished a romance with a similar story–betrothed to someone but falls in love with another–so the visual was even more powerful. While some of the signs are close to American Sign Language, I’m pretty sure it’s the native Arabic sign language.

    • I was hoping you would let me know how close the sign language was. One of the reasons I picked this video over some of Nancy’s other love songs/videos (she has many). It was kind of a nice twist that she discovered her mystery man was deaf and how she reacted to it. Thanks for commenting.

      What was the title of the book you just read? Though it is an old plot line, I still enjoy those types every now and then.

      • I loved that the video showed this Deaf man as mysterious, sexy, and happy. The stereotype that they’re “disabled” is much more widespread. When the group of friends get together and have a great time chatting–I loved that. The signs are similar to ASL, but that’s because the words used in the song are iconic: “heart,” “speak,” “deaf.” The locations are the same, but the formation is different.

        I just read Again by Diana Murdock. It’s an interesting plot, one half historical romance, one half contemporary fiction connected by a man’s promise to love a woman forever and reincarnation. My review of it is on Amazon, but I’ll also post it to my blog in a couple weeks.

  2. I watch a lot of foreign movies, but I can’t say that I listen to much foreign music (other than whatever’s featured in the movies). I admire your sense of musical cultural and diversity though.

    • I think it can be a lot of fun experiencing other cultures. One of my classes at the University was for Israeli Society and politics (which I couldn’t discuss much at home unless I was in an argumentative mood) and the professor showed us some great Israeli movies I enjoyed. It gave me a whole new perspective on the country because the way of life reflects the conditions people live under there. It’s nothing to get your bag searched before going into a coffee shop! I’ve watched some amazing films out of Egypt too (I’m an equal opportunist) that have a ton of humor. I would end up laughing even if I didn’t have subtitles to help translate, they can be that funny. My husband has a thing for putting on movies from China. When we had Netflix, there was a wide selection of them for some reason. He really wants to watch some from India like he used to before coming to the US, but those have been harder to find.

      As for music, you should try some different stuff. I’ve learned you don’t even have to understand the words to still appreciate a song. I’d wondered about that when visiting places like Damascus where you could hear American music everywhere. I came to realize it’s the sound and rhythm that makes people enjoy it. The lyrics are just a bonus!

  3. Beautiful video – “sweet,” just as you said, Susan. I think everyone should be exposed to different music – different cultures. Music is such a wonderful way of defining who we are. I’ve taken French, Russian, and picked up a smattering of Tex-Mex (which isn’t the same as Spanish) through my years of living in South Texas.
    One of the benefits is being able to “write” dialect for my characters – because you discover each language has its own rhythm. Russian, for example, has no “article” words, no “the,” no “am” or “are.” A direct translation, for example, of “I’m Russian” actually is “I, Russian.”
    I thought it was interesting in the Star Wars films when Yoda would say things like “Displeased, I am” or “Ignorant, you are.” Because that’s a direct translation from Latin.

    • Have you ever seen Shakespeare in Russian, PL? Ahhmazing. Forget that it was written in English; you’ll feel like it should have been made for Russian. I saw Hamlet and King Lear old black and white versions from Russia.

  4. I’ll have to go looking for those. Of course, Shakespeare is universal …

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