Once again, a song which is half a century old and still sounds as fresh and relevant as only few today. Eleanor Rigby was released in 1966 on the album Revolver, and it has been popular ever since. It has also influenced the English language as the line all the lonely people has become a set phrase. And how many songs can you think of that served as inspiration for a statue? See the cover image; here is the plaque in a more readable resolution:
The difficulty of this task is about upper-intermediate level, or B2 on the CEFR scale.
Some words (mainly names) have been added to help you a little.
More exercises based on this song will follow.
I almost wrote “this is one of the most famous Leonard Cohen songs”, but you can say the same about a dozen of them, so let’s just say “another great song”. Your task is to listen to the original studio version and write down the words you hear.
Once again, this is not a very easy exercise (later you’ll get easier ones based on this same song); the difficulty is probably somewhere between levels B2 and C1 (advanced). Although the tempo of the song is slow and Cohen’s singing voice is fairly easy to understand, his imagery and poetic language can prove to be tricky.
Some words (mainly names) have been added to give you an easier start.
Fairly soon you will find more tasks here based on this song, including vocabulary exercises too.
Listen to the song Russians by Sting and write down the words you hear.
Although Sting’s voice can be clearly heard all through the song, it’s still not an easy task because the vocabulary is pretty advanced in places. Also, the lyrics contain some abstract ideas and poetic language, which again make this listening comprehension task more difficult. Overall, it’s somewhere between B2 and C1 level, probably closer to the latter – an advanced level exercise.
Some names have been added to help you a bit.
There will be follow-up exercises to help you learn the vocabulary of this song.
Once again, a classic: the famous duo of Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel first performed this song in 1969 and it has been popular ever since. The lyrics are not simple: you’ll find some advanced vocabulary items, some of which you might be unfamiliar with.
In this exercise version, only some easier words are left out, and if you still have difficulties, you can ask for hints.
Later you will find more tasks here based on this song, including vocabulary exercises and a pretty difficult text reconstruction task.
The original version of this unique song is a cappella (with no music), which is quite rare in pop music. It was also published in several different versions and a number of other artists came out with their own covers too. Initially we had a concert version of the song for this task but then we decided to feature the original video instead as it’s easier to understand.
Your task is to listen to the song and write down the lyrics. It’s not very difficult: slightly below B2 level on the CEFR scale, which is between intermediate and upper-intermediate.
There will be other tasks based on this song coming later, so stay tuned.
This is not an easy listening task for a number of reasons. Though the song sounds fairly slow-paced and Sting’s voice can be clearly heard, he sings the words relatively fast in some places, and the vocabulary level is rather advanced too. Also, the whole song is fairly poetic and contains some complex structures, which makes understanding pretty challenging. Nevertheless, you should give it a try – and there’s always the Hint button, which will give you the next letter.
Probably it’s a good idea to listen to the song as a whole first and concentrate on listening only without actually writing anything. Then before starting again you should be able to add at least a few words, which will make your task easier.
You will find more tasks based on this song here later.
Listen to the song Where the Wild Roses Grow by Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds (with Kylie Minogue) and enter the words you hear.
You can stop the video whenever you like but it’s probably a good idea to listen to it once from beginning to end and then start again and stop after only each line.
The difficulty of this task is about C1 level on the CEFR scale.
There will be more tasks based on this song, including vocabulary practice and also reading comprehension exercises on the background of the song.
Listen to the song One by U2 and fill the gaps in the lyrics.
Feel free to stop or rewind the video whenever you feel it’s necessary but ideally you should play it once from start to finish and then for the second time only stop it once after every line.
This task is about B2 level on the CEFR scale.
There will be some more tasks later based on this song — including a text reconstruction listening comprehension exercise, a reading comprehension exercise on the background of the song and also some vocabulary tasks to help you learn the words in the song.
An easier exercise this time — Jealous Guy by John Lennon. Watch the video, listen carefully to try and understand the lyrics, then write the words you hear in the box under the video player, where it says ‘Guess’.
Two words have been added to help you a bit; also, the asterisks show how many letters the words have. When you enter a correct word, it will be added everywhere it appears in the lyrics so you don’t have to type it multiple times.
The difficulty of this exercise is probably a bit higher than B2 level (upper-intermediate) because you have to find all the words, but on the other hand the vocabulary of the song is not very advanced.
You will find more exercises based on this song later here.
This is a listening comprehension task based on the famous Bruce Springsteen song The River.
The difficulty of this exercise is about B2 level (upper-intermediate) or maybe slightly higher.
Your task is to listen to the song and fill the gaps in the lyrics. You can also ask for hints and stop the playback at any time.
We have a few more exercises based on this song:
You can expect even more exercises on The River by Bruce Springsteen, so check back soon.
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