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Spanish for Beginners: Pop en Español

by Judy Cantor-Navas

Spanish for Beginners: Pop en Español

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As Bob Dylan and others have sung, "Spanish is the loving tongue," so it's no surprise that more than a few English-speaking artists have wanted to record en español throughout the years. And these days, with the U.S. Hispanic population at 50 million and growing, not to mention a Latin American audience that's easier to reach than ever, it seems like a smart idea to make versions of pop hits in Spanish, or at least pepper a song with a few Spanish words. Latino wannabes have included not only ABBA and Madonna, but also Stevie Wonder, The White Stripes, David Bowie, Kool & the Gang, Blondie and David Lee Roth, as well as romantics like Dino and Diana Krall. One of the latest singers to attempt to break the language barrier is Natalie Cole, following the pioneering hit Spanish recordings of her father, Nat King Cole, who still charms with the most gringo accent of all.

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