Here’s what English sounds like to non-English speakers

A TikToker shared a famous song that mimics what English sounds like to non-English speakers, and English-speaking TikTok users are stunned.

Daniel Wall (@danielswall) shared a clip from Italian Adriano Celentano’s song, “Prisencolinensinainciusol,” which was released in 1972.

“Have you ever wondered what English songs sound like if you don’t speak English?” Wall captioned the video. The song’s lyrics are entirely gibberish.

“He said he wanted to do this because he wanted to inspire people to communicate more,” Wall explained. “These lyrics actually sound like English.”


Reply to @javikal Have you ever wondered what English songs sound like if you don’t speak English? #singer #songwriter #todayilearned #english #throwbacksongs #originstory #song #language #adrianocelentano #gibberish

♬ original sound – Daniel Wall

The song is about mimicking the sound of English, not about being in actual English so that it gives English speakers the experience of hearing what it sounds like without understanding what it means.

The video has since racked up almost 9 million views, with commenters unable to explain exactly why singer Celentano nailed what English sounds like.

“It sounds like when I’m watching TV without subtitles,” one person joked.

“It sounds familiar, but I don’t know what he’s saying,” another said.

“Why can I hear it, but not?” someone wrote.

In a 2012 interview with NPR, Celentano explained that he was very influenced by American culture while growing up in Italy.

“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 which would only have as its theme the inability to communicate,” he told the publication. “And to do this, I had to write a song where the lyrics didn’t mean anything.”

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