Count music to listening hours?

Would you add music to your listening hours under certain circumstance? the circumstances being;

  • you know the song well enough to sing along and understand what is being said.
  • If you do not know the song well then you’re listening while reading the lyrics
  • the song is clear enough so that it doesn’t sound mumbled
  • you’re actively listening and trying to learn the song.
    the benefits I would say is that you can import lyrics into lingq and if your level is decent enough it should only take 5-7 minutes to finish it and repeat when necessary, from here you can easily keep repeating reading the lyrics without it costing you much time.

another benefit is repetition, I could easily listening to a good song 100s of times.

they have all sorts of coloquial phrases etc.

so I don’t see why not add it to listening hours? I’ve only just started adding it last night and I can already see my hours should be much much greater than 200 if I used songs from the start.

what’s your opinion?


I personally don’t because it would be a pain to do that and music listening is an entirely different skill (which is very useful) but very different then spoken/normal language so for that reason i wouldn’t add it. It’s like flashcards through anki adding it as words of reading or something like that. I just wouldn’t also if you get 300 hours from music and wonder why you cant understand harder content you might wander hmmmm what am i doing wrong but the music listening is inflating the hours of listening compared to normal listening.

Also songs hardly ever contexualize words (provide context for the words and allow you subconciously associate them with what they are) because it uses literary devices to be poetic or just match the meter of the song. This is the main reason so the vocab is kind of rote learned auditorily. Songs still do have a lot of benefit (motivational, vocabulary, etc…) but you can do whatever you feel like I just personally wouldn’t do it. Good Luck on your language adventures!

1 Like

I don’t listen to music in my target language (for language learning anyway). If I was to count it though, I’d drastically reduce the time. i.e. for a 3:00 minute song I might call it 1:50 minute. There’s going to be a lot of music in between all the lyrics. It’s not straight talking.

Probably though, I just wouldn’t count it. Yes, it has some colloquial phrases, but the vocabulary is still pretty limited. The sentences aren’t usually complete sentences. Half the time I can’t understand lyrics (even in my own language) because the way people sing is not how they would talk normally. Because of this, to me, it isn’t a directly applicable sound.

That’s not to say it might not help to learn certain vocabulary or recognize certain words, just that it’s limited imo.

i.e. 200 hrs of listening to music is nowhere even close to 200 hrs of a podcast or an audible book. With the latter you are getting far more vocabulary and word density.


I think I can agree with this thought. I mean, it is almost the same with me listening to the
theme when i play on their site simply because I am more into the japanese language., so I can say that there is not much of a difference to begin with. this is why I implore people to try for more things that can actually give us a much better look on how it is gonna be done in the long run. I guess it is the same as studying for something or when it school, if you needed time or can’t concentrate you could consider that and for me it works.

Does time spent playing Tetris count as Russian listening practice if the soundtrack is turned on?


Record it, if you want. The way LingQ records listening anyways is more a result of being easy to implement programatically. Only you know what your exact listening hours represent.

All I can say is that some content is more valuable to listen to than others. At the top of the list would be podcasts/audiobooks sped up to 1.5x or higher. You encounter many more words per minute in this scenario than say listening to a song or watching a TV series. The general rule of thumb is that a TV show has about half the wpm of that of a podcast at normal speed.

Listening to music you have read and you can understand obviously is still valuable to some extent for some people. I just don’t listen to music in Italian because I know, for me, it’s not very useful. I don’t hear words, I only hear music. The same as in English. I only hear music.

I think listening to music is useful as a language learning tool in so far as you only use it to get your brain acquainted with the sounds of the language, and nothing more. In terms of vocabulary and sentence construction, most music is completely useless for learning the language and I wouldn’t dare count it as listening practice. In my own experience, 30 minutes of a native podcast is far more useful for active listening than dozens, if not hundreds of hours of music. As for passive listening (not paying much attention, listening while doing chores, playing, driving, etc) a podcast, video, or show is still way more effective, hours per hour, than music, in my experience. If you’re going to listen to music in the target language anyway, like I do, it’ll essentially help get your brain used to hearing the sounds of the language, but not much after that. I have been listening to Japanese music for 5-6 years by now, and I’m not sure I’ve learned a single word from it. My limited time watching TV shows, and starting LinQ in the last week has been far more useful.

1 Like