It’s been a long day, and the last thing you want to do is start studying your German vocabulary and grammar. Still, you don’t want to break your streak. After all, learning every day is a good habit to have. If you could find a way to absorb some of the language without breaking open your flash cards? Music to your ears! By which we mean, literally, music to your ears, because we’re recommending German Spotify playlists for you to listen to.
While it’s difficult to learn a language solely through music, there are benefits to listening to songs in your target language as a supplement to your usual studying. With music, you can pick up some pronunciation, discover new vocab and learn about German musical culture.
Jumping right in blind can be a bit difficult, however, because some songs are better for learning than others. We compiled a list of five German Spotify playlists that range from easy to difficult so you can choose what’s best for you based on your experience.
German Spotify Playlists For All Levels Of Aural Learners
Babbel Beginner German Playlist
To get you started, we made our own playlist that features songs with relatively easy grammar and vocabulary. And don’t worry, just because the songs are easier doesn’t mean there aren’t some classics on here. Because what’s a German playlist without Falco’s “Rock Me Amadeus”?
If you’re at the very early stages of your learning, jumping into this music might still be a little tough. If you’re want to slow down and really listen to the songs, we have an accompanying article that breaks down what you can learn from each entry on the playlist. It’ll help you master some aspect of vocabulary, grammar and pronunciation in every song.
Another way to get into the music is listening to German covers of English songs. That way, you’ll have a leg up on understanding what the songs are about. Plus, some artists make their own German covers of their songs, so you can listen to bands like ABBA and The Beatles singing in a different language.
While knowing what the song is about is an advantage, make sure to keep in mind that song translations are rarely direct translations. Sometimes pretty big changes will be made in order to make the song work with a specific meter and rhyme scheme. As long as you know they’re not meant to be one-to-one word translations, you’ll be ready to tackle these songs. It can also be a fun challenge to see exactly what’s been changed!
German Folk Music
If your idea of Germany involves lederhosen and Oktoberfest, you’ll want to listen to this German Spotify playlist that features folk music. That might depend on your willingness to listen to polka and yodeling, though. These songs can seem a little weird to our modern sensibilities, but learning about old German music is definitely fun.
One of the main advantages to folk music is the lyrics are usually a little bit easier to understand than modern music. The words are a little slower, and they aren’t competing with an array of instruments and technical effects.
The German Pop playlist is made by the Goethe-Institut, an organization that advocates for the spread of German culture around the world. Therefore, it’s a pretty good authority on the kinds of songs that are worth listening to. This playlist combines several different genres, from modern hits to “hidden gems,” so it can give you a solid entry into German music.
Most of the songs on this list make it pretty easy to hear the lyrics, and there’s even Nena’s “99 Luftballons” to make sure you’ve got at least one classic song you’ll already know. The more techno beats can be a bit more difficult to handle, and the modern slang in pop songs may be tough, but this playlist is perfect for intermediate to advanced learners. And if you’re a beginner, give it a try anyway and pick out the words you’ve learned.
Germany Top 50
This playlist from Spotify is ever-changing to reflect the current top 50 songs in Germany. This is a mix of both English and German songs — English songs do tend to make their way around the world — but it’s the best way to find out what actual people are listening to.
This is listed as the hardest playlist here because, well, there’s no way for us to predict what the top 50 songs will be when you’re reading this article. But being on the cutting edge of the German music scene will give you all the more motivation to keep up with your regular studying.