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Popular Music from Abroad

Sifting through the postcards, leftover Kroner, and photos from my semester abroad in Denmark, I realized that one of my best souvenirs was my foreign playlist. Listening to the songs remind me of fun times, but also makes me feel more culturally attuned with the world. Much of the reason foreign music doesn’t transition well to the U.S is because the music isn’t in English. Let’s face it, half the fun of music is singing the lyrics at the top of your lungs with your girlfriends on the dance floor. However, if you can get past the fact that these songs may take more than a couple listenings to before you get the words right, you may find these tunes taking up well-deserved space in your Spotify library. Trust me, I remember one of the employees at my hostel in Lisbon, Portugal translating the entire song “Ai Se Eu Te Pego” into English and it wasn’t nearly as appealing (or as catchy) as the original.  

Listed below are the favorite foreign tracks from some Her Campus readers who have studied abroad.  Some of the music is in another language, one of the tracks doesn’t even have lyrics, but all are worth a listen to. 

Name: Francesca Lee
Spent a Semester in: Copenhagen, Denmark
Popular Foreign Songs: “Glemmer Dig Aldrig” (Danish) and “Ai Se Eu Te Pego” (Portuguese) 

Name: Emily Lang
Spent the Summer in: Lyon, France
Popular Foreign Songs: “Ma Direction” (French) and “Positif” (French)


Name: Mike Kerrigan
Spent a Semester in: St. Gallen, Switzerland
Popular Foreign Songs: “Danza Kaduro” (Spanish/Portuguese) and “Ma Chérie” (French)

Name: Erin Flanagan
Spent the Summer in: Dublin, Ireland
Popular Foreign Artists: Damien Rice (Irish) and The Redneck Manifesto (Irish)


Name: Margaret Strode (left)
Spent the Summer in: Lyon, France
Popular Foreign Songs: “Seek Bromance” (remixed by Swedish DJ,Avicii) and “Balada Boa” (Portuguese)


Francesca Lee is a fourth year majoring in sociology with a minor in media studies at the University of Virginia. This summer, she developed a passion for TV production after interning at WETA, the public television station for DC and the greater metro area.  Throughout the summer, Francesca researched, wrote and produced several WETA Around Town segments about the local arts programs and graffiti murals in DC.  As the new campus correspondent for Her Campus UVa, she is working to create video content for the UVa branch to supplement the written content.  This spring, she hopes to study abroad in Denmark and expand her knowledge of international broadcasting and advertising. Francesca also gives historical and admissions tours to visitors and prospective students at UVa and is a member of Alpha Chi Omega Sorority.  
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