Dec. 7, 2008, 4:13 p.m.
I don't use this method at my English studies, as my listening skills are rather good, and I can listen interesting content.
The friend of main who teaches English told me that English songs were the trigger on her engagement in language learning and profession choosing. So they might be a good motivational stimulus in language studying.
I try to use this method to improve my English before I discovered the LingQ website. As Cakupa said, it's very pleasant, but as a language learning method it was a completely waste of time, at least for me. Similarly, I remember that as a child I was listening a lot to Italian songs that were very popular on that time. I learn easily by hearing and memorized them very quickly, but I couldn't understand what the songs are about. Only when I studied Italian as an adult, I could mentally rehearing some of those songs and understand the general meaning.
But when we refer to learn English, we are not just talking about LISTENING, hu? We can compare the informal way of speaking with the formal one, for example. And people can get more conscious about how the language works on the streets. I am saying that because, sometimes, we can´t understand a native speaker because we are waiting for the "right grammar" and that person use other variation of it. So, we get confused and blame ourselves, but it wasn´t our fault. Haha!
Of course, this variation is not considered for getting a good job and it's not ok to emphasize it. But I think we should know about its existence, because we can find native speakers who use it. Do you remember that song "California Dreamin' " when the singers said "I'd be safe and warm if I WAS in L.A"? Songs are closer to the informal speaking. That's why we can´t use only songs for university entrance test preparation, but it's still useful for getting that consciousness.
Another thing, I'd never say that songs are particularly close to informal speaking. Having listened to tons of podcasts in German, watched milions of anglophone movies and so forth, I'd say that no kind media lacks that - and by the way, I think it SHOULD contain informal language.