Roll your Rs like J Balvin

by Bernard O'Shea

When I was a kid in school I had difficulty rolling my Rs to the satisfaction of my French teacher. She would hold her handkerchief (unstained, thankfully) or a piece of tissue in front of my mouth, like a flag, and I had to make brrrr, grrrr, trrr and rrrr sounds and make her handkerchief vibrate visibly in the process.

If only Colombian singer and reggaeton specialist  J Balvin was around at the time. Just listen to the way he rolls his Rs in his hit song Tranquila. Even though he is singing in Spanish, my French teacher would have apprrrrrrroved. He would have made herrrr handkerrrrchief rrreally vibrrrate and flutterrrr. He looks a bit like Rrrrricky Marrrrtin too.

That song did very well not just in his native Colombia and neighbouring countries, but also the US, and in Eastern Europe (Romania and Bulgaria in particular). He was the top drawcard at a Latin music festival in Sydney last year, too.

Here is another song of his, Yo Te Lo Dije (meaning, I Told You – go here for the translation of the lyrics).

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ladyofthecakes January 19, 2014 - 1:23 pm

Can’t do the Spanish double r for the life of me. I cannot 🙁

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pianolearner January 19, 2014 - 8:31 pm

Nope, can’t roll mine. Never could and I guess my teachers never pushed it….

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Trish Whytock January 19, 2014 - 9:51 pm

try the Malmesbury roll – now that would put a French or Spaniard to shame!

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