Music is a topic you might talk about in part one of your IELTS Speaking test. One question the examiner might ask is, “What type of music do you like to listen to?” or “What is your favorite type of music?”
Here, we’ll talk about how to answer this question really well, with 10 example answers (go straight to the answers here).
How To Talk About Music
Music might seem like a difficult topic to talk about. But don’t worry. It’s not so hard.
First, you need to know a few types of music in English (see the examples below).
In your answer, say one type of music you like or say what your favorite type of music is. Then you could talk about one or two of these things:
- How that kind of music makes you feel
- How it helps you (does it help you relax? Cheer up? Focus? Have fun with your friends? Remember good times? Concentrate? Work? Clean? Express sad or angry emotions?)
- Where and when you usually listen to this music
- How often you listen to it
- How long you’ve liked this music for
- How you first discovered that music
- If you’ve ever been to music concerts or live performances
- Your favorite singer, band, or composer
- What instruments they use in that kind of music
- Anything else that comes to mind
Use the Three-Step YES Method
For all your part-one answers, you can keep the English quite simple.
Just focus on fluency (speaking quickly, without hesitation).
Also, don’t say too much. You can use the YES Method to give a good-length answer. Just say:
- Your Answer (the type of music you listen to)
- Explain your answer (say why you like it) or add a few more details
- Stop talking (wait patiently for the next question)
Have a read of these 10 examples and see if you can borrow an idea or two for your own answer.
1. I enjoy listening to pop music because I find it relaxing and entertaining. I most enjoy songs by Taylor Swift and Rihanna, and I like anything in the charts, really.
2. I’ve liked rock music since I was a teenager. Rock music is really cool and energetic and righteously angry. I’ve been to see lots of my favorite rock bands perform live at concerts. It’s always a lot of fun.
3. I enjoy classical music because it’s soothing and it really helps me to unwind and forget about my work and problems for a few moments.
4. I don’t really listen to music much, but when I work or clean it’s nice to have some light music on in the background.
5. I’m a big fan of hip hop. My favorite hip-hop star is Kanye West. I started listening to his music at college and I love it. I think he’s a genius.
6. Well, I think my favorite music is blues. I love blues music because it’s full of so much passion and soul and it helps me to feel and express my inner sadness.
7. I like retro pop music from the past. I grew up listening to bands like The Beatles and Queen. They were amazing. Music these days isn’t as good as it used to be.
8. I usually listen to traditional country music from my hometown region of Hungary. It fills me with nostalgia and makes me miss my home and childhood.
9. Recently, I’ve started listening to a lot of jazz. It’s very complex and beautiful music, and it’s very popular in Krakow, where I live. I especially like going to see live jazz bands play in bars around town.
10. I think my favorite music is electronic music. It’s such incredible, euphoric, feel-good music. When I listen I feel like my mind and emotions are flying on a journey to somewhere amazing.
It’s Your Turn To Try
Now, you should have some ideas on how to answer this question.
Give it a go yourself!
Turn on your voice recorder and ask aloud, “What type of music do you like to listen to?”
Afterward, listen to your answer, and try to improve it.
Keep repeating this process. The more you practice, the easier it will become.
This is a great way to prepare for part one of your IELTS Speaking test.