Whenever I think of her, I think of how far mainland Chinese music’s scene has come. Ten years ago, the most famous artists seemed those who sang “classic”, not pop songs. Song Zuying is probably the most famous Hmong (or in Chinese Miao ethnicity) singer in China. She sang with Placido Domingo at the closing ceremonies of the Olympics and you may already be kind of familiar with one of her songs Spicy Girls on which Jay Chou’s Herbalists’s Manual tune was based (with permission; too bad they couldn’t collab).
In Changsha, Hunan, this Hunan native gave 500,000 RMB out of her own pocket, and in total her foundation has contributed 1.2 million. The foundation (not sure of the name), which was mainly focused on Hunan’s impoverished student sector when founded, has began to increase in scope. Song Zuying knows that many people suffering from the Sichuan earthquake went to Hunan to study, and immediately decided to expand.
Noticeably exhausted at the presentation ceremony, and needing to fly to Beijing soon after, she still took photographs with the students, and conversed with a student representative. She hopes that these students will be able to help others one day.
Oh, and just for my own reference because I loved both songs and have always wanted to put them side by side.
Song Zuying – La Mei Zhi
Jay Chou – Herbalist’s Manual