The company that brought Na Ying and Faye Wong to fame is ready to present it’s newest mainland superstar – Huang Yali, an energetic 19-year-old. Taiwanese companies have recently been increasingly signing on mainlanders, from rock bands such as Fusion and AOK to pop stars like Jade Liu. This is probably in light of the fact that after Taiwan’s changed presidents this past year, things have begun changing with respect to Mainland-Taiwan relations, including a suggested lifting of restrictions on mainland artists activities in Taiwan.
This finally became reality recently:
Taiwanese Informational Department head announced on the 24th that mainland artists will be allowed to come to to Taiwan to record music, to perform commercially, and to hold concerts. The control of popular music will also be switched from the educational department to the informational department. Mainland artists will also be allowed to apply for permanent residency in Taiwan. In the future, mainland artists will not have to be checked in at the police upon arrival. Furthermore, the number of mainlanders allowed in Taiwanese-funded movies have been increased from two to five.
So what does this mean? Well, Taiwan has the most established Chinese music scene, having been around the longest, and due to this has more experienced companies, with the best knowledge of promotion amongst the many Chinese-language regions. Taiwan’s launch pad has allowed many Chinese-speaking non-Taiwanese get known internationally including Singaporeans such as JJ Lin, and Malaysians like Gary Cao. However, due to political reasons Taiwan has not allowed mainlanders to promote in Taiwan except for a select few because of fear of closer cross-straight relations.
While the popular mainland artists can make a lot of money just within China they are limited in their impact beyond mainland borders. So now that the laws in Taiwan have changed mainland singers should get known more globally. The Chinese language is unique in that it has spread to so many parts of Asia, allowing a wonderful diversity of influences. Hopefully Chinese music can grow stronger with this greater flow of ideas and understanding between two of the most powerful Chinese-speaking regions, one with the firm and solid foundations, and one with the huge consumer-market with untold potential.
Let’s take a look at some of the mainlanders who are already making waves across the strait.
Jade Liu’s album is the only album whose every song has made it onto my mp3. With the collaboration of some of the best composers and lyricists in Taiwan, and the support of the popular HIM artists, it’s a mystery to me how she flopped. Even Wang Yuexin sold better than her, and her album was 100x higher-qualitied (Cfensi: I don’t agree with this! :P). Cfensi thinks that it’s due to her ugly clothes and cover (and they were quite bad) (Cfensi: and the lack of variety show appearances which hopefully the new laws will change). Hopefully by her next album, they’ll find better clothes and more people will recognize her great voice.
This is the Way I Am ft Tank and Power Station
Despite having a relatively boring company and no one to help him, Anson Hu captured the audiences’ heart with his irresistible voice, undeniable talent and passion for music, and sharp Shanghainese humor. By the end of his second trip there, he gained enough popularity to get the Taiwanese informational department to make an exception for him by allowing him to be the first mainlander to hold a concert in Taiwan. Anson Hu already has plans for a trip to Taiwan next summer.
Although Jane has yet to officially enter Taiwan, her duet with Wang Leehom in his new album has already stirred up discussion. Many say that now, with the popularity of Painted Heart and the new duet, is the perfect time for her to break into Taiwan. And Jane’s voice alone is enough for anyone to fall in love with her. (Cfensi: She needs to go to America, and I would never say that lightly about an Asian singer)(idarklight: plus,she already has enough English songs of her own to fill an album, as seen below)
To Be Loved at a cross-strait friendship concert in Taiwan
Finally, we return to Huang Yali, the latest mainlander in Taiwan. Huang Yali has enough energy to run from Mars to the Moon and is sure to make any show lively . Her two singles, “I can still fly” and “Mars loves the moon.” have also been great. She’ll have a good support group (Fan Weiqi, Angela Zhang and Claire Kuo). Will that be enough for her to break into Taiwan? Hope it’ll be enough for her to fly.
Mars loves the moon, Huang Yali’s newest single under her new company
Great post and great comments! Thanks everyone! I learned about a lot of new artists today!
@Billy: “手拖手” is my favorite off of “This Love,” too!
@idarklight: I know Amazon.cn has more of a selection, but I’m kind of reluctant to use it for quite a few reasons:
1. I ordered a CD through just Amazon once, and it never came. I waited for half a year before canceling the order, which I used my dad’s credit card for and he never paid back the money I gave him. Besides that, my tastes had changed drastically by then and I wasn’t all that crazy about getting a Jackie Chan CD anymore. :P
2. I’m not sure how good my Chinese is when it comes to filling out order forms, so whether I succeed or not is kind of iffy.
3. My mom keeps a strict watch on how often I order CDs, but she tends to judge by when they come in. If it doesn’t come in for three months, which seems to be the norm when ordering via a Chinese site from the US, then she might say, “Well, that last thing you ordered hasn’t come in yet. You can’t order anything now!”
4. Does it convert RMB to USD? That’d mean a lot.
5. US Amazon is over-priced when it comes to Asian CDs. It costs $40 for some Jay Chou CDs and doesn’t even tell me what comes with them. I’m reluctant to try Chinese Amazon just because it is related to Amazon.
When I do order from a different source, though, I have a list of things I want to buy.
As I said, though, one day I might try Bibi again, and I might like her. After all, I didn’t like sodagreen at first, but I tried them again later on, and now I like them. My tastes can change.
it doesnt… I just said her masculinity is not to my taste. As far as women singers, I prefer Teresa Teng.
and her “masculinity” makes her voice less amazing how?
honestly, I dont like Bibi at all either. too masculine for my tastes
@hobielover: doesn’t amazon.cn ship overseas?
@julie: when I read pb, my first thoughts were playboy…
I think Jay really is most credited for beginning the “zhong guo feng” wave, and they are the songs that I enjoy the most from him. His songs really are so diverse, though…so I can’t just say, oh, it’s from Jay, it must be good.
And I know hobielover doesn’t like Bibi (Zhou Bichang) that much, but I really like her voice. I miss her…she should come back soon…
woahhh~ so many comments
@everyone: happy new year!!!! and i agree with all of you
@cfensi: yes chinese pb’s are much better lol
aw thanks, I found it and listened to some of the tracks. Its still 2008 over here. It seems like this album has alot more ballads and less soul/pure RnB tracks but it is still very nice. I prefer his more soul/RnB style tracks but from what I’ve heard, this album still sounds great. Dont know if you’ve heard 如果爱 but it has this kind of funk/jazz feel that I love. My favorite track on this album so far. Whats your favorite track off this Love? I absolutely love 手拖手. It has a similar jazzy feel to 如果爱 though its really quite different. The melody and rhythm is so unusual in the fact that you dont usually hear songs like this anymore. It has more of a 50’s big band feel. Khalil’s voice fits so well with this melody its gotta be the best song on the album for its uniqueness.
Billy: It came out last year, depending on where you live. (It’s still December 2008 on my side of the world.) It’s called “Orange Moon.” The first song on it is in English and the final song is a Mandarin version of it, but with the chorus still in English. I’m not sure what my favorite song from it is yet, but it’s quite good. I’ve also heard Khalil’s first album, “Soulboy,” but since YesAsia doesn’t carry it, I can’t buy the album. It’s a pity, since I really like quite a few of the songs from that album.
I’ve heard Soulboy,Wonderland, and This Love. All three are great albums. I dont have a favorite. He is coming out with another album? Im excited. whats it called and when does it come out?
Billy: Khalil has an advantage with English, since he’s from Hawaii. I showed my mom “Singalongsong” and she liked that. I didn’t tell her who was singing because I knew she wouldn’t understand if I said that before I had her listen. I hate bad English, since it’s my native language and I’m kind of particular about how it’s used, so I have that same pet peeve. I am definitely ordering Khalil’s new album, and I have “Wonderland” and “This Love” already.
The Mandarin-language music industry still has a lot of ways to expand, yes, but it seems like lots of things have been happening. A Mandarin-speaking (-singing?) Reggae band might happen.