This 11-year-old girl will make you feel woefully inadequate about your karaoke abilities

Thong Junjin’s performance of “Dawn” has been viewed more than 230 million times.

It seems nary a week goes by without some super talented, small Asian child making me feel deficient as a person. And I was feeling pretty good about myself this month, so this was probably overdue. Enter Thong Junjin 汤晶锦 (I’m about 80% sure the ‘h’ is silent).

Thong, an 11-year-old from Selangor, Malaysia, is a recent ‘graduate’ of China’s top-rating children’s talent show, Let’s Sing Kids 中国新声代, where she belted out Mandarin and Taiwanese hits by some of the biggest voices in the Chinese music scene, including A-mei, Han Hong and Tan Weiwei. If those names don’t sound familiar, Han Hong was described by one leading music critic as the Chinese-Tibetan love child of Celine Dion and Elton.

(It was me. I am the self-described leading music critic.)

Praised for her mature vocals and lyrical interpretation, this pint-sized powerhouse is also a viral sensation. Thong’s rendition of Han Hong’s “Dawn 天亮了” has received over 230 million views in just two months.

And it wasn’t even her best performance.

Watch more performances from the show, including some adorable musical child prodigies, and take part in our readers’ perceptions of adequacy poll, below. (more…)

Music Monday: June 27, 2015

This is the first time where the leader kept switching places. It went from Zhang Bichen’s Nianlun to M.I.C.’s theme for the drama that is still never going to air before settling on Zhang Jie‘s Truth.    Also, I really need someone to convince me that Wang Hao is not planning to host drug parties because everything about his store from their slogan to logo to the trap music screams Chinese-entertainment-ban-for-life.

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“Soul’s End” by A-mei concludes Tiny Times OST

Let me and you sing one more song. In soul's end,  time continues to march forth. I will head toward a new journey, but you'll always remain in the flames of youth, left in that curtain of fiery red.  - Guo Jingming
“Let me and you sing one more song. In the End of Souls,  time continues to march forth. I will head toward a new journey, but you’ll always remain in the flames of youth, left in that curtain of fiery red.”    – Guo Jingming

Tiny Times is not only China’s most profitable franchise, but it also has one of the best and biggest original soundtracks.  The first three films so far have 19 original songs. It’s also one of the few Chinese films with good, original English songs.

The latest addition is A-mei‘s theme to the finale,  Tiny Times 4: Soul’s End.   t The singer’s reported to have cried while recording this song. Listen to all the songs from the series in the playlist below.

Each film has at least two theme songs by big name artists like Sodagreen, Zhou Bichang, Jolin Tsai, Wu Yifan, and now A-mei. In addition, since the first two films had eeMedia as a main investor, they had an OST with many eeMedia artists like Yu Kewei, Wei Chen, Liu Xin, and Fu Mengni.  The rest of the OST is mostly done by the less famous but much more fun team of Singaporean musician Terry Tye Lee (who produced many songs for M.I.C. boyband and Vanness Wu), featuring artists like Julia Wu and Gao Kaiwei. What’s your favorite song?

Music Monday: May 18, 2015

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Here to make Monday a little easier =)

Brighten your Monday up with a fun tune from Aarif Rahman, a cute family zoo song from Fan Weiqi, a powerful rock ballad from A-mei,  songs of friendship from  RTA Xu Hao X Zhu YuanbingMa Haisheng and M.I.C.‘s Tan Jianci.

A-mei sets fire to the patriarchy in her epic song and MV Matriarchy 母系社會


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Project WAO – We Are One

Women As One - Against Abuse
Women As One – Against Abuse

Four of the biggest female singers in cpop, hailed from four different regions of cpop, came together for Project WAO theme song. The song titled We Are One or Women as One features A-Mei (张惠妹), Na Ying (那英), Sandy Lam (林忆莲), and Tanya Chua (蔡健雅). The charity concert for Project WAO was held this last weekend in support of abused women and young girls.


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Celebrity microblogger, Liang Huan, ranks Chinese singers

Almost 20 years since her passing, is Teresa Teng still the best Chinese singer?

Last week, Liang Huan 梁欢, who is probably a man, compiled a list of Chinese singers on her his Weibo, allocating points in increments of five, alongside some brutally honest criticism (e.g., Jolin Tsai: “dance moves accompanied by bad vocals”). Since then, her his post has been retweeted—or the Weibo equivalent—tens of thousands of times. Some fans, notably those of Han Geng, have derided the low scores of their idols.

How do your favourites stack up? (more…)

Ethnic minorities in Chinese entertainment

Does she look Chinese to you?

One of the most frustrating things about introducing new Chinese artists are the “they don’t look Chinese” comments. Considering China has 56 official ethnicities with their ancestral homes in China, and who knows how many unofficial ones, and 1.3 billion people, it’s unfair to homogenize any part of China (or of the world ). And according to wikipedia, minority populations are rising at 7 times the rate of the Han Chinese because the One Child Policy only applies to Han Chinese (no, China is not trying to eliminate its minorities via One Child).

Photographer Chen Haiwen recently paid a tribute to the diversity of China by producing a series of photos that captured this diversity. Along with a team of photographers, he traveled across China for a year to take photos of a family from each ethnic group. Those, along with thousands of other photos captured on the trip, were put on display in Beijing’s WangFuJing Street last month. zhouzhzh on youtube has a slideshow of all the photos.

Here’s a spot light on some, definitely not all, minority Chinese artists in pop culture.

Super Girl He Jie

our Yi-group
manager: Super Boy Ji Jie and brand manager for Bacardi
members: two powerful and tomboyish songstresses SM’s lost cause Zhang Liyin
and really lost cause Super Girl He Jie
and boyband Blue Bird Flying Fish‘s 70.
HuHu’s not Yi, but he’s there by association. Maybe Zhang Yunjing can join, too, by marriage. (more…)