I thought I am done with my songs preferences. But I was berated by a few silence readers.
“Dey! You not fair man! Why only got Canto Pop? What about the Mandarin songs? Where’s your Mando Pop?!”
I have many Mandarin songs at my disposal. In fact even more than Cantonese songs and English songs combined. The thing is, I like these Mandarin songs, I think they are all good, but I think my Cantonese songs and English songs are great. That’s why I kind of just let Mando Pop go. But anyway…
With the Mandarin songs, I started fairly late, so my collection is mostly from the 2000s rather than 1990s. So here’s my personal top 10. They are mostly from mainstream singers, but the songs might not be the ones that made it to #1 in the music charts. These songs all have one similar attribute. They made it into my ears at opportune moments, so they meant something to me emotionally.
So, in the name of fairness, here goes…
1. 陶喆 David Tao – 飞机场的十点半 10.30 In The Airport
David Tao is probably one of the best vocalist of the lot. I have the most number of songs from him. I think his most famous song is 爱很简单 ai hen jian dan, Love Is Very Simple. You probably heard it in Malaysian radio before at some point. I~~~ Loveeee~~~ Youuu~~~
But, for me, the song that hit a chord with me is this one. You know lah, I had to endure someone flying away once…
2. 王力宏/彭羚 Wang Leehom/Cass Pang – 让我取暖 Let Me Get Warmth
Leehom is another singer that I feel has decent vocals. And he is multi talented. And he is handsome. I think he is almost as good vocally as David Tao, but he is definitely the best all rounder.
He is an ABC American Born Chinese based in Taiwan. Recently though, it seems like he’s trying to break back into the US market. He’s got a few collaborations with Wong Fu Productions.
He’s got many nice songs of different styles, but I personally love this duet song with Cass Pang of Hong Kong. I was crazy about duets when I first heard this song. Back then I felt that duet songs are the best songs in the entire world. This was also our duet song which we sing on Red Box dates and on empty streets.
3. 梁静茹/光良 Fish Leong/Michael Wong – 只能抱着你 Can Only Hug You
About the same time, another duet song was released. This one is by Malaysian singers. Fish was a rookie in the music industry, this was one of her first songs. And she was not using the stage name Fish yet, she was still going by the name of Jasmine Leong. Michael was at that time still part of Michael & Victor and has not gone solo yet.
I prefer Fish’s early songs, those from her first 2 or 3 albums, her voice really felt like a fresh breeze to my ears. Her subsequent works, not so much.
Again, I love this song the most because I think duet songs are super awesome at that time.
4. 黄品源 Huang Pinyuan – 海浪 Ocean Wave
This is a good song, but the lyrics are what made the song latch onto my heart. Pure heartbreak. Every time I hear this song, it felt like an arrow straight to my heart. 一箭穿心. And yet I can never resist this song. Feel the stab over and over again.
5. 李圣杰 Sam Lee – 手放开 Hand Let Go
This Sam Lee is not the Hong Kong artist Sam Lee. This Sam is Lee Shengjie, the Hongkie is 李灿森 Lee Chan Sum.
This guy is an expert in heart breaking songs. His songs would make me go emo again and again, and yet I will still play his songs again and again.
6. 刘若英 Rene Liu – 成全 Fulfil
Rene is my female version of Sam Lee. Female expert in singing her way into my broken heart. Of course those relatable lyrics played a big part too. I also think she is very pretty. Most guys of my age tend to disagree though.
7. 张韶涵 Angela Chang – 隐形的翅膀 Invisible Wings
Angela is my younger and more explosive version of Rene. She has a good number of high powered songs as well as catchy songs which I like, although I still love her sentimental songs more. Her vocal range is also very good compared to the other female singers of her generation.
8. 张芸京 Zhang Yunjing- 偏爱 Die Die Want To Love
Let me reveal another fact of myself. I am a sucker for 古装剧 TV series with ancient costumes. Even better if the plot involves unrealistic superpower kung fu and fairy tale love story. The most recent series that I watched with these 2 elements is 仙剑奇侠传3 Chinese Paladin 3. It is actually an adaptation of an online game. There is a love story in the series that spans 3 lifetimes. The guy dies for the girl twice, and both times the girl waited and went searching for his reincarnation. The girl has magical powers that allow her to be immortal and remain youthful for as long as she wishes.
You guessed right, this song is the main theme song for this tragic couple.
9. 羽泉/苏慧伦 Yu Quan/Tarcy Su – 还剩下什么 What’s Left
I love this song because of the video. When it comes to watching videos/movies/drama series, I rarely cry. When I’m watching heartbreaking stuff with my sister, she would always end up in tears while I laugh at her, telling her things like: “It’s just a show, why so serious?”. She calls me a heartless bastard.
This video is the closest I got to shedding tears. Closest, but still not close enough though. I suspect it was because I first watched it at a time when I was the most vulnerable.
10. 动力火车 Power Station – 当 When
How can any Mandarin songs loving people not know Power Station? They are like Taiwan’s version of Beyond. Legendary.
I don’t know why I prefer this song more than their other songs. It just is.
Please don’t ask me to blog about Malay songs next. Oh well, maybe I should just include them here. I only listen to a grand total of 2 Malay songs. Might as well hijack this post and share them here.
1. Innuendo – Belaian Jiwa
I was forced to join the school choir team briefly in secondary school. I forgot which year. The choir team was formed just to perform in the year end concert. My school has this thing, every year end we will hold a concert where the students perform various stuff and the parents are invited to be the audience. I’m not sure if other schools does this.
We sang Michael Jackson’s Heal The World and this song.
2. Kris Dayanti – Menghitung Hari
We used to have an Indonesian maid at home. This was her favorite song. She would play it many many times. I kind of caught on with the song.
Definitely don’t ask me to blog about Tamil songs… I have nothing to blog about on this…