Best Chinese Songs of the 1990s

20. “She Knows” by Shino Lin (Taiwan)

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: She Knows, 林晓培
Pinyin Romanization: “She Knows” by Lin, Xiaopei
Year of Release: 1999

Shino was one of the few Chinese pop stars who dabbled in electronics and came up with a few great tunes, this being her best. LINK

19. “Tolerance” by Jeff Zhang (Taiwan)

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 宽容, 张信哲
Pinyin Romanization: “Kuan Rong” You by Zhang, Xinzhe
Year of Release: 1995

His soft voice was a perfect fit for his love ballads. LINK

18. “Just Between the Two of Us” by Eason Chan (Hong Kong)

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: Just Between the Two of Us, 陈奕迅
Pinyin Romanization: ” Just Between the Two of Us ” by Chen, Yixun
Year of Release: 1999

It was difficult to pick an Eason song. The man just kept getting better all the time putting his whole heart into his singing. We’ll settle on this wedding number. LINK

17. “Suddenly Think of You” by Elva Xiao (Taiwan)

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 突然想起你, 萧亚轩
Pinyin Romanization: “Tu Ran Xiang Qi Ni” by Xiao, Yaxuan
Year of Release: 1999

This song established the Vancouver-educated songstress as one cool diva. LINK

16. “Morning Train” by Beyond (Hong Kong)

Language: Cantonese
Chinese: 早班火车, Beyond
Pinyin Romanization: “Zao Ban Huo Che” by Beyond
Year of Release: 1992

The Chinese Beatles continued churning out their classics into the 90s. LINK

15. “Arctic Snow” by Kelly Chen and Steve Zhou (Hong Kong, Taiwan)

 

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 北極雪, 陳慧琳+周传雄
Pinyin Romanization: “Bei Ji Xue” by Chen, Huilin and Zhou, Chuanxiong
Year of Release: 1998

Steve Zhou is one of the most overlooked singers in the industry. He wrote a couple of classics for Kelly Chen and they performed this beautiful tune as a duet. LINK

14. “Red Dragonfly” by The Little Tigers (Taiwan)

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 红蜻蜓, 小虎队
Pinyin Romanization: “Hong Qing Ting” by Xiao Hu Dui
Year of Release: 1990

Every school girl had a crush on this male trio back in the day. Their “Green Apple Paradise” was more popular in the late-80s, but we prefer this irresistible offering. LINK

13. “Crazy about Love” by René Liu (Taiwan)

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 为爱痴狂, 劉若英
Pinyin Romanization: “Wei Ai Chi Kuang” by Liu, Ruoying
Year of Release: 1995

This was a sleeper hit. It wasn’t until after her “Afterwards” five years later that this song became extremely popular. LINK

12. “Buddha Chant” by Shirley Kwan (Hong Kong)

Language: Cantonese
Chinese: 梵音, 关淑怡
Pinyin Romanization: “Fan Yin” by Guan, Shuyi
Year of Release: 1991

Having sung two of the all-time biggest hits of Cantopop, Shirley delved into experimental territory here and succeeded. LINK

11. “Listening to the Sea” by Sherry Zhang (Taiwan)

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 听海, 张惠妹
Pinyin Romanization: “Ting Hai” by Zhang, Huimei
Year of Release: 1997

Sherry (also known as A-Mei) became the Republic of China’s answer to the PRC’s Faye Wang, an overnight sensation, thanks, in part, to this megahit. LINK

10. “Come Back” by Priscilla Chan (Hong Kong)

Language: Cantonese
Chinese: 归来吧, 陈慧娴
Pinyin Romanization: “Gui Lai Ba” by Chen, Huixian
Year of Release: 1992

More popular in the Mainland than her SAR counterpart, Anita Mui, Priscilla continued her string of classics. LINK

9. “Red Bean” by Faye Wang (PRC)

Language: Both Mandarin and Cantonese versions exist
Chinese: 红豆, 王菲
Pinyin Romanization: “Hong Dou” by Wang, Fei
Year of Release: 1998

One of the biggest Chinese songs of all-time, “Red Bean”, from the Beijing export to Hong Kong, continues to be extremely popular today. LINK

8. “Boundary 99” by Mavis Xu (Singapore)

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 边界99, 许美静
Pinyin Romanization: “Bian Jie 99” by Xu, Meijing
Year of Release: 1999

Singapore’s first pop superstar, with an excellent singing voice to boot, scored a number of hits in the late-90s, this being, arguably, her best. LINK

7. “If You Knew My Difficulties” by Vivian Chow (Hong Kong)

Language: Cantonese
Chinese: 如果你知我苦衷, 周慧敏
Pinyin Romanization: “Ru Guo Ni Zhi Wo Ku Zhong” by Zhou, Huimin
Year of Release: 1992

A couple of this strikingly beautiful diva’s songs were more popular but we’ll settle on this power love ballad as one of the all-time classics of Cantopop. LINK

6. “Episode” by Sammi Cheng (Hong Kong)

Language: Cantonese
Chinese: 插曲, 郑秀文
Pinyin Romanization: “Cha Qu” by Zheng, Xiuwen
Year of Release: 1999

By the end of the decade, Sammi had taken over the top spot of Hong Kong’s female stars. This song certainly helped. LINK

5. “Monologue” by Valen Xu (Taiwan)

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 独角戏, 许茹芸
Pinyin Romanization: “Du Jiao Xi” by Xu, Ruyun
Year of Release: 1996

Because of this song, Valen’s album Do the Clouds Know? became the biggest-selling album in Taiwanese history. LINK

4. “You Are Hers” by Gigi Leung (Hong Kong)

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 你是她的, 梁咏琪
Pinyin Romanization: “Ni Shi Ta De” by Liang, Yongqi
Year of Release: 1998

Her “Short Hair” and “Chicken Chick” were bigger hits, as was her “Make a Wish” with Leo Ku, but this song was her masterpiece.

3. “Don’t Ask Who I Am” by Linda Wong (Hong Kong)

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 别问我是谁, 王馨平
Pinyin Romanization: “Bie Wen Wo Shi Shei” by Wang, Xinping
Year of Release: 1993

Another timeless classic and delivered with vocal perfection. LINK

2. “Come Home” by Shunza (United States)

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 回家, 顺子
Pinyin Romanization: “Hui Jia” by Shunzi
Year of Release: 1997

This Beijing native who grew up in San Francisco is a singer-songwriter and blew everyone away with her velvety but powerful delivery of this masterpiece. LINK

1. “Everyone Has a Dream” by Vivian Lai (Hong Kong)

Language: Cantonese
Chinese: 一人有一个梦想, 黎瑞恩
Pinyin Romanization: “Yi Ren You Yi Ge Meng Xiang” Li, Rui’en
Year of Release: 1993

This is the classic to end all classics of Cantopop. It was so catchy that it was responsible for sparking the karaoke craze in China. Vivian Lai, not to be confused with Vivian Chow, delivered this gem and it won the song of the year award in Hong Kong. LINK

You can find our Best Chinese Songs of the 1980s HERE.
And our Best Chinese Songs of the 2000s is HERE.

Best Chinese Songs of the 1980s

Chinese classics were neither better nor worse than the music of today. It was a different kind of music, stuff that sounded very different from western pop, especially the Cantonese songs—so beautiful! We’ve reviewed the big hits of the 80s and came up with a personal list of our favourites. To keep things tidy, we’re including only one song per artist.

20. “Childhood” by Luo, Dayou (Taiwan)

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 童年, 罗大佑
Pinyin Romanization: “Tong Nian” by Luo, Dayou
Year of Release: 1982

The grandfather of Mandarin rock released his debut album Zhi Hu Zhe Ye 之乎者也 in 1982. “Childhood” was its masterpiece, as important a song as it is a treat to the ears: catchy, driving, and playful. MV

19. “Have Nothing” by Cui, Jian (PRC)

 

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 一无所有, 崔健
Pinyin Romanization: “Yi Wu Suo You” by Cui, Jian
Year of Release: 1986

This was Mainland China’s first rock star’s first big hit, an instant classic. MV

18. “Rare Lovers” by Shirley Kwan (Hong Kong)

 

Language: Cantonese
Chinese: 难得有情人, 关淑怡
Pinyin Romanization: “Nan De You Qing Ren” by Guan, Shuyi
Year of Release: 1989

Shirley’s nearly forgotten these days. But she did perform two of the all-time biggest hits of Cantopop. This number was named Cantonese Song of the Year in Hong Kong. MV

17. “Romantic Rainy Night” by Alan Tam (Hong Kong)

 

Language: Cantonese
Chinese: 雨夜的浪漫, 谭咏麟
Pinyin Romanization: “Yu Ye de Lang Man” by Tan, Yonglin
Year of Release: 1985

Tam was part of the band Wynners with Kenny Bee but disagreed with the band’s simply doing Chinese versions of English songs, so he left the band to become a soloist. MV

16. “Bonds of Friendship” by Teresa Cheung (Hong Kong)

Language: Cantonese
Chinese: 情义两心坚, 张德兰
Pinyin Romanization: “Qing Yi Liang Xin” by Zhang, Delan
Year of Release: 1983

Early on, Teresa was part of the group Four Golden Flowers. She became famous by singing theme songs of several TVB drama series. MV

15. “As Long As You’re Better Off Than Me” by Kenny Bee (Hong Kong)

 

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 只要你过得比我好, 钟镇涛
Pinyin Romanization: “Zhi Yao Ni Guo de Bi Wo Hao” by Zhong, Zhentao
Year of Release: 1989

Alan Tam’s Wynners’ band mate did pretty well as a soloist, especially with this classic. MV

14. “I May Be Ugly, But I’m Gentle” by Zhao, Chuan (Taiwan)

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 我很丑可是我很温柔, 赵传
Pinyin Romanization: “Wo Hen Chou Ke Shi Wo Hen Wen Rou” by Zhao, Chuan
Year of Release: 1989

Here’s another forgotten superstar. It seems that, after Mr. Zhao hit the airwaves with this Mandarin classic, which incidentally made him an overnight star, every Chinese song ever since had to include the term wenrou in the lyrics. MV

13. “You Really Don’t Understand My Heart” by Angus Tong (Taiwan)

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 其实你不懂我的心, 童安格
Pinyin Romanization: “Qi Shi Ni Bu Dong Wo de Xin” by Tong, Ange
Year of Release: 1989

Before the likes of Jay Zhou and David Tao, old Angus was the number one male singer from Taiwan. He was so good that we found it difficult to select his best song. We finally settled on this one. MV

12. “Love Is Gone” by Jacky Cheung (Hong Kong)

Language: Cantonese
Chinese: 情已逝, 张学友
Pinyin Romanization: “Qing Yi Shi” by Zhang, Xueyou
Year of Release: 1985

Believe it or not, this was the very first big hit song from the greatest male Chinese singer of all-time, and definitely one of his best. MV

11. “Tomorrow Will Be Better” by Various Artists (Greater China)

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 明天更美好
Pinyin Romanization: Ming Tian Geng Mei Hao
Year of Release: 1985

This is the classic to end all classics. “Beijing Welcomes You” was not the first time all the pop stars got together. Back in the mid-80s, Luo Dayou assembled all the (Mandarin) pop stars of the day to sing this song about the glory of China, celebrating 40 years of freedom from invasion. There are some who consider this the greatest Chinese song ever written. The music video is a must-see—absolutely beautiful! MV

10. “Life’s Desires” by Danny Chan (Hong Kong)

Language: Cantonese
Chinese: 一生何求, 陈百强
Pinyin Romanization: “Yi Sheng He Qiu” by Chen, Baiqiang
Year of Release: 1989

Just about anything dear Danny sang was gold. This song was so good that, even though sung in Cantonese, it was a big hit all over China back in the day. His untimely death was a huge blow to the Chinese music industry. MV

9. “Who Is Your Best Lover?” by George Lam (Hong Kong)

 

Language: Cantonese
Chinese: 最爱是谁, 林子祥
Pinyin Romanization: “Zui Ai Shi Shei?” by Lin, Zixiang
Year of Release: 1986

This was written by Hong Kong’s great Lowell Lo for the movie in which George starred, “Passion”. It deservedly won Song of the Year in Hong Kong. MV

8. “I Only Care about You” by Teresa Deng (Taiwan)

 

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 我只在乎你, 邓丽君
Pinyin Romanization: “Wo Zhi Zai Hu Ni” by Deng, Lijun
Year of Release: 1987

This timeless classic has been covered by 70 different artists. But none can sing it better than Teresa, the greatest Chinese pop star of all-time. MV

7. “Am I the One You Love Most?” by Michelle Pan (Taiwan)

 

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 我是不是你最疼爱的人, 潘越云
Pinyin Romanization: “Wo Shi Bu Shi Ni Zui Teng Ai De Ren” by Pan, Yueyun
Year of Release: 1989

If only everyone could sing like her. A feast for the ears. MV

6. “High Heels in September” by Qi, Yu (Taiwan)

 

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 九月的高跟鞋, 齐豫
Pinyin Romanization: “Jiu Yue de Gao Gen Xie” by Qi, Yu
Year of Release: 1988

Dazzling Greater China with her “Olive Tree” in the late 70s, Qi Yu became one of the first stars of Mandarin pop. This was her best song in the 80s. MV

5. “Miss You” by Leslie Cheung (Hong Kong)

 

Language: Both Cantonese and Mandarin versions exist
Chinese: 想你, 张国荣
Pinyin Romanization: “Xiang Ni” by Zhang, Guorong
Year of Release: 1988

We didn’t care much for “Monica”. Fans of the late-great Leslie would probably accost us for listing this as his best song. But, there’s just something exhilarating about it, its saxophone solo, and the fact that Leslie wrote the music himself. MV

4. “Past Wind” by Qi, Qin (Taiwan)

Language: Mandarin
Chinese: 往事随风, 齐秦
Pinyin Romanization: “Wang Shi Sui Feng” by Qi, Qin
Year of Release: 1985

Qi Yu’s little brother released his classic Wolf album in ’85, one of the best albums of Chinese rock – ever! We liked this song the best. MV

3. “Like You” by Beyond (Hong Kong)

Language: Cantonese
Chinese: 喜欢你, Beyond
Pinyin Romanization: “Xi Huan Ni” by Beyond
Year of Release: 1988

They’re the Chinese Beatles. Need we say more? MV

2. “Silly Girl” by Priscilla Chan (Hong Kong)

Language: Cantonese
Chinese: 傻女, 陈慧娴
Pinyin Romanization: “Sha Nu” by Chen, Huixian
Year of Release: 1988

Who could not like Priscilla? This is Cantonese music at its very best. Her “Night Flight” was great too. MV

1. “Good Luck” by Sally Yeh (Canada)

Language: Cantonese
Chinese: 祝福, 叶蒨文
Pinyin Romanization: “Zhu Fu” Ye, Qianwen
Year of Release: 1987

She’s known as the Chinese Céline Dion. This song was just so damn good! MV

You can find our Best Chinese Songs of the 1990s HERE.
And our Best Chinese Songs of the 2000s is HERE.

Chinese Pop Music in the Late 1980s

“Tomorrow Will Be Better” took the Chinese world by storm in 1985. There are many who proclaim it the greatest Chinese song in history. It certainly was something special to see all the pop stars assembled together to sing a song about the glory of the Chinese people. The man behind the song—Luo Dayou— had made great headway in the development of Mandarin rock and this quickly gave rise to others. That same year, Qi Yu’s brother Qi Qin, his juvenile delinquent days behind him, released one of the greatest Mandarin rock albums in history—Wolf. Mainland China was to make a significant contribution the following year. Their first rock star appeared thanks to his song “Nothing to My Name”. His name was Cui Jian.

Hong Kong was not going to rest content with their large number of big name singers. Jacky Cheung debuted in 1985. We’ll talk about him later in conjunction with the “four kings”. In 1987, Sandy Lam debuted with “Gray”. The following year, Priscilla Chan hit the airwaves with “Silly Girl” and Chinese Canadian Sally Yeh came out with “Good Luck”.

Everything came to a climax in 1989. Some regard it as the best year in Chinese music ever. John Woo’s sleeper hit The Killer was in cinemas. Sally Yeh starred in the film and sang its theme song “Drunk for Life”. Hong Kong’s Shirley Kwan nabbed Cantonese Song of the Year with “Rare Lovers”. Male singer Hacken Lee scored his first major hit (“Life Changes”). Wynners’ Kenny Bee came out with his big solo hit, “As Long As You’re Better Off Than Me”. Priscilla Chan came out with her timeless classic “Thousands of Songs” and Danny Chan with, “What You Want in Life”, both huge hits throughout the Cantonese and Mandarin regions of China. But, perhaps most significant of all was the rise to superstardom of China’s first rock band (thanks to “Really Love You”) who composed their own original Chinese songs and played their own instruments. They were to become the greatest Chinese rock band in history and referred to as “The Chinese Beatles”. They called themselves Beyond.

Things were no less remarkable in Mandarin pop. Shanghai radio stations began in 1989 to hold weekly countdowns of the top songs. By the end of the decade Taiwan’s Angus Tong had secured the enviable position as the number one singer. Three of the top ten songs on the year-end charts in Shanghai were from Angus. Another major force was Zhao Chuan with two songs: “I’m Ugly but I’m Gentle” and “In the End, I Lost You”. He scored another big hit the following year: “I Was a Little Bird”. The singer who was to outlast Zhao’s popularity by a wide margin, however, was Jeff Zhang (“Can’t Forget Your Face”). While these men were ripping up the charts, school girls across the country were obsessed with the male singing trio called Xiao Hu Dui or “The Little Tigers”. “Green Apple Paradise” and “Red Dragonfly” were big hits.

 

Qi Qin

Chinese Name: 齐秦
Mandarin Name: Qí Qín
(b. 1960 in Taizhong, Taiwan)

Biggest Hits:

大约在冬季
柔情主义
夜夜夜夜
外面的世界
不让我的眼泪陪我过夜
原来的我

往事随风

During his childhood, Qin’s father enforced a strict daily study routine that began at 5 AM and included classic Chinese literature. Qin did not like to read, and rebelled against his father in his teens by joining a local gang. His public mischief landed him in prison for three years, during which time he picked up the guitar and taught himself to play.

By the time he was released, his sister Qi Yu had already become a famous singer. She encouraged his musical pursuits by buying an expensive guitar for him and the two began singing together. Although he released his debut in 1981 (See Her Slip Away Again), his big breakthrough came four years later, a rock masterpiece called Wolf. In 1992, Qi converted to Buddhism and refers to his music after this year as his “Deer Period”, pre-’92 being his “Wolf period”.

  

Sandy Lam

Chinese Name: 林忆莲
Cantonese Name: Lam Yik Lin
Mandarin Name: Lín Yìlián
(b. 1966 in Hong Kong)

Biggest Hits:

灰色 “Gray”
依然
前尘
爱上一个不回家的人
至少还有你 “At Least I Still Have You”
伤痕 “Scar”
当爱已成往事
听说爱情回来过
失踪
为你我受冷风吹

One reason for Sandy’s success was her great singing voice; moreover, her command of Mandarin, Cantonese, and even English were impeccable. Unlike other artists who stuck to success formulae, she daringly experimented with different genres of music and demonstrated to other singers that the key to remaining popular is creativity.

Sandy began her professional career at age 16, working as a DJ for Commercial Radio Hong Kong. She signed a recording contract in 1984 and became a star in 1987 with “Gray”. In 1991 she became a household name throughout China with her Mandarin mega-hit “Home Again Without You”, which won her a Best Mandarin song award in Hong Kong. In 1995, she teamed up with renowned Taiwanese producer Jonathan Lee (whom she later married) and issued the Mandarin album Love. It became one of the all-time biggest-selling Chinese albums thanks, in part, to the hit single “Scar”. In Y2K, Lam came out with the gorgeous love song “At Least I still Have You” which remained on the Chinese karaoke charts for a whopping eight straight months. Sandy is also known for doing a Chinese cover of Robbie William’s song “Better Man”.

 

Priscilla Chan

Chinese Name: 陈慧娴
Mandarin Name: Chén Huìxián
Cantonese Name: Chan Wai Han
(b. 1965 in Hong Kong)

Biggest Hits:

傻女 “Silly Girl”
夜机 “Night Flight”
千千阕歌 “Thousands of Songs”
红茶馆 “Red Teahouse”
我寂寞
飘雪 “Snowfall”
人生何处不相逢
归来吧 “Come Back”
逝去的诺言
孤单背影

As a teenager, Priscilla would often enter singing contests and secured her first record contract when she was only 18 in 1983. She scored several minor hits but became a superstar in 1988 with the release of “Silly Girl”, one of the ten biggest songs of the year in Hong Kong. The following year, she beat out heavyweights Leslie Cheung, Anita Mui, Sally Yeh, and Alan Tam to hold the year’s best-selling album, Always Be Your Friend. Not only did the song “Night Flight” become a classic but her “Thousands of Songs” was a sensation all over China. It was declared the second biggest song of the year on Shanghai’s AM 792 radio station and fourth on their FM 103.7.

But at the peak of her success, she announced she was leaving to pursue university studies in the United States. During her academic career, she returned to Hong Kong during her summer breaks to record albums. Hits during this time included “Snowfall”, “Come Back”, and “Red Teahouse”. After obtaining her degree in psychology, she returned to Hong Kong and recorded two albums: Welcome Back and I’m Not Lonely. Her song “I’m Lonely” topped the charts. She held a series of concerts in Hong Kong in 1996 (ten nights) and performed with the Hong Kong Philharmonic Symphony in 1997. She signed onto a new record company but did not work well with them. Her beloved cat died which caused her great grief. By 2000 she had retreated from the music industry.

 

Sally Yeh

Chinese name: 叶倩文
Mandarin Name: Yè Qiànwén
Cantonese Name: Yip Sin Man
(b. 1961 in Taibei, Taiwan)

Biggest Hits:

祝福 “Good Luck”
浅醉一生 “Drunk for Life” (from the film “The Killer”)
女人的弱点
焚心以火 “Heart Aflame”
秋去秋来
信自己 (with Alex To)
潇洒走一回 “Life Should Be Chic”
曾经心痛
真心真意过一生
哭砂
情人知己
伤逝 “Mourning”

Sally Yeh has often been called the Celine Dion of Hong Kong, but she is not from Hong Kong; she is a Canadian who was born in Taiwan. Having grown up in Vancouver, Canada, her English was better than her Chinese but Canadian prejudice prevented Canadians of Asian descent from becoming pop stars. Her only chance of success was improving her Chinese and recording albums in Cantonese and Mandarin in order to launch her career in China. In the beginning, she had to read from sign boards of romanized (pinyin) lyrics in the recording studio. She launched her singing career in 1980. But her big breakthrough came in 1988 with her song “Good Luck”. The following year she starred in and sang the theme song of John Woo’s acclaimed masterpiece The Killer. She gave up acting quickly as she was opposed to the types of roles Chinese women were expected to play in the movies and focused on her music career. “Heart Aflame” became a big hit throughout China in 1990. “Life Should Be Chic” won a Mandarin song of the year award in Hong Kong. In the mid-90s Yeh slowly retreated from public life after she married fellow Chinese pop star George Lam. But in 2002 she made a triumphant comeback with “Mourning”. On January 7th, 2011, Yeh was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Golden Needle Award by RTHK.

 

Beyond

Biggest Hits:
海阔天空
光辉岁月
真的爱你 “Truly Love You”
不再犹豫
大地
冷雨夜
喜欢你
情人

Beyond are often referred to as the Chinese Beatles. Finally, an actual band appeared who played their own instruments and wrote their own songs. The Chinese Fab Four remain extremely popular today and everyone knows their songs. In the early 80s, musicians Wong Ka-Kui and Yip Sai-Wing took an interest in Pink Floyd and progressive rock. They started out in 1983 playing music simply as a hobby. Wong’s little brother Ka-Keung joined them the following year, and, in 1985, Paul Wong. The group struggled financially, doing everything themselves from selling tickets to their shows to buying their own equipment. When they realized they couldn’t earn a living, they decided to go professional and rented a studio to make a record. Other musicians in the studio invited them to a music festival in Taiwan. They were well-received and offered a recording contract. Superstardom came in 1989 with their “Truly Love You” a song that was so popular that Mandarin-speakers learned the Cantonese lyrics by heart. Their 1990 album Party of Fate which included the song “Glory Years” about racism went triple platinum. Their popularity exploded all over Asia: Hong Kong, Taiwan, Mainland China, Singapore, Malaysia, and Japan.

On June 24th, 1993, Beyond appeared on a Japanese game show. Beyond’s lead singer and principal songwriter Wong Ka-Kui fell off the 3-metre-high stage and sustained massive head injuries. He was rushed off to the hospital where he fell into a coma. One week later he died. The funeral procession in Hong Kong resulted in traffic along major streets to come to a halt. All major pop stars in the city were in attendance.

 

Angus Tong

 

Chinese Name: 童安格
Mandarin Name: Tóng Āngé
(b. 1959 in Taibei)

Biggest Hits:

其实你不懂我的心 “You Really Don’t Understand My Heart”
让生命等候
忘不了
明天你是否依然爱我 “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?”
把根留住
借我一点爱
耶利亚女郎
爱与哀愁
一世情缘

By the end of the decade, Angus Tong An Ge had established himself as the number one Mandarin pop star in China. His “You Really Don’t Understand My Heart” is one of the most famous Chinese songs ever recorded. Angus debuted in 1985 with the solo album Miss You. He is admired for his elegant, quiet demeanour, good music and lyrical composition, and first-class vocals. He expertly combined classical and modern styles as well as eastern and western. Angus was part of school choirs from an early age. His elementary school came in second place in provincial competitions. His index finger got caught in the door and for a long time he was unable to write. After school he became a military band conductor and was asked to teach singing to army officers. He also participated in singing groups who released some albums in the late 70s. After his term of military service he could not find work and spent his time writing songs and cartooning. His songs attracted the attention of Polygram records in 1983 and he released his first solo album two years later. After several successful albums, he released his acclaimed masterpiece You Really Don’t Understand My Heart which caused an unprecedented sensation. He was elected the year’s most popular singer in Shanghai. He was so popular that his Mandarin songs entered the Hong Kong market where he received a number of awards.

He toured the Mainland in 1991 and his concerts sold out quickly. In 1994 he continued his acting work by starring in Terracotta Warriors and also composed the soundtrack. He was subsequently invited to hold a concert in Las Vegas, USA. He was the first Taiwanese artist to perform at the MGM GRAND, opening for Barbara Streisand. Two years later, he was invited to participate in the CCTV Chinese New Year Festivities in Beijing. Afterwards, he emigrated to Canada.

 

Jeff Zhang

Chinese Name: 张信哲
Mandarin Name: Zhāng Xìnzhé
(b. 1967 in Yunlin, Taiwan)

Biggest Hits:

让我忘记你的脸 “Can’t Forget Your Face”
不要对他说
过火
白月光
爱如潮水
别怕我伤心
信仰
从开始到现在
爱就一个字
有一点动心

Jeff Zhang Xin Zhe entered a folk-rock music competition in 1988 and signed a recording contract with Rock Records. The following year he came out with three albums. His song “Can’t Forget Your Face” was a big hit and he became known as the Prince of Love Songs. A string of hits followed. Jeff spends his spare time collecting folk art and engaging in water sports and horseback riding.