China: “What Are They Listening to Today?”

Topics: Music of China, Pop music, Erhu Pages: 3 (792 words) Published: January 13, 2013
China: “What Are They Listening To Today?”

Music in China has gone through many changes since it opened its doors to the world and embraced globalization. With the influence of modern technology, western music has had a big impact on the ever-changing music industry in China. With the addition of modern western instruments, traditional Chinese ensembles have been able to branch out of their classical molds be adding new sounds and musical concepts. An example of this mix of modern and classical instruments can be heard by listening to a group called the Twelve Girls Band. This compilation of traditional Chinese instruments with western instruments and melodies creates a fusion of world music with endless possibilities. (

While Instrumental music has been able to keep many traditional sounds and melodies, popular vocal music has turned toward adapting western rhythm and harmony to Chinese lyrics. An example of this can be heard by listening to a Chinese Pop (C-Pop) band Called Lollipop F. As popularity of these new C-Pop bands emerges, some Chinese music critics are somewhat skeptical about the future of the Pop music scene and lack of artistic integrity.

In relative terms, few truly impressive or memorable songs have been penned since the year 2000. Pop music seems to have become a form of fast food. One day people would be fascinated by the beautiful songs of Faye Wong and Na Ying, the next day Jay Chou would be the latest dish. ( by Ma Yujia, December 8, 2008)

While some people in china view modern pop music as a threat to musical integrity, others see it as a threat to the Chinese culture as a whole The traditional views of the Chinese about music can be seen as quite different from those of Western cultures. The Chinese see music as permeating life, where in the Western mind, music is an accessory to life. The Chinese also value the quality of tone and timbre over other qualities,...
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