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Chinese Music Classics of 20th Century – II/VI: Songs

Oct 29, 2009

(Continues from Chinese Music Classics of 20th Century – I/VI)

Why we need such a selection for Chinese Music?

Today Chinese music lovers are able to recite complete scores from Bach to Brahms’s; Books such as “Guide to Western Classics”, “300 Western Classical Music” fill the music section of bookstores and personal bookshelves. When it comes to Chinese music, most people would look at each other, without much to talk about.


Root of Chinese Music | by {link:http://www.flickr.com/photos/dayangchi/1766117633/}Dayangchi{/link}

The Root of Chinese Music

Chinese lack of awareness of their own music as a whole because that Chinese music had never been in a systematic order, which needs a prerequisite for a broad knowledge of understanding. The best approach for understanding is to establish a full trinity system of creation, performance and appreciation.

However, until now, China has barely started a real “Music Appreciation” era. So, at present, the goal of this selection is not to fairly evaluate or accurately judge or rank certain music works through mature experience; its goal, at best, is merely to introduce representative works for the social public awareness, in the beginning of “Appreciation” era. The award is more like a promotion rather than a certified hall of fame.

(… to be continued …)

Part II: Songs (second half, after 1945, the end of WWII)

traveling on the 长江

Sun over Yangtze River | by {link:http://www.flickr.com/photos/yewenyi/2213331793/}yewenyi{/link}

After defeating the Japanese invaders (with the help of USA and USSR) in 1945 and establishing a New Country in 1949, the history of China turned into a new page for the second half of 20th century. So did Chinese Music.

Here is the second half 24 of 49 songs selected as Chinese Music Classics of 20th Century. Lots of them are tributes to our country or land or people, showing the optimism and hope about the future of new China. And some of them are songs written for TV series or movies, which represents a switching focus onto mass media entertainment.

作品 Year Lyrics Music English Title w. video link
《咱们工人有力量》 1948 马可 马可 We Workers Have Power
《草原上升起不落的红太阳》 1950 美丽其格 美丽其格 The Never-setting Sun Rises Over the Prairie
《歌唱祖国》 1950 王莘 王莘 Ode to the Motherland
《愉快的歌声》 1950 王毓 吕泉生 Pleasant Song
《歌唱二郎山》 1952 魏风 时乐蒙 Singing of Mountain Er-lang
《我的祖国》 1950s 乔羽 刘炽 My Motherland
《让我们荡起双桨》 1950s 乔羽 刘炽 Let Us Row Our Paddles
《我们的田野》 1950s 张文纲 张文纲 Our Fields
《我们走在大路上》 1963 劫夫 劫夫 We Are Walking on the Main Road
《马儿啊,你慢些走》 1964 李鉴尧 生茂 Run Slower, My Pony
《边疆的泉水清又纯》 1976 凯传 王酩 Spring Water from the Frontier is Limpid and Pure
《梅花》 1979 刘家昌 刘家昌 Plum Flower
《我爱你,中国》 1980 瞿琮 郑秋枫 I Love You China
《在希望的田野上》 1982 晓光 施光南 On the Field of Hope
《那就是我》 1982 晓光 谷建芬 That is Me
《长江之歌》 1984 胡宏伟 王世光 Song of the Yangtze River
《黄土高坡》 1986 陈哲 苏越 Yellow Earth of the High Plateau (Loess Plateau)
《红楼梦》套曲 1987 曹雪芹(清) 王立平 Dream of the Red Chamber
《篱笆墙的影子》 1989 张藜 徐沛东 Shadow of the Bamboo Wall
《青藏高原》 1997 张千一 张千一 Tibetan Plateau
《阿姐鼓》 1995 何训友 何训田 Sister Drum
《日落西山》 1937 田汉 张曙 Sunset
《你是这样的人》 1997 宋士明 三宝 You Are Such a Person
《好汉歌》 1998 易茗 赵季平 A Song to Tough Guys

Please stay tuned and other parts will be posted soon!

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