The Catchiest Chinese Music to Sing in the Shower
If we say “Chinese music”, what comes to mind? Most probably, you’ll think of ancient music with elegant, poetic lyrics, and multi-ethnic string instruments.
However, it turns out that contemporary Chinese music can sound as fresh and exciting as Bruno Mars or Ariana Grande. In fact, some of the most innovative, cool-sounding rappers right now are Chinese!
Listening to a great Chinese music playlist can help you learn Chinese while you work out or commute to work. That is why, today, we are bringing you the best Chinese songs to learn and have fun.
1. 告白氣球 – Love Confession, by Jay Chou
Born in Taiwan, Jay Chou is one of the biggest names in contemporary Chinese music. One of the reasons why people are so in love with Chou is because he is an incredibly complete artist. Singer, songwriter, actor, and film director are just a few of the titles that could be used to describe him.
The song we are bringing you today is called “Love Confession”, and it is the lead single from the album Jay Chou’s Bedtime Stories (2016).
If you like to learn Chinese with short stories, “Love Confession” is the perfect song for you, as it uses poetic language to tell a wonderful love story full of beautiful details.
Sāinà hépàn zuǒ’àn de kāfēi
Drinking coffee at the left bank of Seine River
wǒ shǒu yībēi pǐncháng nǐ dì měi
A cup in my hand, savouring your beauty
liú xià chún yìn de zuǐ
As you leave a lipstick mark on yours.
2. 爱 – I Love You 3000, by Jackson Wang
Jackson Wang is a Hong Kong rapper, dancer, musician and fashion designer based in China. One of the most prolific singers out there, Wang is best known for his boy group Got7 and his hip-hop band Panthepack.
Due to his international success, Jackson can speak an amazing number of languages—Mandarin, Cantonese, Korean and English among them.
Wang received international attention when he was featured in a remix of “I Love You 3000”, a song by Indonesian-American singer Stephanie Poetri.
Are you afraid your Chinese level is too low to understand this song? Don’t sweat it. Being a remix of an English song, “I Love You 3000” is still mostly in English with just a few verses in Chinese, which makes it great for starters!
Kànjiàn nǐ de shuāngyǎn
Looking into your eyes
yǒu yīcì de jiànmiàn
We have met once again
xīn li yǒu huà xiǎng shuō
There’s something I want to say
dàn yòu pà wǒ shuō cuò
But I’m afraid it will turn out wrong
xiǎng jǐn bànfǎ
Trying my best
dànshì qìfēn gāngà
Worried that things will become awkward
jīntiān bù shuō jiù méi jīhuì
But if I don’t say it tonight, there won’t be a second chance
3. 你給我聽好 – Listen to Me, by Eason Chan
To give you an idea of how popular Eason Chan is in the Chinese music industry, he was featured at number 6 in the 2013 Forbes China Celebrity Top 100 List! Considering China has 1.4 billion other inhabitants, that’s not bad, is it?
In 2015, Chan won the prestigious Best Mandarin Male Singer award for his solo album Rice and Shine.
The song “Listen To Me”, featured in this album is modern Chinese music at its best. With deep lyrics and a beautiful melody, it pierces into your heart and stays there long after it has finished.
Nǐ kàn kàn dàhuǒ er hézhào
Take a look at everyone’s pictures
jiù nǐ yīgèrén méiyǒu xiào
You are the only one who’s not laughing
shì wǒmen zhuāng shǎ háishì nǐ zhēn de
Will we act like we’re stupid or are we real?
yǒu hěnduō pǔtōng rén méiyǒu de kùnrǎo
There are so many troubles that ordinary people don’t have
Do you want to learn Chinese with this song? Read the full lyrics in Pinyin and sing along to Chan’s silky voice until you’ve learned the song. Too challenging? Then do it only with the chorus!
4. 月亮代表我的心 – The Moon Represents My Heart, by Teresa Teng
Now let us go back in time to talk about a woman who is, to this day, the most famous Chinese singer of all time…
We are talking, of course, about Teresa Teng. Teng was a Taiwanese singer, actress and philanthropist still remembered as “Asia’s eternal queen of pop”.
She became an icon of Chinese music for her contributions to Mandopop (Mandarin pop), inspiring the phrase, “Whenever Chinese people meet, Teresa Teng starts to sing”.
Though she sadly passed away due to a fatal asthma episode in 1995, her musical legacy lives on and her music is still revisited and covered all over Asia. The moving ballad The Moon Represents My Heart, released in 1977, is an all-time classic of Chinese music and one of Teng’s most cherished songs. In 2006, The New York Times named it as one of the best-known Chinese pop songs of all time
nǐ wèn wǒ ài nǐ yǒu duō shēn
You ask me how deeply I love you
wǒ ài nǐ yǒu jǐ fēn
How much my love is
wǒ de qíng yě zhēn
My affection is real
wǒ de ài yě zhēn
My love is also true
As you can see, the lyrics to this song are very simple, which makes it great for those who want to learn Chinese with Chinese music.
So, how can you use this song to improve your Chinese pronunciation? Easy. By singing along while reading the lyrics as many times as necessary.
Do you really want to take things to the next level? Put your knowledge (and musical talent!) into practice and do your own cover with this karaoke version.
5. Metropolis, by Lexie Liu
To finish off our list of great Chinese music, we have chosen a young artist who is breaking records all around Asia. Lexie Liu is a 24-year-old is Chinese singer, rapper and songwriter. In July 2018, she took part in the talent show The Rap of China and won fourth place, which helped her launch her career as a solo artist.
Her song “Metropolis”, a futuristic pop song with a dark vibe, is a dual-language hit that could have been easily recorded by Ariana Grande or Demi Lovato.
Tā bǎ wéixiǎn mái zài shāyǎ shēngdiào
He hides danger in his hoarse voice
bèi huàdìwéiláo de yùzhào
It’s the sign of a trap
tiányánmìyǔ chuàn qǐ jǐ zhū xū miǎo
His sweet words are beads of illusion
Lie has a great way with words. If you want to learn Chinese vocabulary, she might be your best choice. In ”Metropolis”, she uses a few great adjectives such as 扭曲的 Niǔqū de (distorted), and 邪恶 xié’è (wicked).
Want to use Chinese songs to learn the language in greater depth? Then, why not take a few lessons with a qualified tutor who can give you exciting listening tasks based on your favourite songs and current level? Contact us now and we’ll pair you up with a native teacher for a free trial class!