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Episode 17


The music of Taiwan reflects the diverse culture of Taiwanese people. Taiwan has undergone several economic, social and political changes through its cultural history and Taiwanese music reflects those issues in their own way.

In this episode I take a trip to the 60's and 70's exploring a psychedelic and pop side of the amazing culture.


溫梅桂  張秀美 - 山地小姑娘  Little Mountain Girl (by Mei-Gui Wen  Hsiu-Mei Chang)
銀石樂隊 The Silverstones  VOL 14  
夜港邊 - 孟君
Yao Su Yong - HK - TWA - Unkown
Various - Lao Kou Kou  60s Songs From Taiwan c
文夏 台中的賣花姑娘
擦皮鞋的少年家 洪第七
銀石樂隊 The Silverstones  VOL 14   
鄧麗君 晶晶
幸福男聲合唱團 - 白牡丹
銀石樂隊 The Silverstones  VOL 14   
Wu Shao Chu (吳秀珠) - I don't know that I love you (我不知道我愛你)
苦戀歌 胡美紅
Yao Su Yong  The Telstars Combo 姚蘇蓉電星樂隊 偷心的人 1968
銀石樂隊 The Silverstones  VOL 14   Side-A 1 2 3 4 5
陳芬蘭 - 桃花過渡  Peach Blossom Takes the Ferry
又見秋蓮 - 鳳飛飛
Hu Min-Hong - Twin Duck Shadow
Various - Lao Kou Kou  - Unknown
Various - Lao Kou Kou  - Unknown
Various - Lao Kou Kou  - Unknown
Various - Lao Kou Kou  - Unknown

Musical History and Styles

The music of the country has adopted a mixed style. As a country rich in Chinese folk culture and with many indigenous tribes with their own distinct artistic identity, various styles of folk music are appreciated in Taiwan. In addition, Western classical music and pop music in various forms are highly appreciated by the Taiwanese population. Taiwan is an important Mandopop (Mandarin pop music) hub

With the arrival of the Kuomintang-led Republic of China government in 1949, native Taiwanese culture was suppressed, and Standard Chinese (Mandarin) was promoted as the official language. This led to a break in tradition in parts of the island, and ended in 1987, when martial law was lifted and a revival of traditional culture began. (See Taiwanese localization movement.)
Instrumental music includes multiple genres, such as beiguan and nanguan. Nanguan originally hails from Quanzhou, while it is now most common in Lukang and is found across much of the island.

Taiwanese puppetry (hand-puppet theater) and Taiwanese opera, two genres of spectacle that are strongly related to music, are very popular, while the latter is often considered the only truly indigenous Han form of music still extant today.[2]
Holo folk music is most common today on the Hengchun Peninsula in the southernmost part of the island, where performers sing accompanied by yueqin (moon lute), which is a type of two-stringed lute.[3] While the Hengchun yueqin plays only five tones, the pentatonic music can become diverse and complex when combined with the seven tones of Taiwanese Hokkien. Famous folk singers include Chen Da and Yang Hsiuching.


Taiwanese opera is popular among the Hakka, and has influenced the tea-picking opera genre. The most distinctive form of Hakka music are mountain songs, or shan'ge, which are similar to Hengchun folk music. Bayin instrumental music is also popular.

Aboriginal music


Of the two broad divisions of Taiwanese aborigines, the plains-dwellers have been largely assimilated into Han culture, while the mountain-dwelling tribes remain distinct. The Amis, Bunun, Paiwan, Rukai and Tsou are known for their polyphonic vocals,[4] of which each has a unique variety.
Once dying, aboriginal culture has undergone a renaissance since the late 20th century. A full-time aboriginal radio station, "Ho-hi-yan" was launched in 2005[5] with the help of the Executive Yuan, to focus on issues of interest to the indigenous community. [Listen to Ho-hi-yan; requires Windows Media Player 9]. This came on the heels of a "New wave of Indigenous Pop,"[6] as aboriginal artists such as A-mei (Puyuma tribe), Difang (Amis tribe), Pur-dur and Samingad (Puyuma) became international pop stars.
The 1991 formation of the Formosa Aboriginal Dance Troupe was another major contributor to this trend, while the surprise mainstream success of "Return to Innocence", the theme song to the 1996 Olympic Games, further popularized native musics. "Return to Innocence" was made by Enigma, a popular musical project and sampled the voices of an elderly Amis couple, Kuo Ying-nan and Kuo Hsiu-chu. When the couple found out that their recording had become part of an international hit, they filed suit and, in 1999, settled out of court for an unidentified amount.


The Bunun's original home was on Taiwan's west coast, in the central and northern plains, but some have more recently settled in the area around Taitung and Hualien.
Unlike the other indigenous peoples of Taiwan, the Bunun have very little dance music. The best-studied element of traditional Bunun music is improvised polyphonic song. Folk instruments include pestles, five-stringed zithers and the jaw harp.
In modern times, David Darling, an American cellist, created a project to combine cello and Bunun traditional music, resulting in an album titled Mudanin Kata. The Bunun Cultural and Educational Foundation, founded in 1995, was the first organization established to help promote and sustain Taiwanese aboriginal culture.

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