You may be wondering why I share a lot of lesser known artists on this blog. The truth is I feel like a lot of lesser known musicians in Taiwan create more unique music, 原子邦妮Astro Bunny, 小男孩樂團Men Envy Children, Vast & Hazy, to name a few. They’re actually a little more ballsy and aren’t afraid to have their very own distinct styles. I really wish they had more exposure. I get bored even with some of the more popular artists in Taiwan that seem to spit out the same type of love songs constantly (won’t name anyone right now).
I feature a good amount of Chinese artists for that same reason. While I have complete love and support for Taiwanese artists (due to my background), I must admit I feel like China is (surprisingly) producing more expressive and unique music at a good pace. Not that China is better or anything but I think it may be due to more opportunities of exposure. There’s tons of music competitions that regular Joe’s can attend, allowing them to present themselves on a very public level. These music competition also train a lot of them to become even better and develop their own voice. Taiwan used to have some like One Million Star 超級星光大道 and Super Idol超級偶像 which produced some amazing artists (Lala徐佳瑩, Yoga Lin 林宥嘉, Eve Ai 艾怡良, Aska Yang楊宗緯, etc.) but in the last five years or so, these shows seem to have fallen out of favor.
Don’t get me wrong, Taiwan has amazing artists but it feels like people will always name the same ones, Jay Chou周杰倫, Mayday, aMEI张惠妹, Jolin Tsai蔡依林, JJ Lin林俊傑 (who’s not Taiwanese but active there), S.H.E, etc. It’s usually the people I grew up listening to. For slightly newer artists from almost a decade ago, Aska Yang楊宗緯, Jam Xiao蕭敬騰, Lala徐佳瑩.
There just aren’t many new artists topping charts or creating iconic music like some of the ones I just named. While charts don’t mean whether the music is necessarily good or bad (because it’s all subjective) it definitely contributes to popularity and exposure. Artists like J.Sheon and Diana Wang stand out because of the risks and effort they take to bring in different styles to their distinct music, smartly taking advantage of their international backgrounds.