Cantonese songs were once trending in the 70s. It was one of the most popular Asian pop music. However, this popularity slowly decayed and disappeared from the mainstream culture. To redeem ourselves I have this list of songs that I recommend canto pop beginners to enjoy. Disclaimer: not every single song is PG 13.
1.One plus one by AGA and Gin Lee
Agatha Kong was a Hong Kong’s very own singer and songwriter. One was the original version of the song and Plus One is a duet version of the song, adding Gina’s heavenly voice. The song is about a loner looking for love and asking the stars why she can never find love. She is worried that she will never find love. She said she has been in many relationships but none of them were fruitful. In other words, the persona is looking for love but she cannot find it.
2.My Vow by Pakho Chow
I have decided that this will be my wedding song, if I ever get married. This song is a storyline. From the persona appreciating how idealistic his partner is to proposing to his loved one. He promised love that will last until nature death parts them, He said he will make a vow that cancels all his love’s worry. The persona said that he will kneel down in front of his love with a bouquet of flowers and promise her that he will go on adventures with her and go through all kinds of ups and lows with her. Overall, this is a beautiful song and it paints a beautiful picture of being with someone forever.
3.Gao Shan Di Gu (High and Low) by Phil Lam
This is my go-to break up song. It talks about how after the break-up there is always one person that will live happily and continue with life while the other is suffering from the agonizing pain. The persona of this song is the one suffering and it makes him feel like the other person is at the high while he is at his low.
4.Wang Chuan Qiu Shui (Looking through the autumn water) by Dough-Boy, Genius f, Seanie P, Tommy Grooves
I never imagined Canto pop have such great hip hop songs. This is well made and very nicely sounded. The lyrics is criticizing people on the internet faking their lives. They listed some examples of posts that we always see online. For example, people that take selfies and add some unrelated captions or breaking news about a country they never cared about before. In short, this song is just calling everyone on the internet fake.
5.Rashomon by Juno Mak and Kay Tse
This song is a trilogy, and this song is a finale. The first two songs talked about the boy perspective, telling how in love he is with this girl. However, this song started with a girl saying that she is grateful that this boy liked her for 600 weeks but she never had feelings for him. She said that she never liked Hello Kitty but the boy always think that she likes it. There are discussions talking about whether the boy died and this is the girl’s confession about the past. Or she just heard about this boy from high school reunion and shocked that he is so obsessed with her without knowing what she truly likes.
Cantonese pop is no longer worldly recognized anymore with increasing competition among other Asian countries. However, mother tongue always has a specially place in my heart.