Saturday, November 08, 2014

Mandarin And Cantonese Covers Of Beatles Songs


When Tunes Only Matter:

For once I shall leave 60s music bloggers not reading but listening. You know these familiar tunes so the lyrics don't matter.  You have added advantage if you know Mandarin or the Chinese dialects and scream, laugh or cry when you hear the words. 

These EP vinyls, 7-inch round, were the MP3s of yesterday. With a little turntable packed with a valve amp, teenagers could play it everywhere, together with the stack of records. Who cares about lyrics. They just a-go-go to whatever tune is on and sweat their hearts out.

This posting couldn't have been without uploads from You Tube by zoundcracker, lvlalaysiaboleh, PsychedelicGomper and p wong. Thank you all.

 Lara Tan n Trailers: Video: PsychedelicGomper

School girl Lara Tan loved singing at school and concerts and was provided with about 40 songs to select for her vinyl debut. Since Mandarin songs had a bigger fan base in South East Asia, Lara recorded covers of current English 60s songs and had them translated into Mandarin by a Ms Violet Chow. The above hit was one. To make the formula work she was backed by The Trailers, one of the most popular bands in Singapore then.

                                           蓓蕾 -  國語版 Video: zoundcracker  

Sexy Billy Tam looks good and sings just as well. Listen to her version of this very popular song but with a Latin touch.  Fiery cheongsam. Billy's Chinese version of western pops were always saleable. It was one of the group's first hits.

                           上官流雲 - 一心想玉人 Video: zoundcracker

The introduction is familiar and sounds hotly convincing but you don't really need a translator to understand the meaning. Good singer he is. Know his name? He sings in Cantonese. Watch out for the part where he goes, mmmmmmmmm... substituting the group's manic screams! That's a professor's music thesis in itself.

 Maggie Wong/Jungle Lynxs Video: lvlalaysiaboleh

Just as sensual, Maggie Wong, a cabaret star, sings this one.  The A-Go-Go dance was popular amongst the Chinese crowd in the 60s and Wong was known as the A-Go-Go Queen.  She has this Beatles band to accompany her.   BTW, what's the plural of lynx? Does it matter?

Chan Po Chu: Video by p wong
This video is a scene from a popular movie starring Chan Po Chu where three guitars and drums depict the typical stage scenario in the 1960s.
Compromised but nobody cares. They just love the music.

 In case you missed it, Videos 1,2 and 4 are in Mandarin; Videos 3 and 5 are in Cantonese.

This article and posting is original. 
Videos from You Tube. This posting is temporary so enjoy them while you may.


Andy Young: Pop Music Not Pills! said...

Thanks to Dick Yip, Chen Hui Shi, Doris Lim and Erwin Maisch for liking the post on FB.


Neatorama presents a guest post from actor, comedian, and voiceover artist Eddie Deezen.

The Beatles are the most talked about, written about, discussed, analyzed, and dissected group in the history of music. Almost all of the Beatles' songs are liked by some segment of Beatle fans.

The actual "most popular" Beatles song is up for grabs. Various polls on the subject have been conducted, with diverse results.

Some like the love songs, some like the hard rock, some like "John songs," some prefer the "Paul songs," some like the later, freakier stuff, and some like the simplicity of the early stuff.

chakap chakap said...

There is even a Chinese Beatles group called, The Cheatles. Check them out on You Tube.

chakap chakap2 said...

Lara Tan & The Trailers with the Beatles hit, "Run for Your Life". This time it's in Mandarin Chinese.

Here is how it's written in Chinese. 櫻櫻和特麗樂隊 (Lara & The Trailers) / 痴情的少女 (Run For Your Life).

Anonymous said...

Hi Andy,
There are no ends of Beatles covers!I have been told your man in video number three was S.K. Liew Yun or Shan Kuan Lew Yun. I remember something about him being a radio DJ? It is interesting that he is photographed outside the old National Theatre. It must have been the number one spot for photos of bands and singers for record covers.

Andy Young: Pop Music Not Pills! said...

Hi Steve,
Thanks for comment and welcome back. University term could have just ended right? I remember going home from a college in NZ in the month of November. Southern hemisphere schedule.

Your much needed piece of information for this ignoramus. Shan Kuan Lew Yun. So that's his handle.

If you more information do write in. Meantime have a good holiday. Hope to see you coming by one of these days. We could meet at Little India again.

Manic Depressive said...

Singapore Shan Kuan Liu Yun sung Chinese Beatles, "Can't Buy Me Love" and "I Saw Her Standing There"in Cantonese.

Listen to his scream in "Can't Buy Me Love". It's on the reverse side and aroused a lot of the ladies around.


Hi Andy,

One I always found very funny was, lose,lose I rub yu ( Rose, Rose I love you )

Very best regards.

Talk Talk Only said...

White man makes fun of the Chinese with Beatles songs:

Liu Shaoqi in the Sky with Diamonds

Yellow River Submarine

Maxwell’s Silver Hammer and Sickle

Hey Zhu De

Here Comes the Sun Yat-sen

Drive My Rickshaw

All You Need is Self Criticism

With a Little Help From My Friends in the Party

Andy Young: Pop Music Not Pills! said...

I guess these jokes come around still, even today so I'm putting them up just to show that certain cock-eyed ideas about people just don't change. To some, we're still back during Fu Manchu'snd Charlie Chan.

It's life.

Andy Young: Pop Music Not Pills! said...

Thanks Herry Yusof for support on FB.


Hi Andy,

Yes, I read your reply and look in now and then to your blog.

I have no plans to visit Singapore at the moment, but if I do, I will be sure to be in contact.

By the way, did you ever see the movie ‘Agogo 67’? I saw that it was re-released in Singapore, but I could not figure out a way to buy it. Maybe next time I visit.


FL said...

Hi, Andy, very interesting blog on the Beatles. They 'conquered' the world in the sixties. The whole music scene changed overnight back then. It happened when I was a teenager in secondary school. My family even bought that same blue cover record just to listen to the Beatles songs in Cantonese ! There were quite a number of Beatles songs in Mandarin & Cantonese, but I couldn't recall if there are versions in Hokkien, eh ? Anyway, thanks.

Andy Young: Pop Music Not Pills! said...

Thank you FL for your valuable comments and suggestions. I always look forward to your positive outlook regarding postings on this blog.

I bought the "blue cover record" as you put it about 3 years ago and treasure it now. There are not too many of such records around today I think.

Like you, I have yet to listen to a Hokkien version of a Beatles song.

Appreciate your regular visit.