Beginner’s Guide to Jay Chou

5. 千里之外 (Qian Li Zhi Wai) – Faraway

Album: Still Fantasy (依然范特西)
Duet with: Fei Yu-Ching (費玉清)
Year: 2006

Vincent Fang really does write Jay Chou’s best themed songs. Faraway (aka. Beyond a Thousand Miles) also features the voice of Fei Yu-Ching… whom, I have to admit, has a killer voice and outshines Chou himself. It’s just great to have him collaborating with older performers.

Listen to it on | Want to sing it out? Head over to Jay Chou Studio for lyrics and translations.

4. 黃金甲 (Huang Jing Jia) – Golden Armour

Album: The Curse of the Golden Flower Theme
Year: 2006

Also penned by Vincent Fang, Golden Armour pretty much sums up with a rock-ish vibe the grand battle scene in The Curse of the Golden Flower… in which Jay Chou played Gong Li’s eldest son.

Listen to it on | Want to sing it out? Head over to Jay Chou Studio for lyrics and translations.

3. 稻香 (Dao Xiang) – Fragrance of Rice

Album: Capricorn (魔杰座)
Year: 2008

There’s an underlying simplicity when Jay Chou takes out his pen and writes lyrics to his songs. Obviously, it’s really difficult to write life-changing lyrics in such a complicated language. Chinese is very poetic, and if you’re one of the erudite ones, your lyrics can go over most people’s heads [Check Faye Wong – Virtues of the Silent Orchid].

However, when Chou writes… he writes about the simplicity of life. In Fragrance of Rice, he talks about someone who isn’t content with his life… especially in the city, and on the video he sports a pimping country style! He’s promoting rural life being happy with what you’ve got, and always striving for something.

Listen to it on | Want to sing it out? Head over to Jay Chou Studio for lyrics and translations.

2. 好久不見 (Hao Jiu Bu Jian) – Long Time No See

Album: The Era (跨時代)
Year: 2010

In his latest album The Era, Chou continues his all-too-familiar pop zhongguo feng fusion. In it, he also dishes this single written by himself with a song on the exchange between two ex-lovers who haven’t seen each other for a while, an awkward situation turned pure catchy acoustic pop.

Listen to it on | Want to sing it out? Head over to Jay Chou Studio for lyrics and translations.

1. 煙花易冷 (Yan Hua Yi Leng) – Fireworks Cool Easily

Album: The Era (跨時代)
Year: 2010

Finally, another extract from his latest album, Fireworks Cool Easily was penned by the one and only Vincent Fang, and it could possibly be the perfect continuation — a love through the ages — to a song like Hair Like Snow.

Listen to it on | Want to sing it out? Head over to Jay Chou Studio for lyrics and translations.

How is it? Do you think the list should have included other songs?

Which ones? Why?

How did you first get into Chinese music?

What do you think of Jay Chou?


YAM Magazine editor, photographer, blogger, translator and part-time web designer. Film junkie, music junkie… and lately series (a.k.a. TV) junkie.

14 Responses

  1. Julili says:

    Guh! Ttly loving the songs from the new album. Although song no.2 has some very awkward dancing…

    Oki, so what is zhongguo feng fusion? Yes, I did google me but enlighten me some more.

    I’m quite happy u didn’t add any of his rnb songs. I tried to listen to them but Jay Chou is just so meh when he is trying to be cocky. He is better when it comes to ballads.

    I got in to Chinese music thanks 2 u Amy!

    I think that Jay Chou has some amazing song titles and some interesting sounds.

    I think the list should include why u chose the songs u did. By the way, are they in order from which one u like most to least?

    • amy says:

      @Julili, I refer to zhongguo feng as Chinese sounding… I label Jay as fusion because he is a lot more pop… than say 12 Girls Band, who do a lot of new pop rock songs (like Coldplay’s Clocks or El Condor Pasa) in a super Chinese style.

      For the record, I really HATE Jay’s R&B. If he had gotten stuck with R&B, I would’ve preferred going the way of Lee Hom Wang. But then again, both of them branched out in different directions, so it’s all good.

      The order of the list is chronological, because it made sense to listen to the songs as they were released. So it’s logical to listen to #10 a simple pop love song to #1 a completely different Chinese-style pop ballad.

    • amy says:

      @Julili, my favorite songs here are Hair Like Snow, Maltose, Faraway, and Common Jasmine Orange xD

      And some of them include the info why they were added. Marking things like Pop sounds to Chinese style, to Country-ish themes… and especially Ting Mama de Hua. xD

  2. TK says:

    Hey, I’d just like to point out that Youtbe link on song No. 4 is Chrysanthemum Flower Bed (菊花台), not Golden Armour. (Both songs are from the movie, but Golden Armour is a more rockish song).

  3. Nayeli says:

    Loved this article/guide/review whatever, gonna share it with my asian-lovers friend hehe. I’m definitely gonna check out frequentely this website <3 ^^

  4. Timea says:

    I think I would have started with some of his more – how to say – western songs of his, something that is more catchy for foreign people, and then go on to his zhongguo feng songs, which are for people who already understand his music. I would have definitely excluded his country style and the childish songs. People might get an idea Jay is a big child (he is indeed) but in fact he is a genius musician and composer, and I would have chosen songs that display this musical superiorness.

    My list would be like (without numbering)
    * Huo Yuan Jia – perfect to showcase his hiphop-rap-yet-so-chinese style
    * Bencao Gangmu – perfect dance song
    * An Jing – my alltime fave slow song from Jay
    * Wo bu pei
    * The Era
    * Checkmate – the perfect rap song
    * yi fu zhi ming (in the name of the father) – I think this is his best song EVER, the whole music is just mind bogglingly perfect and his relaxed rapping …. it just perfectly reflects the theme and the Italian gangster style. Incomparable.
    * Piao Yi – the theme song of the movie Initial D – unbelievable
    * Nunchucks – how could you leave out nunchuks?? :D I grew to love this song for some reason.
    * Double blade
    * hei se you mo – this song perfectly shows that the guy CAN SING and has a beautiful voice that he usually hides with his rapping…
    * hair like snow
    * golden armour
    * Rosemary – I like the Latino style he perfectly captures in this wonderful song
    * Waipo – such a sweet song written for his beloved grandma.

    • amy says:

      @Timea, I have to admit that I never really actually liked his most “western” influenced stuff. And I actually like his country-style Chinese stuff — I do love country and folk all in itself though. I think the list I made was more to show the variety of music… not so much as to say “listen to this pop song”.

      And as for my including Ting Mama de Hua – I actually explain it:
      “I was a bit reluctant to add this song, but I figured this wasn’t about me. The reason why Ting Mama de Hua makes it to the list is because Jay Chou writes a rap/lullaby that talks about listening to what your mother says. How freaking positive is that?”

      LOL, but I get why people wouldn’t xD

      I almost included Golden Armor as well as Rosemary – I also like the Latino flavor in it. I did try to add something out of every album xD

      Thanks for the comment – and the guys on the Jay Chou forum ;D I just spied.

      How did you guys liked The Green Hornet?

  1. February 14, 2011

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Jenna, YAM Magazine. YAM Magazine said: Here it is: Beginner's Guide to Jay Chou – #YayJay @kamala_chan @Julilichan #Cpop […]

  2. January 20, 2014

    […] my other Peruvian homesick pals. It was one of those evenings when I got my first Jay Chou song [1] — Simple Love […]

  3. May 22, 2014

    […] or my favorite for being so funny, Excuse (藉口) [MV] – but you gotta know Jay Chou (1) to find it […]

  4. December 10, 2014

    […] In this website, we don’t hate Jay. Check Beginner’s Guide to Jay Chou. […]

  5. July 31, 2015

    […] Actually, if Chou’s music wasn’t in Mandarin, those singles could probably create a splash on CMT. Better yet, would you imagine CMT playing country music in Mandarin leaving their core audience scratching their heads? Could you imagine CMT playing Chou’s Mr. Magic (魔術先生) [MV], Wandering Poet (流浪詩人) [MV] or Rice Fragrance (稻香) [MV]. […]

  6. July 18, 2016

    […] por esa rara obsesión que tiene por el country rap. Es tan fuera de lo normal, que me gusta. Todo termina siendo una versión pop de Jay Chou con introducciones de banjo y sus versos rap en Mandarin, lanzando sus enganches pop. Tan raro […]

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.