Power Station – Don’t Forget the Fundamentals

Taiwan loves country music!

At least Taiwan’s rock duo Power Station (動力火車, Dong Li Huo Che) does. And so does Jay Chou, by the way [1][2][3].

Honestly, I wasn’t going to post this because I thought the song was so-so with a really sad music video, but while doing research on Gary Burr, Victoria Shaw and Sarah Buxton, I realized they had written Jim Brickman and Lady Antebellum’s Never Alone, which launched Lady Antebellum into the music scene in 2007. This, of course, led to their Grammy nods for Best New Artist in 2008, Country win (and nods) in 2010, and their (almost) Grammy takeover in 2011 with their single Need You Now [MV].

I’m not a really big fan of Lady Antebellum, hence me not knowing Power Station was doing a cover of the song as soon as the melody started, even though I immediately said “This is so country ballad.” However, I did think this was a brilliant crossover post! I mean, would you have ever thought to put “country ballad” in the same line as “Mandarin lyrics” — I know, I wouldn’t. And I’m sure CMT wouldn’t have either!

The song, titled Don’t Forget the Fundamentals (莫忘初衷, Mo Wang Chu Zhong) — fundamentals as in your original intentions,  is the second single from Power Station’s 9th studio album, simply titled Light (光). The lyrics were adapted to Mandarin by Anson Yen (顏璽軒), who has written a bunch of songs for Power Station and another bunch of artists such as S.H.E, Fahrenheit, and Rainie Yang.

The music video (which totally blows the Lady Antebellum one) was directed by Jin Zhuo (金卓), and features Street Stall Brother (地摊哥), real name: Pei Wen Zhu (裴文柱), who participated in CCTV’s reality TV show Chinese Dream (中国梦想秀) last year [1]. Son of an Opera actors couple, in love, he married his wife and soon got laid off, so they were forced to open a small street stall to make a living.

The song and music video obviously refer to their struggles and their dreams, and it’s ultimately a very touching one once you learn their story. In contrast to the English version of the song [1], which read a lot like a prayer at times, this version reads a lot like a friend singing to a friend in need-  “Don’t forget your original intentions, don’t forget that year, that day when you set off to reach the dream in your heart. It’s difficult to escape from the hurt, we’re destined for heartache, but don’t forget that you’ve got me, old friend, to accompany you.

You can get the lyrics to the song here. But you might want to run it through Google Translate.

You can read a bit about Chinese Dream here, and what it means for Chinese television programs. It also seems to tie with China’s plans for the next ten years, which is to base their policy in that elusive “Chinese Dream.

I’ll also leave you with the Lady Antebellum version.


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

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