Wednesday, June 30, 2010

A-Mei Sweeps Golden Melody Awards

Taiwan's premier music awards night, the Golden Melody Awards (金曲奖), were held on the weekend, and A-Mei (阿妹) was the evening's most successful artist. The "Pride of Taiwan" was named Best Female Mandarin Singer, and she also won Song of the Year and Best Mandarin Album for Amit. Amit, released almost exactly a year ago, also won awards for Best Lyricist, Best Arranger and Best Producer.

It's the second time A-Mei, also known as Zhāng Huì Mèi (张惠妹), has won the major Golden Melody Award; she was named Best Female Singer back in 2002. The sometimes controversial, sometimes cutting edge A-Mei is a regular nominee at the Golden Melody Awards. This year she was a clear favourite going into the ceremony, with the most number of nominations - ten. Her Amit album, more rock-oriented than previous offerings, had already been one of the winners at Hong Kong's Metro Mandarin Awards last year.

In the Male category, David Tao (陶喆; pinyin: Táo Zhé) finally broke a long drought to win Best Male Mandarin Singer, after been nominated eight times in the past. Regarded as a pioneer of Taiwanese R&B, the 40 year-old veteran was born into a show business family. He grew up in Hong Kong and the United States, and first entered the music world as a songwriter for other artists. Tao released his self-titled debut album in 1997 and was named Best Newcomer that year. Subsequent album releases were irregular, and last year he released just his sixth studio album, Opus 69. Ironically, Opus 69 is regarded by critics and fans alike as one of his weaker efforts, so this year's Golden Melody award is probably more in recognition of his overall career.

Best Mandarin Band Award went to 1976, indie rockers now in their fifteen year of playing their Britpop influenced tunes. Hip hop band Da Xi Men (大囍门) were named Best Vocal Group. A special Judges' award was given to the four members of Taiwan super group Super Band (纵贯线): Luo Dayou, Zhou Huajian, Jonathan Lee and Zhang Zhenyue - all legends of the Taiwan music scene.

A full list of winners can be found here.

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