Famous Chinese Songs

China is the third biggest country in the world, so it’s no wonder they have a lot of talented musicians.

Chinese music is very eclectic, and you can find the normal love songs and rock, but also more niche genres.

Here are some famous Chinese songs we hope you’ll enjoy.

1. “You Exist in My Song” by Wanting Qu

Song Year: 2012

This stunningly emotional and beautiful song has been covered in many languages, making it a global hit. The song is about finding love when you least expect it and being surprised by how hard you can fall for someone you just met.

In the song, Qu sings about how this new love has entered every corner of her brain and heart, including her songs! The ballad is tender and powerful, expressing the fear and excitement of new love.

2. “The One and Only” by Wang Leehom

Song Year: 2001

As you can probably guess from the title, this song is a romantic ballad. However, it’s a melancholy track about losing love. The narrator sings to their lover that they are the only one for them, and they love them more than anything.

Unfortunately, their partner does not feel the same, and their love is fading. The narrator feels desperate and strained as they don’t want to lose this love but know it has become one-sided and incomplete.

3. “Tonight Is Unforgettable” by Nan Wang Jin Xiao

Song Year: 2002

This song is patriotic and confident, as Xiao sings about the power of the motherland (China) and how no matter what this nation faces, they will prevail and care for one another. The song celebrates the country and welcomes visitors, new friends, old friends, young folks, older people, and everyone in between to enjoy the motherland on this unforgettable evening.

A beautiful theme throughout the song is that no matter what part of this massive country you are from or live in, everyone is a part of the motherland and can rejoice together.

4. “The Most Romantic Thing” by Cyndi Chao

Song Year: 1994

This sweet and playful song is light-hearted with an infectious puppy-love vibe. The lyrics list some of the most romantic things, like growing old with your lover or listening to music together.

Chao sings about how she wants to wrap herself in her lover and do all the romantic things together and describes the relationship as a dream of heaven. It’s one of the most romantic famous Chinese songs that doesn’t even mention the word “love.”

5. “My Exciting Solitary Life” by Elva Hsiao

Song Year: 2000

This song has classic pop energy with emotional vocals but is bouncy, delivering a meaningful message backed by fun music. The lyrics sing about being alone and how it can be isolating, but at the same time, being alone can be exciting because it gives you a chance to find yourself.

The song is powerful but cute, with lyrics about learning to be independent and finding adventure even when alone. It’s easy to bop your head along to the beat, but when you know the meaning of the lyrics, the song is all the more beautiful.

6. “Friends” by Emil Chau

Song Year: 1997

While many songs focus on romance and love, this song emphasizes the significance and value of platonic love. As the title implies, the song is about the importance of having supportive friends who can be there for you.

The singer discusses the lonely and shattered feeling after a heartbreak but also talks about how having friends helps. In return, he promises to always be there for his friends too.

7. “Silence” by Jay Chou

Song Year: 2007

Jay Chou is one of the most successful Chinese pop singers and has a diverse discography of emotional songs, including this one. These meaningful lyrics could bring you to tears, and his soft and heavy voice adds to the depth of this track.

Chou sings about his ex moving on to another man and how much he misses her and regrets breaking up. Now, all he hears is silence, and he feels he will never move on. Nevertheless, he kindly reassures his ex that he will be okay, and wants her to be happy, even if it means he’s hurt.

8. “Super Star” by S.H.E

Song Year: 2003

A popular and edgy Chinese song, “Super Star,” is about how the singer’s lover is their superstar, even if they see themselves as a shining light. It’s a brilliantly deep song about picking someone you care about up when they’re down and reminding them that to you, they’re everything.

It’s an upbeat punky song with an English chorus, making it popular in many countries outside China. You can feel the narrator’s devotion and affection in the song, making it a powerful anthem.

9. “Big Fish” by Zhou Shen

Song Year: 2017

“Big Fish” is a delicate song with poetic and slightly cryptic lyrics. While many famous Chinese songs have more straightforward lyrics, Shen uses metaphors in this heartfelt ballad.

At the center of the song is the classic lesson “If you love something, let it go,” as the narrator tells the story of letting a big, wild fish free in the ocean, even though this brings her great pain. Although the narrator loves the fish more than anything, she knows it doesn’t belong on land, so she has to let it go forever.

10. “Little Apple” by Chopstick Brothers

Song Year: 2014

“Little Apple” is a funny song from this Chinese singing duo of brothers. It was extremely popular for the summer and has many funky dances to go along with it. The video and lyrics are undeniably weird in a quirky and silly way, making it easy to love.

Technically, it’s a love song, and the apple is the narrator’s lover, but the message gets lost in the weird music video and bouncy music.

11. “The Moon Represents My Heart” by Teresa Teng

Song Year: 1997

Teresa Tang is an iconic Chinese singer with an ethereal voice that melts out of her mouth. This song is one of her most well-known and successful tracks, as she sings to her lover about how deep and genuine her affection is.

In the lyrics, she explains how the steadiness and brightness of the full moon represent her neverending love for her partner. The track is soft and subtle but is supremely romantic and sweet.

12. “I’m Willing” by Wang Fei

Song Year: 1994

“I’m Willing” is a heavenly song created with Wang Fei’s tender and romantic voice. The lyrics begin by talking about how much the narrator misses their lover and is counting the seconds until they come home.

Their heart aches when they are without their partner, so they vow to do anything and everything to be with their partner and love them forever. The singer even says she’ll give up her name even for a few moments with her beloved.

13. “I Love Taiwanese Girls” by MC Hot Dog

Song Year: 2006

This song is definitely not promoted by the Chinese government and is one of the more controversial and famous Chinese songs. But if you want a break from the soft and slow Chinese music, this edgy rap song is perfect. As you can guess, MC Hot Dog raps about loving Taiwanese girls in the song and lists R-rated reasons he loves them.

14. “Sweet Honey Honey” by Teresa Teng

Song Year: 1979

Another classic by Teresa Teng, this darling song captures the adorable spirit of puppy love and infatuation. In the song, she sings about feeling like she’s forgotten everything up to the moment she met her love and how every little thing about them makes her happy. It’s a simple and romantic song about being wholly in love and young.

15. “Simple Love” by Jay Chou

Song Year: 2001

Another Jay Chou song, “Simple Love,” has a boy band-style sound and a sweet message about wanting to scream about your love from the rooftops.

The lyrics take you on a journey of love, where Chou sings about sitting by the river, walking while holdings hands, going to his grandmother’s house together, and other ordinary activities that are made beautiful and special because the love of his life is there.

16. “Just Friends” by David Tao

Song Year: 1997

David Tao’s song “Just Friends” has been covered by people around the world, so it’s a more well-known Chinese track. His combination of R&B and soft rock is easy to love, and this song uses his staple sound to deliver heartbroken lyrics.

He sings about the pain of only being friends with the girl he loves, even though that’s what he says he wants. He asks to be friends because he’d rather be her friend than nothing at all.

17. “Lovable Woman” by Jay Chou

Song Year: 2008

This song has everything to make it a classic romantic ballad. Jay Chou sings about loving this woman more than anything and how her beauty makes him blush and feel flustered in the best way.

He wants to travel the universe with her and feels like he can do anything if she is with him. He vows to protect her and love her, making this simple but sweet love song easy to love and identify with.

18. “Hey Girl Look This Way” by Richie Ren

Song Year: 1998

The charming beat of this song and super simple Chinese lyrics make it a popular choice for karaoke! It’s often used in Chinese language classes, and the lyrics are literally about getting a girl’s attention so she’ll look at the narrator.

He sings about how he’s cute and that she should give him attention. It’s a little awkward, but with a surprise harmonic and Richi Ren’s sweet voice, you’ll find it endearing.

19. “A Little Happiness” by Hebe Tien

Song Year: 2015

“A Little Happiness” is one of the most famous contemporary songs in China, as it was made for a feature film that was also popular.

In the song, the narrator laments about not appreciating their lover when they had them and how they need to take more time to love the little things in their life. She regrets letting her lover go, as she now knows they were her happiness.

20. “Light Years Away” by G.E.M.

Song Year: 2016

This song has powerful and poetic lyrics about love. The narrator sings about how they feel so in love that they’ve gone insane and feel like they could cause earthquakes and tidal waves.

In the grand scheme of the universe, their love is small, but it still glows as fiery and bright as a star. At the center of the song, the meaning is that even in a world of unadulterated chaos, they can still have something beautiful like true love.

21. “Those Years” by Xia Hu

Song Year: 2011

This charming song about memories and growing up is popular in China. The gentle piano and smooth vocals make for a soothing and mesmerizing song.

The lyrics focus on childhood and early school memories, like tying a tie as a young boy or combing your hair as a little girl. The narrator says he misses those simple years and sings directly to someone from his childhood who is now in love with.

22. “Stranger In The North” by Namewee

Song Year: 2016

This song is very different from anything else on this list. It’s told in a story format about a stranger from the Northern part of China and combines sweet vocals and edgy raps.

The main themes of the lyrics concern working for a living and chasing your dreams, with the stranger as an example of someone who feels lost in life.

23. “Actress” by Joker Xue

Song Year: 2019

A song about fake emotions, this track calls out the narrator’s partner for being overdramatic and manipulating him. The lyrics use many allusions to acting and theater to illustrate how she will say or do anything to get her way.

He’s frustrated with these performances she puts on and just wants her to let her walls down and be honest and genuine with him so they can love each other fully. Her actions lead him to stop caring about the relationship, which he says at the end of the song.

24. “The Distance of Love” by Eric

“The Distance of Love” by Eric

Song Year: 2014

This song is about needing space after a breakup. The narrator is heartbroken and wants to stay as far away from his former lover as possible. He doesn’t want to be friends or stay in touch because he doesn’t want her to see how lonely and hurt he is.

He feels like every time he sees her, the goodbye gets more painful, so he wants to create distance and make a clean break. It speaks to the pain of a breakup and how not everyone can “still be friends,” as so many people say.

25. “The Brightest Star In The Night Sky” by Escape Plan

Song Year: 2012

One of the most famous Chinese songs in the pop genre, this bop by Escape Plan is about losing hope and finding it again in yourself or the ones you love. The narrator talks about trying to find their way again when they feel like everything is hopeless. But in the worst times, the brightest star can guide them, and their beloved is that star.

It’s a moving pop song with sweet lyrics and a familiar sound that is soothing. It touches on existential subjects like the meaning of the world and the narrator’s place or purpose.

26.“Suddenly Missing You” by Elva Hsiao

Song Year: 2004

Another popular song by Elva Hsiao, this track has a slick R&B sound that is moody and edgy. The lyrics are about how you can be fine after a breakup but then one tiny thing reminds you of your former lover and you start missing them all over again. The song is relatable and heartbreaking, as anyone who has ever gone through a breakup knows how long it can take to heal and fully move on.

27. “The Ordinary Road” by Pu Shu

Song Year: 2014

“The Ordinary Road” is a super famous Chinese song in many countries. It’s a soft rock song with deep lyrics about navigating life. The narrator says they once tried to take the road less traveled, go above and beyond, and achieve their dreams.

While they’re not defeated, they now understand that all you can do is take life one day at a time and learn to appreciate the beautiful things in your life. The message is to not waste your life wanting more but to find happiness in the mundane and simple things.

28. “Accident” by Joker Xue

Song Year: 2019

This introspective song is about feeling like you don’t belong in the world. In this song, the narrator says they’re at their best when things are falling apart because they feel like they don’t know how to exist in the world as everyone else does.

It’s a sad but relatable song, and the lyrics are directed at someone who seems to fit in, someone the narrator envies. They feel like they don’t deserve to be in the world, but then the lyrics progress to the point where the narrator wonders what it even means to be worth love and life.

39. “Don’t Think Of Me“ by Jason Zhang Jie

Song Year: 2017

This song is tender and sweet, as the narrator asks his former lover to forget about him and move on if they’re not going to be together. The relationship ended quickly and he’s hurt, but he wants to move on without her. Even though he doesn’t understand why they didn’t work, he’s not willing to drag out the pain and doesn’t want to hear an apology.

40. “Most Beautiful Sun“ by Jason Zhang Jie

Song Year: 2007

This track is a love song about the narrator’s beloved who makes the world better and more beautiful just by being alive. The song has an enticing beat and bold vocals that lure you in.

The lyrics talk about how confident he is in his love and how everything, from the sun to the moon to the stars to the flowers is more beautiful and stronger because his lover exists. She makes the world seem brighter and makes him feel fearless.

41. “Gentleman” by Joker Xue

Song Year: 2016

“Gentleman” is a slow and meaningful song, and the central theme is acting properly and behaving when you want to break down.

He sings about wearing the collared shirt and staying in his corner when all he wants to do is reach out and grab his lover. He says no matter what he does or how he looks, he will always just be playing the role of a gentleman and will never actually be one.

42. “The Viral Factor” by Jason Zhang Jie

Song Year: 2011

This song uses intense lyrics and an upbeat sound. Jason Zhang Jie sings about wars, battles, warriors, and blood, but despite these dark images, the song is optimistic and inspiring. It’s about standing your ground and believing in yourself no matter how hard things become. The narrator talks about his passion and integrity, which is why he fights.

43. “Just Met You” by Li Yugang

Song Year: 2017

“Just Met You” is about falling in love from the moment you see someone. The meeting is fleeting and ends quickly, leaving the narrator at a loss for his new love. He hopes and prays that they’ll see each other again one day, but for now, all he can do is dream about how beautiful and amazing she was.

44. “Rush To The Dead Summer” by Xia Hu

Song Year: 2017

A soft and ethereal song, this track is heartfelt and moving. It’s another beautiful one from Xia Hu, and his voice is simply angelic. It’s a melancholy but sweet song about moving on and growing up. It can sometimes feel like you’ve lost time because life moves so quickly and before you know it your youth is gone.

45. “Nothing to My Name“ by Cui Jian

Song Year: 1989

“Nothing to My Name” is a popular Chinese rock song about a man who is in love with a girl but she mocks and rejects him because he has nothing.

The hardcore sound is edgy and engaging, while the lyrics are painful and thought-provoking, as it touches on topics of wealth and class. This classic rock song is powerful and moving, cementing it as one of the best Chinese rock songs.

46. “Evening Primrose“ by Li Xianglan

Song Year: 1943

This old Chinese song is still one of the most popular pop songs and new artists cover it all the time. In the song, she sings about the beauty of the night and flowers in the garden, talking about how delicate life is but how it can be so amazing at the same time. It’s a classic song that everyone in China knows.

47. “Goodbye” by G.E.M.

Song Year: 2015

This sad punk rock song is about how you always think about how beautiful the beginning of a relationship was when it’s falling apart. The singer reminisces on the beginning of her love affair and begs her partner not to end things because she doesn’t want to say goodbye. By the end of the song, she accepts the goodbye and decides to move on.

48. “Fearless” by Jay Chou

Song Year: 2006

If you didn’t figure it out by now, Jay Chou is one of the most popular and successful singers in China. Another one of his fantastic songs is “Fearless.”

This song is a little rougher than his softer tracks, so it has more edge and audacity. It’s a fun song to sing along to and Jay Chou hits some impressive high notes in it. The lyrics are about fighting through life and never admitting defeat.

49. “Childhood” by Lo Ta-yu

Song Year: 1981

As the title implies, the song is about childhood! Lo Ta-yu has a low Elvis-like voice and a soft rock vibe, making for an edgy and fun song about being young and free.

When you’re a kid, so much is done for you, and everything you could need is at your fingertips. It’s a beautiful time of learning and growing, but many children want to grow up too fast. The song talks about slowing down and loving life.

50. “Silence Is Golden” by Leslie Cheung

Song Year: 1988

The lesson of this song is that sometimes, it’s best to keep quiet and let things happen as they may. It’s a lively and optimistic song about taking experiences from your past and growing from them to become a more tolerant and thoughtful person. Words can hurt people, so being aware of what you say and how it affects the people around you is essential to being a good person.

51. “The Same Song” by Mao A Min

Song Year: 1994

This song is often played or performed during Chinese New Year celebrations, as it’s about beginnings, endings, and ongoing love.

In the song, Mao A Min sings about joyful reunions and memories of smiles and happiness. But she also sings about hope for the future. Even though it’s “the same song” she’s sung a thousand times, she still feels hopeful for the future and grateful for the past.

52. “Wild Bloom (Inseperable)” by Eason Shen

Song Year: 2020

This adorable song by Eason Shen is about how the girl he loves is like a wildflower. She is beautiful but thrives in the chaos of the world and cannot be contained.

He says even though she may be wild, they are still inseparable and he knows they will be together forever. The central message is that wanting to let his partner be herself and be free because he is confident in their love.

53. “Woman Flower” by Anita Mui

Song Year: 1997

Anita Mui is an icon in Chinese music, and one of her most popular songs is “Woman Flower.” She sings about planting a flower in her heart that only blooms when her beloved is near. However, the flower also grows branches, and weeds can surround it as she metaphorically sings about the hardships that come along with the beauty of love.

54. “The Ocean” by Zhang Yusheng

Song Year: 2021

Like some other songs mentioned on this list, “The Ocean” has been covered many times by various artists. But Zhang Yusheng brings soft and folksy rock vibes to the unmatched lyrics.

He sings about feeling like the love of his life drifted off into the ocean, disappearing from his life. The lyrics are not literal but metaphorical, as he feels like she left without warning and begs her to return and love him.

55. “Blue and White Porcelain” by Jay Chou

Song Year: 2007

Ending this list with another fantastic song by Jay Chou, this track is beautifully written and romantic.

In it, Jay Chou compares his love to a stunning blue and white porcelain vase, something coveted in China with layered meanings. He contemplates the beauty of the vase while he waits for his lover to arrive and sings about how perfect she is, like the blue and white porcelain.

Best Chinese Songs, Final Thoughts

Chinese music has a lot to offer the world, from edgy and moody rock songs to sweet and sugary pop songs to tender and romantic ballads. These famous Chinese songs are well-known in China but deserve more recognition, so download these sensational tracks and jam out to the best music from China!

No matter what kind of music you enjoy, there’s a Chinese song out there that will suit your taste and open you up to a whole new world of music.

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