Guest Post: Learn Mandarin Chinese Like Lovers Do

I’ll admit it — I’m a huge fan of “the karaoke method” for learning Chinese. It’s why I wrote a few years back about 8 Bands to Help You Learn Mandarin Chinese for Matador. And it’s also why I’m happy to share this post from Yang of Learn Mandarin Now

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Listening to Chinese love songs is a really great way to learn Chinese, and was highly rated in a recent survey we undertook, details of which are consolidated in our blog post: How to Learn Chinese: 50+ bloggers give their tips.

We believe Jocelyn agrees with this, as recall reading one of her own previous blogs on the subject some time ago; so, before we go further, many thanks to her for letting us from Learn Mandarin Now make another guest post here, but this time all about one of our favourite topics: Chinese Love Songs!

Whilst, naturally, everyone has their own tastes in music, listening to Chinese love songs is, perhaps, one of the very best ways to learn Chinese, as it will be sure to get the attention of your girlfriend, boyfriend, wife or husband—and probably find you a “special” tutor into the bargain!

Some of the songs below, both from the past and more modern times, can be considered “classics” and are extremely popular amongst many Chinese people—in some cases being an integral part of Chinese music culture.

Here are four we especially like:

1. The Moon Represents My Heart – 月亮代表我的心

This song is really one of the classic Chinese love songs and almost all Chinese, no matter old or young, will know the lyrics and are happy to sing along with it.

The song was actually written in the early 1970s but it was not until the late 1970s that it came to prominence and fame when Teresa Teng’s(邓丽君) version, which has been described as: love song with a waltz-like lilt”, made the song known throughout Asia.

The essence of the song expressing the feelings that words cannot adequately convey the speaker’s love, whereas the moon, a symbol of romance the world over, can.

2. The Goodbye Kiss – 吻別

First released in 1993 by the famous Jacky Cheung’s (张学友), this song became one of the most popular Chinese love songs in the 1990s. Jacky Cheung, with records sales of over 25 million and internationally famous, is known as one of the “Four Heavenly Kings”(四大天王) of Hong Kong.

In addition to the song, the music video was also very popular in China and, if you ever went to KTV in the country during the 1990s, you would have almost certainly heard people asking for and singing along with this song.

3. Red Bean – 红豆

Written by the famous Hong Kong lyricist Lin Xi(林夕), Red Bean is one of the most famous and successful of Faye Wong’s(王菲) love songs, released in 1998 at the height of her success.

Faye Wong is considered to be one of the “divas” of Chinese music, as well as the queen of “Canto-pop”—and one of the highest paid singers in the region. These days, Faye Wong rarely appears on TV or in movies or releases any new albums, yet when she does do a concert it’s usually sold out in just minutes, no matter how high the ticket prices.

4. Marry Me Today-今天你要嫁给我

Marry Me Today, sung in a duet by famous Taiwanese artists David Tao(陶喆) and Jolin Tsai(蔡依林) is, not surprisingly in view of its title, one of the most popular songs heard at Chinese weddings.

Released in 2006 on David Tao’s fifth studio album “Beautiful”, this song became an almost instant hit for the singer, for whom it subsequently won the “best song” at the prestigious GMA Awards. It can usually be heard at any typical KTV session where couples love to sing it together/to each other.

There are so many Chinese love songs to choose from that we had a hard time selecting only four. In fact, if you have some special love song which has helped you learn Mandarin Chinese, be sure to let us know by visiting our website:

Yang is a serial web entrepreneur whose latest website is He is passionate about learning new languages and cultures. 


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6 thoughts on “Guest Post: Learn Mandarin Chinese Like Lovers Do

  • May 15, 2015 at 9:32 am

    I am guilty of singing some of those in the karaoke 😀

  • May 15, 2015 at 9:36 am

    Thank you for the suggestion! I will look them up.

    My favorite Chinese love song is Wo De Ge Sheng Li (我的歌声里), especially the version by Li Daimo. His voice is so soft! I actually learned it by heart few years ago and it was a great way to memorize new words.

  • May 15, 2015 at 2:34 pm

    Thank you for this post. I have already looked up these songs. I can’t wait to start learning new words. I will be finishing my first Mandarin class on Sunday and this will be a great addition to what I have already learned.

  • May 17, 2015 at 6:57 pm

    Except the last one I even know these songs due to one Chinese class I took nearly five years ago 🙂
    In the end I have to listen to all of them during Karaoke sessions during our holidays in China..

  • May 17, 2015 at 9:19 pm

    This post is pretty cool. You should do more posts about Chinese pop culture, Jocelyn.

    I’m a little embarrassed to admit it, but one of my favourite songs is this one by Stefanie Sun (孫燕姿):

    My love for the song probably has as much to do with the movie (“Turn Left, Turn Right”) the song is taken from as it does with the song itself, though.

  • October 21, 2015 at 9:26 pm

    As a Western guy dating a Chinese girl, our favourites are tian mi mi (甜蜜蜜) and Mouse loves Rice (lǎo shǔ ài dà mǐ) (老鼠愛大米).

    We got together after idle chat on the Internet and just “clicked”. At our first KTV, I sang 甜蜜蜜 and got the reply of 老鼠愛大米 which is why we love them.

    wo yuan yi (我願意) should also be up there – a statement of unconditional love.


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