Red songs are basically patriotic songs in praise of the
motherland and the leaders. There is a surge in the singing of such songs in
China, which coincide with the 90th anniversary of the founding of the
Communist Party of China.
Bo Xilai, who is the charismatic Chongqing party secretary,
is heavily involved in popularising red songs. Back in 2008 he was dismayed to
discover many school children unable to songs like 歌唱祖国
(song of the motherland) and other inspirational songs, and thus he went to
encourage the singing of such songs among the youngsters. Adults were also encouraged to sing, and soon it became a very popular pastitime activity in Chongqing.
Many proponents of Red songs also see singing Reds songs as
a way of achieving social harmony, by reminding Chinese people about the
socialist root of the new China (rejecting crass materialism) and to uplift the spirit of the people. The 30 years of reform and opening of China has certaintly resulted in rapid development in terms of ‘hardware’, but the software part is still lacking.
Chongqing city has recommended 45 Red songs. These are divided in 3 parts, those songs that first appeared in the first 30 years (90 to 60 years ago), those in the next 30 years and those in the last 30 years.
Here are 3 songs from the last 30 years group:
我爱你中国 I Love You China singer” 王莹 (wang2 ying2)
春 天 的 故 事 (Story of the Spring) by Timi Zhuo
This song is dedicated to Deng Xiaoping. Timi Zhuo is not the original singer, but sang this song very well.
One day in the Spring of 1979
An old person drew a circle on the south sea side of China.
Like mythical magic cities rose one after the other.
Gold mountains miraculously aggregated.
Thunders of Spring woke up boundless skies in and out.
The warm splendor of Spring permeated both sides of the big river.
Ah, China! China!
You have marched the magnificent landscape with new steps
Entering the renewed Spring.
It was another day in Spring of 1992.
An old person composed a poem on the south sea side of China.
Between Heaven and Earth there arose boisterous waves of Spring.
On the journey of quest vast number of sails was hoisted.
The breeze of Spring greened up the Eastern land of divine.
The rain of Spring nurtured China the native land.
Ah, China! China!
You have launched a new 100 year picture scroll.
Exhibiting the profusely colorful Spring.