Thu, Mar 03, 2011 - Page 2 News List

Singer calls for action, not words in music promotion

CHANGE OF PACE:At least 50 percent of the bands at this year’s Megaport Music Festival will be from the south and organizers are targeting general music lovers

By Loa Iok-sin  /  Staff Reporter

Much-respected senior musician Wen Hsia (文夏) yesterday criticized the government for what he called its empty promises to promote the music industry and failure to offer help to senior musicians.

Wen made the comments in front of a Government Information Office (GIO) official during a press conference in Taipei to announce this year’s Megaport Music Festival to be held in Kaohsiung on Saturday and Sunday.

At the press event, GIO Publishing Department director Chang Chung-jen (張崇仁) said the government has always been -supportive of the music industry.

“We don’t organize our own bands, we don’t write songs, but we’ve always supported publication of music, and sponsored music festivals like this one,” Chang said.

In response to Chang’s comments, Wen, who was also on the stage, said he has “heard the same thing over and over again for the past 50 years.”

“I wish the government would actually take action, not just give us empty words,” Wen added.

As Chang appeared to be embarrassed by Wen’s comment, Wen quickly defused the situation by saying that he believed that Chang was sincere in his words and was confident that the government would translate words into action this time.

The Megaport Music Festival, an annual event since 2006, is one of the biggest music festivals in southern Taiwan.

Festival spokesman Gary Chiang (江季剛) said the festival aims to provide a stage for bands in southern Taiwan, since bands from northern Taiwan are the mainstream in the pop music market.

“We always make sure that at least 50 percent of the bands playing in Megaport are from the south,” Chiang said.

This year, however, they are also designing the music festival to appeal to music lovers of all age groups and not just young rock fans.

“We’ve redone some well-known oldies, and invited the much--respected senior singer, composer and songwriter Wen Hsia to perform with a rock band,” he said. “We hope connect the festival to the location where it’s held, and also make it suitable for all age groups.”

Born into a wealthy family in 1928, Wen has dedicated his life to music. He studied music in Japan, plays several musical instruments and became a well-known singer, in addition to writing more than 2,000 songs.

Besides Wen, rock legend Wu Bai (伍佰) and singer Jeanie Hsieh (謝金燕) will also perform at the music festival.

The festival is organized by the Kaohsiung City Bureau of Cultural Affairs, the Kaohsiung City Cultural Foundation, and The Wall Music.

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