Friday, December 12, 2008

Cantopop Rules for Headbanging and Air Guitar

It's quite often that Miss B is drawn to Chinese CDs at the public library. I'm not sure if it's because there's a big selection, or if there's something in the aesthetics of the packaging that's appealing to her. Either way, Miss B is usually riveted by the majority of Chinese pop music that she hears. The hugely popular Hong Kong singer Kelly Chen's CD was no exception.

When we first put Kelly Chen's Grace into the CD player, Miss B was eager to listen to it. She quietly played during the first song, but then got a very serious look on her face when track 2 began. She rocked her feet, put her fingers in her mouth, and then began dancing wildly with a big smile. She asked, "Is this my music?" Suddenly her dance moves changed into a style new to her, but familiar to me in that junior high school dance sort of way. Miss B started to shake her hips and her arms with a scowl on her face. At this point I couldn't hold back my laughter, and she laughed back at me, realizing that I was amused by her.

By track 3 I heard hints of metal and Miss B kept up the energetic moves, kicking her feet and stopping to point at pictures in my CMJ magazine. She then started to talk nonsensically to a picture before she began singing into an imaginary microphone.

When her father got home, DJ B wanted to put the CD on again. As the music began, she ran around the room like she was in flight, with her arms in the air. She swooped, and ended a dance with a grand, dramatic pose. As the more rock-oriented track 2 began, she again sang into her imaginary microphone with a strange, serious expression on her face. She transitioned into a fast dance, shaking her shoulders before putting on a rock-star face. She held both hands in front of her like she was motioning for us to "Stop!" and asked us to dance with her. By the third track (kind of a disco/metal tune), she was waving her fingers over her chest as if playing an air guitar. She rocked out in true head-banger fashion, stood in place scowling, then screamed, "Go away everybody!"

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