Today’s Doodle pays tribute to one of Teng’s most well-known songs, “The Moon Represents My Heart.”
Meaning of the Song
Like magic, love appears is replenished through time. And like magic, the moon appears to change through time. Bit does the moon really change over time?
It’s always the same moon, it’s only how it is viewed that makes it seem different. From certain angles, the moon reflects light in a certain way, from other angles, it reflects light in other ways.
And yet love, though seemingly different, never changes. Underneath the veil of a half-moon, or crescent moon or moonlessness, there is a full moon just waiting to appear.
Add to all this the significance of the moon in Chinese culture, and you get a great song.
Who is Teresa Teng?
Born in Yunlin, Taiwan, on January 29, 1953. Teng was able to move her audiences as much with the sweetness of her voice as with the power of melancholy emotion
She started her singing life as young as the age of 5. At the early age of 11 (1964), she won the Chinese Radio Station Huangmei Singing Contest by the song “Visiting Yingtai.” by 14 Years old, she hosted the show “Everyday One Star.”
In 1969, she played the leading role in the TV series “Thank You, Manager.” She was also invited to perform at a charity concert in Singapore.
In the same year, she sang the theme song for the first Taiwan TV series.
In 1970, Teresa’s first performance in Hong Kong was held. In 1971, she became the youngest person ever to be awarded the title of the Charity Queen of the Bai Hua You Arts Auction for making charity sales. She also signed to Life Records of Taiwan.
In 1972, she was filmed in the movie “Ms. Music Fan” with Mr. Chang Chung. In the same year, she made the Top 10 Singers list in Hong Kong.
Teresa decided to start singing in Japan in 1973, when she signed to Polydor Records of Japan, so she was determined to try her best in studying Japanese.
However, within a short period of 6 months, she was already able to communicate in Japanese with the staff of the company and during meetings. Her first Japanese Album “KONYA KASHIRA? ASHITA KASHIRA?” (Should it be tonight or tomorrow?) was released on March 1, 1974.
Her second Japanese album “KUUKOO” (Airport) was released on July 1, 1974. Through this song “KUUKOO” she won the Best New Singer award of Japan that year. She also signed to PolyGram Records of Hong Kong and released the album “Good Bye, My Love” in 1975. The following year, she held her first HK solo concert at Lee Theatre.
In 1977, she held her solo concert in Tokyo, Japan and won a television award for her song “I live for you.”
Teresa held her second solo concert of Hong Kong in 1978. In 1979, she held her first solo concert in the US and Canada.
Teresa also studied English at USC (University of Southern California) in California, USA. On the same year, the album “Small Town Story” was released.
In 1980, Teresa performed in the US at the Lincoln Theatre in New York and became the first Chinese to ever perform at the Los Angeles Music Center.
She held her third Hong Kong solo concert. In addition, she went to Taiwan to visit the Kinmen Island troops and performed at the Sun Yatsen Memorial in which all funds from tickets went to the Patriotic Fund.
Teresa won the Best Female Singer award in Taiwan. In the same year, her first Cantonese album was released.
In 1981, Teresa held 7 consecutive solo concerts in Hong Kong, breaking the record for the number of consecutive solo concerts by a single artist. Also, she won the record-breaking number of 5 platinum records in a single year in Hong Kong and also received the Patriotic Artist Award in Taiwan.
In 1983, Teresa became the first Chinese to ever perform at Ceasar’s Palace in Las Vegas, USA. In the same year, she received an award from PolyGram (Hong Kong) for reaching top sales, being the top-selling singer ever in the music industry of Hong Kong. She released her second and famous Cantonese album “The Steps of the Road of Life”, which got the Double Platinum figure after a few days of its release.
Teresa Teng won the Annual Cable TV Award of Japan for 3 consecutive years (1984, 1985, and 1986) by the song “TSUGUNAI” (Love Compensation) in 1984, “AIJIN” (Lover) in 1985, and “TOKI NO NAGARE NI MI WO MAKASE” (Let It Depend On The Flow Of Time) in 1986. No other singer, even to this date, was able to achieve this.
The song “AIJIN” (Lover) also set a new record for staying on top of the broadcast charts in Japan for over 10 weeks. Her song “TOKI NO NAGARE NI MI WO MAKASE” sold over 5 million copies in the Japan market in 1986.
Unfortunately, she left us on May 8, 1995 due to an asthma attack in Chiang Mai, Thailand at age 42. Her coffin was wrapped with the Taiwan flag and was carried by military officers and family members. Indeed, during the funeral, Teresa was given many awards for her large contribution to the nation and society.
Her music and talent was a dominant and influential force in Asia throughout most of the 1970s and 1980s. Teng was able to move her audiences as much with the sweetness of her voice as with the power of melancholy emotion.
One of the “Five Great Asian Divas”, she was known for driving her audience into rapture, and often tears, over a career that spanned three decades.
Personally- she is one among my favorite singers of the past, present and future era.
Here’s a screenshot of my Baidu Yun a/c where I collect almost every digital copies of Lijun’s work.
Teng’s widespread popularity was also driven by her ability to sing in several languages, including Mandarin, Cantonese, Japanese, Indonesian, and English.
Evoking for many precious memories of childhood and happier times, her legacy endures to this day.
By providing an alternative to the most revolutionary songs then prevalent in mainland China, Teng’s emotional rendition of this old Mandarin favorite catapulted her to instant and long-lasting fame that lingers to this day.
Happy 65th birthday, Teresa Teng!
Doodle by Cynthia Yuan Cheng
Credit: Content from Google Doodle page and teresateng.org