Songs of the disputed seas: patriotic music from the anti-Japanese protests and Paracels War

Lu Haitao & Mi Li recorded a theme song for the 2012 anti-Japan protests in China

CDs with a song (one song) were being handed out for free at the anti-Japanese protests on September 18.

The song was specially recorded after the protests began by Lu Haitao 陆海涛 and Mi Li 米粒, two moderately successful contestants from the CCTV talent show Star Avenue. (Lu made the grand final, Mi won one round of the competition last year.)

I don’t know who bankrolled its production, and neither did any of the other bemused attendees who, like me, rushed over to grab whatever everyone else was grabbing. But according to this BBS post, Mi Li herself shelled out her own money for 1000 of the CDs to be pressed.

As horrid as its mixture of Han-chauvinist and Maoist nationalism is, i have found it compulsive listening….and strongly advise against giving up before you get to 2 minutes in — for a spectacularly hammy rap section awaits there. Yes, Diaoyu RAP!

I particularly love the way the guy’s “之” syllables just become growls. Being based on the language of officials during imperial times, it’s not surprising that the Mandarin language is amenable to the kind of haughty authority the song attempts to voice.

As for the diva, well, she may be rather nastily screechy, but not nearly as screechy as the lady who sang ‘Battle Hymn of the Paracel Islands’ to celebrate China’s victory over hapless South Vietnamese remnants there in 1974:

Source for the background image is Chineseposters.net.

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2 Comments on “Songs of the disputed seas: patriotic music from the anti-Japanese protests and Paracels War”

  1. Elliot Crooks says:

    Aaaah…what better way to start my day with that passionate Diaoyu rap!!?
    How’s it going over there? When you back? BBQ season is here!

    • Going well enough, just being at the protests was a great opportunity to observe the state & society’s interaction over a foreign policy crisis.

      As far as the survey research is concerned, its predictably not smooth going and i have awoken to a lot of realities (economic, not political, though that may come later). I am going to h e to investigate funding options before going ahead, but with the Diaoyu crisis so fresh in people’s memory it’s no bad thing that it gets put off for a while. Still confident of getting a survey done in that area, but it’s going to take a lot more compromises and a lot more work.

      In terms of interviews with Internet industry insiders, I’ve just today had a breakthrough in that regard, so will hopefully have progress there soon. Right now I still have another unrelated paper (the one about foreigners on TV show) that is taking a lot of time unfortunately, but deadlines are deadlines, and once that’s done I’ll be able to properly concentrate on hat im here for.

      Looking forward to those BBQs mate. Will definitely have a couple on Langley Park again this summer. For now, the weather is getting chilly here….just the way I like it. Looking forward to seeing yall in November!


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