This song has a really catchy tune, and the lyrics are written using super-basic Chinese – I would peg the level at “upper beginner”. You can think of it as the Mandarin equivalent of an Oasis song, i.e. a glorified nursery rhyme.
曾 曾經在我眼前 卻又消失不見
You were right in front of my eyes, but [now] you’ve disappeared again completely
[Pronoun not specified in the Chinese, but from context it should be a person rather than an object]
[曾經 is usually talking about events a long time ago… but since the next line is ‘the sixth time today’, it’s more like a simple past tense here.]
This is the sixth time today
Continue reading “Crowd Lu: I love you / 我愛你 – English Translation”
This is a silly but fun song. The singer is in love, and it’s making him forgetful and have delusions of grandeur. There are some basic grammar structures repeated here though, so it’s worth listening to and/or learning.
Thank you very much; you are welcome
Even if you’ve got nothing, it pays to be polite
[一無所有: a 成語. Also, these lines are a classic case of being very non-specific about who is being referred to. Not that it makes too much sense in any case!]
I’ve lost my watch; the socks that I bought yesterday are missing too; oh, what’s gone wrong?
[This is just as ridiculous as the translation looks. Notes: 長筒襪 are specifically long socks, as opposed to 短筒襪 or even just regular 襪子; ‘怎麼會這樣’ is kind of a rhetorical exclamation, similar to “what’s gone wrong?” or “what’s up?”]
Continue reading “Crowd Lu: I’ve lost it / 就像白癡一樣 – English Translation”
Continuing this run of easy-to-learn Crowd Lu (盧廣仲) songs, here’s my translation of ‘Mosquito’ (蚊子). There are fewer lines to learn than most of his numbers, and two useful 成語 to pick up here. This song is funny because the mosquito that he’s addressing is never explicitly called out – if you ask other people to guess from the lyrics, they’ll probably just assume the target of the song is someone, rather than something.
You’re back, at last
[Lit. At-last, you still approached over-come]
I knew all along that you’d be back in the summer
Continue reading “Crowd Lu: Mosquito / 蚊子 – English Translation”
I like this song by Crowd Lu, which includes a lot of simple nouns and verbs, especially referring to the time of day. There’s also a little higher-level Chinese too, as noted in the translation below. The song uses the simile of a kite blowing in the wind to describe the aimless way in which the singer’s life develops. As is typical of Crowd’s lyrics, there are a lot of lines where it’s ambiguous what he’s referring to, which can make it a little tricky to understand without considering the song holistically. (For example: we see 找不到 a few times, but there’s no object; what is it that he can’t find?)
He sings nice and clearly, and it’s been available at every karaoke place I’ve been to in Hong Kong and Guangdong, so it’s worth learning.
It’s sunset; a dandelion floats past the window
[Lit. evening sunset-clouds brightly shining me; one [counter] dandelion float past window]
[晚霞, wǎn xiá, is quite literary and has no direct equivalent in English*]
Continue reading “Crowd Lu: Slow Soul / 慢靈魂 – English Translation”
開心餐廳 contains a lot of very basic vocab and grammar, so is great for lower intermediate students. This is one of my favorite Crowd Lu songs, because it’s just so darned funny – it’s all about a restaurant that he’d like to open. He goes through the song describing what he’d buy and how he’d run it; the cutest thing is that he puts the emphasis on making friends. If this isn’t an antidote to all those sorrowful love songs that permeate the world of Chinese music, I don’t know what is.
I had a dream last night in which I’d set up shop
Selling coffee and deserts
[一些: ‘a little/some’, redundant in English]
Continue reading “Crowd Lu: Cafeteria Feliz / 開心餐廳 – English Translation”