Golden Melody Award committee spreads the wealth

The China Post news staff and CNA

TAIPEI, Taiwan — There were many winners at the 25th Golden Melody Awards in Taipei on Saturday, but not many came away with multiple awards on a night when the honors were evenly distributed across artists and countries.

Malaysian-Chinese singer and songwriter Penny Tai (戴佩妮) and Taiwanese singer-songwriter and record producer Jonathan Lee (李宗盛) walked away with the biggest hauls from the award ceremony, Taiwan’s largest music event.

Tai won the Best Mandarin Female Singer award for her album “Unexpected” (純屬意外), and she also took Best Album Producer for her work on Chinese singer Koala Liu’s (劉思涵)”Embrace” (擁抱你).

“Thank you judges very, very much,” said Tai after receiving the Best Mandarin Female Singer award from Hong Kong singer Sandy Lam.

She said she considered herself lucky because she never received formal music training. The 36-year-old singer also thanked the people who helped bring her album to life, as well as her family, fiance and fans.

Lee’s album and song “Hills” (山丘) grabbed Best Song of the Year, Best Lyricist and Best Album Packaging.

Meanwhile, the night’s biggest award — Best Mandarin Album — went to Taiwanese rock musician Chang Chen-yue’s (張震嶽) “I Am Ayal Komod” (我是海雅谷慕). “I felt calm from the beginning (of the ceremony), but I suddenly got emotional when I walked up here just now,” said Chang, after receiving the award from pop diva Jolin Tsai and band Mayday.

Chang, also known by his aboriginal name Ayal Komod, said there was a lot he wanted to say through his latest album.

“I’m not very good at speaking, so I can only convey my message through music,” the 40-year-old said, thanking God, and his family, music partners and album producer.

“I Am Ayal Komod” was the singer’s 10th studio album but his first in six years. It reflects the rock musician’s return to his roots and nature. Chang rose to local fame in the 1990s with hit songs including “Love Me, Don’t Go” (愛我別走), “Freedom” (自由) and “Free Night.”

Singaporean singer-songwriter JJ Lin (林俊傑) took home the title of Best Mandarin Male Singer for his album “Stories Untold” (因你而在), while Best New Artist went to Chinese singer-songwriter Li Ronghao (李榮浩) for his debut album “Model” (模特).

“Yes!! So this is how it feels to win the best male singer award,” an excited Lin, who received the award from Taiwanese singer Jam Hsiao, said during his acceptance speech.

Lin, who is popular in Taiwan as well as in his native Singapore, had been nominated for Best Mandarin Male Singer three times previously but had never won the big prize. He won the Golden Melody Best New Artist award in 2004.

Lin dedicated the award to his grandmother, who passed away last year, saying she had taught him the importance of family.

He also thanked Jesus, and his parents, company, music partners, and fans.

“I want to thank all my fans. This award belongs to you. I am here because of you,” Lin said.

The album that won the 33-year-old Lin the award, “Stories Untold,” was his 10th studio album.

The singer is noted for his R&B and pop songs. He is also an accomplished songwriter and has penned hit songs for singers such as A-mei and Elva Hsiao.

Taiwanese band Mixer (糜先生) won the Best Band title.

The Lifetime Contribution Award was given to late music producer Peng Kuo-hua in recognition of his contribution to Taiwan’s music scene.