On May 17, 2019, Taiwan became the first country in Asia to legalize same-sex marriage. In the months and years that led to this historic date, many songs have helped to bring exposure to the LGBT cause, including “Rainbow” by A-Mei, “Embrace” by May Day and “We’re All Different, Yet The Same” and “Womxnly” by Jolin Tsai. Let’s remember these four amazing songs and videos!
張惠妹《彩虹》| A-MIT’s ‘Rainbow’
Originally titled “My Gay Boyfriend,” “Rainbow” was first sung to A-MIT ‘s gay friends. The song describes being gay in Taiwan from the perspective of a best friend.
The stirring tune and deeply moving lyrics have long cheered the gay community. Thanks to its inspiring lyrics, it was voted the most classic gay song.
“When being sized up by the curious eyes, when hearing the piercing sound, you wrap in the romance of the rainbow, gently,” he song says.
“The closet isn’t too big, but I’m still welcome to share your paradise.”
This line shows that gays, who are coming out, are also willing to share their joy of love with friends.
“Our love is very much alike, both wounded by men, and yet continue to collide,” A-MIT’s song says.
五月天《擁抱》 Mayday’s ‘Embrace’
“Embrace,” known as a simple guitar song for every beginner, is a song that describes the emotions of gay people.
The lyrics, though seemingly obscure, feature many vivid descriptions. “The evening wind kissed the leaves of the lotus flowers and let me fall drunk by the pool.” The lotus pond refers to the one at 228 Peace Park which is a social venue for gays and lesbians in Taipei.
蔡依林《不一樣又怎樣》 | Jolin Tsai’s ‘We’re All Different, Yet The Same’
Released in 2014, “What’s Different, Yet The Same” is an adaptation of a true story that explores the issue of same-marriage and advocates for equal rights. The video follows a lesbian couple entering middle age, one of whom is seriously ill and admitted to hospital.
Yet, when the couple was asked about their relationship, they could only say they were just “friends” because there was no legal bond between them.
In the video, the lesbian couple could only try to find distant relatives to sign. Although the lesbian couple has lived together for more than 30 years, their relationship means nothing legally. One of them passed away and the other finally said, “She is my wife.”
蔡依林《玫瑰少年》| Jolin Tsai’s ‘Womxnly’
Released in 2018, “Womxnly,” whose lyrics were written by Mayday’s Ashin, depicts Ye Yong-Zhi Incident, expressing his concerns about LGBT rights and gender equality.
The song won the “Song of the Year” award at the 30th Golden Melody Awards, an honor awarded by the Ministry of Culture of Taiwan to recognize outstanding achievement in the Mandarin language.
Jolin gave an award speech, saying that “Ye Yong-chi reminds me I could become some minority in any situation, so I have to love anyone around me with empathy. This song is dedicated to him, and to all of you who have ever thought you had no choice, that you must choose yourself.”