Teresa Teng 邓丽君 1953 - 1995
The slow-loading of the page is because there is music preparing to play. The background song is Teresa singing North Travels. It is 320 kbps which is the highest mp3 quality. To stop this music, please go to the foot of this page, and click 'pause' on the small player. To lower the volume, click and 'drag' the player's speaker icon down the scale. The player is set in high volume as default, which I find too high.
Teresa Teng, Teng Li-Chun, was
born in Baozhong, Yunlin County, Taiwan, to a mainland Chinese family from
Hebei on January 29, 1953. By the age of 18, Teresa had already recorded 21
albums, having started as a 14-year-old in 1967. Teresa sang all types of songs
with equal expertise and feeling, and in several different languages. As a
young child, Teng won awards for her singing at talent competitions, and was
soon able to support her family with her singing.
Yeh Yueh-Yu, a professor of Cultural Theory at the University of Southern California said, "It was the sweetness in her voice that made her famous. She had a perfect voice for folk songs and ballads." Although she soon became an international super star, in Taiwan she was known as "the soldier's sweetheart" because of her frequent performances for servicemen. She was herself the child of a military family. Her concerts for troops featured popular music and Taiwanese folk songs that appealed to all as well as Chinese folk songs that appealed to homesick refugees of the civil war.
She performed in Paris during the 1989 Tiananmen student protests on behalf of the students and proclaimed her support for democracy. On May 27, 1989, over 300,000 people attended the concert called "Democratic songs dedicated to China" Her hopes of performing one day in mainland China never materialized. The Communist Party of China eventually invited her to do so in the 1990s but she died before having the opportunity. Teresa died from a severe asthma attack while on holiday in Chiang Mai, Thailand, at the age of 42, on May 8, 1995. She had been an asthmatic throughout her adult life. She was given state honors at her funeral in Taiwan, with the flag of the Republic of China draped over her casket.
She truly deserved the accolades she received, and although she only lived for 42 years, she left us with the most beautiful of treasures. I like this tribute particularly.
"She has left us for 16 years, but her smile, song and dance are still alive among Chinese people and touch the softest chord of our souls. When we listen to her songs and respond from the bottom of our heart, we find that she is already a part of our life". Teresa influenced Chinese society so much as a singer that she was honored by the expression "Anywhere there are Chinese people, there are Teresa Teng's songs". In 2010, American program CNN conducted an online poll called the "Top Five Global Music Icons". Teresa, along with Leslie Cheung, was selected for the Top 20 world famous prominent singers in the past 50 years. Quite simply, she was unique.
Teresa's Early Albums