My Family History

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                                Yao Surong 姚苏蓉 

Yao Su Rong was born in Taiwan on 5 December 1945 . Her breakthrough came in 1969, with the title track to the movie "今天不回家" (Today I Won't Come Home). That one song swept her into fame, securing her a Hong Kong record deal. Most of her songs are sentimental love ballads, wistful, nostalgic melodies, and she often cried as she sang on stage. Hence her nickname the tearful singing queen. A distinctive quality of hers is her very clear, highly enunciated Mandarin which creates her unique style. One of Taiwan’s greatest superstar of the late 1960’s and early 70s.

Yao Su Rong recorded over 200 songs, and made 12 films in HK between 1967 and 1971, including The Melody of Love (1969) Beautiful Dreamer (1970) The Ungrateful One (1971)Happiness and Joy (1971)The Wedding Song (1971) In 1969, early in her career in Taiwan, 80 of her most sentimental love songs were banned, for stirring up unhealthy morals amongst young people. This included her 1967 smash-hit 負心的人 (Heartless Person) Martial Law in Taiwan couldn't be having the slightest hint of immorality. She was banned from performing in Taiwan, and she went to Hong Kong and Southeast Asia to continue her career.

In 1987, Andy Kershaw bought a Mandarin language album as a gift for John Peel, which he played a track from on his 29 July 1987 show. Peel didn't know the name of the artist or song, but it turned out to be Yao Su Rong's 'Return Your Love Back To Me'. John had very good taste. Now, Yao Surong lives a quiet life in Singapore. Taiwan officially invited her to perform at the 1998 Golden Horse Film Festival. She politely declined, saying that now her life was peaceful and stable. Her records continue to be very popular, and she remains a legend in South East Asia.