Zang Tianshuo


Zang Tianshuo
b. 1964, Beijing
Rock musician
Zang Tianshuo began the piano at age six and belongs to the first generation of rock musicians in the PRC. Today, he is a major figure in the field of Chinese pop-rock. Around 1983, he worked with groups such as the Coal Mine Culture Group and the Railway Culture Group, and acquired experience singing and playing the piano. His career as a rock musician began in 1984, when he joined one of Beijing’s earliest bands, Tumbler (Budaoweng). Besides composing his own songs, Zang also co-founded the band White Angel (Bai tianshi) in 1987 before organizing his own band two years later (1989). He was the main organizer of Beijing’s Concert of Modern Music (1990), which was later regarded as a milestone in PRC rock history.
Between 1991 and 1993 he was the keyboard-player for Cui Jian. By the end of 1993 he had recorded his own album, My Ten Years (Wode shinian), which was released in July 1995 and earned him nationwide fame with the song ‘Friend’ (‘Pengyou’, 1985). He is also engaged in film music. In 1997 he had his personal debut concert at Beijing’s Workers’ Stadium. Zang’s message emphasizes friendship, underscored by his personal engagement in volunteer concerts for anti-flood donations. Zang is regularly invited to play large-scale concerts throughout the PRC. He states that he does not have any musical ideals, but merely combines rap, rock and popular light music as his feelings dictate.
Baranovitch, Nimrod (2003). China’s New Voices: Popular Music, Ethnicity, Gender, and Politics, 1978–1997. Berkeley: University of California Press, 243–51 and passim.
ANDREAS STEEN

Encyclopedia of contemporary Chinese culture. . 2011.

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