Also known as "I Have Nothing," in spite of its English title, this is a song written and recorded in Mandarin Chinese by Cui Jian. It is unquestionably both his most famous and his most controversial song. Written around May 1986 when it was first performed publicly, at a Beijing concert, it would become an anthem of rebellion during the Tiananmen Square protests at which it was also performed.
Ostensibly it is written as a kind of love song, but it can be read on another level, and undoubtedly was by the Chinese authorities. A great fan of contemporary Western music, in particular rock and singer-songwriters, the influence shines through, and even without a working knowledge of Mandarin, it is pleasing to the ear.
Alexander Baron - London, England