China's Character Songs by Yuki Kaida

9 September 2019

I, personally, am a fan of anime. Therefore, it should not come as a surprise that I love the character songs of people from the anime. The whole point of the Hetalia series (to sum it up in a sentence, so this doesn’t get too confusing,) is about personifications of countries and how they interact. The corporates have expanded this into a huge fan base, including songs sung by the characters, about themselves. Even though they’re in Japanese, a language I am –unfortunately- not fluent in, they are still the most listened to songs in my iTunes library. I love them all, but the most recent two caught my attention. China’s songs. They hold a different feel than the others, something that speaks of ages past and the triumphs of a nation that still holds power today. It sounds silly, I know, but the smooth flow and the beauty of the words- foreign as they are- moves me in a way I have never felt before.

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The first one, (roughly translated into English,) is titled ‘Aiyah, 4,000 Years.’ It is the softer of the two, the one that is truly a song of an empire stretching across miles of land and holding thousands- nay, millions- of hearts. It strikes a chord within; makes you wish you were around to see China in the height of its’ ancient glory. When you close your eyes, listening to it, you can see in your mind’s eye dragons swooping across a cerulean sky, beautiful silk robes and a culture unrivaled by any other. ‘Hello China,’ the other song, is more upbeat. To me, it is how China is today. A bustling nation, but not without flavors of the past. Maybe a land with issues, but ones that will be overcome with time, like everything else. This song holds respect for what China once was, pride for what China is today and hope for what it will be tomorrow. These songs are, in my opinion, better than some of the trash on the radio today, and well worth listening to (they are, in fact, on YouTube) even if you are not fluent in Japanese. I can only wish this magical music touches your heartstrings like it has mine.

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