Have you heard the English version of the Chinese hit, “Fairytale (童話)“, or have you downloaded the Mandarin version of Justin Bieber’s famous “Baby?” If you haven’t, you should definitely check out Jason Chen.
Jason Chen (陳以桐) is a Taiwanese-American YouTuber. He began his music career in 2007 when he was a sophomore in college. Chen started off with cover songs; Some of his famous covers include “It Girl/It Boy” and “Just Give Me a Reason.”
Initially, Chen only covered English hits, but as he gained popularity, he began to cover Asian songs as well. To promote Asian representation in the music industry, his Chinese covers are free to download. He calls this “節省錢” (Jié shěng qián), literally “saving money”, which is also a pun on his name “Jason Chen”.
Born and raised in the States, Chen is fluent in Mandarin, which adds diversity to his music. Chen has translated numerous English songs into Chinese, such as “Baby,” “Love Yourself,” and “Sorry.” On the other hand, he has also translated a lot of Mandarin song to English so people in the States will have the chance to listen to those Asian songs. Some of his translation covers are “那些年,” (Those Years) the soundtrack for the prominent Taiwanese movie, “You are the Apple of My Eye,” “愛你,” (Love You) and “小幸運,” the soundtrack for another famous Taiwanese movie, “Our Times.”Being a bilingual makes Jason stand out from other YouTubers, especially to Asian audiences. (Fun fact: The majority of his translations are very accurate! It’s very interesting how he is able to translate almost every single word yet still manages to keep the original rhythm of the song!)
This action is very influential to the Asian community. Since English pop songs usually have more exposure to the world and are often the dominant music, people, especially the audiences from Western countries, tend to listen to Western music more. Yet as Jason Chen begins to sing more Chinese and Asian songs, he has introduced Eastern music to a broader public.
So, if you’re looking for a Western and Eastern go between artist, Jason Chen should be the top on your list. There are many other brilliant covers and original songs that aren’t mentioned in this post, be sure to check them out yourself on YouTube!