Shi Shi Sun Sets Sights on Multilingual Musical Journey After Milestone GMA Win

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Taiwanese-South Korean singer Shi Shi Sun achieved a career milestone by winning Best Female Mandarin Singer at the 35th Golden Melody Awards (GMAs) for her 2023 album “Boomerang.”

This year’s win marks her third Golden Melody Award, following her previous victories: Best Mandarin Album for “SHI’s Journey” in 2019 and Best Vocal Album Recording for “Where is SHI” in 2021.

Shi Shi Sun, born Sun Sheng-xi, gained initial fame by participating in the popular Taiwanese singing reality competition “Chinese Million Star” in 2012. She returned to Taiwan from South Korea, where she had been living, to kick-start her musical career.

Her new popularity secured her a record deal with Taiwan-based Rock Records & Tapes. On Spotify, she commands over 450,000 monthly listeners, with her hit track “Tears Remember You” amassing nearly 24 million listens, and “Someday or One Day” reaching upwards of 17 million streams on the platform.

“From Mandopop ballads to blockbuster film theme songs, and experimental productions blending genres, Shi Shi Sun’s artistry and songwriting capabilities have continually shone through,” Dr Chen-Yu Lin, lecturer of MA creative and cultural industries at Cardiff University, told Variety. “Her experimental approach to music-making in the digital era has captivated her fans.”

“The previous two times I was nominated and won album awards made me very happy but also very stressed, so I experienced some ups and downs,” she told Variety. “This time, I just told myself not to overthink it. Being recognized is still very gratifying, and it gives my music a chance to be heard by more people.”

The GMAs, often dubbed the Chinese-speaking equivalent of the Grammy Awards, holds significant prestige in Asia.

The event’s project director Jack Liao emphasized the awards’ role in promoting Mandarin music globally. “Although this is a challenging task, feedback from international music industry professionals has shown that when they think of Mandarin music, they think of Taiwan’s music,” he said.

Looking ahead, Shi Shi Sun intends to explore and perform in various other languages as part of her ongoing artistic experimentation.

“I am gradually opening up more to experimenting with the combination of three languages, which is quite interesting. It allows fans from different regions to hear elements they like and are accustomed to. I will continue to try different things and slowly start preparing for an overseas tour, hoping to bring my music to more diverse stages,” said Shi Shi Sun.

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