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Tuesday, January 13, 2009

More Taiwanese singers drawn in dispute on payola

More Taiwanese singers drawn in dispute on payola
Yahoo News

Dispute between Taiwanese singers Lee-hom Wang and Show Luo on the issue of payola is taken to the next level as singers Jay Chou, A-mei and boy band Fahrenheit backs up Wang. Rainie Yang, who has close ties with both Wang and Luo, found herself in an awkward predicament; Jacky Wu found the dispute a senseless debate.

Wang hinted (fran's correction : it was SONY that hinted) that Luo's record company spent money on getting his songs up the music charts after the latter announced that his new album topped the charts; thus sparking the dispute on payola. As more new singers join the industry, the issue of payola heightened.

The recent dispute began when HIM International Music sent out a release, claiming that Luo's record company used underhand methods to get his songs on the top of the chart for two consecutive weeks.

Chou also led singers Alan Kuo and Rachel Liang, and representatives from Sony Music, JVR Music, etc, in a press conference in Taipei on Jan 8 to campaign against payola. Though Wang was absent from the press conference, he was represented by his company in showing support for the cause. Queen of Mandopop, A-mei, also expressed her support by saying, "Competition should be fair in all arenas."

Yang, who is under the same record company as Wang and artiste management as Luo, is caught in a spot. She expressed her stand that she believed Wang is absolutely honest in his music career, and that Luo's albums are selling very well. To avoid embarrassment, she was quick to mention that she had been in Hong Kong recently promoting her own album, and have little knowledge about the campaign against payola. She emphasized that good and bad music can be easily differentiated by ears, and need not be determined by sales or charts.

King of variety, Wu, on the other hand, described the campaign to be senseless and pointless. He said the unhealthy trend of payola began 15 years ago and also admitted to have resort to this method when promoting Kang Jing Rong's (or commonly known as Kang Kang) album. He added that only Chou's albums truly received support and sold well. In his opinion, the music charts are merely promotional tools and do not matter as long as singers are unaffected.

Gold Typhoon Entertainment, Luo's record company, has also sent out a battle invite to Wang to hold a music showcase at the same time and place as the former on Feb 14, to compete their album sales figure during the period of the showcase.

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