The 13th KKBOX Music Awards will be held on January 20th at the Kaohsiung Arena in Taiwan. This will be the first time the annual award ceremony is held at Kaohsiung, as opposed to Taipei, where it has been held for the past few years. As the much-anticipated KKBOX Music Awards draws nearer, what can Mandopop fans look forward to? But first, here's why this event is monumental in the world of Mandopop.
What is the KKBOX Music Awards?
The KKBOX Music Awards is an annual music fest organised by Taiwan-based music streaming service KKBOX. Every year, KKBOX will examine the listening statistics of their millions of viewers, and identify the ten most popular singers on their platform to be given the “Artist Of The Year” award, as well as the winners of other awards.
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While the more renowned Golden Melody Awards, equivalent to the Grammy’s of Asia, appoints a panel of judges who decide the winners each year, the KKBOX Music Awards are determined by public opinion through user statistics, which may help provide a more accurate representation of consumer tastes in the industry.
The awards ceremony takes the form of a concert, with nearly 20 sets of artistes invited each year to perform. Singers who have performed at the awards in previous years include Mandopop A-listers like JJ Lin, Mayday and Jam Hsiao.
Who will be performing at the awards?
KKBOX boasts a stellar line-up at this year’s ceremony, which not only includes some of the biggest names in the industry, but also some of the breakout acts that have made their mark in 2017.
Fans can look forward to performances from “Artist Of The Year” award winners, who are among the most-streamed singers on KKBOX in 2017. The biggest name amongst them is long-time Hong Kong artist Eason Chan, who shares the immortal “God of Singers” title with fellow veteran Jacky Cheung.
Also on the list are pop divas Rainie Yang and G.E.M., who are among the most successful female singers in recent years, as well as first-time winners of the “Artist Of The Year” award, including Taiwanese singer-songwriters R-Chord and Crowd Lu, Malaysian artist Namewee and Taiwan’s rising EDM-pop star Nick Chou.
Winner of the “Best New Artist” award J.Sheon will also be performing at the ceremony. The hip-hop artist released his debut album last year and since been touted as new burgeoning face of Taiwan’s hip-hop scene.
Aside from the award winners, KKBOX has also brought in three A-lister special guests who have found success on their platform with their recent releases. These include two of the biggest names in Mandopop, JJ Lin and A-Mei, both of whom released their latest albums in December last year.
Lin is the biggest Mandopop singer to have come out of Singapore’s music scene, and has won two “Best Male Singer” awards at the Golden Melody Awards. He has also been a constant in the past few renditions of the KKBOX Music Awards, and will be no stranger to performing at the ceremony.
A-Mei is widely-recognised as the “Queen of Mandopop”, and is a much-revered figure in Asian pop music — her latest album Story Thief saw all ten of its songs reach the Top 20 chart on KKBOX upon release last month.
You can also expect to see Hong Kong actor Nicholas Tse — known for his starring roles in iconic films like New Police Story and Young and Dangerous: The Prequel — who recently announced his return to music, shortly after releasing a new single earlier this month.
Other acts from Taiwan are also expected to perform, including pop teen idol Bii, rapper Miss Ko, R&B singer-songwriter Xiao Yu, and newcomer ANNA, who is also the niece of A-Mei.
What other events can we expect?
Besides the awards ceremony on 20 January, music lovers can look forward to other events held around Kaohsiung in the same weekend.
The KKBOX Music Awards Pre-party will begin at 6pm on 19 January at the Aozihdi Forest Park. This is a free-entry event which brings together top talents from the hip-hop and EDM scene in Taiwan — performers include rising young stars like Mr. Skin, Kumachan, Julia Wu, Trout Fresh and DJ RayRay.
At 2pm the next day, the KKBOX Future Star Stage will take place at the Level 2 Square at the Hanshin Arena Shopping Plaza, showcasing six of the most promising campus bands in Taiwan. This is an event for talented young musicians to come together in a casual artistic exchange. The winner of Singapore songwriting competition “SG:SW 2017” Elton Lee will also be performing at this event.
How do I watch the KKBOX Music Awards?
Audiences in Singapore can tune in at 7pm on 20 January for the live streaming of the awards on Channel U, Toggle, YES933 or Yahoo. Fans can also watch the ceremony live via the KKBOX app or their Facebook page.
Who are all the winners this year?
Artist Of The Year:
Best New Artist:
Check out performances from JJ Lin and G.E.M. at last year's KKBOX Music Awards: