I don’t usually fancy National Day Songs, as I think they are cheesy and too official. I guess many of the song writers are being commission by Ministry of National Development to write those songs, so bo bian (no choice), have to perform national duty. When comes to patriotic songs, I think Hong Kongers did much better than us (see here).
However, look outside of those official songs, you will find gems. Here are my 7 favourite songs that define my Singapore and probably only fellow Singaporean can relate to. Happy SG50 Singaporean!
1985 – 翁素英、蔡振雄 – 岛的儿子
Theme song of SBC (now Mediacorp) TV Series “亚打籽“。The TV series told the story of villagers who live in Pulau Tekong and had to leave their beloved island due to redevelopment of the island into Military training base. The song reflect the love of the island and in larger extend, love of Singapore and how modernisation has change our landscape, from kampung to a modern city.
1985 – 巫启贤- Kopi O
Another theme song of TV Series “咖啡乌” aka Kopi O aka Coffee without milk, by Eric Moo. A lovely song that describe how a cup of Kopi O wash away all our worries, and it’s true. Time to head down to Coffeeshop.
1990 – 梁文福：新加坡派
This is the song that describe going up in Singapore from the 60s into the 90s. By Xinyao Pioneer Liang Wern Fook. I love the interlude: 浪子心声 in the 70s, to “I just call to say I love you”, “We are the World”, “明天会更好” in the 80s, songs that represent those era.
1990 – Dick Lee: Rasa Sayang
One of my favourite songs during my secondary school day. I remember getting the album “The Mad Chinaman” from my neighbourhood in Bukit Ho Swee. Love all the songs in that Album including “Bengawan Solo” and “Mustapha”. That’s the only Dick Lee’s album I have bought.
2004 – Dick Lee – We are Singapore (Cool Version)
Another song by Dick Lee (Not his song strictly speaking but he improvise it). Perform live during his 30th Anniversary concert. The KNNB*** is a surprise. It’s censored in the video so I can’t really sure if he blurted out the 3 words. I like the Lee Kuan Me part too.
2006 – Hossan Leong – We didn’t start the fire
As part of “Talking Cock in Parliament”, the lyrics is just hilarious.
2009 – Electrico -What do you see
The only official National Day Song in the list. The reason I love it is that it’s so different from other Official Song. A little bit of rock certainly do no harm.
Bonus: 2009: Mr Brown – Lekuasimi
A perfect spoof of “What do you see?”, by Mr. Brown.
So what’s your favourite Singapore songs?