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News From:The Straits Timesposted on 6 March at 6:48 PM
6 March at 6:48 PM

Taiwan indie label B'in Music goes back to basics: good material, live shows

By Boon Chan

Just one month after releasing her debut CD, singer-songwriter Bai An performed at the prestigious big-scale venue Taipei Arena last month before a crowd of almost 10,000.

Many other artists before her have had to build up a body of work over several albums and years before they got a chance to step onto that stage.

She was one of five acts who performed at the concert on Feb 3. The other four who performed were big-voiced Jia Jia, kooky pop trio Cosmos People, dance-pop sextet Magic Power and singer-songwriter Yen-j.

The concert, B'in Together, is a free joint showcase for the five B'in Music acts. To enter, fans each had to buy at least two original CDs by selected B'in Music artists.

It is a measure of how the young music label is doing things a little differently - and successfully.

Launched in 2006 as a little label, at a time when digitisation and rampant piracy of music led to companies floundering, it has since become a major player among the indies.

The authoritative G-Music album charts in Taiwan currently have Magic Power's Archer, Bai An's The Catcher In The Rye and Jia Jia's Unforgettable occupying the Nos. 1, 2 and 4 positions.

Three main reasons explain B'in's success: emphasis on signing quality live performers, on artists who produce their own unique material and, counter-intuitively, on spending more money on producing good music.

None of these is innovative or special. They are a return to basics for people who love good music. That is why one of the founders of the label came up with its Chinese name Believe In Music, stylised as B'in Music in English.

He is Ashin, lead vocalist of Mandopop's biggest band Mayday. He tells Life!: "I hoped that the name would mean that our new music company would have a better plan for the future and believe in what we are doing."

For the full story, read Life! on Thursday, March 7, 2013.

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