Monthly Playlist: The TW Drama Edition

大家好 ~!
Now that I'm done everything and have ++free time to myself, music has been coming back into my life, whether it be playing the piano (side note: my improvising and non-classical skills have improved and I'm pretty proud), noodling around on the guitar, or listening to nostalgic tracks. I even filled up my iTunes library the other day (previously, I had maybe 10 albums on there). And if anyone takes a look at it right now, it's pretty much dominated with mandopop/c-pop BECAUSE NOSTALGIA

Spotted: different types of music:  my covers , heavy metal, rock, mandopop, j-pop, electropop, k-pop...

Spotted: different types of music: my covers, heavy metal, rock, mandopop, j-pop, electropop, k-pop...


Just a super quick backstory: back in the day (I'm talking like... starting at childhood, peaking at middle school, and then slowly tapering out), I used to watch A LOT of Taiwanese dramas (I recently made a list and I think I have seen about 60 and counting?) and as a result, was super immersed in the Taiwanese music and entertainment scene. So for today, I'm going back to my elementary and middle school days of music. Here's to learning some of the classic, most popular TW drama songs - and to introducing Chinese music to the blog! 

P.S. guess what triggered this resurgence of interest? None other than MY CURRENT FAVOURITE TV SHOW: METEOR GARDEN! And with that, let's start with the most classic:

1. Can't Help Falling For You 情非得已 (from OG Meteor Garden 流星花園) - Harlem Yu 庾澄慶 


Also check out: Meteor Rain 流星雨 - F4

The story centres around Shan Cai, a poor teenage girl who goes to a university for rich people. The university is dominated by Dao Ming Si, Hua Ze Lei, Mei Zuo, and Xi Men, four rich and handsome but arrogant students collectively known as 'F4', short for 'Flower 4'. They are heirs to four rich and influential families in Taiwan. They terrorize the school by handing out red cards to those they do not like, which allows other students to bully the victims until they leave the school. After one of Shan Cai's friends receives the wrath of F4's leader, Dao Ming Si, Shan Cai stands up to Dao Ming Si and berates him, which in turn results in a red card of her own. However, Shan Cai's persistence in standing up for what is right gradually gains F4's respect and Dao Ming Si falls in love with her. (Source: Wikipedia)

2. Can't Lose You 絕不能失去你 (from Meteor Garden II 流星花園II) - F4


Also check out: Season of Fireworks 煙火的季節 - F4

The story opens with the graduation of F4 from Ying De University and subsequently focuses on their life after graduation. It follows the blossoming love story of Shan Cai and Dao Ming Si. The story takes the group to Barcelona where Dao Ming Si has a car accident and suffers memory loss. He then meets another girl, Ye Sha, the driver of the other car. Shan Cai on the other hand tries her best to help Dao Ming Si regain his memory. (Source: Wikipedia)

3. My Lost Happiness 遺失的美好 (from At the Dolphin Bay 海豚灣戀人) - Angela Chang 張韶涵 


Also check out: Journey - Angela Chang 張韶涵

Legend has it a dolphin once helped to reunite a pair of tragic lovers. From then on, the well-adored animal became the guardian of love. At Dolphin Bay, a tale of love and myth continues.

Two children, Zeya and Xiao Pin Gai, meet at an orphanage but become separated. Years later they meet again by chance at Dolphin Bay and must overcome family and career obstacles to fulfill their childhood promise. (Source: MyDramaList)

4. Lydia (from The Outsiders 鬥魚) - F.I.R

Three sworn brothers - Yu Hao, Shan Zi, and Yang Xiong Q - that are delinquents grew up together fighting local neighbourhood rivals. Although they are not triad gangs, they make enemies with them when they offend some of their members. Yu Hao, who is considered the leader of the three, falls for good girl Xiao Yan Zi. Yan Zi comes from a well-to-do family and has been taking piano lessons since she was young, hoping to become a pianist. Yan Zi runs into a bloodied Yu Hao in the streets and saves him. Yu Hao, who has always been in love with Yan Zi, uses this chance encounter between the two to break the ice and chase after Yan Zi. But the three sworn brothers end up joining triad gangs when they have to protect Yan Zi. (Source: Wikipedia)

5. Heaven of Love 愛的天國 (from La robe de mariée des cieux 天國的嫁衣) - Cyndi Wang 王心凌


Also check out: Torture 折磨 - 183 Club

It was with much difficulty that Ai Qing was able to save enough money and arrive in her dream place, Paris. As a result, she is extremely happy about this. At the same time, Zi Hao is also in Paris receiving an international fashion award, the grand prize. They both get into a big argument at a small artistic shop over a small wooden horse that they both fall in love with. In the end, with the owner's consent, Ai Qing is able to obtain the wooden horse. The accidental meeting at the airport and on the plane cause the two of them to have an even more unfavourable impression of each other. Both are rejoicing at the fact that after this trip, they will never have to see each other again. However, who would have expected that these two people's destinies are forever intertwined tightly together. (Source: MyDramaList)

6. Enticing Trick 迷魂計 (from The Prince Who Turns into a Frog 王子變青蛙) - 183 Club


Also check out: Pure Love 真愛 - 183 Club

Shan Jun Hao, the CEO of a large hotel chain, is the stereotypical heir: spoiled, cold-hearted, and ruthless. He meets Ye Tian Yu, a schemer and somewhat of a gold-digger, who accidentally runs him over. This car accident causes Jun Hao to lose his memory; he becomes kindhearted and loving. Just as love is in the air, Jun Hao's family comes looking for him, desperate for his return to his original home. Jun Hao has a fiancée, Fan Yun Xi, who loves him very much, waiting for him to come home. More accidents follow: Jun Hao loses his memories of Tian Yu and returns to his original spoiled self. Although Jun Hao returns to thinking of Tian Yu as a lying schemer, a surprising new love gradually blossoms. (Source: Wikipedia)

7. Ambiguous 曖昧 (from Devil Beside You 惡魔在身邊) - Rainie Yang 楊丞琳


Also check out: Ideal Lover 理想情人 - Rainie Yang 楊丞琳

Qi Yue finally gains the courage to give Yuan Yi her love letter. Yuan Yi doesn't see her handing him the note and walks past her. Jiang Meng - the troublemaker, the devil - is the one who accepts her note. Although having a cruel appearance, Ah Meng's heart is kind and caring, which touches Qi Yue. The big problem remains: Ah Meng is the son of the man Qi Yue's mother is going to marry. Even though they are not related by blood, what will happen when they become step brother-sister, how will it affect their relationship, what happens when other lovers come into the picture? (Source: DramaWiki)

8. Practical Joke 惡作劇 (from It Started With a Kiss 惡作劇之吻) - Tangerine Wong 王藍茵

After an earthquake destroys Xiang Qin's house, she and her father move in with the family of her father's college buddy, Uncle Ah Li. To her surprise, the kind and amicable aunt and uncle are the parents of her cold and distant schoolmate Jiang Zhi Shu, a genius with an IQ of 200 whom not too long ago rejected her endless crush on him. Will the close proximity give her a second chance to win Zhi Shu's heart? Or, will her love for him end under his cold words? What happens when there is competition for his heart? (Source: MyDramaList)

9. Brave Happiness 勇敢的幸福 (from Green Forest, My Home 綠光森林) - Sweety

The story begins when the four main characters are just children. Luo Shan's father is chauffeur to the Su's who have a daughter, Sophie. Having been abandoned by her mother and occasionally beaten by her father, Luo Shan harbours feelings of inferiority and inadequacy. Luo Shan is envious of Sophie, believing that if given the same opportunities as her, she could be as happy. Then, Luo Shan's father dies in an accident and the Su's take her in, renaming her Susan. Sophie's mother hopes that Sophie will treat Susan as her older sister and not tell anyone that Susan is adopted. Being kind-hearted and easy-going by nature, Sophie is easily taken advantage of by Susan, who decides that everything Sophie has, she must have too. Her jealousy also extends to Sophie's close friendship with Yuan Fang. (Source: MyDramaList)

10. What Should I Do? 怎麼辦 (from Hanazakarino Kimitachihe 花樣少年少女) - S.H.E

After watching a high jump competition on TV, Lu Rui Xi is so inspired by a jumper named Zuo Yi Quan that she decides to transfer to his school, which happens to be an all-boys school; therefore, she disguises herself as a boy to get accepted. At the school, Rui Xi befriends Jin Xiu Yi. One day during a friendly soccer match, Rui Xi is knocked unconscious by Xiu Yi. Quan carries her to the infirmary and realizes that Rui Xi is in fact a girl! However, Quan keeps her identity a secret. At the same time, Xiu Yi starts to question his own sexual orientation when he finds himself having feelings towards Rui Xi. (Source: Sugoideas)

11. Love*Corner 愛*轉角 (from Corner with Love 轉角*遇到愛) - Show Luo 羅志祥


Also check out: The Courage of Love 愛的勇氣 - Megan Lai 賴雅妍

Xin Lei, a girl from a wealthy family, and Qin Lang, a guy who came to Shanghai to pursue his dream of becoming an artist, meet by accident at a corner when her car and his bike crash into each other. They meet again when Xin Lei goes to the restaurant that Qin Lang works at. They truly get to know each other when Xin Lei asks him to teach her how to make oyster pancakes. Then, Xin Lei's parents' company goes bankrupt. Without telling her, Xin Lei's parents go into hiding, leaving only a plane ticket and a key to their house in Taiwan. To make matters worse, Xin Lei's fiancé breaks the engagement, due to his parents' wishes. The only two people she has now are Qin Lang and her best friend Xi Xian. Qin Lang then tells her that he is leaving for Taiwan, so they bid farewell. When Xin Lei arrives in Taiwan, she finds out that Qin Lang's family has been living in her family's house for years! After much controversy, Qin Lang's grandmother finally lets her stay. Thus begins a magical love story. (Source: DramaWiki)

12. Looking 對望 (from My Lucky Star 放羊的星星) - Jimmy Lin 林志颖

Xia Zhi Xing, aka Ah Xing, is a con-artist who makes a living by selling fake jewelry and posing as company representatives to trick her customers. She later crosses paths with Zhong Tian Qi, a man accused of stealing a necklace called Queen Mary. Ah Xing sees him as another criminal like her, and the two's relationship develops over time while they live together back at her village. However, with his sudden involvement in her life, trouble starts to ensue, leading to Ah Xing discovering that there is more to the story behind the Queen Mary necklace, and how a mere criminal to her was actually the second son of a jewelry company's CEO. (Source: DramaWiki)

13. Breathless 缺氧 (from Why Why Love 換換愛) - Rainie Yang 楊丞琳

Tong Jia Di needs a life besides work, paying down family debt, and more work. So her best friend Jiang Xiao Nan sneaks in a "Love" coupon in Jia Di's raffle box praying that the lucky guy who draws it will sweep Jia Di off her feet. As it so happens, Huo Yan, the compassionate manager Jia Di has secret crush on, is the lucky guy. But, although the prince can exchange the coupon for Cinderella's love, it doesn't mean he will, especially when his devilish younger brother is determined to exchange his "Master/Angel" coupon for her servitude. (Source: MyDramaList)

14. New Home 新窩 (from Romantic Princess 公主小妹) - Fahrenheit 飛輪海 ft. S.H.E


Also check out: Don't Want to Understand 不想懂得 - Angela Chang 張韶涵

Adopted by middle classed parents, Xiao Mai has always had a dream to be an heiress. Who knew that one day this dream would come true. Xiao Mai's biological grandfather is the head of a prestigous aristocratic family and after many years of searching, he finally finds his long lost granddaughter. As she starts her life as an heiress, everyday is filled with excitement, however, everything seems a bit different from what she had imagined them to be. (Source: MyDramaList)

15. How Are You Recently? 最近還好嗎 (from Bull Fighting 鬥牛,要不要) - S.H.E


It started as a 3-on-3 basketball competition between two rival schools; an annual event in which the winner would control the 13th Street basketball court for the following year. To everybody's surprise, the 9-year reigning champion lost this year... and it was all because of one girl. Now, this game has a new purpose.
Yi Sheng Xue, a hot-headed young girl, is an avid Bull Fighting fan. At her side is her loyal childhood friend and personal bodyguard, Jin Zi Cong. Their lives take a drastic turn when they meet Shen Ruo He, whom Sheng Xue falls deeply in love with. However, they encounter many obstacles that stand in the way of them being together.
Will love triumph over evil? And will Zi Cong be able to live with seeing the woman he loves, love another man? (Source: MyDramaList)

16. 99 Times I Love Him 99次我愛他 (from Fated to Love You 命中注定我愛你) - Shorty Yuan 元若藍

A really unfashionable working class girl Chen Xin Yi has the desire to tie down her handsome boyfriend to be with her. Due to certain reasons, her boyfriend gets her to go on a love cruise and she started to ponder on how to lose her virginity and tie down her boyfriend. Xin Yi ends up taking cold medicine, which makes her drowsy, and mistakenly goes into Ji Cun Xi's room. Cun Xi is the sole male heir to his family's company and has been in love with his girlfriend, Anna, for a long time. He planned to propose to Anna on the boat but she didn't turn up on the cruise. An island owner adds drugs into Cun Xi's drink and Cun Xi became disorientated and returns to his own room. Xin Yi and Cun Xi end up having a one night stand. Xin Yi later finds out that she's pregnant and Cun Xi's grandmother forces them to get married. Will a couple forced to marry for the sake of their unborn child find love with each other? (Source: MyDramaList)

17. Take Me Away 帶我走 (from Miss No Good 不良笑花) - Rainie Yang 楊丞琳

Jiang Xiao Hua is a jewelry store owner with no sense of style. When prince charming Jia Si Le comes back from Japan with intentions of dating her, she blackmails Tang Men, a poison-tongue style guru, into helping her become a lady worthy of Si Le. (Source: Sugoideas)

18. I Love Him 我愛他 (from Autumn's Concerto 下一站,幸福) - Della Wu 丁噹


Ren Guang Xi, a cocky law student, seems to lead the perfect life. He's the sole successor to a huge and famous business and a talented ice hockey player. But in reality, his lonely life lacks joy, laughter and motivation. That is until he meets Liang Mu Cheng, the new bento seller at his school canteen. Although orphaned at a young age, Mu Cheng does not let her past affect her and lives life with great passion and determination. A harmless bet brings the two together and Guang Xi slowly changes as Mu Cheng teaches him how to give and love. Tragedy strikes when Guang Xi suddenly has to go through a major brain surgery which causes him to lose his memory. His mother begs Mu Cheng to leave him and the latter has no choice but to do so. Little does she know that she already has Guang Xi's child. (Source: DramaWiki)

19. Love Won't Be Alone 愛不單行 (from hi my sweetheart 海派甜心) - Show Luo 羅志祥


Also check out: Rainy Love 雨愛 - Rainie Yang 楊丞琳

Xue Hai is a certifiable dork when he first arrives in Hangzhou. After his schoolmate Bao Zhu saves him from bullying, she becomes his first love. Then, a misunderstanding causes them to lose contact when she moves back to Taiwan. He thinks she dumped him. So he transforms himself from a dork to a hunk in order to seek revenge. (Source: MyDramaList)

20. Loving You 愛上你 (from down with love 就想賴著你) - S.H.E

Xiang Yu Ping, a renowned and handsome lawyer, is seen by others as cold and ruthless. After Yu-ping’s older brother dies in a car accident he has little choice but take in his brother's two orphaned children, Yu Fei and Yu Ting (their mother having abandoned them soon after their birth). Every nanny he hires to care for them is either scared off by the mischievous children or ends up trying to seduce him. Fed up, Yu Ping asks his secretary, Yang Duo, to find a nanny that meets his requirements. Having lost all their wealth when their mother died and being abandoned by their father after racking up heavy debts, Yang Duo can not ignore the fact that she needs the money and recommends her younger sister, Yang Guo, for the job; assuring Yu Ping that her tomboyish sister will not fall in love with him by lying that she is a lesbian. But the tables are turned on Yu Ping as he ends up falling in love with his new nanny. (Source: Wikipedia)

21. I Remember I have Loved 我記得我愛過 (from Summer's Desire 泡沫之夏) - Peter Ho 何潤東

Xia Mo and Luo Xi were both orphans adopted by the same family. Their closeness made Ou Chen, Xia Mo's rich boyfriend, increasingly jealous. He forced their separation by sending Luo Xi to study abroad. However, his overbearing behaviour only pushed Xia Mo to breakup with him. Heartbroken, he got into a car accident and lost his memory. Five years later, Luo Xi returns as a super star. He reunites with Xia Mo and helps her succeed in the show biz. Just when their relationship seems rosy, it begins to crumple as Ou Chen regains his memory and does everything he can to get Xia Mo back. (Source: MyDramaList)

22. I Won't Love You 我不會喜歡你 (from In Time with You 我可能不會愛你) - Bolin Chen 陳柏霖

On her 30th birthday, Cheng You Qing receives an email on "the symptoms of premature aging" from Li Da Ren, her best friend of 14 years. Unable to accept that Li Da Ren is like a fine wine that will get better with age and she is like a grape that will dry into a raisin as years go by, she makes a bet with Li to see who will get married first before they turn 35. As she looks around for a potential husband, she discovers that she is surrounded by unacceptable candidates, like a gay assistant or a cheating ex-boyfriend. The only man who can love her despite her ill temper and stubbornness is her best friend. The only problem is that they both swore that they are not nor will ever be romantically attracted to each other. (Source: MyDramaList)

23. COme back to me (from love arounD 真愛黑白配) - bii 畢書盡


Also check out: Nothing But Happiness 幸福無關 - Bii 畢書盡

Radio DJ Liang Xiao Shu is outgoing, straightforward, optimistic and a little drama queen at heart. After finding out her boyfriend of three months is cheating on her, she is devastated. By a chance encounter she meets Zhou Zhen who comes from a former gangster family that has decided to keep their hands clean. Zhen is gentle, gracious and upright, he encourages Xiao Shu and helps her to move on. Zhen becomes an employee at the radio station where Xiao Shu works by mistake and goes to great lengths to hide his true identity by impersonating a salesperson. Little does he know the seed of love has already begun to grow. (Source: MyDramaList)

24. unstoppable sun 擋不住的太陽 (from just you 就是要你愛上我) - Aaron yan 炎亞綸


Qi Yi is a boss from hell, and the saboteur of office romances. Cheng Liang Liang was tasked by her coworkers to break down the boss' defense and have him lift the anti-office-romance rule. (Source: MyDramaList)

    25. that's not me 這不是我 (from Fall in love with me 愛上兩個我) - Aaron yan 炎亞綸 

    Lu Tian Xing is a prodigy in Asia's advertising field. Rich, famous, and highly successful, he suddenly announces during a press conference that he will be taking a three-month break from the advertising life. With a simple disguise, he transforms himself into "Xiao Lu". Enter Tao Le Si, a young woman who promised her late brother to protect his advertisement agency and his legacy. Unfortunately, business never picks up and Le Si had to battle with Tian Xing to stop her company from being sold. When Xiao Lu enters her office doors, Le Si initially thinks that he's Tian Xing, but the two men's personalities are complete opposites. Le Si finds herself drawn to Xiao Lu's warm temperament, but will their love last once she discovers the truth of his identity? (Source: Wikipedia)

    honourable mention:
    for you (from Meteor Garden (2018)) - Dylan Wang 王鶴棣, Darren Chen 官鴻, Connor Leong 梁靖康, Caesar Wu 吳希澤


    Also check out: Love Exists 愛,存在 - Wei Qi Qi 魏奇奇

    The story centers around an ordinary girl, Dong Shan Cai who is accepted to the most prestigious university in the country. She encounters F4, an exclusive group composed of the four popular boys in the institution - Dao Ming Si, Hu Ze Lei, Xi Men Yan, and Fang Mei Zuo. Shan Cai is a girl from a family that is barely able to make ends meet. Due to the nature of her personality, she immediately clashes with F4, especially Dao Ming Si, who is spoiled, arrogant, and a bully. She remains defiant even after becoming a target of Dao Ming Si and just when she's about to give up, Hua Ze Lei always seems to show up to comfort her. Eventually, the four boys begin to acknowledge Shan Cai's unyielding personality that is like her namesake, which is that of a weed that can never be brought down. She also begins to see the good in the boys, which paves the way for friendship and an eventual romance. (Source: Wikipedia)

    I know this isn't a TW drama, but it has to be included 😜and I guess it can kind of be considered partially a TW drama...
    And while we're at it, there are some fantastic tracks on the OST, featuring the four main leads ("new F4") as well as some english songs that may be familiar to listeners:

    And of course, there's Penny Tai's beautiful rendition of The Love You Want 你要的愛

    YouTube playlist // Spotify playlist (missing a few songs though)