Lin Yu Chun and the Reality of the Music Industry

May 5th, 2021 by dayat Leave a reply »

The Internet recently chose its next person to gain fifteen minutes of Internet fame as Lin Yu Chun of the show Super Star Avenue had blogs and YouTube videos everywhere covering his performances on the show. Many people likened Lin Yu Chun to former Internet star Susan Boyle and were amazed at the twenty-four year old man’s performance. However, these reactions to the musical performances show more of what’s wrong with society and the music industry today than anything else.

For those who don’t watch music reality television or have an aversion to YouTube, Susan Boyle and Lin Yu Chun both came to success on music shows around the world. Susan Boyle, a heavy set Scottish woman, performed in mid-April 2009 on Britain’s Got Talent and amazed the world with her performance of “I Dreamed a Dream” from Les Miserables. Lin Yu Chun captured some of Susan Boyles fame as he appeared in the Taiwan show Super Star Avenue singing Whitney Houston’s “I Will Always Love You.” Both singers did amazing renditions that caught many people by surprise.

The trouble with these two performances is that many people find them impressive because of the surprise they had upon hearing them. How could someone who doesn’t fit our archetype of a successful musician have such an impressive voice? It doesn’t fit our view of talent that a heavy-set Scottish woman could have a tremendous opera-esque voice or that a portly Asian could sing a pitch-perfect rendition of a Whitney Houston song. In both cases, while society has been impressed by the musical delivery, it seems more surprised by their appearance.

Why do people find appearance to be a factor in the issue? In the end, our physical appearance has little influence on our talent in any realm. This issue serves to highlight the challenges we face in removing stereotypes and viewing people on an equal playing field, no matter how charismatic or physically attractive they are. At the same time, the surging appearance of these tremendous musical stars highlights another issue that is rising in today’s music industry. Both of these stars, Susan Boyle and Lin Yu Chun, both achieved their fame through a reality television show that helped draw public attention to them. When listening to their performances, it is easy to realize that these two artists are significantly more talented than many of the musicians who are already performing today and selling millions of music albums. So why do those artists have contracts but not these singers at their coming-out moment to the public?

There clearly is a large talent in the grassroots of society and more work needs to be done to find it. Music reality shows do a great job of starting this push by allowing people the opportunity if they sing well in their countless auditions. However, these efforts are only the beginning. More record labels should have A&R scouts scouring the countryside to find the best in musical talents. We need to treat finding performing artists in the same way companies treat finding new employees. Look for the best, most capable people, no matter where they come from or what they look like. Overall, it’s great to see another solid musical performance from an unknown. While Lin Yu Chun still has some time before he finds out if he wins “Super Star Avenue,” it’s safe to say, he’s already won in the public’s eye.


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