Popular rock band Mayday suspected of lip-syncing
Published: Dec 03, 2023 06:30 PM Updated: Dec 03, 2023 06:28 PM
Photo: screenshot from online

Photo: screenshot from online

Mayday, a renowned rock band from the island of Taiwan, has been embroiled in a controversy since Sunday over allegations of lip-syncing during several of their tour concerts in the past few months in the Chinese mainland.

The accusations are based on a video uploaded by influencer Maitian Nongfu on Bilibili, China's leading video platform, who compared 12 songs recorded by a fan at the band's Shanghai stop on a music analysis software. The results revealed that A Xin, the lead singer of the band, lip-synced at least five of the songs he performed during the nearly three-hour concert.

Beijing law enforcement on cultural market noted on Sunday that they will "make a judgment according to the situation they recorded." And they will make a public announcement when there's a follow-up. The China Association of Performing Arts, which oversees the cultural performance market in China, said on Monday that it would monitor the situation and conduct any necessary investigations.

The topic has soared to the top of the trending list as it garnered more than 240 million views within a day, as many fans who attended the concerts expressed their dismay at the 26-year-old acclaimed singing group.

Mayday, a highly popular rock band in both Taiwan island and Chinese mainland, made a response on Sunday evening that it would perform two live-streamed concerts online for their fans in Paris and Beijing. But concerns have been raised, while the opinions from the netizens and Mayday fans are divided over the debate about whether such a move constitutes lip-syncing.

"If that is true, I'd be really disappointed. The lyrics and music style of Mayday are quite unique and they really helped me get through the dark days," said a fan nicknamed Cappuccino on Bilibili.

But as the comment suggested already, the veracity of the incident is still uncertain, whereas another Mayday fan nicknamed Qicha, who had just returned from its Shenyang tour on July 15, 2023 told the Global Times on Sunday that she felt sympathetic for the "occasional fake singing situation."

"Nowadays there are only few divas who can do their full live singing, while some others will do live singing with back vocals," said the 27-year-old Beijing-based tech firm employee.

"The band has been receiving full marks in terms of its creativity and talent for being excellent songwriters, and for me it is more important to enjoy the atmosphere of the concert. We should support them," she added.

But some people pointed out that the lip-syncing of Mayday was "very obvious." According to the Regulations on the Management of Commercial Performances, performers are not allowed to deceive the audience by lip-syncing, and performance organizers are not allowed to arrange performers to lip-sync. 

"Every industry has its own standards and thresholds. Only by curbing lip-syncing and advocating live singing can the industry develop healthily," Junming, an internet technology influencer and commentator, said on Sina Weibo.

China has been witnessing a strong recovery in its performing industry in 2023, where statistics in September showed that the performing industry in the second half of the year is approaching "a window of outbreak."

According to the data from iiMedia Research on September 30, the performing market is expected to reach a total of 90.3 billion ($12.5 billion) at the end of the year, and the number "is also expected to grow."

The topics related to concerts are popular on various social media platforms. According to a report named Weibo Hot Search Trend Report for the First Half of 2023, the word "concert" was the second most frequently searched keywords.

But at the same time, related issues such as the regulations of the concerts are bothering both of the audiences and the organizers, with scalper tickets bearing the brunt.

For example, on July 28 and 29, the Shenzhen Public Security Bureau carried out a special campaign, arresting 14 ticket scalpers. All of them were then punished with administrative detention in accordance with the law.