There is always music everywhere you go in China. Ask anybody what they like to do for fun and invariably they'll answer, as their third favourite, "listening to the music". Their first two favourites are sleeping and eating but then we get lost in the meaning of having fun.
KTVs (Karaoke) are everywhere and are always the thing to do any day, any time. (except for lunch where sleeping and eating reign supreme).
I find it strange that although everyone listens to music and loves to sing, that there really isn't any passion about it. Evryone listens to the same cringing soft-pop ballad type of music except for taxi drivers, who for some reason listen to electronic disco music at full blast.
There is a 'music scene' of course. Clubs and punk bands et all, but for everyday life there isn't much.
The kind of idea that music defines you, shows your personality and intrests, is a way to escape from reality for almost everyone I grew up with, just isn't here. That stamp of individuality, separation from parents that I remember is only in China at the fringes of society. People don't spend time searching for good music, instead, good music is defined by what's popular. I mean, if it's not popular then it mustn't be any good right? Right?
But go into the parks and you'll find the older generations playing and enjoying their music. Not over-produced blandness, but usually traditional music played on traditional instruments.
Here's where you can find the love of music in China.
Music in the Park
Erhu in the Park
One Man Band
Granny Rocks Out