Friday, October 29, 2010

taiwan's government approved foreign artists

basically, if you're an overseas (aka real foriegner) you can perform at any venue your mananger books for you, provided that the booking takes place overseas. in fact, the cultural bureaus are happy to have you. but if you're a taiwan foriegner, they will do everything in their power to make sure that you stay off most cultural venues, unless of course you are part of a group sponsored by other taiwanese.
why this paradox? because taiwan is still living in the chaing kai shek days. they want to keep an eye on what foriegners are or might be saying.
i have been paying taxes to the ROC for 13 years. but i still cannot apply for use of any public facility, and neither can any other foriegner, without a local taiwan organization supporting them.
but getting that support is very hard, because of the way they think. take for instance my band. there are 3 people: guitar, bass and drums. my drummer is an excellent taiwanese guy who plays stellar jazz. my bassist is a young guy, but he is learning how to use interesting notes to fill things in.
the way we play, we don't need a 4th person. but all these organizations think " if there aren't at least 4 people, then it won't be exciting enough". this is one of those areas where taiwan people like to talk beyond their knowledge of things, and thereby make things harder for people trying to do something new. and also, when they see my fucking white face, treat us as if we were going to sing some debaucherous western song, though i tell them we are a jazz trio.
of course, if it were 3 taiwanese highschool punks trashing a song, they'd let them,no matter how bad they sing, and no matter who bad the lyrics, because we have to give our young people a venue to perform.
the thing is, i paid the freight on that venue too. all tax payers should have equal access to the facilities in our city. simple as that.
of course, if you don't speak any chinese and act rudely, they'll just give you whatever you want. but if you're polite. speak good chinese, they treat you like shit.

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