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Dawen portrait TW 2012.png
Dawen in 2012.
Background information
Native name 王大文
Birth name Dawen Wang
Born (1981-10-28) 28 October 1981 (age 35)
Origin Chicago, IL
Genres Soul, R&B, Neo-soul, Funk
Occupation(s) Singer-songwriter
Instruments vocals
Years active 2007-present
Website dawen.us
Notable instruments
Piano, keyboard, guitar

Dawen Wang, known as Dawen (Chinese: 王大文) is an American singer and songwriter. He first gained prominence when he won Kollaboration Acoustic 4.[1] Dawen’s first single "Wake Up", deals with Asian American stereotypes and prejudice towards minorities, and is especially popular among high school and college students.[2][3] Known for his socio-politically conscious music, Dawen’s material is a staple of Asian American Studies departments all over universities across the US, frequently performing and speaking at various panels and conferences.[3][4][5][6][7]

Dawen became popular for translating famous popular songs into Chinese on YouTube, with his Mandarin cover of Rebecca Black's "Friday" becoming a viral runaway hit garnering much media attention including Carson Daly, exposure on AMP Radio[8] and the Kevin and Bean Show on KROQ[9] in Los Angeles and other online publications.[10] Subsequently, Dawen’s Mandarin covers have become widely popular among Chinese language classes everywhere and often used in lesson plans as examples to learn Mandarin. Some of his translated covers include the aforementioned "Friday" by Rebecca Black, Backstreet Boys, "I Want It That Way", and the 2012 summer smash "Call Me Maybe", by Carly Rae Jepsen.[11]

Early life[edit]

Born in Cambridge, Massachusetts on 28 October 1981, Dawen grew up in Lexington, Massachusetts and attended Lexington High School as a freshman. At the age of 14, Dawen moved to Hong Kong to reside with his mother, attending Sha Tin College, before returning to the United States to study at Northwestern University, at Evanston, Illinois, earning a Bachelor of Arts in English and a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance.[3][12] His brother George Wang, is a new media and TV producer based in Los Angeles, California.


Dawen first appeared on the music scene as an indie artist in the mid-late 2000s. He started off in Chicago, Illinois, playing at open mics and at various music venues. In the fall of 2008, he decided to move to Los Angeles, upon the advice of his brother George, to further pursue his music career.[13]

In late 2009, he released his debut album, "American Me" and followed soon after with a tour including stops in Taiwan and Hong Kong.[2][14][15] In August 2010, Dawen entered the renowned talent show Kollaboration and emerged the Grand Prize Winner, increasing his prominence and exposure online.[16][17][18][19][20][21][22][23]

Subsequently, Dawen started using YouTube as a platform to reach more fans and a wider audience. With many of his cover videos gaining popularity, Dawen began gaining fans and attracting the attention of the media and the music industry. Dawen is currently residing in Taipei, Taiwan and his debut album "Hello" released on Universal Records Taiwan on Christmas Eve.

Dawen's first Mandarin single, "A Change of Heart" ("回心轉意") debuted in episode 9 on the Taiwanese idol drama, Lady Maid Maid (愛情女僕), broadcast on SETTV. It has been regularly featured on subsequent episodes and has since been released as part of a fourteen song TV soundtrack compilation, available as a digital download on Taiwan-based KKBox.[24]


Studio album[edit]

Album# Title Track List Notes
1st American Me
  • Released: 9 September 2009
  • Label: Independently released
  • Language: English
  • Format: Studio album (CD), available digitally on iTunes
  • Genre: Soul/R&B/Neo-soul/Funk
  • Countries: Worldwide
  1. Welcome
  2. Wake Up
  3. Ku Li
  4. Fresh Off the Boat
  5. Hyphenate
  6. The Americans
  7. Never Again
  8. Put Your Swords Down
  9. The Predicament
  10. I Hate Jay
  11. Lament
  12. Typhoon 8
  13. Get Enough
  14. Just You
  15. Rusted Hands
  16. My Cup It Overflows
Music video made for "Wake Up"
Album# Title Track List Notes
2nd Hello
  • Released: 24 December 2013
  • Label: Universal Music Taiwan
  • Language: Mandarin Chinese
  • Format: Studio album (CD), available digitally on iTunes
  • Genre: Mandopop
  • Countries: Worldwide
  1. Slow Half-Beat
  2. Hello
  3. Lets Work It Out
  4. Firecracker
  5. Meaningless
  6. Acid Rain
  7. Change of Heart
  8. Beautiful
  9. Indian Serenade
  10. Shoes


  1. ^ Eun, Elizabeth. "Dawen Wins Kollaboration Acoustic 4". KoreAm Magazine. Retrieved 30 August 2010. 
  2. ^ a b Q&A with Singer-Songwriter Dawen, embarking on New York "American Me" Tour | Hyphen magazine - Asian American arts, culture, and politics
  3. ^ a b c Asia Pacific Arts: Soul Awakening
  4. ^ Panelist and Moderator Bios - Asian American Studies : College of Liberal Arts : Purdue University
  5. ^ Sailing Beyond the Horizon | ITASA 2010 West Coast Conference | UC San Diego is set to host the ITASA 2010 West Coast Conference on April 1-4, 2010. Here's a behind the scenes...
  6. ^ Seen and Heard Conference 2011 Features Dawen
  7. ^ http://maasu.org/intercollegiate-taiwanese-american-student-association-conference/
  8. ^ [Video] Carson Daly: Rebecca Black’s "Friday" Goes To China! « New Music, Music News, Concerts, Gossip – 97.1 AMP RADIO
  9. ^ [1]
  10. ^ Rebecca Black's death-threat-inducing song Friday in Chinese by Dawen | Mail Online
  11. ^ Dawen 王大文 - YouTube
  12. ^ Dawen Wang | LinkedIn
  13. ^ Dawen Interview | Asian American Musician |
  14. ^ Dawen — American Me | MTV IGGY
  15. ^ Introducing Guest Bloggers: Dawen | MTV IGGY
  16. ^ Kollaboration - EMPOWERMENT THROUGH ENTERTAINMENT - Kollaboration Acoustic 4
  17. ^ dawen wins kollaboration acoustic 4
  18. ^ Dawen Wins Kollaboration Acoustic 4 « KoreAm Journal – Korean America's Premier Magazine
  19. ^ Dawen Wins Kollaboration Acoustic 4! | a-Tunes
  20. ^ Dawen Wins Kollaboration Acoustic 4 | Music | 8Asians.com | An Asian American collaborative blog
  21. ^ Empowerment Through Entertainment – Rafu Shimpo
  22. ^ http://www.channelapa.com/2010/08/dawen-wins-kollaboration-acoustic-4.html
  23. ^ Slant Eye For The Round Eye: Official: Dawen Wins Kollaboration Acoustic 4
  24. ^ 愛情女僕情歌合輯 - 回心轉意 (演唱:王大文) (愛情女僕 插曲) - KKBOX

External links[edit]