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A-Mei's "Rainbow" will not be banned on Singapore radio

The song's lyrics have no mature content. Rather, it was a past performance of the song - which saw the Taiwanese singer encouraging fans to "openly show affection for same-sex partners" - that led to licensing concerns for a recent concert here. 

SINGAPORE: A song by Taiwanese singer A-Mei will not be banned on local airwaves because the content of the song does not breach regulations here, said Communications and Information Minister Yaacob Ibrahim.

He responded in Parliament on Wednesday (July 9) to a question by Nominated Member of Parliament Janice Koh, who wanted to know why A-Mei's song "Rainbow" was prohibited from being performed at a recent music festival, and if the decision implied that the song should also be banned from public broadcast.

"The lyrics, which describe how the singer overcomes a failed relationship with the support of her friend, do not contain mature content when read on their own," said Dr Yaacob. "There is therefore no issue with the song being played on radio and in public spaces." 

The song was prohibited from being performed at the Spring Wave Music and Art Festival based on past performances of the song by A-Mei, he said. Last year, she performed the song at an indoor concert, which had been given a 'General' rating. The singer had encouraged her fans to "openly show affection for their same-sex partners. The camera had projected couples in the audience, including those of the same sex, kissing on the big screen," sad Dr Yaacob. "Taken as a whole, this segment of the show promoted a pro-LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trangender) message." 

He added that if information about how the song was going to be performed had been provided to the Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA) at the point of licensing, it could still have been part of the concert, which would then be given a different rating for mature content.

The Spring Wave concert this year was held outdoors - where performances are typically restricted to the 'General' rating, because passers-by may inadvertently chance upon the performances.

The MDA had advised the organisers that, based on how "Rainbow" was performed in the past, the event may exceed the 'General' rating. Dr Yaacob said the organisers made the decision not to include the song in the line-up.

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