Fishing songs are a kind of Chinese folk songs sung by fishermen in coastal areas of China and lakes and harbours. If popular in Shanwei City, Guangdong Province, collectively known as Shanwei Fishing Songs, and in Huidong, Guangdong Province, there are also fishing songs, belonging to the same kind of Shanwei City. It can be divided into deep sea and shallow sea. The former is sung by deep-sea fishermen, similar to saltwater songs, while the latter is sung by seaside fishermen and women. Usually refers to shallow water fishing songs.
On December 03, 2014, the fishing songs (Dongting Fishing Song and Shanwei Fishing Song) were listed in the fourth batch of national intangible cultural heritage list with the approval of the State Council.
Fishermen sing songs and answer each other. —— Song Fan Zhongyan's Records of Yueyang Towers
It is also called "Fisherman's Instruction". Fishermen sing folk tunes. Tang Wang Bo's "Preface to the Banquet on the Upper Sifu River" said: "All the banners are quoted together, and the fishing songs are intertwined." Xu Zhenqing's poem "Send Geng and Hui to Keep Huzhou" in the Ming Dynasty: "Maizhu frequent Laotian officials drums, fishing songs near the king's boat." Qin Huitian's poem "Yanziji" in Qing Dynasty: "Shadows of sails hang in the shadows, fishing in the twilight."
The Lyric format is generally seven-character sentences, two sentences and one song, with four or eight sentences and one song. Four sentences also start with five-character or three-character sentences. The last three words of the second or fourth sentence are often repeated with a complement or a whole sentence. The interlining words are distinctive and often used to distinguish the names of different tunes, such as "Ha-ha-xiang tune" and "Li-li tune". The tunes are lively and beautiful, such as the Guangdong Haifeng Fishing Song "Welcoming the Flower Boat to the Fishing Village". Another example is the fishing song popular in Poyang Lake, Jiangxi Province, which is sung by fishermen. The lyrics are mostly seven-character sentences, four sentences and one paragraph. The tune is mainly in the form of levying tunes. It is broad and melodious, such as the song "A net of fish and shrimp, a net of grain".