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HOME > NORTH TAIWAN > TAIPEI > NIGHTLIFE >

TAIWAN FUN MAGAZINE, September 2002. VOL.2 ISSUE 9

 

The Grooves of the TK's

By Jeph / Translated by Blankie Hsu

       The drama surrounding Hong Kong pop singer William So and his arrest for alleged drug use at Texound has brought considerable publicity to the pub. But Texound has been a long standing favorite with dancers and techno groupies well before the recent media attention. In fact, regulars have nicknamed it "Tai-Ke-Sung" - a slang expression that means "a place where Taiwanese Customers can feel good". Together, the names Texound and Tai-Ke-Sung shed some light on Rave culture and social attitudes in Taiwan these days.

       Texound, a slur of the words "Tech" and "Sound", features electronically generated music that's popular with "ravers". And while Tai-Ke-Sung suggests a place where people can feel good, it also indicates a distinct breed of clientele, the "TK's", who some feel exhibit bad taste and/or behavior in public places.

       What's it like when TK's take to the dance floor? For one thing, their clothing is hard to miss - shirts with bold floral patterns, formal suit trousers and sunglasses set them apart. And, they dance alone or in groups with wild gyrating movements not always in sync with the music. Clustered together on a crowded dance floor, all violently shaking their heads, TK's appear more like jellyfish swaying in the water.

       More "fashionable" patrons do not take kindly to TK's, claiming they are too local, vulgar or tasteless. However, a pub is generally considered equal ground for everyone; people are free to enjoy themselves as long as they don't hurt others or abuse drugs. Actually, personal styles clash in other places, too. Like the local KTV where folks try to out sing each other, or Taiwanese wedding banquets where raucous drinking games and poor manners are not uncommon. In the end, it's differences in personal expression that make life more fun.

       Nowadays you'll rarely encounter TK's at Texound. They prefer to party at other electronic music pubs that have opened in the city since 1999. Pubs playing the Hong Kong style electronics of Sammi Cheng and Kelly Chen are especially popular.

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