i know there are four tones in chinese. but my Cantonese friends don't agree. they insist Chinese has far more tones than that. and they say in Fujian, the tones of the local language even overnumber those of Cantonese. My god, how many tones in Chinese?
by the way, am wanna learn Cantonese. Is there any Cantonese class in Beijing?
except tones of āáǎà
there's one called "qing", pronounce like atonic...so tone, usually at the end of phrase if for e.g. "yours", nǐ de---there de is "qing"
and there's "qu" tone, this is a sound of the end of a word, with a rising but atonic sound, which was the tune of ancient standard chinese, but now no such tone in mandarin, only some dialects kept it...
for e.g. to pronouce "han fu"(han costume) in chinese with a "qu" tone, you should pronouce like "hanfuk" in english...hope I made sense
There are five officially in Mandarin (though the neutral tone is sometimes left out). They can change, though, depending on where they are... when 2 third tones are in a row, the first one becomes a second tone, for example.
In Chinese songs, tones are ignored, right? That's the impression I got, and would explain why almost all performances I saw on TV had subtitles.