The Shui, deriving from the ancient Baiyue ethnic group, is scattered in Sandu Shui Autonomous County of Guizhou Province and Huangni River, Gugan of Fuyuan County, Dahe and Long'an etc of Yiliang of Yunnan Province. Now, they speak and write in Chinese. The former "Shui Script" is only used for augury by wizards.
The Shui's ballads, in terms of form, can be divided into single-song, dual-song, root song, melody song and question song etc; when in terms of content, can be divided into ancient song, canticle, production song, song of praising things, custom song, wine song and love song etc. Dual-song is the most special song of the Shui, which is characterized by speaking and singing. Dual-song dives singing people into two groups and include speaking first and then singing. The dual-song, especially fable dual-song, is very humorous and funny and its moral is not expressed directly and must be guessed according to the current situation and its content. Dual-song is most sung in ceremonious feast and by the host and the guests. The Shui in Shuiwei Township of Rongjiang County of Guizhou Province has a kind of funny song. When singing, the boy and the girl will not meet each other but live in a house respectively, with two bamboo canisters covered with snake skin and with a string in between to transmit their songs. This "phone-type" song is very euphemistic to express their feelings.
The Shui ballads, characterized by stable melody and simple rhythm and changing lyrics according to the actual situation and people, can express this ethnic group's feeling.