HK Entertainment News Roundup
Thursday, August 21, 2003
Rising stars of the Hong Kong Music Scene
Among all the newbies in the Hong Kong Music Scene, who has left an impression to you and how many did?
The music industry is not in a boom but record companies do not let up their efforts in promoting newcomers. The new breed of singers is mostly idols, good-looking but cannot sing. Only a few can pass as singers with their mediocre skills. Amongst them, At-17, is a gem. Their genre is city-folk rock.
Lam Ee Man [Eman] and Loo Hoi Tong [Ellen] form the group, At-17.
Anthony Wong Yiu Ming discovered at-17. Both of them are still schooling and are influenced by their own brothers’ passion for music. They are into song composition and are adept in playing music instruments.
While other idol singers are still resorting to ad-lib for their performances, At-17 will be performing live with their music instruments, chalking up valuable experiences. On New Year’s Eve, I had a taste of their strength. Eman has a strong sense of rhythm and Ellen’s guitar skill is superb. Apart from showcasing their own compositions, they also did covers. A look at their rundown; Jay Chou, Faye Wong,Eason Chan, Cookies, Paula Tsui, Radiohead, Beatles, Joni Mitchell….you will be pleasantly surprised that they could do a rendition of their songs with just a set of drums and a guitar. The diversity is not a challenge to these two young ladies.
Eman revealed that to her and Ellen, singing is not for the fame but for the hope of bringing joy to people. To them, fame is a tool that can help them to reach out to more people. Anthony Wong said he was touched by their live performance, even though the venue was small and the crowd was no bigger than a thousand.
At-17’s debut album [Meow Meow Meow] has since received rave reviews and Shun Wor records shop even raise their CD price from $70HK to $110HK. This has broken the myth that listeners only know how to accept any marketed idol’s brand of music.
They had just won two awards in the recent Cash radio station’s annual music awards show and other singers have begun to ask them for compositions. Their music can be considered as an alternative to the Karoake Pop of the Hong Kong music industry. You can sample their music at www.at-17.com.
Loo Hoi Tong[Ellen Joyce]
In Form 5('O' Levels). Her favorite singer/group:- Cheers Chen and Radiohead. She plays the guitar in the group. Learn to play the classical guitar at the age of 9 from her dad. In the year 2000, she formed a band with her elder brother to compete in a singing competition and got acquainted to Eman. Thereafter, they began to perform live at various venues. They signed on to People Mountain People Sea and realized their dream of releasing albums.
Lam Ee Man [Eman]
Undergraduate. An adept drum player. Has an expressive voice. Will bring quirky instruments on stage to play. She likes Jay Chou and Janis Ian. Her works include Edison Chan’s ‘dessert’. She usually did the demo for her elder brother, Chet Lam Yat Fong. That was how Anthony Wong noticed her and eventually invited her to join his label, People Mountain People Sea.
Courtesy of mytissue.com
Wednesday, August 20, 2003
At the premiere of new movie "Lung Gam Wai" (Dragon Loaded), many stars made an appearance as guests included Jackie Cheung, Cheng Tung Hon, Lam Kin Ngok, Wong Yi Man, William So, Anya, Edmond Leung, Cookies, Shine and even Vivian Chow and Ni Zhen made it a date, causing quite a commotion. Ni was asked what the reason was for appearing with Vivian and he smiled that it was because Chris Wong (who was once rumoured to fancy Vivian) has returned to Hong Kong. Is Ni afraid his girl will be taken away from him so he has come to look out for her?
Vivian and Ni arrived late and when they appeared there was a stir among the press who rushed forward and caused some chaos, when the protective Ni saw this, he immediately called out to the reporters: "Don't be like that, we will stand out here for you to take picures!" Rarely appearing in public with his girlfriend Vivian, Ni was questioned as to the reasoning behind this premiere date, he smiled in reply: "It's because Chris Wong is back in town, of course I need to keep an eye on her. (Are you getting married soon?) We're just watching a movie! Why do you say that? I heard this is a good movie, so I came along too."
When Vivian was asked whether she was here to support Jackie Cheung, she said: "I'm here to support Fat Kuk! (Vincent Kuk)!" (Are you about to announce your wedding with such a public date?) Haha..." As soon as the subject turns to marriage, Vivian can't stop laughing, it would seem that her relationship with Ni is both sweet and happy.
Because Vivian was surrounded by the reporters, she couldn't move and when it was time to enter the auditorium, they were being pulled in both directions for interviews. When Ni couldn't find his girlfriend, he immediately looked around and as soon as he spotted Vivian, he immediately returned to her side and carefully protected her as they entered.
Joyce is currently filming a serial. She was spotted with an assistant, Pat. According to Joyce, Pat was hired by Marco Ngai. Marco was worried that Joyce would suffer under the hot sun, so he thought getting an assistant to help Joyce would be a good idea.
special thanks to Jl for the article.
Tuesday, August 19, 2003
Ekin Cheng’s former and present girlfriends, Gigi Leung and Maggie Siu appeared to support David Tao at his concert and when Ekin was quizzed about this, he replied calmly: “It’s only a concert!”
David is holding three shows in this set and there were a number of stars appearing in the audience each evening. On the last evening, the centre of attention were Gigi and Maggie. Maggie was there with her good friend Sheren Tang and sat to the side of the stage whereas Gigi attended with her agent sitting in the centre of the auditorium, so the two didn’t meet at all during the show.
In response to this chance meeting, Ekin who was appearing at a charity promotion for a camera company, he just said calmly: “I don’t know, I haven’t seen Gigi yet today and anyway it’s just a concert!” Ekin seemed totally relaxed about it all.
During the event, there were over a hundred fans there and the atmosphere was electric. During the games a fan accidentally dropped a piece of paper on the floor and Ekin jokingly called out: “Six Hundred (dollars)!” As Ekin laughed, a bystander gently pointed out to him that the spot fine for littering is now fifteen hundred dollars, making him look a little foolish!
Apart from this, Ekin has been improving his English and learning to surf, when asked whether he will also be improving his Mandarin, he smiles: “I am teaching myself, I don’t think my Mandarin is that bad! I am always doing promotions on the mainland, so it has got a lot better.”
Monday, August 18, 2003
Dragon Loaded 2003 is a movie about a spoilt young master who is lazy but harbours a strong sense of Righteousness. His dad, Dai Seung, secretly asked his friend who is a high- ranking police officer, to help him to discipline his son and nuture him into a talent.
The movie gets into full swing when guy enrolled into the Police Academy. The cast includes Ronald Cheng, Law Kar Ying, Eric Tsang and a cameo by Jackie Cheung.
[ The Sun-hk]
Daniel Wu was spotted at LMF's concert which will be their last as they will be disbanding. He was there to show support for LMF. After the concert, he realised that he lost his wallet. This incident caused some incovenience, as Daniel is currently filming in Mainland. His co-star is Michelle Reis Kar Yan. The movie is Miss Du Shi Niang.
Wyman’s romance with words
Interviewing Wong Wai Man(Wyman) in his cramp office at Cash Radio Station on lyrics composition within the confinements of stifling space was yet like a boundless horizon.
Incubation period is the most taxing
Multi-tasking as an actor, Disc jockey and Pop song Lyricist, Wyman said that he isn’t at an advantage when it comes to looking for a subject matter when he composes. This is because he only has 24 hours like everyone else and has to juggle his time.
Writing stuff that others had not explored, catering to the market demands, providing a new perceptive on things and creating new requirements is Wyman’s rule to ensure he’s compositions retain quality. Wyman treats lyrics composition as a game. The same subject matter could yield a different perceptive at times and this could be interesting.
According to Wyman, the time used to compose lyrics is not extensive. It is the incubation period, the formation of ideas, interests in the subject matter. Discovering one’s interests, the singers’ suitability and the producer(s)’ acceptance of the subject matter is most exhaustive to the mind. It is not difficult for a tune that is well written to induce his creative juice. However, his main source of inspiration still hails from everyday life experiences.
To Wyman, cooping himself in a room will not yield anything. Even if he did come out with something, it will be based on past experiences and not something new. That will be repetitive, so it is important to keep in touch and up to date about everything that is happening around him. Wyman laments that Chinese is a language that does not re-invent itself which is unlike English, there are always new words being invented, and that makes Chinese a passive language.
He suspects that the Chinese word he uses now has not been any different from that of 100 years ago. Everyone uses the same wordings; to attempt to come out with some thing new is actually very difficult. So, if he were to coop himself up, his creativity will be marginalized.
Spellbound by Writing
Wyman has a pathetic count of Mandarin songs’ lyrics that was composed by him. The most memorable ones that came to mind are those that he composed for Faye Wong. The reason was Wyman’s grasp of Mandarin is not good. On the other hand, he likes the challenges that he faced when he composes in Cantonese.
There are more restrictions to Cantonese lyrics as compared to Mandarin; making words rhyme in Cantonese is already a big hurdle. Wyman confessed that he needs some form of binding and he loves writing since young. However, he does not like to write. Perhaps, he was born lazy. Then again, writing could bring one into a limitless dimension. This magic (spell), according to Wyman is interesting.
Wyman gets exhilarated whenever he passes by a shop with an interesting shop sign, and see new books on the shelves of bookstores. He believes that being fluent in the Chinese Language is an advantage, as he is able to express his thoughts in multitude ways. Nowadays, youngsters’ detached feeling for the language and the unwillingness to try is appalling. Wyman believes that creativity cannot be taught. It has to be
From carefree to demanding
During his earlier days, Wyman resolved to break the chains of convention and did what he fancied but as time went by, he realized that everyone still used convention to judge a lyricist’s works. Hankering after recognition, Wyman started to play by the rules. Occasionally, Wyman will reminisce about the good old days. He is known for his witty and unconventional way of expression about his subject matter in his earlier works. That was his style, he called it Illusory; even if the subject matter proved to be mundane, he could skewed one’s perception by the play of words. Thus earning kudos from people. Nowadays, he will demand that his works would stir and invoke ripples in one’s heart. This objective is a coveted by all lyricists and a quest.
Lyrics with modern humor
Hongkong lyricists can be divided into sects:
-a master of the Chinese Language, delving into abstract subject matter, heart wrenching, surrealistic feel. A good example will be Lam Chik.
-One that provides a new insight to a subject matter, playing with words and oozing with creativity, assaulting your senses. Examples will be Lam Chan Keung and Wyman Wong. You [Will Not Have A Happy Ending] using hate to write about love, subverting Chinese Pop’s conventional way of writing love songs.
In 1993, Wyman became the youngest lyricist in Hongkong’s Music Scene. His works were mostly on everyday life like bathing, spa etc. Sometimes, his works are so introspective that it hurts.
Born in 1969. Graduated from HongKong Chinese University, Social Science Faculty in 1991. He was an editor for a fashion magazine before he graduates and became a disc jockey thereafter.
He first try on lyrics composition was in 1993. Contributing his work to fellow disc jockeys, Jamb Lamb and Gwok Ming Fai. That kicked start his route to being a lyricist and the rest is history.
He started filming in 1995. Filming to him was like playing Mahjong, something he just learned and would like to dabble in it.
Special thanks to Wanyi for the wonderful interview. Courtesy of mytissue.com.
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HK Ents News Roundup is a non profit-making site. Copyright 2003 Â© All rights reserved.
HK Ents News Roundup is a non profit-making site. Copyright 2003 Â© All rights reserved.