Wednesday, September 28, 2011

為愛做的一切 [the things we do for love]

what a great album title!

we are sure you have heard in the grapevine that she is back. we are, of course, talking about joanna wang, the one with the husky voice.

we checked with our fastest supplier in town - eric the fast delivery man  in amcorp - for her album last sunday at amcorp mall. eric didn't have it but he said it should be out this week and we believe it has already hit the record stores.

joanna's debut was great, the second one was really ordinary so we can't wait for this one.   

you can sample some songs here

here's the exciting repertoire.

CD1 英文盤
1. Raindrops Keep Fallin’ on My Head
2. You’ve Got a Friend
3. The Things We Do For Love
4. Wild World
5. Lemon Tree
6. Dirty Work
7. Stay
8. You’ve Got a Friend (Acoustic Version)
9. Wild World (Acoustic Version )
10. Stay (Acoustic Version )

CD2 中文盤
1. 償還
2. 親密愛人
3. 三個人的晚餐
4. 一生守候
5. Lemon Tree (中文版)

Sunday, September 25, 2011

新的声音 [a new voice]

we have been asked many times by an event manager: can we discover more new voices with calibre like zyan and winnie? she personally has auditioned many singers, but very few can meet her standards other than the two girls.

it is easily said than done. the two singers have more than 10 years of singing experience respectively, predominantly in live singing, coupled with studio recording experience. so, it naturally excludes singers who are younger than 25 year-old (unless you are a prodigy like david foster's charice from philipines). you may be able to sing in karaoke, or small chinese cafes, but hand you a bigger stage or usher you into a recording studio, most likely you would panic and freak out.  a lot of karaoke singers think just because they can sing karaoke well, they can be good singers. this, of course, is the greatest fallacy. karaoke is noisy, full of distortion, and often masks the singer's true voice, tone and pitching. all you need is a high-octave voice that can cover the noise. a lot of great singers i know don't even frequent karaoke.

anyway, the point is: we have always been on a look-out for great voices, be it male or female. our criteria are pretty stringent. we don't want singers who are too poppish, if you know what we mean. we have auditioned many in the past but to no avail.

this voice that we discovered now has been a distant friend of ours. it is a HE. it has to be a he, because pop pop needs a male singer.

he has always been a good singer with a great tone and character, it is just that he escaped our radar each time. or more to the point, the time has come (with our increased rate of activities) for us to look for a new addition to the pop pop family.

to cut to the chase: he will be performing in the upcoming danny chan tribute launch party on 9th and 16th of november. so, please block off those dates and make yourself available at NBT.

tell us then whether he has what it takes. 

Saturday, September 24, 2011

票价减了! [ticket price reduction!]

our sponsor andaman group has reached its fundraising target hence they are announcing that the jazzy teresa teng tickets will be reduced to RM150 and RM110 starting monday 26th september 2011!

good news to those who still haven't bought the tickets. for those who have bought it, you are entitled to a refund at the venue on the event day itself. just show your tickets to the counter staff.

once again, you can get the tickets here...

ticketing outlets: all rock corner branches (except bangsar village) and victoria music.

Friday, September 23, 2011

不要自满 [don't rest on your laurels]

click to enlarge

this must be the highest accolade we have ever attained: taiwan's audio art's top 100 chinese albums.

the article is found in issue 272 of audio art.

buy it and be part of the pride.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

即将来临 [coming soon]

"bonnie lam: remembering danny chan" will be out in another 2 weeks' time!

bonnie lam's album should rightfully be called a tribute to danny chan and george lam, as she sings 6 songs by danny and 3 by george.

we have heard a couple of songs. how shall we say? bonnie has a unique voice, may not be to everyone's liking but certainly an experienced voice.

now, the danny chan tribute launch party! the dates have been set:

first gig: 9th november 2011 (wednesday), NBT
second gig: 16th november 2011 (wednesday), NBT

we would have different singers for the two nights, so by all means, come for the two nights!

maybe we should open a song nomination here: what danny chan songs would you like to listen? let us know!

Monday, September 19, 2011

发光发热的何芸妮 [winnie ho's coming of age]

she does not have the looks of an idol; she isn't the tallest nor prettiest; she does not conform to the fickled and trivial pop music game... she is simply not your ordinary songstress.

many have dismissed her of having a chance of making it in the convoluted pop music industry. but she does not give two hoods about it. she does not need all these illusions and make belief. all these years, she marches on with her own will and agenda. she does not believe in anyone but herself and her music.

pop pop music recognized the supreme talent in her. we gave her the liberty to do what she wants with her voice and her music.

3 years later, with two successful audiophile albums and a stunning solo concert, winnie ho, like the proverbial cliche, has truly arrived. 

come and be part of the witness.

Date: 14th October 2011 (Friday)
Showtime: 08.30pm -10.30 pm 
Venue: Bentley Music Auditorium, Mutiara Damansara, PJ 
Admission Pass: RM150 | RM110
Booking and Enquiry: 6012-208 3790 
Online booking : 
Ticketing Outlets : All Rock Corner (except Bangsar Village) and Victoria Music outlets.

耀眼的复出 [glorious comeback]

have you ever wondered, why godfathers like liu jia chang and jonathan lee woke up from their retirement and started being active again in chinese pop scene?

liu jia zhang made a glorious comeback recently in taiwan's top reality superstar show as an esteemed judge. his appearance not only gained utmost respect from the younger judges but also spawn hope for the miserable chinese pop scene. let's ask him to compose again!

mr. liu, at his peak, could compose up to 40 new songs a day. one of his classics "mei lan i love you", he did it in 3 minutes. he has so far amassed more than 2,000 compositions in his fantastically-productive career, a record that no other chinese composer is ever gonna break.

another record that he is holding is: his many pupils are all legendary singers that include yuya, jenny tseng, tracy huang, fong fei fei, fei yu qing, jiang yu heng and many others.  

come march 2012, we are gonna do a jazz concert playing all his classic tunes!     

Saturday, September 17, 2011

追忆陈百强音乐会 [tribute to danny chan launch party]

with the imminent release of bonnie lam's "tribute to danny chan" album, we will be organizing a launch party in NBT to celebrate the occasion!

all pop pop's artistes and guests will come together to sing all the memorable songs from danny's repertoire....  in cantonese, no less ;-)

it 's gonna be a wonderful night of nostalgia and great music! of course, bonnie lam CDs will be on sale too!

timeline would be the last week of october/first week of november... as we are still waiting for confirmation from NBT!

stay closely tuned!

Friday, September 16, 2011

星岛的代表 [agent in singapore]

good news to music lovers in singapore!

we are now dealing direct with audiophile specialist CD shop, new disc village, for all our product line.

the proprietor, ernest, is a veteran in the audiophile music industry and he is more than qualified to represent pop pop and serve you!

ernest can be contacted at: 65-63344209.

please support new disc village!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

爆笑 [hilarious]

no music today but some comedy to tickle your funny bones...

hk comedy king lee sze jit's (from the incredible fook look shou trio) parody on louis ku tin lok.

atrocious mandarin but so very funny!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

独立女王的诞生 [hail the new indie queen]

last night  we witnessed something truly magical: the arrival of a local indie queen, much like taiwan's cheer chen. the arrival of liyana fizi.

her launch/showcase in bentley was exceptional not because only of the indie spirits she proudly and smartly exhibited but the quality of her music, her musicianship, and the whole production which is really remarkable.

look at how creative liyana does her showcase and you will be proud and embarrassed for reasons only known to many local chinese pop singers/musicians. come on, we need not say much for diplomatic reasons.

liyana has a big fan base and it is obviously the fans are the mild-mannered indie boys who likes her sweet looks and her equally sweet music.

we are impressed with how the whole production is put together. the lighthing, the visuals, the sound systems are good, so much better than your typical cantopop concert in genting. if anything, it has got class, oodles of class. of course, bentley auditorium's natural good acoustics help a lot.

buying her cd for RM35 and you get to enjoy the whole show. isn't that a brilliant idea? one night alone, liyana sold close to 400 cds and that's close to RM15,000 in gate collection. 

the visual showcase is impressive. a cloth is hung in front of the stage (see photos) , allowing the projection of visuals and painting done on-the-spot by two artistes. visually, liyana seemed like being surrounded in a kaleidoscope of colors and images. it is very cheer chen like but hey, we are talking about a young malay indie artiste doing this kind of creative artistry right in malaysia. impressive!      

what we see is a self-made DIY indie girl who is smart, resourceful with a great sense of melody and tune in her compositions. she could be a pop star if only she wants to. but you can tell she is an indie girl thru and thru.

what we see is a gem who could be developed into a huge indie queen much like cheer chen developed her career in taiwan.

given a good A&R, a super deal maker, a good production team, liyana could go the same way as zee avi.  

Monday, September 12, 2011

爵士光年评论 [review on jazz light year]

we are just about to write our own review on jazz light year but local hifi blog has beaten us to that and the writer sums up quite fairly we what think too.

so, here a good review fom hifi-unlimited for your reading pleasure!

below is another from esquire taiwan magazine but in chinese....

Esquire 君子國際中文版 May 2010 葉雲平專欄

長久以來,台灣的流行樂壇(亦包括獨立樂圈),幾乎鮮少願意好好地、認 真看待「翻 唱」(歌曲)這件事。若非以「口水歌」心態、炒短線地廉價操作之(1980年代之《流 行45轉》、《音樂磁場》......),便是視其為次等投機手法、創作者全然不屑一顧;過與 不及之際,偶有利用經典名曲替新人(如選秀節目)增強行銷記憶點的成功案例。但不 論如何,想做好流行樂中位屬「旁門」的「翻唱」(歌曲),實需要極複雜的功力及技能。

比較起來,「翻唱」與文學中「類型小說」的創作,可能頗有共通相似處:皆是在既 定的限制與框架 ── 熟悉的旋律與公式劇情之下,想辦法再變化出不同的面貌或驚 喜。愈是翻唱家喻戶曉的經典,其遜色於原曲的失敗風險愈高、挑戰愈大;相對地,原 本無籍籍名之歌經人翻作,亦可能就此喧賓奪主,成就另一代經典 ── 關鍵恐怕在能 否由單純「翻唱」,進階至「翻玩」層次。絕品或劣作,致敬或惡仿,「翻唱」是把勝負 於一線間的雙面刃,端看音樂人如何運用。

西方爵士樂中向來有經典(標準)曲目的翻唱傳統(Standard),將早已傳誦雋永的曲 目一而再、再而三地重作詮釋,讓舊音符不斷滋長出既回味又常新的多重生命;而不久 前發行的李昀陵的《爵士光年》,正是這樣一張國語唱片市場少見、質感音感絕妙的爵 士風翻唱作品。李昀陵是個擁有二十年經歷、於無數華語唱片中擔任合聲(號稱任何類 型的音樂,都有辦法唱出美妙合聲)/配唱/製作工作的幕後音樂人,也由於這份深長、 扎實的歲月歷練,令人格外期待她大膽挑戰甄妮、鳳飛飛、鄧麗君、蕭孋珠......等1970 年代國語金曲的改編。

李昀陵的嗓音並非具備強烈個人風格的特色美聲,沒有極端的厚沉或高亢,卻有著唱 爵士必要的成熟、溫醇與律動感,以及收放自如的咬字口氣。或是長年搭配合聲之故, 她總能輕鬆融入樂句背景、自由地找到最適合自己(及聽眾耳朵)的舒服位置,在音域 高低中即興搖擺、呼吸;尤其〈五月花〉、〈難忘的初戀情人〉......等多首歌裡跟樂器互 動的「擬聲唱法」(Scat Singing),聽似輕巧、實則高難度的無意義虛字哼唱,誠顯爐火 純青的歌喉實力。而〈五月花〉找來「青春年華」的女兒合唱,讓可愛俏皮的詞曲,更 添幾分母女連心的溫柔意義。

由資深同新生代樂手交融組成的(夢幻級)錄製陣容,猶如工匠達人般,將Bossa Nova、 Fusion Pop、Standard Jazz......等每一角、每一面的編曲肌理推磨至細膩極致,使得《爵 士光年》像是件精雕細琢的手工打造藝品,是專屬於成人抒情的慢火燉熬。而簡約的器 樂行進舉重若輕,簡中馭繁之外閃現創意(〈千言萬語〉裡神來一筆的琵琶與吉他並奏), 充分展示台灣爵士樂手優越的編奏能力。李昀陵與夥伴們為台灣生產出高水準爵士唱片 的同時,也立下「翻玩」老歌的極佳範例。

Sunday, September 11, 2011

创作才女发片啦 [liyana launching debut solo album]

once again, as we have always  emphasized: talent knows no racial or language barriers, we are going to attend the launch of local singer-songwriter liyana fizi's debut solo album in bentley music auditorium tonight!

formerly from indie band estrella, liyana has caught our attention as being an immensely talented singer-songwriter with a huge sense of pop sensibility.

we are bringing many friends to attend this launch, eventho' we expect to see many malay fans in the crowd.

truth be told, she is the kind of singer-songwriter that we would like to have in our label. let's see what will come out from this launch!

to have a listen to what liyana's music is like, click here. 

Friday, September 9, 2011

令人鼓舞! [encouraging!]

now this is cool: a young singer-songwriter is getting the stage in DFP. isn't that fabulous?

barring politics and insider's connections, do you think chinese artistes will ever get a chance to grace DFP?

food for thought, certainly.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

再次出击 [empire strikes back]

the first one was a total screamer, the 2nd one is gonna be even better!

this 2nd show of "the jazzy sounds of teresa teng" is a charity concert initiated by Andaman group to raise funds for S.M.J.K (C) Sam tet (Ipoh) and Yayasan Pendidikan John Moh.

so come and enjoy a night of great music and do charity!

Date: 14th October 2011 (Friday) 
Showtime: 08.30pm -10.30 pm 
Venue: Bentley Music Auditorium, Mutiara Damansara, PJ
Admission Pass: RM150 | RM110
Booking and Enquiry: 6012-208 3790
Ticketing Outlets : All Rock Corner and Victoria Music outlets.

Monday, September 5, 2011

新专辑 [more collaborations with hong kong]

even in such down market, we are bringing in new albums from hong kong under our exclusive licensing agreement with rock in music....
we are not relying on retail network anymore but our own concerts and gigs to push these CDs....

next month, two new albums will grace us....

1) bonnie lam sings danny chan
2) susan wong classics: greatest hits 

do support us!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

卓越的技术 [technical supremacy]

industry watchers would have observed the recent trends:

1) of major labels issuing tonnes o K2-HD mastering back-catalogues (milking the bloody cow dry, again)
2) of many HK music labels pouring tonnes of money and technology into their live concert video productions, often with audiophile aspirations.

bianca wu 【胡琳】 is one artiste who is currently being heavily promoted by HK's BMA, an independent label rumored to be backed up by some rich tycoons. it is no longer correct to label bianca as audiophile singer cos the way they promote her is very similar to major label's pop artistes: big A&P, big productions, overseas musicians etc etc.

we picked this dvd up and was completely amazed by its sound quality! we are no videophiles, the HD quality is impressive enough but the sound, oh, it 's another level. it is so far the best from the crop of chinese concert DVDs we have in our collection, including cai qin 2007 concert.   

this is a good sign. it shows that the bosses or decision makers want to aim at those who value quality and those who are willing to pay real money. we suppose that's the only way to survive. if you want to cater to teeny boppers, you would adopt an entirely different strategy. (like selling ringtones!)

bianca live dvd is worthy of collection on sound quality alone. this is a demo-quality dvd. as to her singing, we leave the readers to find out themselves.

other examples of big productions from hk are the recent george lam's album, prudence lau mei kuan's album and bondy chiu hock-e's album (who employed  the ever-rising mastering engineer kent poon, who is currently the most sought-after mastering engineer in hk).