Tuesday, July 31, 2007

I've learned to rejoice every day!

My song <<愛的經典>> was once again selected into a compilation called <<感謝每天 II 詩民歌集勵志篇>>, this time on the 張敬軒 & 王菀之's Christian label. I must say I'm quite privileged, because this time it may reach a much farther and more diverse audience, namely, Cantopop listeners. I never thought my first song would generate so much response, but hey, it's all in the plan.

For those who are interested in buying this 2CD set is welcme to visit its Yesasia page. In addition to Eternity Girls, many cool artists are featured on this album including 羅敏莊, 鄧婉玲, 邰正宵, etc.

Also, today my friend pointed out that my all-time idol Cat Stevens released his new album last year. He changed his name to Yusef and the album was released in 2006. How come I never knew about this? This was his first release in 30 years, and I heard snippets of it. It's simply amazing.

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Thursday, July 26, 2007

Ode to the King of Kowloon

...sadly, another HK subcultural icon gone....is it the beginning of the end? Or the end of the beginning?



Count your blessings!

Deleted my last immature post. Instead, I am sharing Gene's wisdom with you:

"Doing the work I do (and, from what I understand of you - the work you do would certainly meet the test), all I need to do when I'm feeling under-appreciated or "un-blessed," as it where, is to get up from my desk and walk around this place and see those folks that I'm dedicated to helping, and the heroes that I am privileged to work with everyday. Then, I don't need to be told what I can see for myself. I AM blessed...the evidence is undeniable and the truth unimpeachable (and the spelling of that last adjective, um, well - unreliable...)

When we get down, we also get ourselves all turned-inward, and we can wear that misery like a blanket, insulating us from not just the injury, but also from the good things we have with us. Alcohol, drugs, work, sex - they can all do it, too. There's nothing wrong with being sensitive to our injury, as long as we enjoy this in moderation, just as those volatile elements above. We must be careful we don't begin to rely on it as a sole source of our energy - we can't let it define us. It's interesting how the phrase "spiraling down" is used with addiction, alcoholism and depression, isn't it? Is there anything more inward-turning than a spiral????? Anyway, I digress....

I know this might sound simplistic, even a bit glib or condescending; but, it isn't meant that way...

Shake that blanket off for just a few minutes, and count your blessings. But - really - count 'em good. Don't leave anything out, don't gyp yourself...

Then, take a look at that list and see if you don't feel a bit better!

I'll betcha do, my friend.

Hey - I see you're here on MY list!



PS: This lengthy note is brough to you courtesy of a Starbucks double espresso taken at 3 in the afternoon..."



Sunday, July 15, 2007

I never believed in the Horoscope...

...but then I read this:

Cancer: People have been lavishing you with so much attention lately that you're almost burned out. Some alone time is in order.

Can't be more true. Maybe there's some scientific basis behind this horoscope thing after all.



Saturday, July 14, 2007

Clips from Fringe last Saturday

Route 66 (With Jennifer Palor on vocals)
Soloists: Me, Ram Cheung, Adrian Fu

Sweet Home Chicago
Vocals: Vincent Lam
Soloists: Ram, me

Everyday I Have the Blues
Vocals: Ram Cheung
Soloists: Me, Adrian, Ram

The audience's reaction was simply fantastic! Thanks!



Monday, July 09, 2007

開心主流派 recap

I remember some of my fondest childhood memories were from watching <<開心主流派>> on ATV in 1991 (when I was in F.2). Some of my favorite clips are as follows:

強烈建議亞記出開心主流派 VCD DVD Boxset!

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Aftermath of a great gig!

Words can't even begin to describe my lingering excitement from Saturday's HK Live! gig. I think the level of music exceeded that night at Grappa's Cellar and the band reached another threshold of sophistication.

For one thing, we had a rehearsal this time and our drummer, Joel Haggard, was the perfect blues drummer I had been looking for in HK. Moreover, Paul Candelaria did play his electric upright bass which added more texture to our original blues sound (as original as it can get in HK). In addition, Vincent and Ram had already warmed in their sets so when they started playing, they were already spot on. I detected some fantastic chemistry between the guitar players and the entire Fender v. Gibson concept was never more eminent.

This was my first official gig at the Fringe and we packed the joint with about 300-350 people. Sometimes you can tell when people just come to Fringe for fun or for the music. This time it was definitely the latter. Helter Skelter and Dumb Melon had their fair share of steady fans who support them on every gig. That means more fans got exposed to my music at the end of the night, thanks to the two bands. The highlight was after we did 6-7 of songs, I pulled Jennifer Palor up to the stage, and the whole crowd just went nuts. First, after 2 and a half sets of pure testosterone, it's refreshing to have an attractive female to balance the unevenness of gender on stage. More importantly, the presence of Jennifer also added to the sexiness of the whole thing (well, Vincent himself was sexy enough, but could use more...you dig!).

Musically speaking, I was on a high. It seems every time I played this year I would discover something new to woo the audience. I don't merely want to be a technician (or performer if you will), I want to entertain the audience as well. Blues is not supposed to be boring or intellectual. I was especially delighted when organizer Clare Morin said, "This was the best HK Live! yet. It was the best in terms of musicianship and audience response." C-Chai also put it best when he wrote, "聽到那許多為聽音樂而來的女生的尖叫,是令人興奮的!" Don't forget this is the *blues* we're talking about - a form of music that was invented by the blacks on the cotton fields.

SCMP wrote that one of the reasons I decided to return to HK was to contribute to the culture here; it's true. On a selfish level, of course I cherished the last applause and cheer. On a deeper level, if my music moves somebody after a bad day or makes someone happy after a good day, then I've done my job.

Music cures and heals. There are no two ways about it.

So what have I learned from all this? Nothing except to keep following my heart.

Preview: If you liked when you heard last Saturday, a similar lineup will appear at the Grappa's Jazz Festival on August 17, Friday. The only difference is that Eugene Pao will be playing lead guitar for the band. "Chung Meets Pao" is bound to happen. Stay tuned!

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Friday, July 06, 2007

Today on RTHK 3!

Vincent Lam and I were on RTHK 3's "Morning Brew" program this morning hosted by Phil Whelan, to promote our HK Live! show tomorrow. Please click here & listen to Segment 3 starting from 10:00 to 45:00 minute mark.

The songs featured were as follows:
1. For You My Love by Deanna Bogart with Jammin' The Blues Allstars
2. Delusions by Helter Skelter
3. Tie Your Mama Down by Eugene Pao
4. Money is Getting Cheaper by Bill Heid

We had a good time. Hope you have a good time listening to it too.

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Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Passed PCLL!

Time to celebrate!



Remember this?


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Sunday, July 01, 2007

Happy SAR 10th Year Anniversary

Finally, a song that is both conscientious and reflective of HK's situation since 1997. Thoughtful and pure genius!



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