22 April 2011
Back to the article I am writing on Asian singers singing in English, here is Japanese megastar, Koda Kumi, with versions of her first two singles from 2000 that were released in the US. Not surprisingly,they didn't do very well. The Japanese versions had better music and better production - even if you don't understand Japanese, at least you can hear what she is singing.
14 April 2011
Some records coming up that I bought on a recent trip to Singapore. The Blue Star Sisters - five Filipino sisters (?) who were popular in Hong Kong in the 60s. I am told this EP was recorded in Singapore, which is why I digitized it and gave it away - long story. But Not Goodbye is a Hong Kong original - thumbs up to shatinterry for posting it on YouTube (and the fascinating chat about 60s nightclubs and electric car racing!). No date on the record as usual, but it must be 1968 or 1969 as the original of As I Look came out in 1968. I am choosing As I Look as my favourite track, because I was once a big fan of The Rebel Rousers.
08 April 2011
I have just written this about SNSD (aka Generation Girls in Korea, Siu Nui Si Doi in Hong Kong) in an academic paper on Asian artists who sing in English. "At a 2010 press conference for the Korean female pop group SNSD (who regularly issue English version of their Korean songs, and recently topped the Japanese Oricon sales chart with a single recorded in Japanese), Kim Young Min, CEO of the groups production company SM Entertainment, expressed his aim to “unify the Asian market and build it into the biggest market in the world”. The press release reported that SNSD want “to reach further out to their foreign fans all over Asia, and becoming fluent in foreign languages is essential to that goal”, and quoted group member Tiffany as saying that the group had “really focusing on the language these days, especially since we want to be able to connect with our foreign fans”.
Into The New World was their first single from 2007. Hoot is from 2010. The certainly have focused on their English, but somehow I wish they hadn't.
03 April 2011
Under the leadership of the adventurous hedgehog we have been visiting some of Hong Kong's oldest cafes and I have got in the habit of ordering anything on the menu with a raw egg in it. First, a bowl of 'pheonix egg custard' from China Cafe on Canton Road, Mongkok. Custard powder and hot water with a broken egg dropped in and the rest is up to you. It tastes, well, a lot like custard. Next, the same without custard from Diamond Cafe in Choi Hung estate (Picture below). Stir it up and add sugar and it tastes, well, a bit like custard.