I've always loved listening to covers; especially in the Taiwanese music scene with its' emphasis on indie music and acoustic, relaxing music, it's allowed me to gain a new appreciation for listening to artists perform in a much quieter and low-key setting, performing songs that they love for us, or performing popular songs which might not be their own, but might reveal to us a whole new side of their personality, or a new versatility that we can't find in their music! Here in the first post of this blog series, are three covers which I've enjoyed listening to in the past week or so. Enjoy!
WILLIAM WEI: 慢慢等Waiting Slowly
I guess you can't really call this one a cover, but more like an acoustic performance of Will's own song 慢慢等(Waiting Slowly) which he performs here in lieu of his performance in Beijing in end September. His voice as always, brings comfort and a quiet confidence and warmth that lingers after the last notes are sung and the twang from the guitar chords have faded into thin air.
Second, we have Sharon Kwan's cover of the hit song <听见下雨的声音>(The sound of rain) which was picked for her by fans to perform! Unlike Queen Wei's version, cool, crisp and refreshing, Sharon's take brings with it from the first note a twist of warmth-a smile in her voice, and an honesty which transcends through the song to the ears of all listeners. Also getting a grunge-rock feel from her version, which is refreshing in its' own right!
A very interesting and impressive song choice that we don't see done very often by the new generation of singers; Kimberley Chen performs a One Take of Whitney Houston's <I Have Nothing>. It's a little rough around the edges, but she never fails to impress with her jaw-dropping range which she showcases through an amazing key change and use of improvisation. Makes you want to brush up on your karaoke skills doesn't it? Me too...
Ann is finally regaling us with her presence as she gets ready to release her all new second album <接下來是什麼>(What's Next). This time around, the small girl with a big voice has an entirely new sound and image (cue the pink hair), working exclusively with the legendary Jonathan Lee李宗盛 as the producer for this album. However, Ann's creative input is far from lost;working completely on the lyrics and composing all songs on this album herself. Check out her latest first single of the same name as the album, I promise you won't be disappointed!
While you're at it, treat yourself to Ann's second and third singles' videos titled <若你真的有想过>(If you've really thought about it) and 安慰(Consolation). Once again, she's coming through strongly with her very own unique image and style genre and concept wise; can't wait to hear the entire album!
I've been following Rose Liu's music for a while, and have always been a fan of her vocals, so intensely pure and sweet but yet with a touch of huskiness that adds an entirely new dimension to each and every note she sings.
But it was only when I saw her performance on The Voice china as a contestant that she truly impressed me. Taking a golden classic and integrating her own modern take as she performed <飄洋過海來看你>(Crossing the seas to see you) won the hearts of the judges and the audience alike, myself included! Long after the song was over, I kept thinking about it, replaying not the notes in my head, but the beautiful timbre of her voice as she tiptoed gently in the verses, a weary traveller with a heart full of love, and following her into the chorus where her husky sentimentality reached its' peak; enveloping the hearts of audiences everywhere.
In the music industry as I see it, it's been harder and harder to find new talent whose appeal can lie purely in their voice, there's always lots of other things included in the 'package', an eclectic bundle of songwriting, multiple instrument playing, dancing- an endless list of skills which act as a filler for any flaws they might have. And of course I can understand that. Nobody's so perfect that they can rely purely on their voice to touch the hears of listeners completely, but Rose certainly is as close as it gets. After being in the business for five years, she shows a maturity in her voice and an elegance in her stage persona that I hope will be able to help her now and in her future career as a singer. This is one artist that is going to go far-this single performance is just the beginning. Go Rose!
It's been a while since Fan Fan's released anything musically, so nice to be able to hear her voice again! Check out her new single!
I've actually been following this talented artist for quite a while; she first came to my attention when Wang Leehom shared her cover of his song <你不知道的事>(The Things you Don't Know) on his Facebook Page sometime back in 2009. I watched the video and was truly impressed that someone like her could have such a passion for chinese music and for the chinese language! I kept following her, albeit less regularly for a period of time.