|Image: From Giam Bistro|
A Goat Year Posting:
I am not too enthusiastic about Chinese New Year anymore because like Christmas and other festivities it is so commercialised that I immediately leave shopping malls that play CNY songs especially when the number one ear-breaker, Quo Xin Nian or He Xin Nian is heard. No offence meant.
But reunion dinners and visiting friends are a must.
So blogging during CNY becomes a problem because I don't want to post cliched stories about fire-crackers, reunion dinners or ang-pows. But I need to feature a Chinese singer especially for surfers who love local Mandarin fare. I am also thinking of Valentine's Day which was just celebrated by lovers around the globe.
Mun Li uploaded by Mr Rainbow64. Thanks, Vernon Cheong.
I rummaged through my record collection of Chinese EPs bought at random during these past years at Sungei Road and vinyl shops, wondering who to write about when I chanced upon this image of a bespectacled gentleman among my dusty records. He has a clean cut with Tancho greased hair and staring at me with a pleasant half smile. Ah, a posting at last.
Like Engelbert Humperdinck and Tom Jones, our singer from the 60s is a living legend. With his recognizable strong baritone voice, he has endeared himself to so many fans from all over South East Asia. It is common knowledge that telephones at broadcast stations keep ringing as fans call to show loving support for this heart-throb after his songs have been played.
|Followed by ladies everywhere he appeared.|
It has been rumoured that grandparents take their grandchildren to watch him sing at the various venues when he appears on stage. Huang Qing Yuen (黃清元) as he is known in Pinyin began his singing at the youthful age of 19 but not before he participated in some contests and talentimes. He remembered his prize for one contest - two large cases of soft drinks.
|Youthful Huang Qing Yuen in the 60s|
|Stylers accompanied Huang Qing Yuen on his recordings.|
His first hits were Man Li and Lu Dao Xiao Ye Chi, the same two songs that he sang during competition. All these years Wong has been recording and many of his 800+ songs can be found on CDs nowadays.
Some of his songs with translated titles and thematically suitable for 14th February include Goodbye My Love, Bitter Wine, A Woman's Heart, Forget Me, My Love, Missed Chances, Cheers and many others. His first hits Man Li (lady's name) and Lu Dao.... (Green Island Song) are Chinese hits and have been recorded by others.
He released his Golden Hits in the late nineties and with modern recording techniques plus newly minted songs he felt that he could go on for some years. Bands that accompanied him during recordings were well-known guitar groups The Melodians or The Stylers and had cut vinyl for companies like Panda and Cortersions Records. His songs usually carry the same theme - love.
|Maurice Patton and The Melodians.|
|A near iPod and one to play Wong's vinyls. Neat.|
Happy Lunar New Year and Valentine's Day 2015 to lovers everywhere.
Images: Andy Lim Collection.
Information based on an article by Sharon Wong, July 1997, New Straits Times.
Posting done on Acer A500. My DELL computer went sour on me weeks ago.
Thanks to Erwin Maisch, Malvin Chua, group 'Take Two' member Paddy and my MacPhersonian gang for the publicity on FACEBOOK, comments of which I have published on this posting. Appreciate your support and kindness.