When I was about 5, I was sent to learn piano. Sometimes I loved it, sometimes I hated it. Sometimes I am ready by the doorstep even before my dad comes home to send me there, but other times I dread leaving the television that’s broadcasting Sailormoon. But I know, every time on the way I will sulk all I want – but each time I hear my teacher playing the piano – I’ll forget ever being unhappy. Little did I know back then, that music was capable of moving me, changing me and influencing me.
Music was art.
When I was 13, I went to my first Chinese pop concert ever. Tickets were free. I remember how that hard thumpings of the beat from the speakers made my heart jump every second. People were flocking in the stadium, everybody with whistles and banners. This guy must be reaally famous. I only remembered one song from the radio – but also probably because there were simple words that I could understand. When the concert started, songs were pretty upbeat – I didn’t really enjoy it. I was a 13 year old girl, probably about 157cm – and that man standing on stage was so far away I couldn’t even see his face. Just when I was getting really bored, he appeared on my side of the stage – with a piano.
I was awestruck. The music was perfect – melobeats, smooth tricks on the piano, and stage lighting was all toned down to a perfect dim. This man is amazing. Can’t believe I was I got his signature few days prior to the concert without knowing what kind of music he was able to make and play. I went back home that day, and saw the piano in my house with a different house.
Music also had a deeper and meaningful meaning to it ever since.
As I grew elder, as much as I liked music – I never found myself doing anything to really express my fondness for it. All I did was just listen to music from day till night – Celine Dion, Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston – all the classics that I could find. When I feel like it, I’ll write short parts of melodies while spending time with my piano. I’ve always wanted to put them all together to make a song, but I never know how. Sometimes I lose inspiration and motivation, but I think of that man on the stage in 2003 – and I regain some sort of excitement to play the piano again.There’s always something about a piano that doesn’t belong to you, and I always find new melodies to keep when I play it somewhere else.
I guess the people around me, have never really really liked music and instruments to actually discuss and talk about it. I myself never saw it as a conversation, to me it was all about feeling and appreciating it. Frankly, I have recently come to realise I’ve never really embraced and took pride in the fact that I like music – and in the recent years, singing.
In college, I met a couple of friends who were pretty outspoken about loving music. Then I gradually realised, why not me? Singing makes me feel so relaxed, even more than the piano ever did. I don’t know why I hide the fact that I actually love belting out to songs – maybe I had a feeling that I was being judged. I don’t even know why I bothered being judged. But realizing that has given me a different perspective to all different parts of my life and direction. I realised I have to embrace what I believe in and like, then take pride and stride towards it. That is a kind of happiness.
A true value of life music and singing has taught me.
So I took my first step on a stage with a mic ever by trying in a public audition.
However, I do realise the limitations that I had. I haven’t any prominent musical talent, my piano skills weren’t up to expectations – even if I wanted to make my own music, you could say that I had no capability to. If I were to take up lessons, it would have costed some time and money – that I have yet to learn to earn. Joining musical groups in university sounded like a good thing, but really had no time to join cause activities were always after class hours and I always had to travel home immediately after classes to catch the next train.
Now that I’m here in Beijing – I have decided to embrace this hobby of mine. Finally joined the Tsinghua Acapella Club. And I’ve never felt this happy about a decision made in an institution. Activities start late evening, and runs for a few hours after.Everyone from the club are from different divisions in university, some can’t even speak Chinese. But in this place, we all share the same passion for the one thing called music. Everyone speaks the same language – music. Everyone thinks the same way – with music. It’s so cheesy, but it’s really how it is. All able to laugh at a slight creek, a missing beat – and sometimes we throw ourselves off the chair for the horrendous recording of us singing. Everyone walks in the room with such a tired face, but nobody walks out with a yawn. Everyone will be belting their lungs out while walking our way up the stairs, harmonising, beatboxing, or just waving our hands in the air.
People give us stares, but with them – I don’t feel the way I sometimes feel back home, being judged. Because when we all come together, with music – it feels like I’ve never been this proud and excited about my own likings.
This year in 2013 – ten years after that first Chinese pop concert in Malaysia, that man is returning to Malaysia again. The one who made me try to venture into venturing into the art of music..and coincidentally the one who very possibly taught me my first few tenths of Chinese characters. Karaoke sessions to his songs over the years has made reading a lot more easier for me (despite still being difficult, but could’ve been harder) here while taking my course. Amazing how one genre of something could lead to another.
Brought to us by KL SOGO
How great it would be, to go back to his concert again – as the girl who has finally learnt to embrace music and singing as her interest. Maybe its a coincidence, or a welcoming event – I would love to think, that it’s being held just when I get back to KL. Learnt so many Chinese characters now, maybe I can sing along even better to his songs because his concerts always have lyric plates hung ahead.
Music, is definitely art.
An art of emotions. An art of knowledge. An art of happiness.
Your music is an opus. A true work of art.
At Jay Chou’s concert two years ago. I always make it a point to go to his concerts whenever I can possible.
Here I attach a cover I did with Vivien, just before I left to Beijing! Hope you like it!