Xinyao Heading Towards the Climax

Xinyao Heading Towards the Climax

Singapore Chinese folk-pop music, also known as Xinyao emerged in 1980s and according to singer-songwriter Liang Wern Fook, who is a pioneer in that genre, it shouldn't be just about nostalgia.

Innovations are required and for engaging new audience, it should be featured on new platforms, he adds.

For this reason, in November, pioneers of xinyao, Wong Hong Mok and Liang as well as Lee Wei Song, a famous composer will be featuring in a real life concert.

As a part of Crescendo, a new xinayo-themed drama, the snippets of filmed concert will be aired. The drama will debut in October on Channel 8. Liang, 50, a recipient of Cultural Medallion said that people are of the view that xinyao concerts just are able to attract middle-aged audiences. He also cited the movie That Girl in Pinaforce (2013), which included a xinyao soundtrack. That movue appealed to new immigrants and students who did not have any memory of xinayo. Liang spoke on Tuesday at a press event for the concert. He, Lee and Wong (better known as Huang Hongmo) will also appear in the drama. While the cast, including Ann Kok, Darren Lim and Christopher Lee, will be in character.

According to Liang, who is behind Singapore Pie and Xi Shuo Chang Liu (a xinyao classic), the set list of the concert is still in works. One thing is for sure, Liang is bound to give a fresh spin on classics. For instance, it can be a duet new talents such as the local singers Bonnie Loo or Ling Kai or with “old friends”, Lee and Wong. Wong, who has been turning the Chinese poems of local poets into famous songs and made a great impression with his self-written title track of also his debut album, will also sing his new compositions.

Although the tunes from South Korea and Taiwan are prominent these days on the Asian music horizons, but he isn't discouraged. Wong says that the composition should not be stopped just because of the reason that they are not being given due attention and it should also be determined that why the listeners have been turning to other songs instead of xinyao. He also says that they can start over and find some suitable new material. If the songs are good they will surely gain traction and back then they did not know that xinyao would be able to get so much attention of the listeners.

Lee, 47, says that he would like to make his contribution to local music by utilizing his abilities to groom the new talent. He and Si song, his twin brother, have mentored the Singapore's Mandopop singer Stefanie Sun. Singer-songwriter Ling Kai, their new protégé has appeared last year on Sing My Song, a reality TV singing show of China's CCTV.

The Lee brothers are widely considered to be established hit-makers, having written songs for famous Asian pop heavyweights like Jacky Cheung and Jam Hsiao.

Lee also says that even the local Singaporean behind-the-scenes talent, musicians and music arrangers are sought after by the overseas singers. So they need to believe that there is no shortage of talent in Singapore.

SAM TSUI live in Singapore 2019

SAM TSUI live in Singapore 2019

Sam Tsui has been hailed as an internet singing sensation, who along with his production partner Kurt Schneider was among the first musicians to establish a hugely popular music-focused channel on Youtube. To date, his videos, including covers, medleys, and mashups, have amassed over 500 million hits on Youtube alone, with each new release, including his debut original album “Make It Up”, and his brand new 2018 album "Trust" contributing to his ever-expanding worldwide fanbase. A graduate of Yale University, Tsui has been able to harness the ever-changing tools of the digital music age to independently create an internationally popular channel and brand, garnering him countless TV and magazine appearances, including the Oprah Show and Ellen Show, and brand partnerships with brands like Coca Cola, Kia, McDonalds, and Samsung. Turning his digital success into ticket sales, he has toured extensively throughout the US, Asia, and Australia, with plans for more touring in 2019. Sam continues to use his powerful digital platform to share his distinctive music and creative video content with his fans, the "Samily"

Show Info

Date: Sunday, 17th Novermber 2019

Venue: Capitol Theatre / 17 Stamford Road, Singapore 178907

Showtime: 8.00pm

Doors Open: 7.00pm


VIP: S$179 (Inclusive Meet & Greet)

General Admission: Early Bird $S79* / Regular S$109

Early Bird available until 15 Oct or sold-out

All prices exclusive ticketing & processing fees

All tickets are free standing and seating

Tickets via online:

Thunder Birds

Thunder Birds

The sound that thundered the Singapore people with hit songs “My Lonely Heart and You were Made For Me To Love” was sung by the popular Singapore band which was formed in 1963, by a tie up with a guitarist Derrick Fitzerald. This band waved the Singapore stage for nearly two decades. The Thunderbirds won the competition, which was held between Beatles versus Rolling Stones. This is the competition for the band to prove themselves and to turn as professional musicians. Later on they wrote and composed many songs and performed on various stages on the Singapore island for a decade. Finally The local Singapore band settled in the year 1980 at the Stately York Hotel. The two hit songs with which the band popularized were released in the year 1966 and 1967 respectively. The Thunderbirds band with some internal changes continued until 2007 in York Hotel and their career came to an end with the drop out of Fitzgerald (who had attacked a stroke) and with the decline in the business in the bar.

Team mates:

As days pass on, there are some additional singers added to the band and some internal changes within the band. In place of Derrick, his brother Harvey was replaced to play guitar, and Fitzgerald's brother Ivan a vocalist, newly added to the band. At the end of 1960, an Organist, a bass instrument player and drums player were also added to the band. The most remarkable change occurred in the year 1975, that is, by the marriage and migration of Fitzgerald and Heather Batchen.

Career record:

Philips company was the first to release the band's first EP under its label in 1965. The slide guitarist, Derrick Fitzerald, who produced a distinctive sound just by using a comb composed a hit song My Lonely Heart… which thundered the Singapore and Malaysia. This song reached the heights of the Singapore music scenario and inspired the youth of island people . The band in the year 1967 released its second recording which was composed and presented by Harvey Fitzgerald. The second composition (“You Were Made…….) is an exceptional hit by Thunderbirds for the decade.

Stage Entries:

Usually the band troops move frequently, but , this local band stayed constantly from the beginning of their introduction. They stayed for a long time in the York Hotel until 2007, with internal changes between the singers. The band gave many stage entries starting at the British military camps in Seletar and at night club on Orchard Road. The band gave regular performances at The Pub, American Club and Sheraton Hotel and at last they settled at the York Hotel. In this hotel they nearly played for many years. In 2004 the band along with 11 other members raised the funds and supported the bar authority not to close the bar.

Looking back the Singapore's music in 60's was still alive and inspiring the youth of today. What a notable change made in pop music with the local singers and made that decade as a “Golden” Era of Singapore for pop music. London is known as the best country for its pop music in 1960's, but the local band of Singapore, beat the record of London and remarked as the best music time for the youth in nation. The band stayed permanently in Singapore, and the local band made popular and got fame internationally.

Popular Compositions:

In the year 1965, Some of the popular compositions of The Thunder Bird's band are Little Lady and I'm Sad As I Can Be, My Lonely Heart and Hey Girl in the year 1966, and in the year 1967 My Hula Girl and You were Made For Me To Love respectively.

Looking back to 2015

Looking back to 2015

In the middle of 2015, Singapore is facing its golden age in their music industry. Youngster interest on the indie label makes a big expansion for the Singapore music artists to launch their masterpiece. It has open a path for the local artist to bloom inside their own country independently. This period is called to be a spotlight on Singapore independently music scene.

Their masterpiece didn't just sell a lot of copies, but also in a good quality. Some of those great examples of shining albums are Charlie Lim's (Time/Space), The Observatory's (August is the Cruelest), .gif's (soma), and Cheating Sons'.

This Golden Age has made a lot of new artists to pop out from all over the country to show their talent of music. A lot of music production has been made through several label recording, and songwriting skills have been tested. But in turn, the rivalry between the Singaporean music artists have become harder. It also raised a topic about concerning the limitations to become a music artist in Singapore. It's a pity to block embedded talent of the musician of Singapore, for real. Although they can do the touring and the promotion to maintain their existence.

What progress could Singapore music artists have in 2016? What a surprised, that just for about one-year interval, they didn't make a progress at all. The other way, they already sinking on their career. Slowly, they have begun to stop recording or performing music. Even some of them have sold their music equipment through Carousell.

Here are some of their testimonial; One of a musician, who didn't want his name to be told, said that he knew he couldn't avoid performing to cover Ed Sheeran after receiving the check that has come in from Spotify. While the others said that his album has exploded in 2015, and one of the main singles of that album has racked over 50,000 viewers on YouTube, but he has to spend a lot for his show to support that album. At first, he's so happy, but after SG50 (referred to 50 years Independence Day of Singapore), he thought that he didn't feel inspired anymore. Another musician also said the same thing after performing Baybeats, that she feels her existence in the music industry has been threatened. On her last time performance, she felt humiliated because she only performed at Hood Bar with only 20 people's audience. She's so angry and said that she doesn't want to feel unwanted anymore. As the impact, she decided to move to Berlin and apply for a job as a freelance photographer to find herself.

A lot of another musician will announce their exit from music industry in the following weeks. But, what about the still-existed artist? When they've been asked, this is what they said: Joel, from the “I Killed the Murder Victim” band has said that they didn't want to do it anymore, but they still have a lot of contracts to covers Parkway Drive. Our other source is James, a singer, and also a songwriter. He also didn't sure about his career in the music industry at this uncertain period. He chose to get focus to his doctorate like his father always want him to. But it is a good thing that he decided to keep his acoustic guitar and the synthesizers with him for his leisure activities, and not throwing it. His talent may be proven again someday, in a better condition than this period. It's a shame to have such a lot of talent to be devastated and shattered into pieces. They have been disappointed and give up to this condition. But who knows, that someday they talent will be avowed by the world.