Wednesday, June 12, 2013


妳我翻滾過的榻榻米 味道熟悉
所有回憶 在小叮噹口袋裡
~周杰倫, <<時光機>>, 2008~

Aloha everyone! It's mid week again and that means the weekend is nearing once more! I hope everyone is having a good week thus far.

I'm still recovering from the adrenaline rush from the exciting and amazing long weekend which started last Thursday for me! Finally went on the long waited and much needed break and it turned out to be the most wonderful weekend that I had for the first half of this year which is why I'm pretty reluctant to settle back into reality. It's going to be a super lengthy post if I am to write everything in one post so I'm going to split it up into two entries. 

I had been waiting for and counting down to last Friday since the earlier part of the year. If you didn't know by now, King of Mando-pop, Jay Chou, made his way to Singapore for his 2013 Opus World Tour last weekend! We were really lucky to have score the tickets to last Friday night show cause 17,000 tickets were snapped up within two and a half hours for Friday and Saturday shows; Thursday's show was the additional night. 

Rushed over to Leisure Park from Resorts World (more on this in the next post) to meet Nicole, my bosom and Jay-chasing buddy for an early dinner before the concert and also to grab some of Jay Chou's concert memorabilia. Thankfully (for me), most of the memorabilia was already sold out on Thursday, so I saved quite a lot of money. Although we didn't managed to snag the concert sack (only 600 sets available) which consisted of the sack, concert fan, a special Jay OPUS light stick, LED electronic fan with slogan and a LED bracelet, we did however managed to get some of the items separately; the light stick, concert fan, LED electronic fan and LED bracelet. On top of that, I also bought the concert notebook and a pair of uber cute looking key chains. Amongst all the items that we bought, the LED electronic fan has got to be the coolest, you can check it out here.

The uber cute Opus Jay and Gong Gong key chains.
After two hours of catching up with Nicole, Xinhui and gang, it was time for us to make our way to the indoor stadium for the concert! By then, we were all extremely excited for what was to come. Before heading to the stadium, we also made sure we made that last visit to the ladies and gents as there was NO way we would be leaving our seats anytime during the concert. 

Fans of Jay united! With Xinhui and Nicole, both who were my secondary school mates.

By the time we stepped in the stadium, the aura of anticipation and excitement was palpable in the air! Some photo taking later and we made our way to our respective seats. After settling down in our seats, getting ready our glow sticks, light sticks, cameras and iPhones, we sat down with batted breath for the concert to start. Because our group was sitting at different sections, it meant that we were able to have photos from different angles! Of course, that also meant I had to spend double the time sorting through all the photos but it was all worth it in the end. 

With Hooi Leong, Nicole, Pearlyn and Mary-Anne
Yes, that was how near to the stage we were!

Moments later, the house light dimmed and the show started to the screaming of fans and a sea of pink light!

House lights starting to dim
A sea of Pink (the official color for Opus Jay 2013 World Tour)

After the opening short film of Jay fighting off monsters and getting into a space ride zooming in to us, our dear Jay Chou stepped out from a Tron-inspired space ride in a red rocker-chic outfit and baring that now very famous sculpted eight-pack of his, very much to the delight of all his female fans, including Nicole and myself! First tracks of the night included "驚嘆號" (Exclamation Mark), "龍拳" (Dragon Fist) and "最後的戰役" (The Final Battle).

For the benefit of those who didn't managed to catch the concert, I have included the links at the end of the post to the YouTube videos recorded by some of the fans. 

Spot the famous 8-pack!
Close up!

The next segment was a musical concert; a sneak preview of his second self-directed movie, The Rooftop which will be released in July! Guest starring in this segment were the actual leads themselves, Darren from The Drifters, Cindy Yen, Devon and Gary from Nan Quan Ma Ma.

After the awesome sneak preview coupled with the stunning graphics presentation, he then went on to belt out the tunes from three of his movies.  "一路向北" (All The Way North) from Initial D, the movie that launched his acting debut and scoring him the Best Newcomer Actor in the Golden Horse Awards and Hong Kong Film Awards; "不能說的秘密" (Secret) from his very first self-directed movie of the same title and finally, "雙截棍" (Nunchucks), which was featured in the closing credits of his debut Hollywood blockbuster, The Green Hornet. Previously, this song was always performed at the finale, so it came as a surprise when he decided to perform this song in the middle of the concert. 

Love the sparkling Pink microphone and stand

Next, a must in every of his concerts, serenading us with his piano ballads. As with each of his concerts, there will always be the most ornate and custom-made beautiful piano, where he will play and belt out the ever familiar ballads that we, his fans, grew up with over the last twelve years. Tracks for this segment included "明明就" (Obviously), "世界末日" (End Of The World), Mine Mine and of course, "安靜" (Silence).

The beautiful instrument
Look who's in the photo with Jay!
Hooi Leong didn't even realized that Nicole and myself were in this photo until much later. 

Through an elaborate backdrop set to depict that of a Chinese inn, dancers decked in Chinese vampire outfits, eunuch get-ups and updated period outfits, we were then transported back to olden China through "公公偏頭痛" (Eunuchs Tend To Have Headaches), "青花瓷" (Blue And White Porcelain) and "紅塵客棧" (Mundane Inn). This is one of the reason why I admire Jay; despite being on top of the latest trends and innovations, he has always remain true to his Chinese roots by developing his own unique brand of music through oriental influences and instruments and this is evident in every of his albums where there will be at least one such track. He is also the only artiste who has sang about Chinese vampires and in his latest album, eunuchs.

The next segment was something new, an a cappella performance where his back-up singers started with "鬥牛" (Basketball Match), "水手怕水" (Sailor Afraid of Water) after which the multi-hyphenate performed a jaunty rendition of "大笨鐘" (Big Ben), one of my favorite track from his latest album. With a guitar on his lap, he then brought us down memory lane with a sing-a-long session (actually every segment was a massive sing-a-long session) of his older hits, starting with "彩虹" (Rainbow), another of my personal favorite, "軌跡" (Locus), "牛仔很忙" (Cowboy on the Run), "星晴" (Clear Stars), "回到過去" (Go Back To The Past), "完美主義" (Perfectionism), "喬克叔叔" (Uncle Joker) and ending with the crowd favorite, "晴天" (Fine Day). 

The reason why Jay is still going strong despite being in the music industry for 12 years is that he constantly strives to innovate and reinvent himself. This is why each of his concerts is a must-watch even though we have seen the previous ones. Each of his concerts is different from its predecessors and Opus Jay 2013 World Tour is no different. Elaborate and sprawling stage sets, pyrotechnics and visually stunning graphics backdrops are not new to us. He is notoriously famous for being fussy about his concert preparations, rehearsals and spares no expenses when it comes to production costs; conceptualization and preparation for Opus Jay 2013 World Tour took one and a half years and cost a whopping S$5 million; because to him, his fans deserve nothing but the best.

This year, he upped the ante with a 4D visual presentation during his first encore performance of "手語" (Sign Language). With the help of flooring to ceiling white drapes and a special customized animation with the help of 80 cameras, we saw Jay weaving in and out of the drapes, making his physical performance with that of a hologram of him as well. Everyone in the stadium was definitely impressed by this special performance especially when as many as six Jays appeared on stage at one point. 

Four Jays!

He then followed up with "開不了口" (Cannot Speak) from his second album which was another of the crowd favorite.

Second encore had him belting the one song which I had been playing on repeat mode of late, "烏克麗麗" (Ukulele). With this song, he also turned the concert into a rave party with streamers and larger-than-life beach balls!

By this time, Nicole and myself was getting a little sad because we knew that the concert would be coming to an end soon and honestly, we just wanted time to just stop there. But of course, we knew that wouldn't happen but no harm just dreaming right?

The concert ended on a high with the last encore of him singing "屋顶" (Rooftop) (the song which every of his fans knew by heart) with Cindy Yen. With that, OPUS Jay 2013 World Tour ended on a high.

Looking back, it's been 12 years since the day I bought his debut album. His songs have been a constant companion in my life, accompanying me through the ups and downs in my life. With the exception of Nicole, no one understands why I like him so much and am willing to spend money buying his albums, watching his concerts, travelling to Taiwan to visit his vintage store (previously owned with his business partners) and his restaurants. It's like he literally grew up with me. 

He's also one of the most loyal artiste that I have seen. His band has been with him since the start of his career, and has been there for each and every of his six successful world tours. He takes good care of his juniors and artistes; 南拳媽媽 (Nan Quan Ma Ma), 浪花兄弟 (The Drifters), 袁咏琳 Cindy Yen and Lara Veronin; his team members including his dancers, his make-up artist and his friends, who are a constant in his music videos and concerts. You rarely see people going for toilet breaks during his concerts when his guest performers perform because he plans it in such a way that all his guests performers are part of the entire performance. 

I love listening to his songs because it's always different from the other commercialized albums that we see out there. Like I mentioned previously, he is the only artiste who sings about Chinese vampires, eunuchs, Dracula, ninjas, and will not hesitate to shame the paparazzi in his songs. He's one that will go against the norm. Not to mention the fact that he's talented; he sings, composes his own music, acts, directs his own music videos and movies and has his own restaurants. And he is filial; he has an album named after his mum, "葉惠美" (Ye Hui Mei); the aptly name "外婆" for his maternal grandmother who has also appeared in two of his music videos, "外婆" (Maternal Grandmother) and "迷迭香" (Rosemary).

That said, he is not perfect. I don't really like how he handles his relationships but then again, I don't really care about that cause that's wasn't what drew me to him in the first place. Nicole and I have a little wish, that is to watch one of his concert in Taiwan itself but no chance of that happening this year since tickets for the shows in Taiwan were snapped up within one and a half hour. But, but, we are keeping our fingers crossed for another stop, which I shall will only mentioned if our wish does come true. :)

I hope you have not fallen asleep by now; for those of you who are still reading, I hope you enjoyed reading this post. As promised, here are the links to the YouTube videos. For those who did not attend the concert, I hope you will enjoy the videos, those who attended, let's sit back and reminisce the wonderful experience once more.

1. Opening + 驚嘆號 (Exclamation Mark)
2. 龍拳 (Dragon Fist)
3. 最後的戰役 (The Final Battle)
4. 天台 (The Rooftop) Part I
5. 天台 (The Rooftop) Part II
6. 天台 (The Rooftop) Part III - 打架舞 (Fight Dance) + 哪裡都是你 (You Are Everywhere)
7. 一路向北 (All The Way North)
8. 不能說的秘密 (Secret)
9. 雙截棍 (Nunchucks)
10. 明明就 (Obviously) + 世界末日 (End Of The World) + Mine Mine + 安靜 (Silence)
11. 公公偏頭痛 (Eunuchs Tend To Have Headaches)
12. 青花瓷 (Blue And White Porcelain)
13. 紅塵客棧 (Mundane Inn)
14. 鬥牛 (Basketball Match) + 水手怕水 (Sailor Afraid of Water) + 大笨鐘 (Big Ben)
15. 彩虹 (Rainbow) + 軌跡 (Locus) + 牛仔很忙 (Cowboy on the Run) + 星晴 (Clear Stars) + 回到過去 (Go Back To The Past) + 完美主義 (Perfectionism) + 喬克叔叔 (Uncle Joker) + 晴天 (Fine Day)
16. 手語 (Sign Language)
17. 開不了口 (Cannot Speak)
18. 烏克麗麗 (Ukulele)
19. 屋顶 (Rooftop)

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