October 5, 2009

Malaysian Cai Qin is born

Exciting times are happening in the Malaysian audiophile music scene....

Maggie passed me a demo cd of his latest creation called JZ8 (pronounced as Jazzy-Eight), a piano-n-vocal duo represented by supremo Jazz pianist Tay Cher Siang and female vocalist Lydia Chew.

Both artistes have great credentials. According to the bio, Tay is the one of the top Jazz pianists in the circuit now, who has just released his own jazz album called "WVC trio". Lydia Chew is even better, she is the top BV (backup vocalist) in Malaysia, responsible for almost half of the BV cases in Malaysia including Sheila Majid and Gary Chow!

Maggie only let me listen to one song, since it was still a rough demo. It was a Chinese oldie originally sung by Pan Xiu Qiong, being rearranged into a very slow and sensuous Jazz piece.

I was in awe! This combination is lethal! Tay is a virtuoso pianist who displays a full mastery of the ivory, with beautiful chording and harmonizations. I was absolutely enchanted by his playing and arrangement.

But I haven't told you about Lydia Chew yet. This lady is a thorough gem! I thought I was listening to a younger version of Cai Qin. Her low notes are so magnetic and sexy. Her techniques and control are top-notch too. From her emotive singing, one could tell she has experienced all life's ups and downs, trials and tribulations... as she breathes so much life into this beautiful oldie. I haven't heard this quality of singing from any Malaysian Chinese singer ever, let me be frank to you. If you don't believe me, beg Maggie to let you listen to her demo!

This JZ8 duo is gonna be a winner, that much I can tell. From the rough mix CD that I heard on Maggie's system, the recording is sumptuously analogue and thick... it was a few notches up from the 2V1G album that he produced in 2007. Maggie explained that the Neve Genesys mixing console that they use in the Tutti Studio is a stunner in producing natural and analogue sound.

I am going to the Tutti Studio to cover the "Love's Tapestry" recording this weekend. I hope I could capture some footages on videos!


TSQ said...


Please check with Ms Lydia Chew whether she likes to be compared to another artist. I believe any serious artist would like to be his/her own person and I am sure Ms Chew has the talent to stamp her own mark. This is courtesy and also respect for the individual.

fafafion said...

I hope they choose the piano well.Unfortunately ,most recording studio/pop artists use Yamaha pianos,which give thin sound..

I personally prefers Bosendorer for full bodied effects;even a simple upright piano by Bosendorfer sounds better than Yamaha grand.

Alternatively,a Bluthner or Steinway also have better tones than Yamaha.........

Cher Siang said...

I'm not sure if Bosendorfer produce any upright pianos.... Also there aren't any Bosendorfer in Malaysia, as far as I know.
As for the limited numbers of Bosendorfer that I had the privilege of playing, I think the general tone of Bosendorfer is rather thin and "metallic"... In comparison to American Steinway.

As for Steinway, a new full grand cost around 600K RM, which is a bit too much, and with that little of a difference in terms of tone and touch (Yamaha new full grand 300+K, or Kawai 250+K).

Not really sure about Bluthner, even when I was studying in the States, I have not came across any Bluthner. If you could tell me how it sounds and how's the touch.

I think the studio is using a second hand, 6 foot Kawai.

Big E said...

Cher Siang,

Woo,woo,woo! The artist himself in our humble blog page! Welcome man!

Folks, there you have it, straight from the horse's mouth too!

Looking forward to listen to your effort in my humble hifi.

BTW, from the pictures, Lydia does oozess with sex appeal, just as Hifi Maverick described her voice to be.

Thanks for droping by.

fafafion said...

mr cher siang,

certainly Bosendorfer did produced upright piano,but not in the "classic" sense.....but Calling Bosendorfer sound thin?well maybye in comparison with Steinway,but certainly not Yamaha or Kawai........

in fact,Roy Bittan uses Bosendorfer piano in Meatloaf-bat out off hell despite J Steinmann objections-Jim was Sponsored by Yamaha.......

Haven't tried a Blutner?Give your self a try, you would be addicted........

the point I am trying to make is,If you are producing an album,where the piono sound is at the prominence,You must make sure the piano sound is carefully selected.....a 'student" piano might not be good enough........To cut cost,why not practice on the usual piano and rent a Bosendorfer or even Petrof for the recording sesions.......There are quite a few Bosendorfers around,I happen to own one too.

mikelau.2 said...

Big E,

Your hifi is above par..so is your eyefi ! She appeals to me too you know! I don't know about our hifi rating but our eyefi sure same same. hehe

Cher Siang said...

thanks for the info, Sorry that I know too little about pianos. Hope I will come across a Bluthner or Bosendorfer here in Malaysia. Also, I don't really like Petrof, just a personal taste, at least the ones that I had the opportunity to lay my hands on.

About the cost, perhaps we need to talk to our producer.... Hehe.

Big E, It's my pleasure to drop by. Hopefully my playing will be up to par to your systems. Fingers crossed.