Sunday, 19 March 2017

My 1980 Jianghu (Gongwu) OST list

I told Hannah a while ago that I was listening to a compilation of 1980 Jianghu/Gongwu Original Soundtracks from iTunes. Hannah asked me for the list, but I haven’t got around to it until now.

Hope you find it useful. I'm sure Spotify etc can also provide you with this list. Let me know what else to add, I’m most interested in the TVB 1980s songs. I’ll also update this list as I find ‘new’ songs to add (I want to add the Foundation songs etc). The detailed songs (with Chinese characters to copy-paste) are after the break. All songs are in Cantonese.

Saturday, 18 March 2017

The Godmother

Source: Rob Radboud

Apologies for the silence; I’ve been having some deadlines and writing blocks that made my submissions not progressing much. I will still publish my commentaries on LOCH 2017, though I’m already 3 weeks behind the schedule now. However, publishing those commentaries mean that I need to watch the series again, and I need to dedicate a special time for that, which I don’t have at the moment. Nonetheless, I miss MB… a lot. Hence, this article for this weekend.

Only recently I learned that Barbara had a godmother in Hong Kong. The kind godmother was no other than Mrs Lee Heung-kam, who portrayed Mrs Kam in ‘United We Stand’ 1984 and the Old Lady Kam (Kam tai-kwan) in ‘Chor Lau Heung’ 1984. Mrs Lee also portrayed Abbess Ruthless in ‘Heaven Sword and Dragon Sabre’ 1986, and as Tony Leung’s mother-in-law in ‘Yang’s Saga’ 1985.

Sunday, 5 March 2017

If I Loved You Less

Update 18 March 2017: I've edited the info about Michael/Barbara concert in Singapore. I don't think it was in 8 April 1985, for Barbara already cut her hair by 6 April 1985. Hence, some premises for this article have been revised accordingly. I have also added some newspaper clippings here and there.

I am somewhat reluctant in writing this, but I thought I’d give it a go. The reason for my reluctance is because bringing up the past can disturb the present. But… I just have to write this.

I am new to MB (since September 2015, that’s considered still new IMO), though I’ve been a fan of Michael and Barbara separately. When in late 2015 I realised their unfulfilled potentials as a couple, I was rather devastated. Then I tried to balance myself by thinking that Michael and Barbara would, just as Michael said, just share a friendship or, again as Michael put it, brotherhood, instead of unrequited love. I even wrote it as such when I wrote a post during Barbara’s commemoration last year. That Michael and Barbara might have had a thing, but they doused it off. And that’s that. But it was just a vague guess…

Upon receiving some old photos of MB from Hannah and Cynthia last December and January, I became more certain about one thing: something did happen between Michael and Barbara in 1983-1984, and it was quite big that it almost changed MB’s relationships with their official significant others at that time. Thus, this post is about how I came to that conclusion. With all due respect to Kent Tong and Jaime Chik, particularly Jaime who has been a very amazing wife to Michael… allow me to write up my speculations here.

Friday, 24 February 2017

LOCH 2017 commentaries for Eps 21-28

Resort-owner Huang Yaoshi welcoming his guests (including myself) at the gorgeous Peach Blossom Island

Apologies for the lack of update, I have an (exciting) personal matter (which Hannah helped sorted) which temporarily halted other things …

I’m so late with the commentaries for episodes 21-24 last week, hence I just combine them with the comments for eps 25-28. I haven’t finished re-watching episodes 24, 27 and 28, so I will add the comments for those episodes later.

Also, yesterday was the cremation of the body of Mrs Liu, Barbara Yung’s mother. May she rest in peace now and reunited with her gorgeous daughter…

Episode 21

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Barbara Yung's mother passed away

The late Mrs Liu Ming Yee by Andrew Chan, Barbara's godson, via Rob Radboud

Barbara's mother passed away last January, and I didn't know this until now. Some fan I am... Mrs Liu Ming Yee was 90 years old when she died on 17 January 2017 in Cambridge... and I was too busy with deadlines to notice this!

hung head in shame...

Back to Mrs Liu's death... Andrew Chan provided info from his Weibo that Granny Liu had been ill since she was born, and she had a stroke a few years back. Her funeral will be on 23 February 2017 (next week!) in the Cambridge City Crematorium, and her ashes will be buried next to her daughter's grave. Which means, the next time me (and Hannah) visit Barbara's grave, we will also pray for Mrs Liu...

Beautiful jianghu artworks of Barbara Yung

 Definitely taken from Song Siu Ching (see her hairstyle and necklace)

When browsing Rob Radboud's website, I unexpectedly found two beautiful artworks of Barbara in the jianghu style. I can't read the Chinese characters, hence I cannot identify the artists. However, their arts are really gorgeous that I need to put them here. I have, however, identified the original art pieces, hence I also put them here after the artworks of Barbara.

If you know any other pieces with such a style, do let me know. The other artwork is after the break.

Barbara Yung's letters part 4: UWS & FD 1984

The United We Stand ceremony (Mrs Lee Hung-kam was standing next to Barbara,
and Michael was slightly behind Barbara), from Rob's website

Apologies for the slow update. I just returned from a holiday last weekend and had to readjust to the hot weather here so I've been a bit sluggish. Happy Valentine's Day for you all, belatedly for those in Australasia and Europe, but still within the day for friends in the American continent. I've actually been writing a post for V-day, but I haven't finished it. Hence this post in lieu:  a letter from Barbara to her UK family, containing Fearless Duo 1984 and United We Stand 1984. 

In her only letter containing UWS and FD, Barbara also mentioned a 10 days tour with Michael on 15 May, a day after UWS was aired (and a year before her death...). Not sure where the tour was, was it in Malaysia or Singapore? I need to look into this later. Also we learn that Shela (Barbara's aunt now, now that Shela has married Barbara's uncle) had given birth to a baby (Andrew Chan). In June 1984, Barbara and Kent Tong went to UK to visit her family. Afterwards, directly she filmed Chor Lau Heung with Michael as described in her June 1984 letter (seems to be dated 22 June 1984). 

Thursday, 9 February 2017

LOCH 2017 commentaries for Eps 17-20

Michael Miu as Huang Yaoshi with a passage from the novel

I’m still traveling on holiday now, so I will just post short commentaries on episodes 17-20 of LOCH 2017. For Michael Miu fans, here’s what you need to know: He appears again as Huang Yaoshi in Eps 19 and 20. For Han Dong fans, he makes a debut in Ep 19 as Wang Chongyang, the Central Divinity. He certainly looks the part IMO, albeit a tad too young. Some important episodes for Yang Kang fans as well. I will update this post as I re-watch the episodes in due course; a bit difficult to do that when you’re traveling…

Episode 17

Thursday, 2 February 2017

La Vie en Rose (United We Stand 1984 MV)

I love 'La Vie en Rose' both in French (Edith Piaf) and English (mostly Louis Armstrong) versions. Somehow I wanted to use this song for a "United We Stand" MV, and I wanted to use the French version. I've never used a French song for any Michael/Barbara song... but whyever not, actually?

Then, when I found the version sang by Ye Bei Lei (叶蓓蕾) earlier this month, I realised that I do want to have Bei Lei's version for "United We Stand". So here it is. I hope YouTube does not delete it, for I'm sort of done with guessing which song is okay or not in YouTube. Louis Armstrong and Edith Piaf should be fine for they had passed away a good while ago. Ye Bei Lei's version was sung during the Tianjin TV Spring Festival 2012, so that should be okay?

The lyrics and translation are below the break, as well as the embedded Vimeo of this MV and the YouTube video of Bei Lei singing 'La Vie en Rose'. She really sang this French song superbly well!

Monday, 30 January 2017

Jiangsu TV Chinese New Year TVB concert

It's nice to see some Mainland channels appraising the TVB oldies. A few years ago, the main crew of LOCH 1983 (except Barbara, sadly), were invited for an LOCH 1983 celebration by a Mainland channel (will add the name later). Now, for the Chinese New Year 2017, we had Jiangsu TV inviting Michael Miu, Felix Wong, Gallen Lo and Kenneth Joe Ma singing five TVB oldies songs, including "You're the Best in the World" (LOCH 1983) and "Shanghai Tan" (The Bund 1980).

Assisting the four main TVB giants are TK11 and Zero-G plus some all-men background dancers. I have no idea who Zero-G is other than they are six modern boybands. Nevertheless, the all-men configuration really gave the New Year positive fighting energy. Love the all-white suit that the background dancers gave (and that they actually backflipped! OMG, I thought no one in the Central Plains could do that anymore these days!)

Below the break I have the original clips of the TVB songs performed here. Thanks to Ian Liew, Sarafina and Mandred Skavenslayer from the SPCNet for identifying the other songs I had no clues about. 

Update 4 Feb 2017:

Thanks to TVBFan for letting me know about the first song (Triumph in the Sky) and fixing the identity of the actor singing with Gallen Lo. The actor should be Joe Ma instead of Kenneth Ma. 

Sunday, 29 January 2017

LOCH 2017 commentaries for Eps 9-16

Highlight of past week: the death of YTX & BXR for me

Happy New Year! Fire Rooster, hoping all the best for us hard-workers (that should include me, I hope…), but in general, may we all be happy, healthy and prosperous. Since iQIYI has released episodes 9-16 last week for the VIPs (which then leaked to YouTube), I can review those episodes for us this time. I do find 8 episodes per week too much to watch, hence I’m glad it’s back to the 4 episodes per week next week onwards. I have indeed subscribed to iQIYI VIP, but it’s just $6 per month, and I made a one-off purchase.

I’m also happy that other people can watch Ep 9-16 as well through YouTube, though I do suggest you watch Ep 9-12 from iQIYI to help the rating. So far, the 2017 LOCH is competing with a series called “The Tomb” something or other for rank 2-3, while Angela Baby’s “General and I” is at Baidu Baike rank 1.

Generally speaking now, I love this series. I did watch it earlier because of Michael Miu, but along the lines, I fell in love with Genghis Khan, Jebe, Ouyang Ke (!!), Mu Nianci, Yang Tiexin, Bao Xiruo, Wang Chuyi, Qiu Chuji, Ma Yu... n the two main leads of GJ HR. I’m okay, but not ecstatic over Chen Xingxu’s Yang Kang, but I am totally irked at the choice of Hong Qigong. The actor may have won a movie award in China, but that doesn’t make him the HQG I hope for.

Sunday, 22 January 2017

"In the Rain" (Zài Yǔzhōng), a Michael/Barbara MV

Sandy sent me some songs sung by Barbara Yung last December. I knew that Barbara sang during some of her shows, but I never really listened to those songs. TBH, I think she wasn't a great singer, though she was definitely a great actress and a passionate dancer. Barbara was an alto singer, hence she struggled with higher soprano notes. But when I realised that Barbara actually sang one song with Michael Miu during their concert/tour in Malaysia, I became excited. I listened to a song titled "In the Rain" several times, and the tune entered my brain easily. It was a lovely tune, and quite merry on its own. Michael was definitely a good singer; his baritone voice could produce vibrations several times when he hit some lower notes. Barbara, as I said, wasn't a good singer, but her singing voice was actually sweet for alto tones. She struggled with higher notes, but when singing the lower and medium tones, it was nice to hear her and Michael doing the duet. 

(lyrics and translation under the break)

Friday, 20 January 2017

Manga of the LOCH 2017 characters

So the producers have released the lovely manga of the LOCH 2017 characters. So far, we have only the four main leads, and not sure if we will have more. But I definitely want to see the Five Greats' manga (particularly Michael's laaaaah), hence I hope we will have more!

I'll post more manga artworks here if we have more.

Huang Rong (needs a better facial expression) 

Thursday, 19 January 2017

LOCH 2017 commentaries for Eps 5-8

The fearsome Temujin-led Mongolians

Click this link for the iQIYI viewing of LOCH 2017. iQIYI has asked YouTube to remove unauthorised LOCH 2017 videos, hence it’s difficult to view it from YT now.  Still, please view it at iQIYI If possible, for it will help the rating. The show is at rating #3 now as per 19 January (thanks to Don Yu of SPCNet for the rating screen shot below the break). Some quotes about Ouyang Ke is at the end of the post, between some cute photos of Michael Miu as Yeung Hong (!).

Episode 5

This episode covers the Temujin vs Jamukha battle; Temujin was a very cool Khan. Amazing strategy as Mandred Skavenslayer in SPCNet said, and amazing battle scenes. Jebe of course stood out for me, as well as Temujin himself, and Tolui, whose long hair made him look cool, almost like a Native (First Nation) American.

It was touching to see Temujin (Genghis Khan) actually closed his eyes and then, with glassy eyes, shot his own brother. Like, he wished that he didn't have to do that, but he had to, under those circumstances.

Saturday, 14 January 2017

LOCH 2017 commentaries for Eps 1-4

The Legend of Condor Heroes 2017 is on-air now on Dragon TV, Dong Fang TV and iQIYI. I’ve been watching ep 1-4 from Monday to Tuesday this week, and I am glad to say that it’s a promising series.  Click this link for the iQIYI viewing. Although there are so many YouTube channels uploading the drama now, please view it at iQIYI If possible, for it might help the rating.

The followings are my commentaries on episodes 1-4. I won’t go through the minute details of the episodes; there are other blogs available surely that mention the episode details. I will definitely go into detail when my favourite Michael Miu appear, but he might not appear before early or mid-February. But we know that Michael is happy with the series so far (see his Weibo at the end of this article). Also at the end of the post, I have a very nice snippet of the upcoming performance by Michael and Felix Wong, singing 'You're the Best in the World' for the upcoming Spring Festival at Jiangsu TV. Thanks to A Virtual Voyage for the news!