Monday April 25, 2011
Fish Leong talks about her new album
By SETO KIT YAN
Fish Leong shares the bliss of married life in her new album.
THE Queen of Love Ballads – Fish Leong – shows no sign of slowing down, now that she has tied the knot. On the contrary, she is working harder than ever before.
Last year marked a milestone for homegrown Mandopop diva Fish Leong as she married English-educated Taiwanese businessman Tony Chao and made her big-screen debut in fellow Malaysian entertainer Aniu’s directorial debut Ice Kacang Puppy Love.
She also tackled another challenge – producing her 11th studio album Qing Ge Mei You Gao Shu Ni (Mandarin for What Love Songs Didn’t Tell You). It’s her first release with Universal Music, the label she signed up with last year. Released in December, the 10-track album of love songs includes seven compositions by Malaysian artistes.
In a departure from her usual girl-next-door image, Leong appeared at a media conference to plug her new album sporting a blazing fuchsia hairdo which perfectly complemented her purple satiny dress.
In an interview held after the press conference, the chatty songstress was accompanied by her mother, who sat in a corner observing her quietly.
Commenting on the album, which took a year in the making, Leong mused: “I’d always wanted to be able to keep the master for my own songs and album. So, when I signed with Universal, this was my request to the company. Also, I set up my own production house (in Taipei) and sought my favourite musicians to collaborate on the album and did my own song selection.
“I’d just got married when I was working on the album so I was inspired to share the bliss of married life, with songs such as Ru Guo Bing Xiang Hui Shuo Hua (If A Fridge Could Speak) and La La La La.”
She also roped in her singer-songwriter cousin Z-Chen to collaborate on the romantic wedding-themed duet Yi Jia Yi (Twosome), which required mixing to be done in South Korea.
The 32-year-old songbird spoke fondly of Wo Jiu Zi Dao Na Shi Ai (I Just Know That’s Love), the song she produced for the album. “It’s got a country vibe and I’ve never done that genre. I really enjoyed myself.
“When you listen to these love songs, be reminded that you have to take action for romance to blossom and bear fruit. No matter how many love songs you have heard in this lifetime, love will only come to you if you are brave enough to give and receive.”
Admitting that she felt some pressure initially, Leong said she was very excited to be able to create her own album from scratch.
“Previously, I only had a small part in the making of an album, but now I’m completely involved in all aspects, from start to finish. Beginning with very rough ideas and watching them take shape, then enjoying the end result ... it’s all very rewarding and satisfying.
“Even for the image, styling and make-up, I decided to be daring. My hair colour has been changed a lot these days,” she said with a chuckle, noting that her now-violet hair had recently transformed from the fiery scarlet do and the cheery chestnut pixie cut before that.
Despite numerous offers, Leong only started acting last year. She had a cameo in Taiwanese idol series Bai Quan Nv Wang (My Queen) and she played a quiet schoolgirl secretly in love with the protagonist in Aniu’s Ice Kacang Puppy Love.
Bitten by the acting bug after the Malaysian-made film, the doe-eyed singer declared she’s looking forward to dabbling in more acting projects between making albums and staging concerts.
“It was a lot of fun, and I’m more interested in movies now. Given the opportunity, I’d like to try another film. It’s really compelling how you can be another person and live another life, especially if it involves a very distant time period. I’m really looking forward to some interesting scripts.”
Leong is also busy preparing for her Fish Leong The Love Library World Tour 2011 that will kick off in Taiwan on May 28 and take her to China, Hong Kong and Malaysia.
“The show’s concept is about the different chapters of a young woman’s life, and the concert itself has five parts.”
> What Love Songs Didn’t Tell You is available in record stores nationwide.