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China Beat--Nicky Lee's New Album, Not Perfect
    2008-11-01 15:57:17     CRIENGLISH.com

The cover of Nicky Lee's latest albumn Not...Perfect.

Hello, and welcome to another edition of  China Beat here on 'China Radio International'. This is Zhong Qiu. 

Li Jiu Zhe (李玖哲), also known as Nicky Lee is a popular Korean-American Mando-pop singer. He established himself on the Chinese music scene as part of Jeff Huang's hip-hop group, Machi. Since then, Nicky has attracted the attention of listeners with his unique vocal style. Last year, Nicky Lee landed his biggest success at the Golden Melody Awards where he was honored as Best Mandarin Singer for his second album 'Baby It's Me'. Lately Nicky Lee released his fourth solo album, 'Not...Perfect', 不完美. The album features nine tracks and varying musical styles. During today's show, we will review Nicky's latest offering and ask Nicky how he remains imperfectly perfect through his music.

(Nicky in English)

"This is my feeling towards my life and some of the situation I've been in. But it is not really imperfect. It is a choice. When we look at something it can be perfect; it can be not perfect. A lot of people might see me and think: Wow! He gets to be a singer for a living and it should nice. And it is because I love singing but they didn't see the imperfect side which is I might see my families seven days out of a year, which is imperfect. I think that situation is very, very sad. But at the same time it is perfect. Something might be perfect for some one, but to me it might me imperfect. It is a vision on life. This album is not to make people sad. It is an encouraging album. I hope every one can make the situation better and hopefully we can make things perfect one day. "

Here is the title track, 'Not...Perfect', which tells a story of romance with an imperfect ending.

(Soundtrack 'Not...Perfect')

That was 'Not...Perfect' taken from Nicky Lee's namesake album. His latest record sways more toward melancholy pop than Nicky Lee's signature R&B sound. Yet Nicky brings R&B flavor to the music with his vocal interpretation. Many of Nicky's songs feature breathy singing and gospel influence, which finds its roots in his early days of singing.

(Nicky in English)

"When I was 17, a producer found me singing in church and asked me if I wanted to sing in Korea. So in 1997, I did a group album called 'VOICE', and those were R&B album. But at the end of the day we broke up because some of the members went separate ways and some wanted to study. In the year 2000, I released a solo Korean album called 'Scent'. At that time, my boss out in Korea ran away with all the promotional money and my album never saw the light of a day."

However, difficult experiences didn't stop Nicky Lee pursuing his musical dreams. He met Jeff Huang who was amazed by his voice and made him part of 'Machi'. The 'Machi' crew went back to Taiwan, made it big, and in 2005 Nicky released his debut solo album in Chinese, 'Shadow'; and later his second release, 'Baby It's Me', which won him the award of Best Mandarin Singer at last year's Golden Melody Awards.

(Nicky in English)

"My previous albums were mostly produced by me and my good friends Jae Chong. This album is too. But when I was working on my third album, I worked with a good friend of mine, JJ Lin. I just found working with good friends on music is such a happy thing. This album I've got even more friends to help me, F.I.R's Ah Shin, Fang Da Tong, Wu Ke Qun. So I've got a lot more people working on this album."

The fourth track, 'Not Just a Dream', 不只是场梦, is courtesy of friendship. Composed by Kenji Wu, 吴克群, the rhythm fits perfectly well to Nicky's R&B performing style; along with the catchy lyrics, this song is destined to be a hit.

(Soundtrack 'Not Just a Dream')

One of the people important to Nicky Lee's music career is Jae Chong, the Korean producer who first introduced him to the music industry. On his new album, Nicky asked Chong to feature on one of the tracks, 'You Don't Understand', 你不懂我的明白.

(Nicky in English)

"This song is a track of a little bit R&B there and a little bit Hip-hop there. And Jae Chong is the one who found me as 17 in the church. And I've worked with him ever since. He is a great songwriter and producer. This time I asked him if we could sing in Mandarin. "

(Soundtrack 'You Don't Understand')

Nicky Lee tries not only to sing in Mandarin but also introduces more Chinese influence to his R&B style of music. The first track, 'Gray Sky' 苍天, is one such song featuring music of Chinese style.

(Nicky in English)

"It is my first time trying 中国风R&B style. I always wanted to do it. This time I just got the chance to do it. It is the theme song to online game. It is first time my trying 中国风, hope everyone would like it. "

(Soundtrack 'Gray Sky')

Nicky Lee has the voice of an angel, husky and soulful, perfect for the R&B songs that he sings. He tried different styles with this new album, 'Not...Perfect', yet one song I would recommend is a track of Nicky Lee's own style. Track two, 'Don't Tell Me', 别说, is a song that Nicky manages to give his own sound.

(Soundtrack 'Don't Tell Me')

(Nicky in English)

"I want to keep focus on my Mandarin music because the Chinese fans have given me so much support and love. My later focus will still be in Mandarin music. "

With this song, we come to the end of this edition of 'China Beat' on 'China Radio International'. Your comments and suggestions are always welcome. You can email us at Chinabeat@cri.com.cn; or log on to our website at crienglish.com, find  China Beat, and leave your message. This is Zhong Qiu from Beijing. Bye for now.



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