Category: Event Coverage

Guang Liang ‘Tong Hua’ Showcase – Kuching 2005

A little bird told me that Guang Liang was in town this past Sunday for a concert showcase.

I wasn’t planning on going initially as I didn’t have tickets, but I stole it from some fat kid bought a spare one from some kid for RM10.

Now I know what you’re thinking.
“OMG Kenny, you went to see Guang Liang? What’s wrong with you?! HE’S SO GAYYYY!!!11
Yalah yalah I know lah.
I agree Guang Liang is a bit of a poofter with nothing but a skinny-ass and a high-pitch voice. But of course… I wouldn’t say anything bad about him because when I was a teenager and some girl I liked broke my heart, I would listen to his songs and cry myself to sleep.
*cough* You didn’t hear that from me.

Malaysian Armed Forces: Directing traffic since 2005. Khidmat Negara… join the armed forces TODAY!

For those unfamiliar with this Malaysian music artist, Guang Liang aka Michael Wong was once one-half of a very successful duo called ‘Guang Liang Ping Guan’ (Michael+Victor). Before they split, ‘Guang Liang Ping Guan’ produced some of the best Mandarin ballads at the time. In fact I loved them so much I owned every single one of their albums. Its too bad that after they decided to go solo, the quality of their songs just seems to go down, down and down. Kinda like Hugh Hefner without viagra really.

The so-called VIP area.

Whatever their reason for splitting was, I hope its not because they think they’re gonna earn TWICE as much money by producing TWICE as many albums separately. Honestly, their solo albums so far were nothing to shout about as I still find myself listening to their old albums.
That said, Guang Liang is still arguably the more successful of the original duo. I don’t know what happened to Ping Guan’s singing but it just wasn’t good enough. Besides, Ping Guan sounded like Penguin and you wouldn’t buy an album from a penguin would you?

The obligatory time-wasting boring-as-hell pre-show games that ONLY the host himself seemed to enjoy

Anyway after experiencing the disaster that was the David Tao Kuching Showcase last month, I didn’t have my hopes up. I was expecting loads of boring pre-show games, listening to the host repeatedly reminding us to buy the CDs, then the star coming out to sing two songs max, sign some autographs to make us happy then go home to sleep with his stuffed toys.
Guang Liang

Guang Liang: Hello everyone, my name is Guang Liang.
Me: DUH! I thought this is Tan Ah Beng’s concert.

The showcase was held in a multi-purpose hall fit for 3,000 people in Kenyalang Park. The area closest to the stage was cordoned off for reporters and big-balled VIPs. I could see that the VIP area was quite poorly managed because there were no guest list, no special tags or whatever. Anyone lugging a big heavy camera could pretend to be a reporter and sneaked in easily.
Note to self: Next time, get a digital SLR camera and wear a khaki vest. 🙂
Guang Liang

Ji de wo ai ni (Remember I love you)

After some excruciatingly long and horrijible pre-show program, which included the host trying to get the crowd to sing-a-long to Guang Liang’s songs, the man boy himself finally graced the stage at around 8:00pm – about an hour after the scheduled start. His first number was ‘Ji de wo ai ni’, an up-tempo song designed to get the sleepy crowd all fired up. Of course that’s not needed because the hundreds of screaming schoolgirls effectively ‘gerengteed’ that I lose my hearing next morning.
Guang Liang

Xiang zhuo jou xiang you jou (Walk towards the left, walk towards the right). Its also the soundtrack of a movie of the same name.

I didn’t go crazy over Guang Liang of course. It might’ve been different if you ask me eight years ago when I would listen to his songs every single day. But alas… its just too bad so sad that Guang Liang and I met at the right place, at the wrong time. Sorry mate but you came eight years too late.
Now I know how those girls at the Backstreet Boys concert last month must be feeling.
Guang Liang

Tien Tang (Heaven)

Guang Liang is very much an average joe who haven’t yet grown into some pretentious mega-bitch superstar. Despite him possessing the dancing skills of a cupboard, I reckon Guang Liang handled the stage really well. He engaged the audience’s mood and really took time to explain the meaning behind each songs he wrote.
And that’s the thing I like about artists who write their own songs. Normally I’d just buy albums and listen to it because of the melody. But having the artist himself explaining why he wrote a particular song somehow brings to it a different depth, a different dimension. Next time I hear it on the radio, I wouldn’t think of the song the same way again.
‘Tien Tang’ (Heaven) for example, is a song that came to mind when he heard the news of Leslie Cheung’s suicide.
Guang Liang

I too, thought that this is another Malaysian singer who called himself ‘Ah Niu’.

Three songs and a mini-game later, I thought that Guang Liang would be more than ready to wrap the show up. After all, David Tao stopped after a miserable grand total of two songs.
But of course, Guang Liang is different. He went on to perform ‘Shou Ji Liu Yan’ (Messages on the mobile phone) and ‘Yi Dian Guang Yi Dian Liang (errr.. A bit of light, a bit of light?). Throughout the evening, he threw posters into the crowd. At one point, he even left the stage to shake hands with the audience.
Guang Liang

Tong Hua (Fairy tale, not the minishorts version I hope)

The last number of the evening was ‘Tong Hua’ (Fairy tale) – a staple among Chinese radio stations here and a favourite among those poor heartbroken souls out there who recently broke up with their boyfriends/girlfriends. Heh. Definitely one of the best sappy tearjerking break-up songs out there, isn’t it? 🙂
I was really looking forward to listening to him performing that song live… but the Kuching crowd spoilt it by singing along loudly like some drunk uncles at a karaoke competition. GAH!

The poster face Vs the real face. Ahhh… the wonders of Photoshop!

Guang Liang ended the evening signing autographs – which was effectively a scribble-handshake-NEXTTT affair. I didn’t get an album and I wasn’t enthusiastic about lining up for an hour just to get his autograph. So I pretended to be a reporter and went on stage among other ‘real’ reporters just to snap some close-up photos of him. 😉
All in all, it was a good night out. Guang Liang performed six songs in total and went out of his way to interact with the audience. Nice to see that fame didn’t go through Guang Liang’s head and that he still acknowledged his fans properly.
Its quite sad that eventhough some celebrities *cough*David Tao*cough* produce great songs and all that, they unfortunately also have the tendency stay away from fans like a plague.
Please lah, your fans are the people who support you. These are the people who waited 1 hour in a stadium packed like sardines for you, went through so much just to see you and yet you merely performed two songs and left? Why is it that when people asked you for a photo and you CLEARLY know you had time for it, but yet you blatantly refused to acknowledge it? Take one photo very jialat one ha?
That’s the thing, I can’t stand these prima donnas. Honestly speaking, without the fans buying your albums you are absolutely nothing. At least give them some face, can?

Astro Talent Quest 2005 – Kuching Stage Challenge

The Astro Talent Quest is regarded by many as the Chinese equivalent of the Idols franchise in Malaysia. The format is slightly different from American Idol or Malaysian Idol but the purpose is the same: ie, its a singing competition, home viewers watch the show, they SMS-vote for their favourite contestant, the winner gets a recording contract and the home viewers end up with a massive phone bill.
The Astro team was in town last Friday for the Kuching-leg of the tapings so I decided to pop by to have a look at what the fuss is all about.
Wisma Saberkas
The competition was held in Wisma Saberkas, which looks like a bucket if viewed from the skies. The ironic thing is that the Chinese name for this building is “Chïng Tong Dà Shà”, which literally sounds like “Green Bucket Building”. I don’t know why the building is not green. We Kuching people are very confusing.

The security guard who doesn’t wanna do his job.

The show started at 5pm, but I couldn’t leave work until 5:30pm. By the time I arrived a small crowd has formed across all five stories of the shopping center. I missed half the show. Apparently there were ten contestants in this round, only two of which will advance to the next.
Meet the judges of the show, which is a complete rip-off from the three American Idol judges right down to their seating arragements. Let’s see: fat guy for Randy, female judge for Paula, slim-built wearing a dark-coloured sweater with rolled-up sleeves for Simon Cowell…. check, check and check! I’m surprised they didn’t bring in a black Indian dude for Randy. Then again, this is a Chinese singing competition, aight dawg?
Luckily the hosts aren’t rip-offs of Ryan Seacrest. They were Astro presenter Royce Tan and MyFM Radio DJ Gan MeiYan.
Gan MeiYan
You know, I used to think that all radio DJs are fat and ugly.
But after meeting Gan MeiYan, I realised some radio DJs can be skinny and ugly too.
Just kidding :). She’s skinny, but still quite chio lah. Gotta love the top.
Contestant 4

Eh brother. Why wear so thick? Kuching having winter ha?

I don’t remember much about the singing itself, but it was nothing to shout about. I mean they are good, but I won’t be rushing out to download pirated MP3s… buy their CDs if they ever release one.
There were some fashion faux pas at the scene though.
Contestant 5

Hey dude. Nice pants. Where did you get them from? MC HAMMER’S GARBAGE CAN!?!

This guy had it all. Outrageous dance moves, fugly clothing, bad interviews and make up on his face. Yes, MAKE UP ON HIS FACE! What the feet was he thinking putting blusher and lipstick on his face?! I’m sorry but they’re not accepting any more members for the Si Qian Jin coconut tree singing troupe.
Contestant 10
There were some good ones though. I say watch out for Contestant 10, he’s got the total package and he sang really well. I hope he got through.
Wrong name
Halfway through the show, there was a mini game requiring two volunteers from the crowd. I raised my hand and hopped onto stage. I doubt they are going to show this on TV, but I was crap at the game and lost terribly. I did crack a few jokes whilst I was on stage and had the whole crowd laughing with me so I guess all’s good.
Wrong name

I lost but I still got a prize. A pretty one too! An Astro notebook, Sammi Cheng’s Live VCD and her very old CD that nobody wants

Oh, if anyone had photos of me that day please let me know. I don’t have Astro installed at home, but being a publicity-whore I’m keen to find out if I appear on TV. So please check out Wah-Loh-Tai on 1st May ok?
Well I had fun that day. I’m not keeping my hopes up but I hope someone from Kuching wins the competition.
Three years ago an ex-schoolmate of mine went from being a virtual unknown to Malaysia’s big Chinese singing sensation thanks to this competition. I’ve always known him as prankster from school who never really excelled in his studies, and now he’s earning thousands from his recording contact and various endorsement deals. His name is Nicholas Teo aka Zhang Dong Liang.

Nicholas Teo
I hope they become like him some day.
P/S. Eh I didn’t photoshop the above picture of Nicholas Teo ha! It was a promotional poster that was already vandalised when I took a photo of it! Heh, I got nothing against him because I used to know him personally. But is not responsible for any anti-Nicholas Teo comments below.
So feel free to blast away. 😀

David Tao Showcase – Live in Kuching 2005

Last evening I had the opportunity to attend the David Tao Concert… sorry… Showcase that’s held in the MBKS Indoor Stadium in Pending. The major sponsor of this event was Maxis Hotlink. The deal was: if you purchase a Hotlink startup SIM pack for RM30, you’ll get 6 tickets to the Showcase, as well as 20% off the latest David Tao CD. The reason why its called ‘Showcase’ and not ‘Concert’ is an important one, as I found out why when the evening progressed.
David Tao 'Showcase' ticket

The David Tao ‘Showcase’ ticket that I bought from an opportunistic passerby.

I can’t be bothered paying RM30 for six tickets as I have no plans of bringing 5 of my non-existent Kuching friends to come with me. All I want is one ticket for myself, so I showed up at the stadium hoping to do just that. I had no luck, as the Hotlink salesperson insisted that that I sign up for their prepaid card and get six tickets. Finally, someone with spare tickets offered to sell me one of his for RM10, so I obliged.
Enemy at the gates?

HELLOOOO… aren’t you supposed to be, like, saving the world?

The first thing that caught my eye as soon as I arrived in the stadium is the presence of military personnel. I’m not talking about the 5 or 6 of them that’s directing the traffic outside the stadium. I’m talking about a total of about 50 of them inside and outside the stadium! For a moment, I thought I was attending a concert by Mahathir.
How many military pesonnel

Count how many military personnel is in this picture. No prizes for correct guesses.

The second thing that caught my eye was the crowd in attendance. There was nothing, NOTHING that can prepare me for the horror that I had to witness. This event shouldn’t even be called a David Tao Showcase. It should be called the AhBeng-AhLian Fashion Showcase.
Behold, the latest in Kuching fashion…

The pink panthers!
The pink panthers!

The skinny-ass gangster-wannabe!
The skinny-ass gangster-wannabe! (aka la-la zhai)

The Ayumi Hamasaki-wannabe
The Ayumi Hamasaki-wannabe! (aka la-la loui)

And my personal favourite…

The embroidered quarter-pants!
The embroidered quarter-pants!

Faces have been pixelated or cropped to protect the ‘innocent’ (or was that the ‘guilty’) party.

The concert/showcase was supposed to start at 8pm. I went in there around 7:30pm hoping to get a good spot since its free-seating/standing, but alas, the stadium was already half-full. Nonetheless, with my handsome good looks, I managed to charm my way to the front, about 4 rows from the barricade.
Some teenage girls told me that they’ve been waiting since 6:30pm. If these kids go to school with the same enthusiasm they have coming to this event, their parents would be proud. The place was so packed and the air was so humid. As I waited among the crowd I was already sweating profusely. I thought I’d never complain about being surrounded by teenage girls, but mannnn… that night I was just hoping that those girls would leave me alone!
Fan with fan

Fans with the hands

Looking at the above picture, you must be thinking that the fans were going wild because David Tao just came on stage. Well, you are wrong. The big-ass cardboard “hands” provided by Maxis were used to fan the fans (err..?) themselves.
That DJ who can't cheer Kuching people up.

That DJ who can’t cheer Kuching people up.

The time was about 8:15pm but there were still no signs of the popular Taiwanese singer. Instead, we were treated to some monologue by a DJ from 98.8FM (which I never listen to), who tried to get the crowd going wild, with no success. Kuching people are made of wood I tell you.
Then came the stupidest, most time-wasting, most horrible part of the evening. The DJ tried to get people from the crowd to come on stage to play a game. After a good 20 minutes trying to get people with names like “Catherine”, or “David” up on stage, she ended up with five guys. The game? Each of them must sing a 2-minute snippet of a song from David Tao’s latest album, and the crowd will be the judge of their performance.
Total time waster.

Yes, they are reading lyrics off the album cover. Yes, its a coincidence 3 of them wore sleeveless. Yes, their singing was absolutely horrible. Simon Cowell would be proud.

For obliterating our eardrums and causing us mental instability, the DJ rewarded the five of them with prizes from Maxis Hotlink. I managed to catch up with one of the contestants after the show (Vincent, the guy on the extreme right), and he showed me what he received. A cardboard hand, a poster, a Maxis writing pad, a Maxis brochure, another Maxis brochure, all in a crappy Maxis paper bag. Not a mobile phone, not a sim card, not even a bloody CD. Those tight-ass selfish wankers.
David Tao appeared on stage

David Tao appeared on stage after much wait.

After another bout of trying to get us cheer David Tao’s name, the famed artist himself appeared on stage. He wore a pink Abercombie & Fitch T-shirt, slim fit tattered jeans, and a white belt so feminine I reckon Nicole would look good in it. I’m sorry girls, I like his music as well, but I just don’t see the physical appeal of this Taiwanese singer. You call him metrosexual, I call him a guy who had forgotten to pack his testicles from Taiwan.
David Tao in Kuching

David Tao singing ‘Ai Wo Hai Shi Ta’

David Tao’s first song on stage was ‘Ai Wo Hai Shi Ta?’ (literally “Do you love me or him?”). Let’s just say I was expecting a live band or something. The last two concerts I’d been to in Perth (Craig David and Vanessa Amorosi) both performed with live bands, and this one just disappoints. The vocal was good, but the background music was flat. It was just a glorified Karaoke show.
David Tao in Kuching

David Tao singing ‘Susan said’

David Tao’s second song on stage was ‘Susan Said’, which is one of my favourite songs on the new album. If you’ve heard the song before, you’d recognise that there’s a falsetto portion of the song followed by a rap which was really well done. (A ‘falsetto’ is when a guy deliberately make his pitch higher than usual in singing). The song itself was good, but when it came to David Tao doing the falsetto, I could see him struggling when he smiled nervously. I heard two voices, which led me to believe that the falsetto portion of the song was recorded into the Karaoke track. I was disappointed. He did the rap pretty good though.
David Tao’s third song… wait, that’s it. That’s the end of the singing. Two songs. Yes, my friends, and that’s the difference between a ‘Showcase’ and a ‘Concert’. After all that waiting, standing, squeezing with hundreds of sweaty teenage girls, and putting up with horrible singing from the five guys… what did I get? Two sucky Karaoke-fied songs. You know a concert is crap when the pre-show games lasted longer than the actual singing itself.
David Tao autographed

How I wasted a rare close-up photo of David Tao with my shaky hands.

The rest of the evening was allocated for the autograph session. The DJ emphasised that only the outer cardboard cover of the latest CD or cassette will be signed. Nothing else. Clearly that’s to promote his CD sales. But even if I have bought the CD and asked to have him sign the poster, the security… sorry, I meant military personnel wouldn’t let me. I have no idea why, but I’m not stupid enough to argue with our army men. No cameras were allowed on stage as well, but I managed to snap a blurry picture of David Tao close-up before 5 soldiers tackled and escorted me away.
David Tao autographed album

My autographed David Tao album is now for sale. RM50.

I did manage to get David Tao’s autograph on the CD. I bought it for RM35 on the day of the event. Then I thought… why the hell am I putting myself through all the crap just to get this stupid CD? This is a concert… I mean, showcase that wasted a good 2.5 hours of my life with 2 bloody songs! Its an event I’d rather forget. Which is why I am now putting this CD for sale, RM50, registered postage included to all parts of Malaysia/Singapore. 🙂
Anyway, I actually lined up again after the crowd subsided. I was hoping that if I’m the last few person, David Tao might actually be so kind as to pose for a photo with me. No such luck. I asked him politely “Wo Ke Yi Gen Ni Pai Yi Zhang Zao Ma?” (Can I have a photo with you please?). He said “Dui Bu Chi, Wo Bu Neng” (Sorry, I can’t). And before I knew it, I was tackled and escorted off stage again.
With nothing left to see or do, I went home. Meanwhile, I can sleep soundly, safe from the knowledge that in the event that my home country of Malaysia was invaded, the first thing our troops do would be to stage a live concert.
Malaysian army
May God bless them.

My Virgin Gay Experience – Big Gay Out 2005

If you came here (heh) because you were thinking what I thought you were thinking, I am sorry to inform you that my butthole is exactly the same size as it was before. 🙂
Last Saturday, I attended the Big Gay Out 2005 concert/party at The Court Hotel in Northbridge. I didn’t plan on attending it initially, but for reasons I detailed previously, I decided what the heck, I’ll just give it a shot (hehe). It was my first time attending a gay & lesbian event, hence the title of this entry.
Initially, I was supposed to bring Nicole with me, but she had stomach pains that evening. So being the perfect boyfriend that I am, I left her home alone whilst I went to the Court Hotel myself.
Vanessa Amorosi and band

Vanessa Amorosi and her band were incredible on stage.

When I got there at 10pm, the place was already jam-packed. The highlight of the night was Vanessa Amorosi, who is an Australian singer with minimal success locally and virtually no success internationally. I was wrong about her singing abilities. Despite her pint size, Vanessa Amorosi has impressive vocals comparable to Whitney Houston and she sounded amazing live on stage. The front row of the crowd was only an inch to the stage, and the audience was so crazy, so loud yet so well behaved. Vanessa Amorosi summed it up when she said “Perth fucking rocks!”
The crowd off stage

The crowd was only inches from the stage.

For me, it was as entertaining to watch the gig on stage, as it was to see the people at the gig off stage. Like I said, it was my first time at a gay club. I went there with some stereotypes on my mind *Kenny visualised big buff muscular men in pink tutus*. I was very wrong actually. In my opinion, the gay club isn’t any much different to any other regular nightclubs. The only difference is: instead of me standing alone in the corner with a beer in my hand watching 300 men kissing/groping their girls , I was standing alone in the corner with a beer in my hand watching 300 men kissing/groping each other.
Lesbian couples kissing

Couples publicly displaying their affection for each other.

There are straight people at the event, but probably only about 20 out of 1000 that were there. The rest of the people were all gay couples who very openly show their affection for one another with all the kissing and groping that goes on. Once you accepted the fact that that’s the way gays behave, you’ll find it slightly amusing and realise that it wasn’t actually that gross.
Middle-aged lesbian couples

Middle-aged lesbian couples.

There’s a good mix of different age groups and different races of people there. Many people often have the misconception that gay guys are very good looking guys who take very good care of themselves with all these moisturizing and exfoliating that’s going on. (The term ‘metrosexual’ applies to men who do all that but are still straight, eg David Beckham and the cover models of GQ magazine) Well that’s true to a certain extent, but not all of the gay guys are like that.
Bikie gang gay couples

Bikie gang gay couples.

Look at them! Try calling these people metrosexuals! (Well actually you can’t, because they are gays.)
The revellers there are kind enough to pose for photos everytime I ask them.
Pretty girl

Pretty girl?

Look at the one on the right. Pretty cute isn’t it? Well, all I can say is that ‘she’ is not that kind of girl. 🙂
7 feet tall drag queen

7 feet tall drag queen

There were quite a few drag queens parading around. Some of them are seven feet tall and can easily throw me out of the club with one swift kick. Despite their intimidating size, they are actually very nice and gentle. This one accidentally bumped into me. But instead of being told to ‘fuck off’ like what usually happen, he said to me in the most hair-raising voice “Oh, SHHAAAAAAWWWWW-REEEEEEEIIIIII!, and then gay-waved at me. I find it mildly amusing.
The trio of gay guys in question

The trio of gay guys in question.

One of the most memorable event that night happened when I was about to leave the club. I noticed a trio of fairly goodlooking guys sitting on the table, so I approached them asking if I can take a photo of them. They obligingly posed, and then asked to see the picture on my digital camera. The guy in the middle then asked me.
“Zis iz not for the newsh-paper, iz it?”
“Not at all. Its for my personal website that’s all!”
“Oh zhat’s ok! Zjust that I’m not allowed to appear on the newspaper, zhat’s all!” (I didn’t ask him why.)
“No worries! Its not gonna appear on the newspaper for sure.”
“What’s your name?”
“I’m Kenny.”
“Oh hi Kenny! Do you workout?”
“Yes I do, but not much these days.”
“Realllyyy?? You look great, you know.”
He then proceeded to squeeze my biceps while the guy on the right touched and squeezed my right breast.

Strangely, it felt good.


Heh. So what do you think?
Have you ever been flirted by someone the same-sex as you? Or, if you are gay/lesbian/bisexual, do you flirt and fondle with your straight friends – just for kicks? Tell me!