Sean Leow (of Neocha.com) reports in depth in a 4-part piece on the underground hip-hop scene in Shanghai with the different musical styles, artist portraits, events and venues. Check it out on asiascoutnetwork.com: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4.
Abe Deyo gives in this City Weekend article a pretty good insight into the problems of bringing what he calls bands of the “middle-class of the music industry” to China, especially Shanghai. He argues that while the big acts have the money to apply for the necessary permits and lesser known bands come into China with just tourist visa playing at the smaller underground venues, the musical middle-class operates in a legal gray area or is stuck with the costly and time consuming process of applying for proper visa and performance permits. Due to the increased costs and travel expenses they have to play in bigger venues with even stronger regulations by the Department of Cultural Affairs because underground venues do not have the necessary capacity to generate enough profits to cover the band’s expenses.
Read the full article on City Weekend.
For those in Shanghai propably well-known, for those not in Shanghai the perfect opportunity to get an insight into Shanghai’s rock scene: The blog of Andy Best, 35-year old expat, living in Shanghai since 2001 and deeply involved, especially in the Yuyintang concerts.
Expect numerous reviews, videos (check out his youtube channel) and comments on the rock scene in Shanghai by Shanghai Rock insiders Brad Ferguson (remember ShanghaiStreets?), Lisa Movius and Micah Sitting (whom I’ve met back in 2004 and who still enjoys a lot of shows).
Andy is nearly constantly blogging (unlike Rock in China, where we constantly update the wiki) and despite his putting Cold Fairyland into the genre “World Music”, I mostly agree to his reports and reviews. Unfortunately his blog just started in May this year…
Remember Small Swords Magazine writer Morgan Short with whom Rock in China had a brief cooperation phase, exchanging interview articles (e.g. No Name). We havent heard of him in a long time and to be honest, havent really looked too much in the Shanghai scene lately (despite short intermezzos with YuYinTang), but it seems Morgan didnt stop writing, but rather taking up the pen and posting over a 100 new posts at Smart Shanghai.
Diving into his articles, I found a lot of insider news, well-written articles, elaborate interviews and tons of info that Shanghai-based rock fans need to know. So, if you are living in Shanghai and feel not informed enough about whats going on, join SmartShanghai and get your share of event information right from Morgan.
There is a live video of Cui Jian performing in Shanghai’s JZ Club on January, 29th.
You can watch it here on Chinese Tudou Video Sharing website.
Crystal Butterfly, Shui Jing Die 水晶蝶乐队, was formed in June 1998 with three of the four remaining members from Lunar Eclipse (月蚀乐队) (formed 1994; other prior members went on to form The Honeys 甜蜜的孩子 in 1997).
Original members singer/bass/rhythm guitar Li Pang 李乓 (aka 乓乓, real name Li Jianfeng 李剑俸), guitar Wang Wenwei 汪文伟, and drummer Chen Song 陈松. Poached Vicky’s Area’s bass Guo Shengsheng 郭生生 for about 4-6 months in 1999, but then let him go. In 1999 or 2000, they started borrowing Qiqi 琦琦 from Chan, and in 2003 he joined the band officially, although he also later joined Blue Garden. The band added another member, an expatriate name Jon, in 2006.
Signing with Beijing’s record label New Bee in November 2000, their record Magical Mystery Tour is finally released in May 2005 and material for a second record called Forest of Illusions is prepared and ready to rock.
As one of the few long-time Shanghai rock bands, Crystal Butterfly are a milestone of Shanghai rock and everyone should make sure to have seen them live at least once …
Read more …
Download one of their videos (2.7 MB, WMV, hosted at newbeesmusic.com), caution: slow connection
Underground Shanghai 2000 for download
The website Rockself.com has uploaded a whole record full of interesting underground music for free download: Underground Shanghai 2000
To download a song, click right on the little harddisk image and choose “save as…”.
There are a few upcoming concerts in Shanghai (as reported by Shanghaistreets.net):
- V-Day, November 4th
- Jazi, November 11th
- Channel Green, 16th
- Noise Night, November 24th
For more information and detailed event infos, check out www.shanghaistreets.net
What’s up with the scene in Shanghai and who is talking there?
- The main “live music” venue in town, Tanghui, was shut down due to lack of license.
- The “other”, Yuyintang, has not returned any of our emails about the canceling this weekend of the Brain Failure show.
- Live Bar, an old favorite, temporarily shut down before being taken over by one of us (Brad — grand opening October 6th).
- We are the only consistent ones putting on live gigs in this town — are we, perhaps, to confident about it? No — we’re just certain that Wednesday nights, our GigLive nights, at BonBon are the best thing, rock-wise, during the entire week.
Well, according to GigShanghai.com
Check out their last week’s podcast: http://media.odeo.com/files/9/2/8/850928.mp3