Monday, August 13, 2012

[Behind The Scenes] Song Recording For V-singer Contest: Ka Fei by Jackie Cheung

Another stepping stone for me.

I suck when it comes to performing during singing contests: breaking into cold sweat, body trembling and feeling nauseous. My knees go weak and I turn pale as ghost standing in front of the panel of judges. I still do.

Then again, I can't seem to stop myself from participating in these contests to gain more exposure-- the learning milestones. Whenever I make progress and move a step higher by being selected to the next round, I tell myself that I want to strive to improve; a boost for myself and my undying passion for singing.

I found another reason to join singing contests: Making new friends who hold the same value as I do; our love & value for music are unbeatable. We hold the same frequency, the understanding of fear of rejection and anticipation we contain within ourselves. In times like these, we support and encourage one another to do our best; Times like these when we meet true friends.


I met Tommy and Hanrey for the first time. Actually it's the 2nd. The first time when we were at the TCP awards ceremony, I didn't have a chance to speak with them.  They are the funniest & funkiest duo I met at singing contests!

Left to right: Tommy, Hanrey, Me

Tommy Ng (Duo Mi) is the 'class monitor' of Channel U Youth Talkshow, Let's Talk (Ni Zai Jiong She Me). Catch him on Season 3 which will be telecast this month, AUGUST 2012.

The trailer is already showing and he's acting in it.
Tried to find the trailer on Youtube but can't find any*

Hanrey is one of the youth speakers as well from Let's Talk Season 2 and recently starred in Jack Neo's latest film, Ah Boys To Men. I believe he will be in Let's Talk Season 3 too! His nickname is Mee Kia.

Here is Hanrey's audition video:


I have another friend who is passionate about singing and his name is extrodinary: Tiger Zhou.
I'm trying to find the video of others but there are just too many of them!

My hands were waving this sacred sheet of paper like the people in the picture: exhilarated & breathless. I'm in the NEXT ROUND!!!


The 2nd round of audition is done online through this announcement video:

The theme for the 2nd round audition is: Love Song.

I decided to choose the song 'Coffee' by Jackie Cheung.

Unlike any other songs, the song title does not appear anywhere in the lyrics. The song writer relates how love is like coffee (a metaphor) ; using its sweetness, bitterness, hotness & coldness to describe a relationship.

Beautifully written.

Here are the lyrics to this beautiful song and I chanced upon an accurately translated english explanation of the lyrics from







The flavor's too strong, isn't it,
Or else why would it be so bitter we can't speak?
Everytime, I'm all alone, asking myself
"Is our love really still there?"

Or maybe the flavor's already gone,
Even if we put in more sugar it wouldn't get any better.
Maybe it's best that after drinking this cup, we each go our own way
Don't sit across from me and enjoy my suffering!

A failed love is like a joke,
When it was hot, I couldn't get my mind to think properly.
But after it cooled down I see that I was so stupid..
Why do people get trapped so easily?

A flavorless love is like a lie,
When it's sweet, you only believe in it.
After it becomes bitter, every sentence is torture..
Why is it so hard for people to stop being attached?


My sister made an interesting discovery to my video which made me burst out laughing like a mad woman.

In the chorus, the lyrics mentioned that a failed love is like a joke. The word 'Joke' is pronounced as 'Xiao Hua' in mandarin, which has a similar pronunciation as 'Little Flower' (Xiao Hua).

Then, it said a flavorless love is like a lie. The word 'Lie' is pronounced as 'Huang Hua' in mandarin which has a similar pronunciation as 'Yellow flower' (Huang Hua).

Sounds like what I'm singing in the video.
I. agreed. with. her.

Is that a good or bad thing? 

Jokes aside, I've done recording and wish I have better sound equipment to do it! How budget was my recording done?

Let's go on the tour and you'll see.


Welcome to my 'recording studio'!

The chair was where I was seated throughout my recording. Knowing I was doing work, Bubble Leong kept very quiet in his bed next to me.  The pretty backdrop belongs to Silver Ang.



As for the background, one side of it was held on with pieces of masking tape while the other side was pegged up.



My childhood books for reading to act as a tripod for my camera. They come in handy that's why I couldn't bear throwing them away after so many years. Recording from high angles make your face look slimmer.




It took me more than 10 takes, with plenty of trial-and-error with the macbook, speaker & mic to finish my recording. Stuffed myself with peppermint candies to smooth out my vocals as I'm still having a sore throat and cough since a week plus ago.

Thankfully, my boss is able to save minus one tracks from his home-karaoke system so I got him to help me. But the minus track wasn't passed to me until a few days back as he was extremely busy at work and didn't have time to prepare the track for me.

First, the music was too soft from the ASUS laptop, I found an external speaker (my 25th birthday present from William bro) to enhance the music. Then I realise the music became too loud and my voice couldn't be heard at all in the video. I dug in my closet and found an old but working computer mic to pick up my voice. The mic didn't work at first and it took me about 30minutes to figure how the plug-in works.

Finally I had to adjust the screen to fit the backdrop nicely and test out a suitable angle to place my mic.


By the time I finished recording 4 hours later, Bubble Leong was fast asleep in his bed. My voice is too soothing or it may be because of the too-long waiting time.


After reviewing the video after uploading, it turned out the music is STILL louder than my vocal probably as I have placed the mic too close to the speaker. It sounded okay on my headphones though.

MAJOR  (- _ - "). 

Tip when doing recording at home: SWITCH OFF YOUR FAN to minimise the 'walkie-talkie' effect (noise that makes people think you're driving); unless that's your intention.


Try your very own recording too, it's FUN!

For more information and updates on V-singer contest, visit

Wish me luck in this contest!
Show your support by liking my video.

Here it is once more:

1 comment:

  1. Nice. You have great voice.

    But hor, next time need to iron your backdrop. :P Hee hee.