Sunday, December 7, 2008
Wyclef Jean Sings in Chinese!
Jamie and I had a nice little time with our friends in Shanghai at a promotional Hennessey event last night. Headlining was Jay Chou, a Chinese "R&B" artist with number one singles in China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong. I'm embarrassed to say I had no idea who he was! Those three places are a sizeable chunk of the world's population, thanks to China of course. Xie Xie, Chonguo!
At the bottom of the listing was, can you believe it, a very humble and sportsmanlike Wyclef Jean! I think he was paying his dues before the Chinese masses, hopefully to be rewarded with more market share, and rightfully so. I was jumping up and down, putting my hands in the air with all my heart, and feeling for him when nobody else was able to respond to his commands to do so in English! I doubt he'd had to work a crowd that hard since before the Fugees! He had to resort to, I'm not kidding, doing acrobatics to get some universal crowd response!
After Wyclef's back-handspring I thought a lot through the performance of how these two artists could better support each other. When Jay Chou came out, he gave no credit to Wyclef; one of his mentors who created the genre he is so privileged to dominate in Asia. At the end they did perform together, as pictured below, and ended the show with a hearty one armed man hug, but I want more!
That's what I live for, to see humans, artists especially, of different cultures share the same values on the same level. As my tour guide back in Kolkata, Asim, told me when we spoke eye to eye as he pointed back and forth between our faces, "Same, Same, Same."