beyond’s new date in Kuching
Steve Wong and Paul Wong will perform new songs in their Beyond Rock & Roll Live In Kuching concert in January.
NOW into their third decade of musicmaking, Hong Kong rock band Beyond’s Paul Wong Koon Chung and Steve Wong Ka Keung continue to be fired with enthusiasm whenever they talk about music.
The duo was chatty during an exclusive interview at KL International Airport a fortnight ago before their late night flight to Kuching to promote their concert.
For a fresh spin on their show, Steve and Paul will be performing new songs which are yet to be released.
“For this Kuching stop of our world tour, Paul and I have each written a song to suit the theme of the concert. For now, these two songs can only be heard at our concert.
“Since we have not yet released the album, Malaysian music fans would probably not have heard them before,” said Steve, adding that they will be singing a mix of old and new songs.
“Lots of fans worry that we won’t perform our older tunes. We’ll definitely sing the old favourites, too,” said Paul, adding that they may also include some Mandarin songs for their Kuching show.
The 46-year-old Paul looked every inch the quintessential rocker, with a bold curling tattoo on his right arm, while Steve, 45, appeared more like the unassuming guy next door.
Yet, when the subject turned to music, both men brimmed with excitement as they took turns to share their latest ventures.
Steve, who has four solo albums to his name, will be releasing a new album soon, but said it will not include his new song.
“My new album will be an instrumental collection of ambience music, so that song does not fit in. After making music for so many years, it has always been my dream to create pure music, and I did not care to be bound by lyrics.”
Paul, who has released nine solo albums, will be releasing a full rock album with a mix of Cantonese and Mandarin, maybe even English, tunes.
“I’ve been working on it for the past few years, so whatever concept I had earlier has gradually evolved into something else now,” explained Paul.
Being quite the idealist, both guys are not too concerned about commercial issues, preferring not to set rigid deadlines for themselves as they do not want to rush things and compromise on the quality of their work.
With rampant downloading and bootlegging affecting much of the music industry, the two Wongs said though they target a release date this year, they would only do so when they feel absolutely ready.
Although music makes up a large part of their lives, both are gradually moving on to other creative ventures.
After starring in a dozen of Cantonese films, the most recent being triad flick Rebellion (2009), Paul is taking his involvement in Hong Kong cinema a step further. “I’m more interested in behind-the-scenes and production work. I’m now in the midst of writing a screenplay for a movie.”
Steve, whose focus has mainly been music, shared that he might be penning a book in the near future.
Beyond was formed in 1983 during an indie band boom but gradually took its underground music to mainstream pop before becoming arguably the most influential Hong Kong rock band of the 1980s and 90s. Their last lineup comprised Yip Sai Wing, Paul, Steve and his brother Wong Ka Kui, who passed away after a tragic fall from a 3m-high stage in 1993.
The three remaining band members played their last world tour concert together in 2005 and officially disbanded after that.
Even though each member has since embarked on his own solo career, they continue to make music together.
Yip and Paul last staged their Beyond Next Stage concert in Genting Highlands in 2008.
Beyond Rock & Roll Live In Kuching
has been rescheduled from Oct 2 to Jan 15, 2011, to accommodate a request by the Sarawak government for a state-level function at the venue of Perpaduan Indoor Stadium in Kuching. Showtime is 8pm. Ticketholders are not required to return their tickets or exchange them for new ones. The original tickets are valid for entry on the new concert date. For refund, call % 039223 3667.
Tickets priced at RM588, RM388, RM308, RM228 and RM128 are available at selected Rock Corner, Speedy Video and Lo Hong Ka outlets.
For concert details and ticket reservations, contact the organiser Star Planet (% 03-92233667 / www. starplanet.com.my) or TicketCharge (% 0392228811 / www.ticketch arge.com.my) or Top Star Global (% 082-410553).
Kuching date: Hong Kong rockers Steve Wong (left) and Paul Wong of Beyond are looking forward to performing for Malaysian fans.