Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Jacky, Jay and Vincent

When Jacky Wu offered Jay a position in Alfa Music as a contract composer, the young man merely nodded his head, without uttering a word. In fact, Jacky thought he was retarded as he was so quiet and shy.
But the very next day, Jay turned up at the studio all ready to start work....and work he did, over the course of the next one and a half years, churning out songs for other artistes like Power Station, SBDW, Valen Hsu and Jacky Wu himself. He practically lived in the recording studio, sleeping over on the sofa and subsisting on noodles and fried chicken, as inspiration flowed. It was probably not very comfortable but at the same time, that environment allowed him free rein to compose, crash and compose even more music. He also began to learn about the ins and outs of  music production and could not resist recording some of his songs, one of which would pave the way for his big break into the Mandopop scene.

Around the time of Jay's signing-on with Alfa Music, a 29-year-old writer from Taoyuan knocked on Jacky Wu's door.

Vincent Fang had initially been trained as a screenwriter but switched to lyric-writing where he felt there was scope to develop his writing skills further. He had approached many other music production companies with his compilation of a hundred song lyrics but had been rejected by all of them. Undeterred, he sent his work to Alfa Music and was pleasantly surprised when he received a call from Jacky Wu, who signed him on and then paired him with Jay to produce songs for other artistes.
This was a partnership which would eventually contribute to Jay's success as a pop star and spawn an amazing number of award-winning songs and top hits in the ensuing ten years and more.
However, as brilliant as these two guys were, things were not smooth sailing from the word 'Go', as I will talk about in my next post.

And was it mere coincidence or fate which brought Jay and Vincent together?
Whatever it was, a huge vat of thanks is due to Jacky Wu making it happen and supporting them in these early years.

In an interview in 2009, Jay described Jacky as a having two sides to his personality, on the one hand being a humorous host but on the other, also being very serious about work. He took care of and mentored Jay and also used his songs for himself. Jay felt comfortable in the industry even though it was tough and decided to do his best. Although it could be stressful working for Jacky, who demanded a frequent output of songs from him, Jay would deliver, which is probably why he ended up sleeping in the studio so often too!

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