Hi Jane, Welcome to the Universal Family

On Monday, Jane Zhang and Universal Music held a press conference for their joining on the anniversary of Faye Wong’s debut. In attendance were our beautiful Jane, Eason Chan, legendary lyricist Lin Xi and Universal Music Asia VP Sam Hole.

It’s uncertain how Universal will affect Jane’s career. As of now, she has yet received any epic theme songs like she once did under Huayi. Meanwhile, her performance outfits lost their class. Hopefully, those will be temporary and Jane can find what she wants under Universal – ie. more capable composers who don’t simply write for movies but also for her album. A change that Universal is certainly pushing for is the increase of the amount of fast and powerful songs over ballads that Jane will sing. I’m not yet sure how that’ll work with Jane. She has proven to excel at both, but I think it is far easier for her to find good ballads than fast and powerful songs in Asia, which means Universal’s connections will be useful. On the movie theme side, though, it’s unlikely Jane will get as many good ones she once did under Huayi, which is known for major films and series.

Either way, getting a personal message from Mariah Carey was probably worth everything for Jane.

Jane’s new song, unaffiliated with Universal Music:

22 thoughts on “Hi Jane, Welcome to the Universal Family

  1. @ hobielover

    According to Happy Camp, the song alludes to Teresa Teng’s “I don’t know why.”

  2. Oh, okay I have heard her, actually while at clubs, and on youtube, the China Wine song but yeah, she didn’t have the Ho part. They were good dance songs.

    I can’t really imagine any worship leaders I’ve had do that, but I’ve seen a lot worse…overall it’s pretty tame. I don’t think there’s a conflict of interest…it really depends on the Church. And China Wine was condemning adultery right? :P But you’re right the production is very good and it would be cool to have a 37 year old woman be the first to break through, to show age is just a number. I hate seeing comments where kids, surrounded by tween idols, think 30 is old and that hopefully would shut them up. Meiko Kaji is like 60+ and just released something in Japan. She does enka, but still.

    I hope she succeeds. She’s got the attitude, the sort of confidence that makes her fun to watch, as opposed to some of the other people who tried.

    No idea on Jane. But if she’s with Universal, I’m assuming her album sounds will change. But I didn’t like her new song. :(

  3. @cfensi
    Oh, some Singaporean news wouldn’t be bad every now and then. ( :
    However, I’m not really sure if much goes on there…since it’s such a small country. Most of the Chinese-singing Singaporean artists seem to have their careers in Taiwan. JJ Lin, Stefanie Sun, Tanya Chua…uh, Jocie Kok?

    But “Sun” (she dropped the ‘Ho’ part for her US venture… > _ >) is actually a pretty interesting character. Her husband is the senior pastor of a church in Singapore and she was the worship leader. But she collaborated with Wyclef on a song…and her outfit in the video was pretty…well, kinda skimpy. So, when you see negative comments about her, it’s typically about that sort of controversy. = _ =

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Twxf2LraoEE

    I think she’s already had three or four number one songs on the Billboard Dance Club/Airplay charts (compared to BoA’s one song at number eight).

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uFh9Su_SiM4&hl=en&fs=1&]

    The video production quality is pretty good, I think.
    It’d be amusing if, after all these years of Coco Lee, Utada Hikaru, Se7en, BoA (who are all major Asian artists) trying to break into the US market…some 37 year old Singaporean woman is the first one to do it.

    Oh, but does anybody know when Jane is coming out with a new album? It’d be nice to know when I can expect to be disappointed again. : (

  4. i’m also a little worry about jane n her future with this company b-cause like many mention i have yet seen the benefit…..so far, i’m not liking her new look with this company…they make her look cheap and trashy and made her talent look like it’s found everywhere which are not true…

  5. @ Benji – I swear I remember reading something about her getting benefits for her own Sichuan-based sub-company from Universal but I’m not sure.

    I don’t think she wants to go international though – didn’t she say she though from Coco Lee’s example that it was better not to be go for the US market? I think she simply cares about music in general, whether it be singing or behind the scenes, and doesn’t matter where she does it.

    Although Japan would be cool, there are so many good composers there. But I would hope that she could get famous there singing either in Chinese or in English, and not have to “cater”.

    I’ve never heard of Sun Ho. Tell me if you want to ever post up Singaporean news. I don’t know really where to find it, and I like to post on anything that doesn’t really get covered too much in Cpop already. She seems interesting.

  6. Dear god, please don’t let Zhang Liangying turn into a carbon copycat of Mariah Carey. Please make her go back to her natural unique look instead of another plastic dime-a-dozen bleached blonde wannabee.

  7. @idarklight
    I thought Jane went with Universal because she wanted more international exposure? Maybe I’m just imagining things. u _ u
    I’m not sure what other markets there could be, though. Taiwan+Southeast Asia seems the most logical. I don’t think Jane’s style is really suited for Japan, though I’d love to see her crack the Japanese market. The US is always a hopeful, yet distant, possibility.

    On a somewhat-related note, has anybody noticed Sun Ho’s attempt to go mainstream in the US? Her manager is the guy who managed pre-crisis Britney, NSYNC, the Backstreet Boys, and a lot of other big names. Her first single was produced by Rodney “Darkchild” Jerkins. The music video was choreographed by the person who did Lady Gaga’s stuff, and directed by Joseph Kahn, who also did Britney’s “Toxic” video.
    All in all, it looks like they’re actually throwing a lot of money into her American career.
    (For those who don’t know, Ho Yeow Sun is that Singaporean woman who mostly does dance music, but had a kindaish successful career in Taiwan. She was some Music Ambassador for some Olympicsy thingy, too.) I wonder if she’ll make it…

  8. @Benji
    At this point, Jane doesn’t really need the Taiwanese market and any Taiwanese composers that could possibly compose for her probably knows her.
    Thus, there’s really no point in dueting with anyone who won’t match her voice. Wilber Pan goes for more of a hip-hop route, and that doesn’t fit with Jane’s image.

  9. @hobielover
    I totally thought the same thing, too, when I first heard the song! Good to know it wasn’t just me hearing things. c( :

    Since signing on with Universal, Jane has become more…I dunno, more of a popstar, it seems. First the hair, and…now, well…have you seen her body lately? > _ <

    And despite my great dislike for Wilber Pan, just about any duet with (another) Taiwanese artist would be good for Jane's career. Though I think Jay Chou would still be the number one artist for Sony.

  10. Wilber Pan is more similar to Kenji Wu, though…they never rose to the top like Jay, David Tao and Leehom did at one point or another.

    Xue Zhiqian’s also better looking and a lot more entertaining. If Jane really wanted to help Chengdu, she could’ve at least gotten He Jie or someone with more potential than Wang Zhengliang.

  11. Well Wilber Pan is one of the biggest Cpop names in Universal. Whereas Leehom is in Sony.

    True…Hua Yi doesn’t do remakes. She might not really have thought about remakes at all.

    I hope she ditches Wang Zhengliang and helps Xue Zhiqian. Poor kid works so hard and still isn’t popular because Universal has no idea how to promote mainland artists. And he composes a lot more interesting songs than Wang Zhengliang.

  12. Why Wilber Pan? Maybe because I was too intent on Jane dueting with Leehom, but I would really rather her duet with people who a)has the vocals or b)writes for her. I don’t think anyone else would sound good dueting with her.

    Universal has such a lack of big Greater Chinese artists that they worry me…or maybe it’s good for Jane?

    But Universal could’ve offered to package her to be more “Western” which would’ve been tempting. And considering Huayi has given her about two cover songs (minus Teresa Teng) in her life, she might not have realized how much everyone else covers.

    Given Universal’s track record in China, I simply don’t yet see the advantage for Jane careerwise unless she is able to work with Universal artists and resources outside of Universal.

    P.S. She should stop promoting Wang Zhengliang.

  13. It took me only a quick look at Universal’s track record to see that they are the biggest offenders of remakes and laziness amongst Cpop, despite being the biggest music label in the world.

    If Jane can’t do that much research towards her own future then she loses half the reason I am a fan of her. My assumption now is either 1) They promised her good original songs or 2) Benefits for her own sub company. Show music or whatever it was called. If either one of those doesn’t come true, then it’s her own fault. And I think she is very intelligent, so…still waiting to see the benefits.

    It’s very possible she may duet with Wilber Pan at some point though. If she does, I shall cry.

  14. I’m worried that Jane was sold on the idea of working with more “universal” artists. Not necessarily Mariah Carey, but more world-class composers that Universal probably has more access to. But will she actually get good songs? Or will Universal simply give her remakes of good songs?

  15. I don’t think Jane’s dumb enough to waste x-amount of years of her life in a company where the bad outweighs the benefits, just to see her idol, even if it is her ultimate idol.

    Thus, I’m still waiting to see those benefits from joining Universal. I trust that they’re there given Jane’s track record…I just haven’t seen them yet, given the crappy songs, the cheap outfits.

    I really just want her to get her Sichuan music company going. Please let that happen *crosses finger*

  16. Doesn’t this song allude to Teresa Teng’s “千言万语”? The first line caught my attention, and then the words “千言万语” are in the song later. It sounds very pretty.

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