In the mood for a change

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 03 May, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 03 May, 2009, 12:00am

It is said that one has to be slightly schizophrenic to be a versatile entertainer. Local singer Jason Chan Pak-yo is living proof of this.

Meeting Chan in person can be a jaw-dropping experience. His cheerful personality is in stark contrast to his soppy love songs and emotional performances on stage. It seems like positive energy is constantly radiating from his beaming smile.

The easy-going 25-year-old claims he has no grand plans or a specific career goal. He is more than happy to satisfy his management's expectations as long as he can keep on singing for a living.

Yet, if given a chance, Chan says he would love to try something new to match his personality. Maybe some cheery songs completely unrelated to love and romance.

'I would like to make jaunty, care-free songs like Eason Chan's recent hit Allegro Opus 3. am,' says the rising star. 'Or maybe like singer-songwriter Pong Nan. Some of his songs are about growth and his personal experiences.'

Despite his wish, Chan's upcoming single I Will Be Loving You is yet another depressing song about a break-up and the struggle to come to terms with it. Chan says newcomers should stick to sad, romantic songs.

'It's easy to handle extremely sad songs,' says Chan. 'You just dramatise everything to get into the mood. I usually think of my family and imagine they are leaving me.'

And he has mastered this skill with ease - one moment he's laughing and fooling around, the next he appears to be on the verge of a breakdown.

'Melodramatic songs are more relevant, and therefore, more easily move the audience,' says Chan.

However, merely setting the right mood is not enough if you can't sing properly. The current entertainment industry does not 'overpackage' music like in the old days, so it is important that you can sing well, says Chan.

There are a few good-looking singers who almost wrecked their career after performing poorly on TV shows.

But this does not worry Chan who has no problem hitting the right notes.

'A wide range does not necessarily make a good singer,' says Chan. 'But, with that skill, you can try different things in music.'

He is quite right, especially when you hear the fresh, interesting vocals in the singer's latest single. In I Will Be Loving You, a sad love song, he daringly adopts an R&B style as he explores new avenues in music.

Actually Chan is challenging himself to take his music knowledge to the next level by playing the piano and composing songs.

'I started to play the piano a couple of months ago and I have been composing segments of melodies,' he says. 'Hopefully, I will have my own song recorded soon.'

But it definitely won't include his own lyrics. 'I am terrible at writing lyrics,' Chan admits.