I’m finally insane enough to write a full tribute post here about one of my biggest bias, Li Yifeng, as promised =D (though, I should really be using my time today as last prep for an exam tomorrow @___@).
Like Eason Chan (I know he’s pretty much “god-status” and thus no one should be compared to him, but…), Li Yifeng’s witty personality makes him one of the few artistes out there who is entertaining to watch regardless whether he’s in a drama series, performance, or interview.
Out of my deprivation for his on-screen presence these days, since I have just finished his recent drama series & movie (The Lost Tomb and Forever Young) and currently waiting for his new work, I decided to muse myself with his past work for the time being. That’s when I realized that his fame and popularity today did not come easy.
His presence captured the public for the first time when he joined a popular Chinese singing competition, My Hero, back in 2006/2007. He made it into top 10 and became a contestant of controversy when he got ranked 8th place by the end of the competition. Due to his huge popularity and big fan base in the competition, the public thought it was odd that he got eliminated from the competition so soon and some even thought that it was because he came from an ordinary background (& without any “influential backing”) — basically, the public thought the competition was fixed to a certain extent due to his elimination. Personally, I found the competition was executed fairly and that the top 3 contestants did deserve their spots. Mainly, I think it was due to what Li Yifeng represented at that time (an ordinary lad who chased after his dreams — an underdog), which resonated with the public that such a controversy started.
Soon after the competition ended, he continued singing for a while and even a few albums came out, but the reception did not exceed expectations. I think he has a great singing voice, so the main problem is really with the songs. I found that while the songs sound nice, they are largely unmemorable…even the original sound tracks for some drama series are not that memorable– again, nothing to do with his voice, just the songs that’s problematic. Anyways, after a lukewarm singing career, his name and face were mostly forgotten along with the competition days. Since then, he switched to acting.
Apparently, he was in a lot of Taiwanese idols dramas when he first started his acting career. His acting was rather refreshing and quite natural even though he was a new actor back then, and his ability was recognized when he received a “Best New Actor” award in 2011. However, too bad these Taiwanese idol dramas suck in general in term of plots (very cliche and full of Mary-sues, Gary-stus, and very ridiculous in general), so I don’t think it really got him anywhere except getting some more acting gags from this poor genre (the “idol” genre). He did eventually branch out into other genres but it was only until Legend of the Ancient Sword (a fantasy wuxia drama) did he experience a second wave of fame. Well, to be frank, the fantasy wuxia genre has always been somewhat of a guaranteed shoot to popularity for many actors (even if some of the actors can’t really act….just as long as they have a good face, it was good enough @____@).
So in sum, his career until recently is pretty like much Li Yifeng, himself, has thought — the past 7 years of his career is like the ever-changing stock market that he could only watch on helplessly. Though, he understood it perfectly that without the last 7 years, he wouldn’t be who he is today and wouldn’t have accumulated enough work to share and connect with his fans today. After such a long bumpy ride in his career, it’s no wonder he really seems to know how to cherish his current opportunities more than others around his age.
Anywhoo~ I’m not gonna beat around the brushes and bs some epic transitions, so I’ll just directly present you some of his songs here. I’ll try to list out the songs from oldest to the newest (not an exhaustive list). For a few of the songs, you will get a glimpse of his acting ability (which make me realize that his acting is rather inconsistent throughout his career…sometimes his performance makes me go “WOW O___O *thumbs up*” but sometimes it just makes me go “huh…?” @___@ well, I still love him for his personality).
我愛的人傷我最深 (The Person I Love Hurt Me the Most) — From 2007, but the song gives a 90s feeling.
我曾爱过的女孩 (The Girl I Loved Before) — From 2009…another song that gives me a 90s feeling. O__o
那首歌 (That Song) — From 2010…is it the saxophone playing randomly throughout the song that gives me a 90s feeling (heck, even late 80s feeling)?? Did his company at the time know that he’s an idol??
忘记要忘记 (Forget, Need to Forget) — From 2010…finally a song that I like (but still not obsessed about)~ ^^ Also, this has some scenes from one of his earlier dramas.
江湖 (Jianghu…or The Pugilistic World? This translation is hard) — From 2012…an OST from his first period drama, Bounty Hunter. This one is a great listen as it has a very good traditional Chinese tune to it.
记得我爱你 (Remember I Love You) — From 2012…an OST from the drama, White Lies. A nice, emotional ballad song. Li Yifeng’s acting here totally captivated me. I just want to give him a big hug~~!! XD
永远不分开 (Never Separating) — From 2012…another OST from the drama, White Lies. Seriously, if you’re looking to cry your eyes out, then watch this drama. More of Li Yifeng’s captivating acting.
剑伤 (Sword Wound) — From 2014…an OST from the fantasy wuxia drama, Legend of the Ancient Sword, that rose him to fame for the second time in his career. This one has some traditional Chinese tune to it, but mostly sounds very much like contemporary soft rock. Some scenes from the drama in this MV.
心如玄铁 (Heart Like Xuan Tie) — Sorry for the half-a** translation…Xuan Tie is actually a term coined by Mr. Louis Cha and only appears in the world of wuxia or fantasy wuxia (it is a mysterious, black heavy iron material usually used in the making of the best sword or sabre, or whatever weapon you have in mind >.>). This song is from 2014, an OST from Legend of Fragrance. This one is more of a contemporary Chinese ballad. One of my favourites out of all his songs. Some scenes from the drama in this MV.
我要的現在就要 (What I Want, I Want It Now) — From 2014…a motivational song. I like this one. ^^ Seems Li Yifeng is finally getting better songs after all these years. But he looks like freakin’ Waldo here! Seriously, has this guy forgotten that he’s still an idol (at least to me)? T___T
再见再见 (Goodbye Goodbye) — From 2015…one of the songs from the movie, Forever Young, sang by Li Yifeng and the rest of his male co-stars. This is a nice song for a lazy afternoon.
年少有你 (Have You in My Youth) — From 2015…another song from the movie, Forever Young, sang solely by Li Yifeng. It’s a rather slow ballad. Not my favourite song, but at least you get to evaluate his recent acting skills here! ^^