Interview with Cold Fairyland

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Via Email on July 4th-8th 2005 with Miyadudu of Cold Fairyland

Miyadudu represents Cold Fairyland, Azchael represents www.rockinchina.com


Azchael: Can you please first introduce yourself and your bands' members and tell me since when they are playing with the band?

Miyadudu: This is our biography:

Cold Fairyland - the past, present and future - of Shanghai's Underground.

A Cold Fusion of sound, that brings you from a melancholy single voice to tsunami's summit tasting it's heaviest depth with the hint of metal as it crashes down upon you.

Combining traditional and modern instruments, armed with rock heart and the bitter taste of life, this union of skilled performers plays with the freedom of Jazz, soaring through the night. An atmosphere thick as honey, you can almost taste this new wrought sound.

Born in 2001, Cold Fairyland began as the project of coworkers Lin Di (Vocals/Pipa/Keyboard) and Suyong (Bass). Taking the name from the Chinese translation of one of Lin Di's favorite books by author Haruki Murakami, they reworked several songs they had each previously written and made a demo. Unofficially released online, it was soon picked up by underground record company LStape and released on cassette. Now this demo is available as their first CD demo "Flying Over the City".

Next, drummer Li Jia joined the band, and with a few others who came and went, they had their first show at a bar called NowhereTown. From there they played out regularly, doing a mix of cover songs and their own material.

In September of 2001 they played a cancer benefit at XinTianDi's ARK; thus began their long relationship with the club, playing most months at least once, as sort of a home base and live practice performance. They have played in many cities across the country, and yearly return to the MIDI music festival, often referred to as the "Woodstock of China" which now occurs in Beijing every October 1st.

Cold Fairyland began a rotation of guitarists until 2003, settling on Song Jian Feng, a midi device engineer who works with Suyong. Next came the cellist known as "Yao Yao" (Zhou Shen An), from the Shanghai opera.

Lin Di studied Pipa from age 4 and piano from age 10 in music school, both continuing through college. She is the voice of the band.

Currently Cold Fairyland has released two demos: "Flying over the City" and "Kingdom of Benevolent Strangers", as well as two albums on Wind Records in Taiwan. The Taiwan releases "Ten Days in Magic Land" and "Bride in Legend" are entirely (save for one song) composed/written by Lin Di.

"Bride in Legend" holds the highest production value of all their recordings to date. An epic tale of a young girl's journey to understand her place in a strange and harsh land as she travels to an arranged marriage, it encompasses more of the traditional spectrum on record than the heavier live versions.

The band has plans to record an official release of their intense live sound matching the production values of "Bride in Legend" later this year [2005, remark by Azchael].

Azchael: What kind of instruments are you using?

Miyadudu:

  • Lin Di : Pipa, Keyboards, Vocals
  • Li Jia : Drums
  • Zhou Shen An : Cello (Found her 2003)
  • Song Jian Feng : Guitar (Decided on him 2003) (previously had had several guitarists)
  • SuYong : Bass

Azchael: What kind of style are you playing and why are you playing this in genre?

Miyadudu: I can't say that I know what style our music is. Many people have commented on our style, likening it to a mix of "traditional" and Rock, Jazz, Gothic, even Metal. We just try to do what moves us. We aren't interested in pursuing a specific crowd. As a result we have fans from many different scenes and walks of life.

Azchael: Do you consider yourself as a Chinese band, a Shanghai band or a rock band? Please give reasons.

Miyadudu: This question is meaningless.

Azchael: Which foreign bands would you like to jam with or with which musician?

Miyadudu: I'm not too interested in jamming. I don't think I'd be interested in playing with anyone in particular anyway.

Azchael: What do you think about the domestic scene?

Miyadudu: The Chinese music scene is way too small. There aren't enough people making and listening to music, so basically I'd say the scene really sucks.

Azchael: Which other domestic band do you like?

Miyadudu:

Azchael: What was the most important event for your band and what has changed? What was the impact?

Miyadudu: Last year we went to the MIDI music festival in Beijing. That brought us a much bigger fan base than we ever had before. Most of our recognition previously had come from our music being shared online. The MIDI festival was a chance for us to perform live for thousands of people.

Azchael: How do you see the Chinese scene in the next ten years? What are your expectations?

Miyadudu: Well, in the past there was about one band per city. Back then there was no scene/interest separation between styles so in a way it was easy to gain recognition. These days there will be no ONE famous person, like Cui Jin. This is a good thing. There's a lot more going on than there was ten years ago. So in the next ten years I expect more bands, and more record companies, but no major changes. I just hope for growth.

Azchael: What do you think about www.rockinchina.com?

Miyadudu: I hope there will be more and more, better and better websites like this. I think they're a good thing.


Note: Translation of answers from Chinese done by Asa Fox.


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