Wanting: Music, Success and World Peace

Posted by Betty Mao & filed under Identity, Music, People to Watch.

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China’s newest and hottest singer-songwriter – Wanting Qu, is actually based in Vancouver. With the last name Qu (曲) meaning melody in Chinese, we can’t help but think that she was born to succeed in the music industry, and we are destined to be “Wanting” her music.

Wanting is the first Chinese artist to sign with Nettwerk, the studio that has launched artists and bands from Sarah McLachlan, Avril Lavigne to the Barenaked Ladies and Coldplay.

When the Chinese single “You Exist in My Song” (我的歌声里) came out, it reached chart topping heights reached by “Gangnam Style” in China. The single, along with “Drenched,” were featured in the Hong Kong film Love in the Buff 2. Wanting’s first album Everything In the World went platinum in China within a week of its release.

Recently, MuchMusic premiered the english single “Drenched.” Wanting expressed her excitement on Weibo and thanked everyone who supported her in making her dream into reality. For fans of Degrassi: The Next Generation, “Star in You” from Everything was featured in the episode “Bitter Sweet Symphony, Part 2,” which aired on Feb 22nd, 2013.

wanting-qu-promo The Canadian story…

Wanting’s mom sent her to Canada, hoping that she would study business management in a Canadian university. Wanting did as her mother had hoped, but she wasn’t fulfilled; instead, she found her calling in song writing. From her experience as a child singing on stage, Wanting loved the attention and applause, and has grown determined to put herself on the international stage. To make money on the side to pay for her lessons on music theory and song writing, she found houses that needed cleaning after parties and frequently worked from 10pm – 6am to support her music dream. Her hard work has finally paid off. Wanting’s persistence has transformed her into a chart topping artist conquering the global music industry.

When Wanting was growing up, Chinese media censorship was stricter than it is today, and there was limited exposure to Western culture. Wanting listened to Mariah Carey, Celine Dion and Michael Jackson, and was fascinated with Western culture, she tells MSN Canada. In an interview with Today, Wanting explains that she didn’t know what a singer-song writer was before she came to Canada. While studying in Ontario, she explored many genres of music such as Jazz, Blues, Rock, Punk, and R&B.

Wanting wrote songs to her parents to express her feelings. Although “Shell” and “Hide Away” are in English, she believes that music can overcome language barriers and even cultural differences. Terry McBride (cofounder of Netterk, Wanting’s North America manager) loved the integration of Eastern and Western cultures in Wanting’s music style, and signed her with the intention of guiding her as an international artist. Wanting’s exposure to Western music enhanced her rhythmic senses, which, combined with the Eastern melodic influences, gives us a fresh, unique blend of popular music.

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The Wanting Style?

Like her music, Wanting’s style mixes east and west, influenced by the “streets of Vancouver.” With voluminous black curls, dark eyeliner, and a hint of rasp in her voice, Wanting resembles Amy Winehouse, particularly in this Vogue China photo shoot. Do you see the resemblance?

Fun facts:

With her career accelerating, what’s next for Wanting? She has just finished her performances on Artistry on Ice and is currently working on her next album in L.A. Wanting is also the first Vancouver Tourism Ambassador in China.

Her ultimate goal, she explains in an interview, is for her songs to affect as many people as possible in a positive way, and to create world peace through music.

Wanting travels frequently between Vancouver, L.A. and various cities in China. You can follow her on TwitterFacebook and Weibo. To explore her music, check out Wanting’s Youtube page and Myspace.

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