Malaysian singer-songwriter Eric Moo knows who he is and what his audience wants.
Expect the 56-year-old to stick to his famous xinyao classics, such as Encounter, and love ballads, such as Too Silly, at his April 4 concert at the Resorts World Ballroom.
Over the phone last week from Shanghai, where he was on his way to film a television programme, he expressed his reluctance to shake up the formula. "Some performers, after singing for a while, might get bored of singing the songs. But it does not mean the fans are bored of listening to these songs."
"Fans bought the tickets, so I think the concert is to serve them. I am singing for them, not for myself."
In this spirit of giving fans what they want, a highlight of Moo's upcoming show is a question-and-answer segment, where he is expected to answer 10 questions from fans, collected beforehand by the concert organisers.
Any topic he is fearful of? "Just don't ask me how much tax I submit every year," he joked.
The Mandopop star released his first album in 1985 and over the years has performed in Singapore quite frequently, such as at The Star Theatre in 2017, and at the Singapore Indoor Stadium in March 2019.
The English title of his upcoming concert is We Are Destined To Be Together, and he explained: "My fans, like me, are getting older. So I think everyone should get together more often."
Part of its Chinese title contains the Mandarin phrase "huo gai" - meaning "you deserve it" - which is the name of a new song which is expected to be released around January 2019 and depicts cheating spouses.
Moo said he drew inspiration for the song from several such incidents involving celebrities in China in recent years.
While he did not mention names, he said: "Usually, people steer clear of such a topic. But such cases happen often. I turned it into a song, so everyone can observe and face this issue directly, and be warned about it."
"When the cheating is revealed," he continued, "some couples try to work it out, while some can't. The phrase 'huo gai', I think, refers to the emotion the cheating parties often feel after reflecting on their own actions."
Moo said he might have a guest singer, either from Hong Kong or Taiwan, at his upcoming show. But unlike at his previous concert in March 2019, the guest star will not be his teenage daughter Yonghuan, who is currently attending Berklee College of Music in the United States.
While he was happy she got admitted earlier this year, he said: "To be a successful singer, what matters is her ability, rather than who her father is."
Entertainers today face much more challenges than when he was breaking into the industry, he added.
"There are many more musicians and more platforms. To make it big, you need something unique, and the stars really have to be aligned for you. Talent alone is not enough."
Eric Moo We Are Destined To Be Together Concert
Where: Resorts World Ballroom, Resorts World Convention Centre, 8 Sentosa Gateway
When: 8pm, April 4, 2020
Admission: $48 to $188 from Sistic (go to www.sistic.com.sg or call 6348-5555).
In recent years, Malaysian singer-songwriter Eric Moo has been known as one of the most acerbic panellists on the Chinese singing programmes Masked Singer China and Masked Singer China 2.
His comments are often witty, sometimes heartfelt, and here are some juicy zingers he has made to the masked contestants:
- on the long fringe of a mask worn by Hong Kong-based singer Khalil Fong, whose persona was Chic Baby Loves To Eat Ice Cream.
- on Hong Kong musician-actor Kenny Bee, who appeared as Omelette Baby, and tried to convince the panellists that he was Hong Kong actor Tony Leung Chiu-wai.
- on Taiwanese singer Valen Hsu, who appeared as Iron Fan Ultraman.
- on Chinese singer Sun Nan, disguised as Alpaca.
- on Taiwanese singer-songwriter Kenji Wu, disguised as Beijing At 4am, about his present to Taiwanese singer Cyndi Wang. Wang was also on the show, as The Fish That Cannot Swim.