Video: Goh Wen Kai
David Tao is no stranger to our shores - he might have held his last full-scale concert here eight years ago, but since then, he has visited Singapore both for work and pleasure. His last official visit here was last September for Thong Chai Charity Night 2017.
This time, however, his fans will be in for a treat as he will take the stage for a full concert. Speaking to Toggle a day before his concert, which will take place tonight, he let on that he originally told the organisers that it would be a 90-minute concert, but decided that he “had to add on a couple more songs, and thankfully, they were very open to me extending the set list.”
After more than two decades in showbiz, the 48-year-old admitted that he does sometimes “get sick of my own title songs” such as ‘Ai Hen Jian Dan’ and ‘Regular Friends’, especially since he sings them so often. However, once he looks at his audience, their passion and them singing along with him gives him the boost that reminds him of why he loves music and singing so much.
Speaking of music, it’s been a good five years since his last full-length studio album, Hello Goodbye, was released. David sheepishly admitted that he knows that he takes “quite a bit of time” in between albums, but declared that his next one is already in the pipeline, and will hopefully be released within the year.
While production on the album hasn’t quite started per se, David revealed that he is in discussions with his company to record the album outside of Taiwan. “I’m really familiar with Taiwan. My recording studio is here, my company is here, and so on,” he mused. “I’ve told them that I’m considering recording my music somewhere else, because if I step out of my comfort zone, there might be a new side of my music too.”
Photos: David Tao/Facebook
Two of the countries on his potential hit-list are Singapore and the United States. “I’m very familiar with these two places; I’ve been there many times, and my wife, Penny, has also become familiar with them after visiting them with me,” he shared. “But it’s not as simple as saying, ‘I want to move there’, buying a house and calling it a day. There’s a lot to consider, so we’ll have to see how things pan out.”
While we were on the topic of Penny, whom David tied the knot with in 2014, David admitted that although they have been married for almost four years, he has yet to write a song specially dedicated to her.
“When my dad passed away, people started to ask me if I wrote a song for him. I don’t think you necessarily need to dedicate songs to a specific person, but if you ask me if I’ll ever write a song for Penny, I’ll say yes, it’s possible that I will do so in future,” he smiled.
(Continued on next page: David on how he and Penny are still “working hard” towards having children)
Photos: David Tao/Instagram
David’s song, ‘Mars Baby’, was previously speculated by many to be about his wife’s miscarriage, but the singer has since shot down those rumours. The couple’s loss has not caused them to give up on their dream of having three children, as he revealed that they are still “working hard” towards attaining that goal.
“Being in a new environment, such as moving to a different country, could possibly raise chances that we will be able to conceive, but there are still other factors, such as her lack of friends in foreign lands, that we have to think about, so we might need a bit of time” David mused.
That hasn’t stopped David and Penny to go on the prowl for their dream home in Singapore, as he let on that they will be in Singapore for a week this time around and hopefully be able to view some properties while they are here.
“She used to not be familiar with Singapore, but after we came here a number of times, she really likes the place and sometimes tells me that she wants to come back,” David grinned. “She’s accompanied me on quite a few trips here, so Singapore has now become a place that’s familiar to her.”
There’s one thing that David tries to keep from his wife, and that his music when it’s still a work in progress. “Whenever I’m composing songs I’ll be in my room writing on my own because sometimes, if my wife hears it when it’s unfinished, she’ll say that it sounds weird. That’s a really big blow to me so that’s why I like to hide when I’m working. I usually only let her hear it after it’s completed and I record a demo tape,” he chuckled.
“But of course, sometimes I”m a bit thick skinned. If she says it doesn’t sound good, I’ll say, ‘It doesn’t sound good? It’s because you don’t know how to appreciate it!’. Honestly, Penny isn’t someone who studied music so the way she listens to my music is probably closer to how the general public would hear my music, and it’s a different angle from how musicians would view it. That’s why sometimes I find that her suggestions are valid and I will also consider what she said,” he added.
As for his future plans, David shared with us that he has a larger-scale world tour that is in the works which is slated to kick off next year. He hopes to visit both Singapore and Malaysia during this tour, explaining that he “feels a strong connection to both these places, because when I was promoting my albums when I first started out, I’d always visit these two places, so there’s also a sense of familiarity there. I really want to show those who have supported me throughout the years the best music that I can.”
Up-Close with David Tao takes place tonight, June 9, 8pm at the Singapore Indoor Stadium. Tickets are priced at S$198, S$168, S$138, S$108 (excluding booking fees) and are available on SportsHubTix.