JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years

The 37-year-old couldn’t help but to express his happiness at finally coming home to Singapore

JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years
JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years
16 Aug 2018

JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years

Photos: JFJ Productions & Unusual Entertainment
Videos: Philip Ang

The last time we watched JJ Lin in concert back in September 2015, we enjoyed ourselves so much that we never questioned when his next concert in Singapore would be. Fast forward three years and an agonising wait later, and our homeboy finally came back home to stage a concert.

“I haven’t been back for so long, but I’ve always tried to visit secretly. I miss Singapore, I miss my family, I miss so many things,” he quipped during the first of his four sold-out shows. “But I don’t think my secret visits worked too well, because I like visiting the hawker centres and the internet cafes.”

Throughout the show, JJ bantered with the crowd in Mandarin, English and Singlish, expressing that it felt “so good” to finally be able to speak however he liked. He spoke in Mandarin for most of the concert, however, as many of his fans flew in from all parts of the world to watch him in concert. Reading out the LED boards that these fans held up, he rattled off names of cities such as Shanghai, Hong Kong, Sabah and Toronto.

Secret visits aside, the 37-year-old remarked that it was as though his past 19 shows in the tour were warm-ups to his 20th show back home, as he’s brought his Sanctuary World Tour to cities such as Wuxi, Chongqing, Tianjin, Chengdu and Nanning so far.

It looks like his warm-ups paid off, as he belted all 27 of his songs with perfection, never missing a beat. Crowd favourites such as ‘A Thousand Years Later’, ‘Dimples’, ‘River South’ and ‘Twilight’ had the 8,000-strong audience in a massive singalong.

(Continued on next slide: How does JJ Lin relate to ‘All By Myself’?)

How does JJ Lin relate to ‘All By Myself’?
How does JJ Lin relate to ‘All By Myself’?
16 Aug 2018

How does JJ Lin relate to ‘All By Myself’?

One of the biggest highlights of the night, however, was when David Foster appeared on stage to quiz JJ on songs that he’s created, making the 37-year-old belt out tunes such as Josh Groban’s ‘You Raise Me Up’ and Celine Dion’s ‘All By Myself’.

Special mention also goes to JJ’s perfect cover of Whitney Houston’s ‘I Will Always Love You’ – yes, he aced that very song that we always try to sing at karaoke but fail terribly at.

He also peppered his three-and-a-half hour concert with numerous witty comments, as he explained to David that he “relates very well with this line from ‘All By Myself’ – there’s one that goes ‘but when I dial the telephone, nobody’s home’.”

JJ explained that during his past visits back home, his friends would eagerly agree to meet him for a meal or catch-up session, but these days, he gets rejected more often than not.

“They’ll tell me that they have to spend time with their wives, their children, their family… I think I’m the only one who isn’t married among my friends,” JJ lamented to David. In response, the veteran singer assured JJ that any one of the audience members would gladly (that’s an understatement) pick up the telephone the next time JJ needs someone to call.

Touché.

(Continued on next slide: Singapore pride at JJ Lin’s gig)

Singapore pride at JJ Lin’s gig
Singapore pride at JJ Lin’s gig
16 Aug 2018

Singapore pride at JJ Lin’s gig

There was also plenty of Singapore pride going on at JJ’s gig, as he invited Kit Chan to sit at the front rows of his concert last night.

“I remember back then, she also performed at this very venue. On that day, I was standing where Ang Junyang is right now. I was her backup singer,” JJ smiled.

Junyang, the ‘backup vocal fairy’ and JJ’s good friend since their schooling days, has been touring with him since this tour began. Likewise, he was greeted with equally loud cheers when his face was flashed on the big screens towards the end of the concert.

JJ also introduced fellow local musicians The Freshman (to be exact, only Chen Diya was present last night) to the crowd, declaring his hopes for Singapore’s music scene to continue thriving in the coming years.

He also poked fun at celebrated producer Goh Kheng Long, who he chuckled “couldn’t direct my concert this time, because he’s working with someone even more famous than I am!” In case you were wondering, the musician has worked with the likes of Wang Lee Hom, Stefanie Sun and David Tao – and the ‘famous’ person that he’s working with this time is none other than Jacky Cheung.

With that much pride for the local music scene flowing in the audience (we also spotted Kelly Poon last night), it became somewhat of a celebration for Singapore born-and-bred musicians last night, with patriotism running at an all-time high just after the National Day celebrations.

At the end of the concert, we were thoroughly impressed by the midweek mood-booster, and our only wish is this: that we won’t have to wait another three years for the next show in Singapore.

Click on for more photos of JJ Lin Sanctuary World Tour in Singapore!

JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years
JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years
16 Aug 2018

JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years

JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years
JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years
16 Aug 2018

JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years

JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years
JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years
16 Aug 2018

JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years

JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years
JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years
16 Aug 2018

JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years

JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years
JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years
16 Aug 2018

JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years

JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years
JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years
16 Aug 2018

JJ Lin makes grand homecoming after 3 long years

WATCH: Highlights from the JJ Lin Sanctuary World Tour in Singapore!​​​​​​​

JJ Lin's Sanctuary World Tour is happening in Singapore on August 16, 18 and 19, 7.30pm at Singapore Indoor Stadium. The show is currently sold out.

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