Jay Chou: the actor and 'King of Asian Pop' that outsells Madonna and Beyonce

Chinese singer Jay Chou London interview Chinese singer Jay Chou London interview
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Jay Chou is no stranger to Western audiences.

As a Hollywood actor, he was seen as martial arts expert Kato in The Green Hornet, a race starter in The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift and as Mr Li, the magic shop owner, in Now You See Me 2.

But he is also an award-winning singer-songwriter, with musical style that is influenced by rock, hip hop and blues. 

His music career is so successful that he has sold more than 30 million albums, his music has been downloaded more times than Madonna, Rihanna and Eminem.

If that is not impressive enough, Chou – dubbed the “King of Asian Pop” – broke 11 Australian musical performance records with his 2009 concert in Sydney.

These included the highest production cost and the largest audience, outdoing Queen B, Beyoncé herself. 

Jay Chou

Chou says his concerts are "all about nostalgia and old school tracks", which his fans got to experience first-hand during his first ever concert in Europe - at the Wembley Arena in London.

But what Chou finds really touching is when his early fans bring their children to his concerts. 

This is his "musical heritage being passed on from one generation to another" and along with it, he hopes, "positive energy" too.

Jay Chou

Chou also explains that concerts give him a lot of ideas for music. 

One such example is a love song from his forthcoming album, which is due to be released later this year or early next, was created after a show in China. 

Jay Chou

So how then does he feel his musical style compares to his Western counterparts?

"I don’t think we ever need to compare each other’s music. A musical style is something that’s very personal and comes from within. 

"But, if I must compare mine to Western music, I think the biggest difference is that Western rap music [has] violence and swearing words, you wont find any in mine. 

"The time that I did write a song about violence in families, it was because of a friend’s situation and I was trying to remind everyone to pay more attention to the problems we have in our societies.

"With regards to my style, I am just trying to make music that sounds new and fresh for everybody. I am trying to show people stuff that’s positive."