The concert at Guiyang just concluded is my 7th stop. Not once have I missed since Daolang started his first ‘Thanking You’ Concert Tour at Beijing
last year on 21 May. On record are Shanghai
a week later,
followed by Shenzhen on 21 Oct, Hong Kong on 14 March this year, and then Chengdu his birthplace on his 41st birthday 22 June, with Yancheng close behind on 7 July. Guiyang the 7th stop proves to be my most adventurous trip.
As always, fan friends I’d made through the years in Baidu Daolang Tieba were on hands to help out with buying the concert ticket, train tickets and the hotel stay. This time round Lao Nai Nai 老奶奶, a sprightly 74-year-old ardent fan since day one came to meet me at Chengdu airport and brought me to her home. We first met in person when I made a trip in 2007 to Lijiang, Yunnan to catch Daolang perform in Snow Mountain Music Festival, dropping by Chengdu, Sichuan to see her. She visited me in Singapore in 2008 and together with our husbands, we headed to Genting，Malaysia, where Daolang had a show there. All except for Shanghai, we were to meet again when Daolang started his concert tour.
On this particular day 26 Oct, we were to take
Lao Nai Nai
a night train to Guiyang. Starting out from Lao Nai Nai’s home, we arrived at the East train station and met six other fans including one youth. To some of us, we may be meeting for the first time but in reality thanks to internet, we have already known each other sharing our views, our joys in all things that concern Daolang in Tieba. Hence the 13-hour rides to and fro, my first such rides, weren’t that boring after all!
Stepping out from the train in the morning hour of 27 Oct, it was to be about 15 minutes walk to our Guiyang hotel, and already we spotted other fan friends who have arrived. Again the scene replayed itself especially when fans meet fans for the first time. It is always a joy to watch. It is like one big family. It makes for such wonderful memories when we meet again on-line when we all get back home. All in, there were 40 or so of us from Tieba attending the concert and thereafter the celebration dinner. Hence moving around inevitably meant we had to break up into smaller groups.
Guiyang has a vibrancy of its own – high buildings, shops, people, cars, small eateries at corners and alleys. As such we need not venture any further especially since Guiyang Sports Stadium where Daolang concert would be held is just a few minutes walk away. Having a local Guiyang fan Zuìměichénzuì 罪美沉醉 with us helped too. Breakfast, lunch and dinner were delightful – but oh how I missed beehoon and porridge, my all-time favourite.
Still Daolang was the reason why we were there. And so by around 6pm, together with Lao Nai Nai and a few others, we made our way there in high spirits. As usual, long banners with 2 new additional ‘刀郎’flags greeted us at the front steps. We joined in. This is something I can’t imagine having back home, still I’ve gotten used to it by now as it seems to be a must-have fixture before an event. It’s so-chinese, wahaha!
Ah, the high point throughout the night – Daolang - his voice reverberating through the 8000-seated hall, his music, his songs so eagerly awaited each time, with happiness, joy written all over our faces even before he appears, pierced through the air with his opening number ‘北方的天空下'. Who cares if his stage outfits remain the same concert after concert. Who cares even if he sings the same songs in more than half of the song lists of each concert. They are all our favorites anyway. Yet he would give us some surprises by singing the local folk songs. This talented man with a voice like an uncut diamond, brilliantly reaching the high notes with clarity yet able to drop to a low note shows just how unique his voice is. It is most appealing when he sings his own songs, for as yet nobody seems to be able to sing better than him even in oldies like '最美还是我们的新僵''驼铃'. Oh Daolang how could we not love you.
It was as always a 3-hour karaoke-session that ended too quickly. Yet again for the third consecutive concert, he was called back for an ENCORE! Daolang returned to the stage and obliged with 4 more songs playing the keyboard. If however tired he must have been, he didn’t show it. He even candidly forgot the lyrics at some point.
NOTE: I’m especially touched when he acknowledged and thanked us (in the audience) – and even me whom he addressed as ‘Xin Jie’ from Singapore 新加坡的新姐。This night, he addressed me twice on stage and again at the celebration dinner, affectionately – thank you Daodao!!
See you in Urumqi Concert come 20 December 2012!!