Jacky Cheung, January 2007
|Chinese name||張學友 (traditional)|
|Jyutping||Zoeng1 Hok6-jau5 (Cantonese)|
10 July 1961 |
|Other name(s)||God of songs|
|Occupation||Singer, Songwriter, Very occasional Lyricist, Actor, Musical director, Musical producer|
|Genre(s)||Cantopop, Mandopop, Operatic pop, Jazz, R&B|
|Voice type(s)||Baritone,  Tenor, occasional falsetto|
|Years active||1984 – present|
|Spouse(s)||May Lo Mei-mei (羅美薇)(1996-present)|
|Influences||Michael Kwan, Sam Hui, Michael Jackson, Mariah Carey, Roman Tam, Harlem Yu|
|Influenced||Eason Chan, JJ Lin, Jay Chou, Justin Lo, Show Lo|
Jacky Cheung (born 10 July 1961) is a Hong Kong singer-songwriter and actor. The Chinese language media refers to him, Aaron Kwok, Andy Lau, and Leon Lai as the Cantopop Four Heavenly Kings (四大天王), with more than 25 million records sold as of 2003. 
Cheung was born and grew up in Quarry Bay in the eastern part of Hong Kong Island. His father is from Tianjin and his mother is from Shanghai. In 2007, Jacky revealed that the paternal side of his family are mostly seamen, including his father, paternal cousin, and older brother. Growing up speaking Cantonese as first language and singing modern English pop songs, Cheung is known for his baritone voice. On 15 February 1996 in London, he married Hong Kong actress May Lo Mei-mei, with whom he has two daughters. Cheung is also nicknamed "god of Songs" (歌神), but he is the second person to hold this title, after former Cantopop singer Sam Hui. In an interview with Ray Cordeiro (Uncle Ray), Cheung stated that the title was more appropriate for Hui than for him, even when his singing ability is not the best, since he actually wrote and popularized Cantopop songs.
Cheung originally started working as a reservation officer for the Cathay Pacific airline. His music career started when he won the Amateur 18-Hong Kong district singing contest in 1984 with the song Fatherland (大地恩情) by Michael Kwan. He bested more than 10,000 other contestants. After winning the contest, he was signed by the then Polygram Records, now Universal Music Group. Although encouraged by a bright start, he was not able to achieve immediate supremacy in Cantopop, then dominated by Leslie Cheung, Alan Tam, Anita Mui and Danny Chan. In 1985 he won his first two major awards together with the 1985 RTHK Top 10 Gold Songs Awards and the 1985 Jade Solid Gold Top 10 Awards.
A transitional song from the golden age to the Four Heavenly Kings (四大天王) era by Jacky Cheung
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In 1991 he released the song "Loving You More Every Day" (每天愛你多一些), a translated version of the Japanese Southern All Stars hit, Midsummer's Fruit (真夏の果実). The album True Love Expression (真情流露) in 1992, as well as the subsequent release, Love Sparks (愛火花) in 1992, achieved audited sales of over 400,000 copies in Hong Kong alone.
His subsequent albums included 1993 "Me and You" (我與你) and 1994 "Born to be wild" (餓狼傳說). In the 1994 Billboard Music Awards in the US, he was named the most popular singer in Asia. He received numerous music awards both in Hong Kong and elsewhere, including the best-selling Chinese singer in the World Music Awards for two consecutive years in 1995 and 1996 held at Monaco. Cheung was also elected as one of the world's Top Ten Outstanding Young Persons in 1999.
Amongst his hit songs, some of his most famous were Amour, "Just want to spend my life with you" (只想一生跟你走) and "Goodbye Kiss" (吻别). The album The Goodbye Kiss (吻别) was one of the best-selling albums of all time, achieving more sales in Hong Kong, Taiwan and Southeast Asia than ever attained before, with more than 4 million copies sold in 1993, making him one of the PolyGram's top 10 artists worldwide that year and he was the first Asian artist to do so. It made him the first singer with non-Taiwanese citizenship to win Taiwan's Golden Melody Awards. The album was also instrumental in helping Cheung break into the mandopop market. Due to these great songs and albums, Cheung is generally considered to be the pre-eminent member of the Four Heavenly Kings of Cantopop. He is regarded by some sources as the best singer of the four.
In 1995, Cheung staged his record-breaking 100-show world tour titled "Yau Hok Yau" (友學友), literally a pun of "friendship Jacky Cheung" reusing the same Chinese characters found in his name. The tour started with 34 shows from 8 April to 9 June at the Hong Kong Coliseum. Then the tour continued at Perth Brisbane Australia and returned to Taipei and mainland China. It then expanded to Madison Square Garden in the US, different parts of Europe, Singapore, India, Malaysia and Japan. He was regarded as the new Michael Jackson by Business Week.
In 1999, he was named one of the Ten Outstanding Young Persons of the World by JCI (Junior Chamber International), a worldwide federation of young professionals and entrepreneurs. In 2000 he was awarded by RTHK, the Golden Needle Award. This award, the equivalent of a lifetime achievement award, recognized outstanding contributions to the music industry.
In 2004, Cheung released Live Is Like A Dream, an album in which Jacky co-produced with long-time collaborative partner Michael Au, and Jacky composed the melody for all songs, and penned the lyrics for three of them. He had songs dedicated to his eldest daughter, his wife and his friends who had all passed away in 2003.
Cheung won the Best Selling Cantonese Album Award in the Hong Kong IFPI Awards of 2005 with his live album, Jacky Live Performance, which he accepted in person for the first time in years. This is despite poor ticket sales due to the concert was meant to be a one-night-only charity concert in nature, and the fact that Jacky attempted to sing mostly songs from other artists for the first time. In the fast-changing scene of canto-pop, Cheung has been able to maintain his popularity and sales power for more than 20 years after his debut, which is unparalleled in the history of Hong Kong pop music.
In 2007, Cheung staged his "Year of Jacky Cheung World Tour 2007". The tour started on 18 February 2007 at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. When the tour ended in Hong Kong on 3 February 2008 after touring 58 cities around the world, a total of 105 shows had been given, attracting more than 2 million fans. 105 became the highest number of shows in a tour by a Chinese artist, breaking the previous record of 100, which was also set by Cheung previously. In the same year, he also released a Mandopop album zh:在你身邊in which he is the sole executive producer of the album for the first time after Michael Au suddenly left to further his career in Beijing.
In 2010, Cheung started his "Jacky Cheung 1/2 Century World tour". This tour started on 30 Dec 2010 at Shanghai, and ended in Hong Kong on 30 May 2012. For 1 year and 5 months, his tour included 5 countries 77 cities, overall 146 shows, more than 2,800,000 audiences. 146 became the highest number of shows in a one tour by Chinese artist. Previous record of 105 was also made by Jacky Cheung on his 2007-2008 World Tour. At the beginning of that year, he also attempted new musical styles. His new album, Private Corner, became his first ever Jazz album in Cantopop history, it also featured other non-mainstream Cantopop styles such as strings quartet, Waltz and Hymn. The special edition also featured a special glass-CD, also a first in Chinese pop history.
In "Jacky Cheung 1/2 Century World tour", he set a Guinness World record for the largest combined audience for a live act in 12 months, with 2,048,553 audience members. During the first 12 month of the tour, was ran from 30 December 2010 to 29 December 2011, with 105 live concerts in 61 cities across China, USA, Malaysia, Singapore and Australia.
Cheung won the RTHK"金曲35周年榮譽大獎 Honor of Golden song 35th Anniversary Award" in the 2012 RTHK Top 10 Gold Songs Awards, as he has the greatest number of RTHK Golden Songs since the award has been started.
Cheung's collaboration with Regine Velasquez is one of Cheung's best duets.
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Cheung not only performs solo but often performs duets with female singers. Cheung recorded a duet with Fillipino singer Regine Velasquez for the song "In Love with You", the song was included in her multi-platinum album "Listen Without Prejudice". In 2008, Cheung and A-Mei, the popular Taiwanese singer, performed Zhu Fu ("Blessing") as a duet in a benefit concert for victims of the 2008 Sichuan earthquake. Other duet partners include:
- Priscilla Chan - "A Pair of Lonely Hearts" (一對寂寞的心), (愛和承諾), (接近)
- Faye Wong - "Love's Promise"
- Kelly Chen - "Waiting for Your Love"
- Anita Mui - "Love is Hard" （相愛很難）, (祝福)
- Shirley Kwan - ""Youngster No Love"" (年少無情)
- Coco Lee - (從頭到尾)
- Sandy Lam - (日與夜)
- Vivian Chow - (留住秋色)
- Sarah Brightman - "There for Me"
- Reba McEntire - "For My Broken Heart"
- Regine Velasquez - "In Love With You"
- Cally Kwong - "Only Love Persists" (祇有情永在)
- Karen Tong - "Miss Each Other In the Wind & Rain" (相思風雨中)
- Vivian Lai - "Long Flow, Never Rests" (長流不息)
- He Ruhui - (似曾相識)
- Francesca Gao (高慧君) - (你最珍貴)
- Karen Tong - (情濃半生)
- Chen Jia Lu - (花與琴的流星(雪狼湖)) , (愛狼說(雪狼湖))
On stage musical
In 1997, his work on the groundbreaking Cantonese Broadway-style musical Snow.Wolf.Lake was enthusiastically received by both audiences and critics. Cheung not only played the male lead, he was also the artistic director for this production. The first female leads were played by Sandy Lam in Hong Kong and Nnadia Chan in Singapore. Kit Chan played the second female lead. They achieved 43 consecutive full-house performances at the gigantic Hung Hom Hong Kong Coliseum which remains the record today. In November 2004, Cheung and his concert manager, Florence Chan Suk-fan, worked on a revised Mandarin version of Snow.Wolf.Lake so as to bring it to a wider audience. The female leads this time were Evonne Hsu and Nnadia Chan respectively. The market budget alone exceeded HK$15 million. The estimated budget for this revised production was HK$100 million and the show premiered on 24 December 2004 in Beijing.
While Cheung is known for his singing, he has also acted in many films. He received the Best Supporting Actor award in the 8th Hong Kong Film Awards for his work in As Tears Go By (1988) as well as the Best Supporting Actor Golden Horse Award for his work in Swordsman (1990). That same year he also collaborated with John Woo and Tony Leung in the film Bullet in the Head. For his work in July Rhapsody, he also received the Best Actor Award at the New Delhi Film Festival for his portrayal of the protagonist role. His song Perhaps Love, which serves as the theme song for the multi-award-winning film Perhaps Love, also won the Best Song Award at the 2005 Hong Kong Film Award and the CASH Best Song Award at the 2005/2006 CASH Gold Sail Music Awards. He also starred in Taiwanese mini-series called Love Scar with F4 member Jerry Yan and Karen Mok, where he acted as Jerry Yan's older brother.
In the 2004 released and Wong Ching-po directed triads drama film, Jiang Hu, Cheung played the role of Lefty, the best friend and right hand man of a crime boss, Hung Yan Chau, who is played by Andy Lau. The film includes several actors from the cast of Infernal Affairs. As of August 2013, he is one of a handful of Chinese singer-actors to have never been starring in a drama series.
Ceremonies and spokesperson
Cheung was named the spokesperson for Hong Kong Disneyland in 2004. He took part in a number of large-scale marketing events organized by The Walt Disney Company and Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, beginning with the hosting of a TV program, Magical World of Disneyland. He recorded a multi-lingual song for Hong Kong Disneyland, entitled One. The music video for One was filmed at Hong Kong Disneyland. He also recorded for the Hong Kong Disneyland: The Grand Opening Celebration Album.
In December 2006, Cheung performed live the theme song "Together Now" at the Opening Ceremony of the 15th Asian Games in Doha, Qatar. He was introduced as "the most popular Asian performer in the world".
In 2012, Cheung sang "中国节拍·震动世界", the cheering song of China for the 2012 London Olympics.
In March 2009 he became the first Cantopop/Mandopop artist to contribute items to the Hard Rock franchise memorabilia collection. Items are to be exhibited at the Hard Rock hotel in Macau. A joint donation is also made to donate HK$600,000 to the Children's Cancer Foundation and ORBIS Macau. In September 2009, Cheung, was one of the super ambassadors of End Child Sexual Abuse Foundation (ECSAF) founded by Josephine Siao; he attended the charity fundraising event for ECSAF’s 10th anniversary in Hong Kong.
Foreign domestic helper incident
Cheung's maid was arrested for taking images of Cheung's children, in a case that sparked controversy among some domestic servants in Hong Kong. It was argued that Cheung overreacted and the sentence was disproportionate and the case was regarded by some as racial discrimination. The Philippines consulate soon announced that Cheung's family had employed 21 different maids in a three-year period and placed Cheung on a 'blacklist' that would prevent him from employing any Filipino maids in the future.
IFPI Awards (partial list)
IFPI Gold Disc Award
- 1989 87'演唱會 Polygram
- 1990 絲絲記憶精選 Polygram
IFPI Platinum Disc Award
- 1985 Smile Polygram
- 1986 遙遠的她 Polygram
- 1987 相愛 Polygram
- 1987 Jacky Polygram
- 1988 昨夜夢魂中 Polygram
- 1990 給我親愛的 Polygram
- 1990 祇願一生愛一人 Polygram
IFPI Top 10 Sales Album
- 2003 Where is he 他在那裡 What's Music
- 2004 Black & White What's Music
- 2005 活出生命 Live 演唱會 What's Music
IFPI Top 10 Sales Artist
IFPI Top Sales Album
- 2005 活出生命 Live 演唱會 What's Music
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-  Jacky Cheung & Anita Mui - Hard to Stay in Love (Jacky's lowest E note)
-  Jacky & A-Mei - Blessings (the lowest G note male tenors can hit, also worth noting the original key is G major, the key was lowered to C major, or else A-Mei will be too high)
- Jacky Cheung - Your Hair's Become Messy(Jacky's highest falsetto notes)
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- 東方日報。2003年5月18日。學 友 坐 擁 3 億 延 續 神 話。
- 香港演藝人協會，撿自：2013年11月18日。Jacky Cheung。
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- RTHK. "RTHK.org." 2000 RTHK Top 10 Gold Songs Awards. Retrieved on 2009-04-12.
- Hollywoodindustry.dig. "Hollywoodindustry.digitalmedianet.com." Hard Rock International World's First Chinese Memorabilia Displayed at City of Dreams. Retrieved on 2009-04-12.
- "." Jacky Cheung performs for largest combined audience. Retrieved on 2012-6-12.
- RTHK. "." 十大中文金曲 金曲王張學友獲榮譽大獎. Retrieved on 2012-12-21.
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- Xinhuanet. "Xinhuanet." 揭開《雪狼湖》票房收入之謎 Retrieved on 2009-04-12.
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- Jacky cheung in Jiang Hu (2004) lovehkfilm.com Retrieved on 30-08-2007
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- CBS. "CBSnews." Jacky Cheung Donates Memorabilia To Hard Rock. Retrieved on 2009-04-12.
- "Charity fund raising event for celebrating the 10th anniversary of ECSAF". 6 September 2009.
- dead link International Herald Tribune Jacky Cheung's maid jailed
- "Popstar fired '21 maids in three years'". Ninemsn.com. 27 September 2007. Retrieved 28 September 2007.
- IFPI HK Awards ifpihk.org Retrieved on 20-09-2007
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Jacky Cheung.|
- Jacky Cheung - Official website
- Jacky Cheung at the Internet Movie Database
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