The Concerts in China

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The Concerts in China
Live album by Jean Michel Jarre
Released 1982
Recorded October 1981
Genre Electronic, ambient, world
Length 78:17
Label Disques Dreyfus
Producer Jean Michel Jarre
Jean Michel Jarre chronology
Magnetic Fields
The Concerts in China
Music for Supermarkets
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars [1]

The Concerts in China (French title: Les Concerts en Chine) is a live album by Jean Michel Jarre, recorded in 1981 and released in 1982 on Disques Dreyfus. It was recorded during Jarre's Concerts in China tour of Autumn 1981, which consisted of five Beijing and Shanghai concerts in China; this was the first time a Western pop artist performed in China after the Cultural Revolution.

The album is a balance of previously released tracks by Jarre, new compositions inspired by Chinese culture, and one rearranged traditional Chinese track ("Fishing Junks at Sunset"). The album consists mainly of live material, plus ambient sound recordings and one new studio track "Souvenir of China". Other new compositions recorded live include "Night in Shanghai", "Laser Harp", "Arpegiator" and "Orient Express". "Fishing Junks at Sunset" is a new arrangement of a very old traditional Chinese song known as the "Fisherman's Chant at Dusk" which was performed and recorded with The Peking Conservatoire Symphony Orchestra, and is often wrongly attributed as being composed by Jean Michel Jarre, misled by the album inlay.

The album was originally released as a double-disc LP, then as a double-disc CD. There was also a CD release in two separate volumes, with the cover color changed to blue (Vol. 1) and yellow (Vol. 2).

In 1997, a one-disc remastered CD was released, made possible by reducing the total running time to 78:17 by reducing the gaps and audience noise between tracks. The remastering was done by Scott Hull at Masterdisk to the 96 kHz - 24 bit standard.

"Magnetic Fields I" is listed on the sleeve but is not present on the album. The track instead contains 20 seconds of table-tennis.

One of the album's original tracks – "Arpegiator" – was used in the soundtrack of the cult film 9½ Weeks as well as in several mid-1980s episodes of the American soap opera Santa Barbara.

The Concerts in China's opening track "The Overture" is in fact the first movement of "Magnetic Fields Part 1" slowed down.

The album reached #6 in the UK charts[2] and #1 in Portugal.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "The Overture" – 4:47
  2. "Arpegiator" – 6:54
  3. "Equinoxe IV" – 7:49
  4. "Fishing Junks at Sunset" – 9:38
  5. "Band in the Rain" – 1:29
  6. "Equinoxe VII" – 9:54
  7. "Orient Express" – 4:22
  8. "Magnetic Fields I" – 0:21
  9. "Magnetic Fields III" – 3:48
  10. "Magnetic Fields IV" – 6:49
  11. "Laser Harp" – 3:35
  12. "Night in Shanghai" – 7:02
  13. "The Last Rumba" – 2:07
  14. "Magnetic Fields II" – 6:26
  15. "Souvenir of China" (Studio Track) – 3:54

Mention should be made of a rare third album in this series, which contains 6 previously unreleased tracks from the first concert in Beijing,[3] both in the original monophonic broadcast format and in an enhanced stereo remaster by Alvaro M. Rocha. While not officially released, it is widely available as a bootleg among various Jarre fansites across the internet.

  1. "Oxygène I" - 6:58
  2. "Oxygène II" - 8:28
  3. "Equinoxe VIII" - 5:28
  4. "Fishing Junks at Sunset" - 18:00
  5. "Magnetic Fields I" - 6:31
  6. "Magnetic Fields II" - 5:29


An excerpt from Arpegiator, highlighting the use of the Fairlight CMI

Problems playing this file? See media help.

Additional personnel[edit]

  • Pierre Mourey – musical instrument coordinator
  • Peking Conservatoire Symphony Orchestra - Chinese orchestra on "Fishing Junks at Sunset"
  • Huang Feili - orchestra conductor on "Fishing Junks at Sunset"
  • Mrs. Li Meng, Mr. Wang Zhi - collaborating artists (possibly playing guzhengs) on "Fishing Junks at Sunset"


  1. ^
  2. ^ Connolly Company
  3. ^

External links[edit]