Tagged: Beijing Rockstars

Offset Spectacles

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Vince Li is in the Offset Spectacles, a Hong Kong folk rock band. The three members came to Beijing because its rock scene is so far superior to the one in Hong Kong. They have performed in D-22 and other major venues around the city.

Favorite genres of music are Shoegaze and 80s and 90s NYC underground and, of the most well-known Chinese rock bands, he likes PK-14 most.

Super VC at Burberry

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Beijing brit-rock band Super VC is a fan of Burberry and enthusiastically welcomes the new store. Burberry Creative Director Christopher Bailey came to Beijing for a single day to attend the opening and I gave him a Stylites pocket square, which he found a bit surprising. In the Jinbao Place Shopping Mall, also home to Gucci, Buttega Veneta, Vertu, and the Swank, mentioned in the post before, this new outlet on Jinbao Street is Burberry’s sixth and largest store in Beijing. Someone evidently has a plan to make Jinbao street into Beijing’s answer to Madison Avenue or Via Spiaggia. Jinbao street also has the Peninsula hotel, and its shopping mall, the Beijing Hong Kong Jockey Club Clubhouse, dealers for Maserati, Ferarri, and Bugatti, as well as the subtly designed Legendale hotel, which could have been the brain-child of Harrod’s owner Mohamed al-Fayed.

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On both sides of the roped-off entry to the shop were standing some spectators from the neighboring hutong. As it turns out, the lady in red crocs worked as a seamstress until retiring in her forties. She doesn’t expect to ever enter the Burberry shop, despite its proximity to her home, but maybe she could get a helping with alterations? I wonder what she thinks of the Legendale.

From Austin to Beijing

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The Beijing rock scene lures talent from other music hubs. Austin, Texas, guitarist and drummer Taylor arrived in Beijing four months ago to make music. In Texas he was part of Balmoreah, a band that blended classical, western and rock to produce a unique sound evoking the tranquil empty spaces of Western Texas. Taylor describes the region, his original home, as a perfect one for creative work. Distractions are minimal and entering a meditative, focused states is natural.

Beijing may not be terribly tranquil, but Taylor thinks it is also a good place for creatives, and they have been flocking here recently just as they do to Berlin, which he thinks has a similar vibe. He lives in the Nanshiliju area, one filled with bohemians, but also enjoys hanging out in the Nanluoguxiang area where there are several performance bars that he frequents. His favorite local bands are Lonely China Day and the Re-TROS.

Classic Beijing: Rockers in Skinnies

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I should start a “classic Beijing” category. It would include young rockers like this and old men in Mao jackets, which is the sort of funny combination that makes this an interesting place to live. Thinking of the city and its denizens, I immediately think of an image like these two. I was going to add “post 2000” but in images and movies of youth in the city from the late 1980s, I’ve noticed some of these types. Is the current breed as tough, as genuine, as their spiritual forebears?

It’s a much more pleasant image than that of a chubby businessmen with alligator loafers holding a pleather murse or a kept woman in pink fur carrying LV, which are what I think of for several other prosperous towns. Beijing is China’s bohemia. You noticed, I’m sure.

The city never feels bereft of boy rockers in their skinny jeans. They have appeared on stylites many times: last year and more recently. Plenty of girls too: Norwegian, Gia, and rather pretty.

Oil, Econ and Rock ‘n’ Roll

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Mylène Chen is an economist at Shell China Exploration and Production Co. Ltd. On the side, she sings for a rock band. Only 22, she speaks English and French, perhaps taking her name from France’s answer to Madonna. It’s funny because, in one of their constant comparisons of China with “developed” countries, several Beijingers have remarked to me that youngsters here have far fewer hobbies than their counterparts in the West. They do face far more constraints in the forms of huge loads of schoolwork and pressure from family, but I think that many people I meet in Beijing do a pretty good job in surmounting these.

Red Pants Alert!!

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There’s more to be scared of here than just the red trousers. I know there is an indie band here called Hedgehog, but this young rocker must be part of Porcupine.

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I hope that bag is real. Clearly her boyfriend is investing all of his fashion renminbi in her. Aside from the tedious sack, I do rather like her look and it’s a nice shade of red.

Slim red jeans can be a good alternative to the usual blue. Anyway, this was a small fraction of the people wearing red pants on Nanluoguxiang this past weekend. It is a good color to wear. It symbolizes good luck and happiness and is thought to ward off evil.

Black Coffee with Sugar

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I love it when people appear on Stylites more than once -especially lovely young women like Kiki. Last time it was in winter. Always on the way to a rehearsel or show, Kiki, the lead singer of Milk and Coffee, returns in black, as usual, but her smile and the heart make the color warmer. Sometimes I feel that black looks a little bit uncomfortable on a hot day though. But what is the fluffy thing in her hand used for?

Gia W. from Hang on the Box: Killer Looks

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Having now appeared on the cover of Newsweek and toured in the United States and Japan, Hang on the Box (and a wiki here) front woman Gia W. is known for her agitated singing style. Considered representatives of the new Chinese youth since the late ‘90s, they claim Marilyn Manson and Billy Corgan as fans. Gia’s outfit was purchased mainly in Tokyo and consists of Japanese brands. She said her day job is oil painting.

Constantine the Creative

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Constantine Comenos teaches music, plays base, and has designed his entire wardrobe, having it produced by Beijing tailors. He loves the process of sketching his outfits and selecting fabric, best found in Southern cities. It always perplexes him that more men fail to take advantage of the inexpensive tailoring to exercise their creativity. The key to staying cool in summer is moving slowly and infrequently, according to Constantine.


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Central Beijing is filled with them. This guy uses black to good effect. The mystery of the color blends into this young rockstar’s character.

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With the right attitude, the classic look of jeans and a tee-shirt always distinguish a man. Bo Xuan, the bassist from Hedgehog, illustrates how it also helps to be a rockstar and have the body to wear such tight clothing.

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Dashing to practice, this young rockstar relies exclusively on this trendy cycle for transportation around the city. He says it’s the most convenient way to move here.