Chapter 22: Would You Like To Come To My Recording Studio?
Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
Wei Shaoyin fiddled with his cup as usual. “Feng Kun provided his two cents on this song, and the removal of some of Xia Ling’s music segments was also authorized by him. He even recommended that Shen Manyao be the main singer for this song.”
Xia Ling was bewildered. “Shen Manyao? Why would he recommend her?”
“Feng Kun says that a lot of those who praise Xia Ling sky high are actually hypocrites, they can’t wait to do her in. I think he’s right, given Xia Ling’s arrogance and temper, it’s no wonder she’s not well liked,” said Wei Shaoyin matter-of-factly, before carrying on. “He said that Xia Ling detested being lied to and betrayed more than anything else. If those hypocritical artistes were to sing for her bereavement, Xia Ling’s spirit wouldn’t be happy about it. In this case we might as well get Shen Manyao to sing it. Her singing might not be exceptional, but at least she was the only one who dared to voice her unhappiness to Xia Ling’s face.”
So that’s why.
Xia Ling couldn’t decide if it was funny or sad, but she felt warm inside. Feng Kun had always known her well, and now it seemed like the one who knew her best wasn’t Pei Ziheng nor Xia Yu, but him.
Choosing Shen Manyao based on such a reason seemed odd, but it was exactly what she would’ve wanted. Previously, Xia Ling had no idea that those who flattered and exalted her were so hypocritical. Now that she knew, she indeed would rather pick someone like Shen Manyao than give the rest of them a chance to boost their reputation with this opportunity.
She nodded. “Feng Kun… that’s great.”
She couldn’t think of how else to say it, no words could express the gratitude she felt.
Wei Shaoyin did not notice the slight change in Xia Ling’s mood. He simply said, “Yeah, he has always been very nice to Xia Ling. But I’m the one suffering now, having to work with someone like Shen Manyao who can’t even vocalize properly — half of the time was used just to teach her singing from scratch!”
Xia Ling snorted, but quickly kept her smile when she looked up to see Wei Shaoyin’s deadly glare. “Uh huh, at least the melody of the song is catered for the masses, it doesn’t require much of a prerequisite for the singer.”
“We’re working under time constraints for the song, and Shen Manyao’s standards are just — there’s no way we can give her a challenging song,” said Wei Shaoyin. “Moreover, this song was written by Xia Ling’s fans, and most of her fans don’t have much singing capabilities. For it to be sung well and be moving, the only way is to have a melody that’s mass-oriented.”
On this note, he seemed to have another thought as he said, “I really wonder what the fans are thinking. Singing any of Xia Ling’s songs make them sound like they’re making a racket, yet they just like her anyway. Like Sister Mai Na, for instance…”
Xia Ling slowly sipped her fruit tea, her head held low. She had no comment. It’s true, her songs easily make it to the top hits, but her fans rarely won by singing her songs at competitions.
If she could do it all over again, she would be nicer to them — she would write a few songs that they could sing well and sound good.
“The good thing is that you’re around,” said Wei Shaoyin. “Some of Xia Ling’s original tunes are incorporated in this song. Her songs have always been challenging to perform, thus having them in here is causing some problems with the bridging. I’ve tried working it out with a few songwriters, but it hasn’t been very fruitful. Talking it out with you, on the other hand, has given me some direction.”
Xia Ling looked up and smiled. “Oh well, I’m just glad I’m of help.”
Wei Shaoyin nodded. “You’re of a very big help here. I’ll make some modifications to the song, thus the final product should be way better than what we have now.” As he said this, a new thought seemed to have come to mind. He turned and looked straight at her. “Ye Xingling, I never knew you had a talent in this area. Would you consider coming to help us out at the recording studio?”
Help Wei Shaoyin out at the recording studio?
Xia Ling was a little stunned, and then casually asked —
“Will I get paid?”
Wei Shaoyin was stunned as well now. After pausing a moment, he said somewhat seriously, “This is more than what most people can even dream of, and all you’re thinking of is whether you’ll get paid?”
She believed him. In her previous life she’d seen how people had fought with their lives to get a place in Feng Kun’s recording studio. People were willing to even pay to that job, not to mention work with no pay. He and Wei Shaoyin were considered to be in the same league, thus it seemed like the situation wouldn’t be much different over here.
But Xia Ling was different. She didn’t need the experience, wasn’t interested in the credentials, and had no intention to get close to anyone — Wei Shaoyin’s invitation was of no use to her. She said, “Mr. Wei, thank you for your suggestion. But I already owe the company a lot of money and my priority now is to clear my debt. Whatever doesn’t help me achieve that is not within my consideration.”
Wei Shaoyin was slightly taken aback. “You owe the company money?”
Seeing that she wasn’t about to reply, he didn’t probe further. He simply said, “Trainees who haven’t made it big yet are not paid for these contributions to the company, and I can’t make it an exception for you. However, if you do make it big, I’ll write your first song. How’s that?”
This time it was Xia Ling who was surprised. Who knew he’d be so magnanimous?
A newbie’s first song as a celebrity is of great significance. If they could rise to stardom with that song, their road ahead would be a lot easier. And if their first song was a flop, they could forget about breaking out of that vicious cycle of unpopularity and lack of opportunity.
There were way too many newbies out there who resorted to unthinkable means just to secure a good enough first song.
Yet over here, Wei Shaoyin had so lightly made such a promise to her.
She couldn’t figure out why he was doing it. “Mr. Wei, I heard you’re very particular about who you pick. I have enough self awareness to know that I’m not fantastic at dancing and my voice is nothing out of the ordinary. You already surprised me when you picked me out to be featured in the MV, why are you still willing to write that song for a nobody like me?” She obviously did not really think she was a nobody, but on the surface, she really was just average.
“You’re very special, Ye Xingling,” said Wei Shaoyin. “I’ve found you special the very first time I saw you.”
Now that’s weird. Their first meeting was during the MV selection, where she deliberately appeared as just an average dancer. He managed to get something out of that? Xia Ling shifted a little, now looking all ready to listen on.
Wei Shaoyin spoke pleasantly. “If we’re talking about your dance moves and posture alone, you were indeed just average. And if that was a solo audition, I definitely would have just overlooked you. But you were lucky.” He smiled. “the other candidates who were at the selection that day were confused by you — they messed up their steps.”
“Huh?” She was beginning to sense that there was a problem.
As she guessed, Wei Shaoyin went on. “You had an aura that wasn’t dimmed by anybody in your surroundings — even those who seemed to have beautiful dancing techniques. On the contrary, your seemingly-ordinary moves managed to sway the people around you naturally and subconsciously, even when your ways were wrong.”
“And that’s why you selected me to be part of the MV?”