Evergreen xinyao singer Eric Moo captivated fans with a homecoming concert.
On the evening of July 9, fans of xinyao (Singapore folk song) singer, Eric Moo, turned up at Singapore Expo Hall 8 to attend his Moments concert. Though it was not the usual pop concert swamped by adrenaline-charged teenagers, the air of anticipation was thick, as otherwise office-weary adults in their 40s, families and senior citizens turned up to catch their beloved singing idol in action.
Kicking off a slightly atypical start, lights were dimmed as a photo slide presentation of Moo’s life story flashed across the projection screen, with his songs playing in the background. Born in Malaysia in 1963, Moo’s family moved to Singapore when he was 8-years-old after his mother’s death. As a teenager growing up in Singapore, he worked and studied as a private student and was admitted to Jurong Junior College. There, his life took a turn towards the path he was destined for. He met a ‘gang’ of friends who enjoyed singing and composing songs more than attending lectures and tutorials. Out of this friendship, the xinyao group 地 下 铁 (Subway) was formed, with Moo as the lead singer. The presentation ended with a declaration by Moo that his return to showbiz was because he had found his ‘老 大’（’Big Brother’）.
The man himself, all snowy-haired and tanned, then appeared on stage to a cheering crowd. It was obvious that after a three-year hiatus, Moo’s fans had missed him sorely. He greeted the audience, assuring them that this was not just his concert but it belonged to everyone, as it was a reunion. He also encouraged the crowd to sing along with him as his voice had turned hoarse after indulging in various Singaporean delicacies upon returning from Beijing (where he resides with his wife and two daughters). He then belted out familiar favorites such as “何 必 故 独” (“Why Be Lonely”), “赶 路” (“Rushing On A Journey”) and the mesmerizing “爱 情愧 儡” (“Love’s Puppet”).
The audience then received a surprise in the form of FM100.3 radio deejay, Ye Li Mei, who appeared on stage to sing a duet with Moo. Confessing that Ye was his secret crush during his teens, the couple exchanged greetings, jokes and teases on stage before singing the well-loved song “爱 你 一 点 点” (“Loving You A Little At A Time). It was followed by a lineup of upbeat songs like “人 生 如 梦” (“Life Is Like A Dream”) and the evergreen “咖 啡 乌” (“Coffee Black”), which had feet tapping and heads bopping.
| CN PHOTO: Albert Soh
The mood turned up-close and intimate as Moo sat himself on a sofa with his guitar. Illuminated by a dim glow from a nearby table lamp, he sang a medley of old favorites including theme songs from popular 1970s Taiwanese movies, and continued with his 1980s xinyao hits. The session ended with him delivering the track that was his claim to fame, “邂 逅” (“Meeting By Chance”).
Moo then invited his brother, Allan, on stage to sing a heart-rending duet entitled “手 足 情” (“Brotherly Love”) which was followed by a solo turn by Allan. Much to everyone’s delight, Eric then invited one of his close friends, Li Fei Hui, on stage to sing with him. The latter is a famous songwriter in his own right, having written the hit song “等 你 等 到 我 心 痛” (“My Heart Ached As I Waited For You”) which was also sang by Hong Kong Cantopop superstar Jacky Cheung.
The highlight of the night came when Moo boldly confessed that he found his ‘Big Brother’, Jesus, three years ago and has since renewed his life—among others, he was miraculously cured of his smoking addiction after saying a prayer. He then dedicated a Hokkien song, “叫 你 的 名” (“Call His Name”) to the Lord.
The evening came to an emotional end when Moo assured his fans that he would continue to sing for as long as he is able to, until ‘we became one another’s crutches towards the end of our lives’. Tears then rolled uncontrollably down his face as he turned away from the audience to mask his emotions. At that, several fans were themselves spotted taking out tissues to dab their tears.
As Moo left the stage after his last song, the audiences continued to cheered, demanding for an encore. Moo then re-appeared in a white jacket and sang another four songs, with the last song being the most apt choice to end the night with. The clock struck midnight as he closed with “我 真 的 要 走 了” (“I Really Must Leave”). It was indeed a poignant and mellow evening, sure to stay in the memories of fans.