Lara (櫻櫻) sings Visions (難忘的情意) Singapore 1960s
Singapore recording artiste Lara Tan or Ying Ying (櫻櫻) who usually sings in Mandarin pressed songs with The Trailers in 1967. You Only Live Twice the James Bond theme was sung entirely in Mandarin. Other songs on the same EP (CEP 3008) and accompanied by the same group include Don't Talk To The Lifeguard, Single Girl and Dream Girl.
Another EP (CEP 3002) titled This Is My Song has Dear Mrs Applebee, Downtown and Love Potion Number Nine. The above video is from a record and with Visions Lara sings, Run For Your Life, Puppet On A String and Sugar Town (CEP3004).
|Lara Tan sings with The Trailers|
It was the usual path for many would be singers in Singapore 60s and Lara was no different. She sang at school concerts and in private parties for a while.
The break came when she was spotted by an executive from a local record company, was contracted and trained in the skills needed to be a pop star. It was tougher for her because she did not like some of the songs she was singing.
After an exhaustive period Lara was provided with about 40 songs to select for her vinyl debut. Since Mandarin songs had a bigger fan base in South East Asia, Lara recorded covers of current English 60s songs and had them translated into Mandarin by a Ms Violet Chow.
To make the formula work she was backed by The Trailers, one of the most popular bands then. Where EMI had Rita Chao and The Quests, Lara was the answer to Cosdel's search for a female lead vocalist to front The Trailers. And like Chao and Sakura she had her share of singing a-go-go and off-beat cha-cha music as well.
So here after nearly 45 years under cover, Ms Lara Tan appears again on Valentine's Day singing Visions - a very popular Cliff Richard number - hopefully to revive days of yore that all you Seniors remember. It's for the young ones to appreciate too.
To all my friends in the music business, the Bloggers group, writers, the old teacher friends I meet sometimes, the lecturer buddies from the universities, the new friends who write to me on the Comment page, the young students who ask for information and all the others who have made this blog what it is today, Happy Valentine's Day. Don't forget the flowers.
"Visions of you in shades of blue..." Lost love?
Valentine's Day in Chinese - 情人节 - qing ren jie.
Image: Andy Lim Collection.
You Tube video by eastasianmusiclover.