Lee Hom a 'changed man'

SINGAPORE - It was a "changed" Wang Lee Hom who appeared in front of fans here on New Year's Eve - the first time since he announced his lightning marriage last November.

The Taiwanese-American singer was visibly in high spirits when he ushered in the new year with the 18,000-strong crowd at MediaCorp's Celebrate TV50 New Year countdown show at The Float @ Marina Bay.

Speaking backstage to the media before his performance, Wang, 37, admitted that he was a "changed man", having gone through an eventful 2013.

In an all-white ensemble and donning sunglasses, he rattled off the memorable milestones of the past year.

"Getting married, that was a huge one. Working with Michael Mann, that was a huge one," said Wang, who started filming his first Hollywood movie, action thriller Cyber, with American directorproducer Mann last year.

"I worked on the film My Lucky Star, and my Open Fire concert tour," he added, referring to the romantic flick co-starring Zhang Ziyi and gigs which included a stop at London's O2 Arena.

He shocked fans when he announced on his social media accounts that he had found his "Forever Love" - a reference to his self-penned ballad and life partner Li Jinglei, 27.

His manager had earlier asked reporters here to refrain from asking questions about Wang's personal life.

No mention was made of Chinese pianist Li Yundi, whom Wang has denied being romantically linked to, and who also recently unveiled a surprise girlfriend.

Since the singer-songwriter made his debut 18 years ago, spending every New Year's Eve singing to fans at countdowns has become a ritual for him.

He said: "This is my favourite way of spending festive seasons. People spend the festive season with their family. But for me, I spend it on stage with my fans. It's my ritual."

Now that he is married, how about spending special occasions with his wife?

"She's here with me, (so I have) the best of both worlds," said Wang, who was accompanied by his wife Li, a Columbia University student.

And it looks like marriage will have an impact on his future works. Switching easily between English and Mandarin, he said: "My music reflects what I go through in life. My music is like a window to my heart.

"I spent quite a bit of time on my personal life last year. Now that I'm done with the matter, I can spend more time on my music. I know fans have been waiting for a long time. They'll be able to hear my new album in the new year."

He said he would be staying in Singapore for a few days for the wedding of a friend.

"A friend of mine is getting married in town. I'll be singing at that wedding as well."

A group of 210 fans here were treated to Wang's 2014 Free Show at klapsons The Boutique Hotel in Hoe Chiang Road last night.

He said: "It's a free concert we do on Jan 1. This year, it's in Singapore. Last year, it was in Shanghai. Before that, it was in Taipei. We try to do it at different places every year. It's really to thank the fans."

Limited tickets for the free concert were announced on his official Facebook page and Weibo account on New Year's Eve. Fans snapped up the tickets within hours.

He said: "Next year will get even more interesting. If I have anything to share, I'll certainly share it with fans. I like Weibo as I can interact with fans directly and share the news with them in seconds."

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