Stefanie Sun signs with Universal Music

Singer Stefanie Sun's next album and tour will be supported by her new label Universal Music to the tune of a few million dollars.

A spokesman for the label says that it will commit a "nine-figure sum in Taiwan dollars", adding that there is "no time limit" on when the Singaporean singer has to deliver on her work.

This was revealed to regional reporters after the official signing ceremony held at Capella Singapore on Tuesday.

The flexible working schedule Sun is afforded is considered quite a luxury in the competitive Mandopop scene.

Looking elegant and svelte at the press event in a black mesh top and a gold glittery skirt, she said: "I think I'm very lucky not to have too much pressure with regards to album sales and stuff like that, because I've been around for so many years. It's a lot harder for new singers.

"For me, I want to make sure that every new album is better than before, and also offers something new and unique for the listeners."

At the signing ceremony, Mr Sunny Chang, chairman of Greater China, Universal Music, said that the company is "very excited" about signing on "one of the best-selling female singers" in Mandopop, and that the company will do all it can to bolster her career.

To date, Sun, 35, has 11 top-rated albums to her name and has sold more than 30 million records since making her debut in 2000.

Universal is her fourth record label, after Warner Music, EMI and Wonderful Music.

At the ceremony, Sun said simply with a grin: "I think Universal will be treating me very well."

This also marks the official music comeback for the singer, who took a break after giving birth to her first child, a son, on Oct 30 last year. Since becoming a mother, she has done only photo shoots for magazines as well as commercial promotion appearances including for a baby formula brand in May.

While she declined to reveal the musical direction of her much-anticipated new album, she said she hopes it will be out by the end of the year. Her last album, It's Time, was released in 2011.

As for her touring concert, that will likely begin early next year. While she admitted that she will "miss" her baby whenever she has to go away for her shows, she is happy knowing that the concert schedule will not be too packed either.

"It's not just because of my baby, but I think it's important to have adequate time between the shows to get yourself physically prepared again. Otherwise, you won't be in top form by the end of the tour. I want to give only my best."

That is probably also why she insists on being very hands-on with her baby, whose name she has not revealed.

"I watch over his every meal because I want to make sure his every meal is balanced and nutritious," she said.

"I used to have so much time on my own, like I'll have time to go shopping or just stay at home and watch a movie, but now I'm too busy.

"As a mother, your life is a lot fuller, but it's also a lot more meaningful, I think."

She added that she sings to her son every night, but not any of her own songs. "I sing children's songs, like Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star. He always reacts when he hears music, and he will start moving left and right to the tune."

One thing that frustrates her since becoming a mother are the paparazzi shots of her baby. "I'm okay with people taking pictures of me, but I really don't like it when they take photos of my son. I always go up to tell them, 'Hey, can you please not take pictures', and usually they agree.

"But one time on a plane, I told that to a woman and it turns out that she was Thai and actually had no idea who I was. I imagined too much," she said, laughing.

Despite enjoying motherhood, she always "knew" that she would eventually return to music.

"Music is kind of my calling. I always considered it as an integral part of my life. It's just that now I have another big part of my life, and that is my baby."

yipwy@sph.com.sg

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