Wang Lei


Wang Lei
b. 1971, Pengzhou, Tongji county, Sichuan
Rock musician
China’s best-kept rock music secret is Wang Lei. Often referred to as the ‘Cui Jian of the south’, Wang Lei’s catalogue of four records was not widely distributed until 2000, when Jing Wen Records released a special reissue compendium of Journey Man (Chumenren, 1994), Night (Ye, 1996), Everything Comes from Love (Yiqie cong aiqing kaishi, 1998) and Spring Is Here (Chuntian laile, 1999). Wang Lei’s father was an amateur painter, and his mother sang in a local cultural troupe.
As a child he received training in the theatre, martial arts and Chuanju (Sichuan opera). At age seventeen, he left home to go walk-about in southwest China, eventually ending up in Guangzhou, where he began making records. In the last half of the 1990s, when Wang Lei released most of his catalogue, he also participated in various collaborative projects with foreign and domestic television and performance artists. He owned the ‘Unplugged’ bar in Guangzhou between 1997 and 2000. In 2001, he assembled a group of friends from his home town, taught them to play instruments, and moulded them into a live electronica outfit called Pump (Beng). In 2002, Wang Lei returned to Sichuan with Pump, who released their record 10 Brothers through Beijing Pulay Music, though it was never widely available as a commercial release.
MATTHEW CLARK

Encyclopedia of contemporary Chinese culture. . 2011.

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