CoCo Lee

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Coco Lee
Chinese name
Birth name
Born 17 January 1975 (1975-01-17) (age 39)
Hong Kong
Other name(s) Ferren Lee
Occupation singer, songwriter, actress, dancer
Genre(s) Pop, C-pop, dance-pop, hip hop, R&B, adult contemporary, soul
Label(s) Capital Artists, Fancy Pie, Sony Music Entertainment, 550 Music, Epic, Sony BMG, Warner Music, Universal Music
Years active 1993–present

CoCo Lee (born 17 January 1975) is a Hong Kong-American pop, dance and urban contemporary singer. Her real name is Ferren Lee-Kelly and 李美林 Lǐ Měi Lín in Chinese (although she also uses the stage name 李玟 Lǐ Wen when she writes songs). She sings Cantonese, Mandarin and English.

Biography[change | change source]

CoCo Lee was born in Hong Kong to a Chinese Indonesian father [3] and a Hong Kong Chinese mother. Her father died when she was young, and CoCo moved at age 10 with her mother, stepfather and sisters to California, United States. She went through school while trying out her singing voice and she followed her older sisters in entering many local singing contests. CoCo Lee went to high school in San Francisco, California. CoCo later went for a short time to the University of California, Irvine. CoCo is close to her mother, who has at times managed her career.

After Lee's high school graduation in 1993, she went on holiday in Hong Kong, probably seeing her two sisters Carol and Nancy Lee take part in the Miss Hong Kong Pageant, and while there, she became runner-up in the 12th Annual New Talent Singing Awards. The following day, the local record label Capital artists Records contacted her.

Record companies[change | change source]

CoCo Lee appeared in some compilations with other singers with Capital artists. Then, in 1994 she worked with Fancy Pie Records and recorded four albums with them. She later signed with another record company in 1996 by Sony Music, who has continued to represent her until 2008. After that, she changed her record company and decided to work with Warner Music (Taiwan).

World fame[change | change source]

Coco Lee, September 16, 2006.

CoCo sang the song A Love Before Time for the action-drama movie Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. People around the world could see her when she sang this song live at the 2001 Academy Awards ceremony.

In 2002, CoCo was the star singer at a Houston Rockets basketball game. She became the first East Asian singer to ever sing the American National Anthem at a major world sporting event.

Aside from her fame in singing Mandarin music, CoCo's English-language songs have also become famous. Her love song Before I Fall In Love was included in the soundtrack of the romance movie Runaway Bride.

Walt Disney Pictures also hired her to sing the title song and be the voice of the heroine Fa Mulan in the Mandarin version of Mulan. She recorded the song Reflections, which she also sang at the 2005 opening of the Hong Kong Disneyland with Lea Salonga. A Reflections PV was also filmed. She also sang an English version which appears on her maxi single Take a chance on love.

CoCo has been getting into acting part-time. She co-starred in the Chinese comedy movie Master of Everything (Bamboo Shoot) with John Lone, which won the Best Foreign Film award at the 2005 Beverly Hills Film Festival. While in character within the movie, she sings one of her own songs, Di da di.

In the world of fashion, CoCo was an Omega Global Ambassador in 2004, and Chanel named CoCo its first "Asian-Pacific Celebrity Ambassadress" in 2001. She got her nickname "CoCo" from being an admirer of CoCo Chanel.

In June 2005, CoCo's engagement to Canadian millionaire businessman Bruce Rockowitz was made public, although it seems to have happened some months earlier. Even though Rockowitz is 18 years older than she, her mother approved the marriage.

CoCo returned to the San Francisco bay area in 2007 for a live concert at the Shoreline Amphitheatre on 22 September 2007 with special guest Alex To. It was her first live performance in her hometown in several years.

In 2008, Coco was chosen to sing one of the Olympic songs, "Forever Friends", opposite Sun Nan.

On July 17 2009, she had a solo concert at Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles. She's the first Chinese singer to ever performed in this place. She notably sang 3 Michael Jackson's songs Gone too soon, Rock with you and The way you make me feel in homage to her idol.

On August 14, she released her new Mandarin album East to west with Warner Music. The main hit singles are Party time, Beautiful theme song and Turn. It also contains the cover of Jay Sean's Maybe called Love now and BYOB, a song to encourage people to bring and recycle their own shopping bags to save the environment.

She recorded the song Smile Shanghai (微笑上海) with other artists including JJ Lin, Andy Lau, Jam Hsiao or Jane Zhang for Shanghai World Expo 2010.

On March, 27 2010, Lee began her "East2West" World Tour Concert in Taipei at Taipei Arena. She pursued at the Encore Theatre in Wynn Casino in Las Vegas on July 3 and 4, then in Singapore Indoor Stadium in Singapore on October 2 and in Nanning on December 16.

Voice[change | change source]

CoCo Lee's voice has been favourably compared with that of Mariah Carey and other western artistes, due to her tonality, strength and vocal range. Her voice is classified as a mezzo-soprano, with a vocal range of three octaves. Her lowest recorded note is an E3 and highest recorded note is E6. Her highest chest voice note is F6 in the song Before I Fall in Love.

Current career[change | change source]

In March 2011, Lee was one of many artists participating in the recording of "Artists 311 Love Beyond Borders" (愛心無國界311燭光晚會) official theme song called Succomb not to sorrow (不要輸給心痛) in Cantonese version.

On April 7, 2011, her song Dreams on oriental seas (梦在东方的海上) featuring Sun Nan was broadcasted. It has been named as he theme for the 14th FINA world championships, that will take place in Shanghai on July 2011.[4]

On June 8, 2011, Lee announced that she recently set up her own studio. That way, she's more free to write and produce music that she loves. Her new album is planned for Summer 2011.

On June 25, her song Four seas alliance (四海盟約), the theme song for the 2011 China television drama Water Margin (水滸傳), was broadcasted.

Discography[change | change source]

Studio albums[change | change source]

Coco on the billboard of Pure Yoga in Hong Kong
Fancy Pie Records releases
  • June 1994: Love from Now On
  • December 1994: Promise Me
  • June 1995: Brave Enough to Love
  • September 1995: Woman in Love
  • December 1995 : You are in my heart concert
  • August 1996 : Beloved Collection
  • May 1997: Dance with the wind
Sony Music releases
  • March 1996: CoCo Lee (or Love me longer)
  • November 1996: CoCo's Party
  • June 1997: Sincere
  • November 1997: CoCo Lee (Cantonese album)
  • January 1998: DiDaDi (HMV Music Chart: #1)
  • July 1998: Sunny Day
  • December 1998 : Million fans concert
  • May 1999: Today Until Forever
550 Music release
  • November 1999: Just No Other Way (HMV Music Chart: #1)
Sony Music releases
  • January 2000 : The Best of My Love
  • August 2000: True lover you and Me
  • October 2001: Promise
  • June 2002 : D. IS CoCo
Sony BMG releases
  • March 2005: Exposed (HMV Music Chart: #1)
  • September 2006: Just Want You (HMV Music Chart: #1)
  • May 2008 : 1994–2008 Best Collection
Warner Music releases
  • August 2009: East To West

Maxi singles[change | change source]

Sony Music releases
  • April 1998 : Di da di color remix
  • August 1998 : Take a chance on love
550 Music releases
  • 1999 : Do you want my love
  • 2000 : Wherever you go

Compilations[change | change source]

Capital Artists releases
  • June 1993 : Red hot hits 93' Autumn edition[5] (火熱動感93'勁秋版)
Capital Artists and Fancy Pie releases
  • September 1994 : Red hot hits 94' Love Party[6] (火熱動感94'戀愛Party)
  • November 1994 : Statement of love, duet songs (愛情宣言, 情歌對唱)
  • December 1994 : Merry Christmas (聖誕禮讚)
  • 1995 : I'm still your lover (best of Love from now on and Promise me)[7]

Asian Chart-topping hits and singles[change | change source]

Not exhaustive

  • "Yesterday's passion"
  • "Di Da Di"
  • "Take a Chance on Love"
  • "Do You Want My Love" Hot Dance Music/Club Play: #49
  • "Before I Fall in Love"
  • "Wherever You Go"
  • "A Love Before Time" (English and Mandarin for the soundtrack of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon)
  • "Reflection"
  • "No Doubt" feat. Blaaze
  • "All Around the World"
  • "So Good"
  • "Hip-Hop Tonight"
  • "Brave Enough to Love"
  • "Another Sad Love Song" (Dance Version)
  • "The Ninth Night"
  • "Dangerous Lover"
  • "I Have a Dream" (2008 Single)
  • "Bring Your Own Bag (BYOB)" (Recycling Jingle)
  • "Party time"
  • "Turn"
  • "Beautiful theme song"

Videography[change | change source]

Coco (on the left), performing "Hip Hop Tonight"
Fancy Pie releases
  • 1995 : Foot print (VCD)
  • 1995 : You're in my heart concert (VCD)
Sony Music releases
  • 1996 : Coco's workout camp (VCD)
  • 1998 : Coco in Italy (VCD + photo book)
  • 1998 : Di da di (VCD)
  • 1998 : Sunny day (VCD)
  • 1999 : Million fans concert (VCD/DVD)
550 Music releases
  • 2000 : Just no other way, The Video Collection (VCD)
Sony Music releases
  • 2002 : Coco so crazy (VCD)
  • 2002 : All my Coco (DVD)
  • 2004 : Master of everything (DVD/VCD)

References[change | change source]

Other websites[change | change source]