One of my favourite things to do in music is to collaborate with other musicians. Today I was in the studio with my producer recording with my dear friend, the talented musician Cheng Lin. I feel honoured that she is singing a duet, in English and Chinese, entitled ‘We Must Look Higher’, with me on my new album. There are several other duets on the album (including ones in Spanish and Arabic) and I’m excited to share them soon.
Originally, I had asked Lin to play her erhu for the song. After listening to it, she offered to sing as there were many spaces for more vocals and I knew her voice would add so much beauty and dynamics to the piece. We promptly set about verifying the Chinese translation and then proceeded to work on fitting the parts into the existing composition so that it would flow with the English. As time was short (I’m already working on final mixes of the other songs on the album), we worked intensively to practice her parts so that she could record quickly. I’m thrilled that the recording went beautifully today and Lin’s vocals were flawless.
This piece is unique on the album as it includes four separate quotations. It was a challenge to get all the vocals recorded in both languages without the piece sounding cluttered but I think we found the right balance and I can’t wait for you to hear it!
The lyrics of ‘We must look higher’ are so uplifting. I’m sharing them with you below:
“We must look higher than all earthly thoughts; detach ourselves from every material idea, crave for the things of the spirit;…”
“Let nothing grieve thee, and be thou angered at none.”
“When calamity striketh, be ye patient and composed.”
“Be thou not unhappy; the tempest of sorrow shall pass; regret will not last; disappointment will vanish;…”
Cheng Lin recording ‘We Must Look Higher’ in the studio