Fri, Nov 21, 2003 - Page 18 News List

Pop Stop

Compiled by Max Woodworth  /  STAFF REPORTER

Faye Wong looks perky despite disappointing sales.

PHOTO: TAIPEI TIMES

When Faye Wong (王菲) puts out an album, most record companies choose to hold their releases so that their artists won't have to enter a mismatched sales battle with Mando-pop's indomitable diva. But Mayday (五月天) may have achieved what was previously believed impossible by outselling Faye's new album, To Love (將愛), with their new CD, Time Machine (時光機), which was released the same day.

Sales figures in Taiwan are unreliable because it's an open secret that labels lie through their teeth about album sales, but Next Magazine (壹週刊) claims in its latest edition to have insider information to prove that the Taiwanese rock band sold four albums for every album Faye sold, which would be a bad sign, indeed, considering Mayday had sold a respectable but not outstanding 60,000 in the same period.

Nothing seems to be going quite right for Faye, who arrived in Taipei from Hong Kong on Monday for a nine-day promotional tour. The highlight of her trip, which will take her to Taichung and Kaohsiung, was intended to be a meet-and-greet the fans session at the glitzy new Taipei 101 mall, but the bumbling managers of the shopping center somehow added a zero when telling Faye's agents the number of people the space could safely hold. So, Faye's managers who had planned for 2,000 fans were belatedly informed that the space could accommodate only 200. The mix-up forced Faye to switch venues for the event to the far-less glamorous Nankang 101 for this Saturday.

Things also seem to be going from bad to worse for Momoko Tao(陶晶瑩), whose sassy talk show was taken off the air by Phoenix TV in the wake of sharp criticism coming from a semi-official media watchdog group over her show's lurid content. The conclusion of the group's assessment of her program was said to show that it discourages advertisers from signing on to "unwholesome entertainment shows," and forced the station to reconsider its content. Momoko has been under fire from the Government Information Office for over a month for episodes that, according to officials, crossed the line into unsuitable prime-time content.

TV show host and author Mickey Huang (黃子佼) added his two NT dollars this week to the often-raised but consistently denied rumors that his ex-girlfriend and socialite TV hostess Little S (S) has had breast enhancement surgery. At the release of his ninth book on Monday, when asked by The Great Daily News (大成報) about the rumors he said curtly: "Knowing her, I wouldn't be surprised." Little S, her sister Big S and their buddies Mavis Fan (范曉萱) and Aya (阿雅) were featured in Sunday's Apple Daily (蘋果日報) in a large spread that tried to get to the bottom of this ongoing mystery, with some eye-popping before-and-after pictures that make their denials seem about as hollow as their denials of having dropped ecstasy when Next Magazine reported them doing so two years ago.

The pop event of the weekend, sure to be attended by every name in Mando-pop, will be David Tao's (吉吉 ) first solo concert tomorrow night at Taipei Municipal Stadium. Tickets are still available for the show, but David has complained recently about long-lost friends who've suddenly come out of the woodwork trying to hit him up for spots on the guest list. Who can blame them? Most of the tickets ran for well over NT$1,500.

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