Red Rock – The Long, Strange March of Chinese Rock & Roll
The Asia Society Hong Kong Writings on Asia Series
Evening Presentation by Jonathan Campbell, Author
“A brilliant exploration of the Chinese opening to rock & roll, from a keen observer on the front lines of cultural transformation.” – Ken Stringfellow, The Posies, R.E.M., Big Star
"The ancient rhythms of East meets West have rarely been played out so intensely of at such a raucous volume.” – Jonathan Watts, author of When A Billion Chinese Jump
Rebellious, individualistic, and explosive, rock and roll seems incongruent with modern Chinese society. Beginning from 1986 when Cui Jian took China by storm with “Nothing to My Name”, the music has evolved from a Western import into something uniquely Chinese, reshaped by the nation’s unique system and its relationship with the outside world. After a decade-long study and immersion in the Chinese rock and roll (yaogun) scene as a drummer, writer and promoter, Jonathan Campbell released Red Rock – The Long, Strange March of Chinese Rock & Roll as an attempt to give a comprehensive overview of the Chinese rock identity. What has yaogun taught him, and what can it teach the world? Is Chinese rock ready to smash its guitars on the global stage like the rest of the Chinese art world?
Jonathan Campbell arrived in Beijing in 2000 planning to put his MA in China Studies from the University of Washington to use. Campbell used his extra-curricular time to join a string of bands and discover the local music world. Beginning with the now-defunct, bilingual, biweekly entertainment guide Jianwen, and later with Beijing’s leading local English magazine now known as The Beijinger, he began writing more and more about the music that he loved, hated, and loved to hate. As a freelance writer, he contributed regularly to the South China Morning Post, among others; his work has also appeared in the Wire, Paste Magazine, the Globe and Mail, and the Toronto Star. Campbell began organizing music events in China in 2002; he started the Time Arts Jazz Series at Peking University, and was the Foreign Affairs Director at the Midi Music Festival in 2006 and 2007.
Book sale after event.