Meet Your Neighbour: World Music Promoter and Singer Yang Guanglei

By Shanghai Family 2021-12-28 17:15:47

Get to know the musician next door at Le Ville Residence Shanghai Biyun.

Yang Guanglei was brought up in the modern music conservatory method. He is proud of the professional musical training he received in a reputable conservatory, but was still surprised when he heard Asif Ali Khan, a Pakistani musician, sing at the 2010 Shanghai World Expo. That experience jolted Yang’s view of music and inspired his path toward world music.


World music awakening

“At first, I was confused about his performance because I couldn’t sing any note he sang in an accurate way,” said Yang. Later Yang learned that Khan was using a musical tuning structure of 23 temperaments, instead of the 12 equal temperaments that dominate modern music and instruments. This different system cuts an octave into 23 parts creating more notes than the typical 12. For Yang, “those microtones cannot be played on the piano and thus seem to us incorrect, but Khan could sing the notes very well.” Yang could barely keep up with Khan’s tune. Only when the Pakistani musician sang to him sentence by sentence during a meal, could Yang fully understand.

Since then, some of Yang’s deep-rooted musical beliefs changed completely. “I am sincerely convinced that the music passed on by word of mouth can open up a new world to us. However, big problems arise once it is restricted by modern technology.”

Yang decided to devote himself to world music.

Before 2008, the word “world music” was not in China’s vocabulary. The term was coined from the western-centric perspective, and had a discriminatory connotation. World music is used to refer to the folk music of various ethnic groups around the world, especially in undeveloped areas. But it became popular worldwide due to the promotion of non-western music in the 1980s.

With the passage of time, world music came to include all kinds of ethnic music owing to a broad and ambiguous definition. Gradually, its connotation of a condescending western view faded. This term, now a mere musical category without judgment, recognizes and respects the cultural diversity of all ethnic groups.

Yang’s current music project is working as a promoter and singer with World Music Shanghai, a concert series that has been held 17 times from its start in 2008.



Home base at Le Ville

Le Ville Residence is a new standard of quality of life with an elegant environment. It provides comfort and convenience where one can live a pleasant life. “The caring staff, welcoming neighbours, and warm atmosphere make me feel loved and cared for all the time,” according to Yang. “I like the atmosphere of living in Le Ville Biyun, it is very comfortable and relaxing.”

Yang has been living at Le Ville Residence Shanghai Biyun since April 2020, and chose the Biyun neighbourhood in Pudong for its great location, comfortable living environment and attentive service that makes him feel at home. His apartment is a 68 sqm select room. It is installed with high-end home appliances such as custom-made furniture, self-contained air-conditioner, refrigerator, drying and washing machine, capsule coffee machine, satellite TV and high-speed broadband.


Le Ville Residence Shanghai Biyun

Address: Lane 450, 15-16, Hongfeng Road,
Pudong New Area

Tel: 3860 2288