Collaboration With a Famous Malaysian YouTuber
With over 300 hours of video uploaded per minute and about 5 billion videos viewed everyday by a total of about 1.3 billion total viewers (at the time of writing), YouTube has changed how we consume our entertainment. It has democratized the production of content and has given regular folks like you and me the opportunity to become "YouTubers" - producers, actors and directors of online video content that are enjoyed by many.
Malaysia has its share of YouTube sensations, and in recent years, they have become a major option for brands to market their name and products to the masses. Instead of the more usual tried and true channels of getting a video ad out to the public through ad agencies and production houses, many companies are hiring these YouTubers to come up with concepts for ads, produce them, and put them online for the world to see, without even going through broadcast channels.
About a year ago, I started working with a well-known YouTuber from Malaysia on some commercial projects. It was during this time that I thought I'd try reaching out to some other YouTubers to see if they would have a need for my services. That's when I had the pleasure of meeting Dan Khoo, one of the few Malaysian YouTubers whose work is enjoyed by fans around the globe. We met up over a Nasi Lemak and we talked about YouTube and his work. It was certainly a pleasure to meet such a hilarious dude.
Looks like I was about to steal his drink while distracting him with my photo-taking.
Fast forward to about 3 weeks ago, I got an email from Dan asking me if I would be interested in doing some music for a new video he was working on. Although I was working on a couple commercials at the time, I jumped at the idea, because the concept of the video was hilarious: "What If Buying Economy Rice Became Anime." Truth be told, I hadn't watched any anime since I was a kid, so I was a little unsure what type of music to do.
Usually, when I work on a commercial or movie, there is a temp music track along with the video, giving a good example of the style of the music the director wants. However, in this case. there wasn't a temp track, and Dan said, "Just have fun with it." Thankfully, with the help of YouTube, I was able to get a sense of the style of music required. Dan gave me a reference video, and right after that, it was time for me to get crackin'. Also, whenever I work on a movie, the Director and I go through the movie painstakingly, to discuss where the music should happen and what the styles should be. However, when I had my spotting session with Dan, he mostly translated the dialogue of the video to English for me because I am a total "banana (Chinese dude who doesn't speak Chinese and usually only speaks English)" and he hadn't completed adding the English subtitles yet. He also gave me very broad strokes on the style of music and just told me to do as I wanted, which kind of caught me off guard, because composers for commercials or movies NEVER get to do what they want. He did say for some parts of the video, the music has to accentuate the "idiocy" of the situation. (He used the Cantonese term, but I'm too polite to include it here;))
One of my favorite scenes
The process of doing the music was fun because the video was really funny and I actually did laugh out loud for certain scenes, even though I watched the video so many times while working on the music. When I was done, I sent him the music track for the whole video for comments and changes if any. I was glad to find that he was fine with the music and even commented that the music really brought the "idiocy" level through the roof. So let it be known the world over, if you need music to make a scene super idiotic, Jinx is your guy! So here is the final video below. Thankfully, there are now subtitles for those of you who like me, are not Cantonese-literate.
It was a treat to work with Dan, and I am impressed at how productive he is with so many quality and fun videos constantly being produced by him. Looking forward to more collabs with him and his team in the near future. I even told him if he ever needs a Yakuza/Chinese Triad mobster character with a heart of gold, I'm his guy.