Saturday, May 30, 2015

Priceline Group Announces Additional US$250 Investment in Ctrip

via TechNode http://ift.tt/1ACkUL8 : The overseas online travel service company Priceline Group Inc. today announced that it will invest an additional US$250 million in Ctrip.com International, Ltd. , China’s leading online travel company.  This investment follows a commercial relationship established between the two companies in 2012, which was expanded in August 2014 along with the US$500 million investment by The Priceline Group. Immediately following issuance of the new US$250 million bond and assuming conversion of the two bonds, The Priceline Group will own securities representing approximately 10.5% of Ctrip’s outstanding shares. The two companies will continue their existing commercial partnership, whereby accommodations inventory is cross-promoted between the brands. The online travel service platform market in China has been dominated by local companies like Qunar, eLong and Ctrip. The world’s leading online travel company Expedia, pulled out of  the Chinese market this week after operating localized websites for over a decade through a controlling investment in eLong.com. The company divested its 62.4% share in eLong, which was majority bought by Ctrip, who now owns over 37% of the smaller travel company. In 2011, Expedia bought Renren’s stake in eLong in an effort to further its expansion in China market, but the Chinese company has been performing poorly since. TripAdvisor who entered China in 2009, launched a media site under the Daodao brand and acquired Kuxun.com. They recently launched a new brand ‘Mao Tu Ying (a word play for ‘owl’ and ‘journey’)’ for China. The company now offers an app with WeChat integration and travel guides in Chinese. While Qunar has been growing its open platform project over a large user base, Ctrip has planned large investments in different online travel services services 2013. At the tome, they led investment in Chinese car rental service eHi and Yongche, followed by a $100 million investment in overseas travel platform ToursForFun. Last year, Ctrip invested US$200 million to its competitor LY.com (previously 17u.cn) and is now their second largest shareholder.  Image Credit: Ctrip

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Mi Fit Can Sync With Google Fit Now!!

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Monday, May 25, 2015

Cuisine chinoise à Paris : retour vers la saveur

via lapetitecouronne.blogs.liberation.fr - Derniers articles http://ift.tt/1cVFon0 :

Journalistes, réalisateurs : Chloé Consigny et Florent Detroy

Un vent nouveau souffle sur la gastronomie chinoise parisienne. Loin des nems et du riz cantonais, une génération de jeunes cuisiniers chinois revient à la source et invite à la découverte des saveurs de la Chine. Des produits frais, une cuisine authentique pour un voyage à sensation qui se fait à Paris.

Décidée à renverser les clichés qui pèsent sur la cuisine chinoise « française », une nouvelle génération de cuisiniers propose de revenir aux origines de leur gastronomie. Leurs plats, nourris d’histoire et de la diversité de ce grand pays qu’est la Chine, invitent à la découverte de saveurs d’une cuisine riche, variée, aux influences multiples.

Ces chinois passionnés, fraîchement arrivés ou depuis longtemps installés, souhaitent nous présenter une image plus juste de leur pays. Prêt pour le voyage ?

Cours de cuisine chinoise de Margot Zhang : http://ift.tt/1F4KOTh

Taverne de Zhao (cuisine de la région de Xi’an, à base de blé). 49 rue des vinaigriers, 75010 Paris. Tel : 01 40 37 16 21

L’Orient d’or (cuisine de la région de Hunan). 22 Rue de Trévise, 75009 Paris. Tel : 01 48 00 07 73

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Li Kunwu, auteur chinois de BD, dans son atelier à Kunming, une exclusivité du Forum « Chine et Francophonie »

via Forum Chine et Francophonie - 中国和法语国家论坛 http://ift.tt/1ReL8HB : Notre dernière rencontre avec Li Kunwu remonte à avril 2012, je l’avais interviewé dans les locaux de « Français sans Frontières » à Kunming C’est grâce à Yvon Vélot et à son équipe que j’ai pu revoir « Monsieur Li », dans son atelier cette fois-ci, une première, pour un chroniqueur français Ce ne fut d’ailleurs pas un entretien à proprement parler, mais une discussion à bâtons rompus, dont voici le compte-rendu. C’est dans un appartement, au centre de Kunming, que Li Kunwu travaille ...

Friday, May 22, 2015

Expedia gives up on China partner, sells off $671M majority stake in eLong

via Tech in Asia http://ift.tt/1JG0gLX : Expedia has sold off its entire 62.4 percent stake in eLong, worth US$671 million. US$400 million of it was picked up by China's Ctrip.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Mystery Monkeys of Shangri-La

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Mystery Monkeys of Shangri-La

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Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Insights Into the Situation Between MAO Livehouse Beijing/Shanghai

via China Music Radar http://ift.tt/1zMdFQu : Toward the end of December we attended a press conference where it was announced that MAO Livehouse would be expanding. At the time, there was a bit of chatter on Weibo from Li Chi (李赤), the founder of MAO Beijing. We’ll reproduce an archived screenshot here.   Finally (a version of) the full story came out, and it looked as though we were dealing with a fairly complex but not…

Soundbrenner Pulse is a Berlin-born, Hong Kong-raised wearable metronome for musicians

via Tech in Asia http://ift.tt/1dK5v0T : Moving closer to Shenzhen, China's manufacturing hub, made sourcing a breeze for this startup.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

John Nevada Lundemo to release album Rocket Chair

via GoKunming Articles http://ift.tt/1KIonbF : For the past decade, John Nevada Lundemo has been a fixture of the Kunming rock music scene, fronting bands The Tribal Moons, War Whores, rocking with the Québec Redneck Bluegrass Project and generally playing live whenever the opportunity presents itself. After countless concerts, monkey shows and Beer Laos, he is now ready to release his first ever album at the tender age of 66.

Entitled Rocket Chair, the album contains 15 songs and was recorded and produced by So Danger Records here in the Spring City. An album release party featuring a performance by Lundemo as well as a slew of various other shenanigans will be held at DT Bar on Saturday, May 9.

If you would like a sneak peak at what the album will sound like, check out the song Low Maintenance Woman on Douban or on YouTube (requires proxy).

We sat down recently with the man, the myth, the legend, and were joined by album producer and So Danger Records founder Mark Corry and sound engineer extraordinaire Jan Hassmann — who last worked on Tripedal, an album by the Great Apes. We discussed just what went into the making of Rocket Chair, and how the three managed to avoid killing each other during the record's production.

GoKunming: So how did Rocket Chair come to be?

Mark Corry: I was drunk and standing in front of a urinal and someone said, "What's this record label all about?" I thought about it, and in my mind I fashioned a small nugget of an idea. The day after, I called John and told him, "If So Danger doesn't do anything else, we're going to make a record with you."

GK: John, was that the first time you had the idea of making an album?

Corry: It wasn't his idea! I told him he had to do it.

John Nevada Lundemo: I've recorded on four-track, eight-track and 16-track back in the States in the 80s and 90s, but those were never released anywhere. When I leased my house in Nevada, the people who took over the place destroyed all of my master tapes. Then I came to China and started playing here, and me and the Tribal Moons had done a demo tape but never had it mastered.

Then, when So Danger started, it was mainly doing stuff with the Rednecks, but Mark came and told me he wanted to sign me...you know...for one yuan [laughs]. So he took the ball and ran with it but of course we couldn't run very far without having Jan involved. And because we've all three played together — in the War Whores and other bands — it was an easy fit.

GK: On Rocket Chair, what did you each do?

Lundemo: Without Mark's impetus and Jan's mixing and playing abilities, it never would have been made. We each play and sing on the album. But it's basically 15 of my songs...although we started with something like 28.

GK: So it was always planned to be a full length album, not an EP?

Lundemo: From the beginning there were just way too many songs and we had to whittle it down to 15. There are probably four or five others that we should have done but didn't.

GK: What was the process of choosing a song and then getting it to the point you guys were happy with it?

Corry: Let me just interject that John chose all 15 of the songs. But we would start with shit tracks. John came to my house, and we recorded just him playing guitar and singing the songs with a metronome. Then we went from there.

GK: And other than the three of you, you would then bring in other musicians?

Jan Hassmann: Let's see, Philippe on drums, Shu Rui on percussion, James and Charlie on horns, Vanessa and Kirstin on vocals, Chuck on the fiddle, David, Frank...in total 12 people. From all over the world! And many of them are coming back for the album release on May 9.

GK: So why the name Rocket Chair?

Hassmann: I'd like to know that as well.

Lundemo: It started with this drunken joke about me being old but at least not in a rocking chair yet. So we were talking about abstract titles, kicking names around for so long it just got stale...

Corry: Two months later, the fact that Rocket Chair was the best says a lot.

Hassmann: We had a list of titles at least a page long. And many of them were quite good, I thought.

Corry: This guy [points to Lundemo] can write forty or fifty brilliant songs. But when it comes to stringing together a few words or a phrase to describe his opus, his first album, this thing that defines him musically, simply took him ages.

Lundemo: Well, maybe 'rocket chair' defines me [laughs].

GK: So if it is an opus, is there an overarching theme or musical style?

Lundemo: It's all sorts of different stuff. It certainly isn't a concept album in any way. We kept some of the country songs because that's close to my heart. There's some old kind of derivative rock and there's a handful of songs dedicated to the love of my life. It's rock n' roll and blues, mainly.

Corry: And he manages to do it all without being cheesy. Almost. Which is an amazing thing. How do you compose a rock n' roll song that really actually rocks, and write it about your wife? I don't think many musicians can pull that off.


GK: If you argued for months about the title, how long did it take you to settle on the track arrangement

Lundemo: That was actually easy. We've all played together so much, at so many gigs over five, eight, ten years, that making a set list becomes kind of an art form. When it came to this album, things just lined up — with a few exceptions. The way the order is, there was no argument or confusion. People are going to mix it up on their Ipads or phones anyway.

And I think it's important to talk about how Mark and Jan work in production. You know, I have my contributions, with the lead vocals and whatever, but from the inside, the decisions they're making in the mixes — bring this up, more organ instead of piano...

Corry: The major decision on each song was how to bring John's voice down, how to shut him up [laughs].

GK: John, did you write the lyrics for each song?

Lundemo: I wrote everything except for one song, which is actually a poem composed by a 15 year-old student of mine from back in the States who was in my creative writing class. I asked her, long ago, if I could take the poems she submitted in my class and write music for them. Pretty unbelievable stuff from a teenager in the 1970s.

GK: What sort of time frame are we talking about for the composition of these songs?

Lundemo: For example, Judgement Day is probably the first song I wrote and really did with a band. And that's from '71. There are some from the mid-70s and some that I didn't write until this year or last year. It spans pretty much from '71 until now. A lot of them, we've played so many different ways at live performances, but on Rocket Chair some of them sound completely different because we had a horn section, or back-up singers, or an organ.

GK: How long did it take to lay out each song and record it the way you wanted?

Hassmann: You know, We get into the studio with a crap track and talk and think about arrangements. Then we start recording, invite other musicians and watch it grow. And that's the fun of it — figuring out the arrangements and the tweaks. When we added horns to one of the songs it completely changed the feel of it. We weren't sure at first and had them go in again and improvise and I cut it all together, and it turned out brilliantly. You get everyone in a room, make them comfortable and see what happens.

We had so many good takes — back-up singers, guitar solos, good licks. And at the end of the day, for the sake of the song you have to get rid of some things, even when they are very good, even if you worked on a single line for three hours.

Lundemo: That wouldn't have happened without a lot of back and forth. We trust each other. Sometimes I deferred to Mark's ideas and sometimes to Jan's. In the end, I have my own ideas, but I can't just go in with blinders on. It had to be a collaborative effort, which is one reason everything took so long.

Hassmann: The key thing is — the reason the album sounds like it does — we started with vocal and guitar tracks recorded in a living room, and then we twisted them the right way. We disagreed on many things, but found a way to make it work.

GK: What was the biggest challenge to making the album?

Hassmann: Could we squeeze more work out of John [everyone laughs]? Could he possibly do four vocal tracks in one day before announcing "I'm done!" and refusing to do another song.

GK: How are you distributing the songs?

Corry: We're making a seven-inch sized record sleeve. Inside is going to be a booklet with lyrics, photos and on the back of each sleeve will be a download code so you can get it online.

Lundemo: It's so people have something to hold on to. No one is listening to CDs anymore, but it's nice to have the lyrics in front of you — something tangible. We know there's no way to stop people from sharing digital files, but for the people who want the literature inside, it will be available. We might also include the story of the ancient Chinese rocket man.

Hassmann: Yeah, the scholar who wanted to go to the moon and built an actual rocket chair out of fireworks and kites and then exploded himself!

GK: What's in store for the album release party?

Hassmann: Big. It will be like Halloween and Christmas together. Games and prizes. People can win a guitar autographed by John, free copies of the album and perform air guitar versions of John's songs. Opening act Vanessa will be followed by Eddie and Sandro and then there will be the last ever performance of the New Digs. John will play his entire album live and DJ Xiao Kris will wrap up the evening. There are lots of people coming to perform who are on the record, and hopefully we'll have an actual rocket chair throne for John.

Portraits: Kris Ariel
Album art: So Danger Records
Studio image: Jan Hassmann

Powerwall | Tesla Motors

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Festivals, Large Gatherings Canceled in Beijing

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2015 Q1 Analysis of Livehouse Shows in China

via China Music Radar http://ift.tt/1EbELfk : In this piece we share the findings of a live industry report out via BeeBee, an independently operated mobile-based news source. It provides a really detailed picture of where we stand as of Q1 2015. Graphic 1: Number of Events  The number of livehouse performances & shows that took place in the first quarter was 1264, featuring a total of 1648 performing artists. That’s a 27.95% increase over 2014. Graphic 2:…