Calling David Choi a talented singer is an understatement because the Korean American musician is more than just that; his humble and down-to-earth personality is what makes people feel comfortable around him. David felt the same whenever he’s in Malaysia too. Nasi Lemak isn’t the only reason why David Choi would come back to Malaysia over and over again because it was our warm hospitality and the friends he has made during his previous tours in Malaysia that made him feel comfortable being here.
The feeling is mutual, just like how he connects with fans through his music.
David is famously known for uploading cover videos of popular songs and some of his own originals, which most of his followers feel emotionally attached to. His songs were often featured in other YouTube personalities’ videos including Shane Dawson, Eric Feng, and Wong Fu Productions. His funny side is also evident in his collaborations with Wong Fu Productions as he often make cameo appearances as a humorous character with a straight face.
He released his first album “Only You” back in October 2008 while the follow-up albums “By My Side” and “Forever and Ever” were released in 2010 and 2011 respectively. As of December 15, 2014, David Choi’s YouTube Channel has over 900,000 subscribers and received a total of 96,182,018 video views! It’s been almost 3 years since the release of his last album but if you’ve been following him closely on his social media sites, you’d know that he will be releasing a new album soon!
While he was here in Malaysia to perform at #OHHSOME Fest alongside Wong Fu Productions, we managed to have a quick chat with David about his upcoming album and his future plans. Check out our exclusive interview with him below:
Hi David, welcome back to the Land of Nasi Lemak! How does it feels to be back?
Thank you. It always feels good. The more I come back to Malaysia, the more I feel like I am coming back home, almost. I am very comfortable here and I always like the food. The more I come, the more friends I make too. So it’s nice to see everyone when I come back.
I heard that you’ve got a new album coming out soon. Tell me, as compared to your previous albums, what are some of the biggest changes your fans can expect in the upcoming album?
So, for the people who’ve listened to it, they say that it’s a lot more mature sounding. It still sounds like me but maybe more cinematic and mature.
How difficult was it to produce this album, as in what are the challenges?
I didn’t have as much challenges but it’s just a different process. Like this time around, I hired some really amazing musicians to play on it. Before that, my first 3 albums I played most of the instruments. For this record, a lot of it are played by the musicians so I am more of a producer. I wrote all of the music with the guitar, but the difference is that now I have other musicians playing on it as well.
People feel emotionally attached to your songs because it felt personal to them. What led you to write this way?
For me, I write for myself, to be honest. I don’t really write them with the goal of having other people relate to it but it’s really nice when people do relate to it. So, where I gain all my inspiration from is just living life like you and everybody else in their lives. I have my ups and downs, relationships or things like that. So that’s the kind of things I write about.
What were you listening to while you were making this new album?
That’s a good question! I usually listen to a lot of oldies and I think that kind of influenced me to set the music to the 70s a lot. I really enjoyed the music from the 70s. It’s nothing like the music from “Guardians of the Galaxy” because it’s not disco style but I’d say it’s somewhere in that era. Mostly love songs or heartbreaking songs.
I’m sure a lot of fans are exited to hear your new album! You were able to work with Wong Fu to visualise your songs, how does it feels like to work with them? Are you going to be working with them again?
We are all really good friends and we hang out a lot even though we are not working with each other. So, it’s always great to work with friends because it doesn’t feel like a work. They are really good storytellers too and it’s always fun to work with them. We’re still doing things here and there and we are working on a web series right now. I made a cameo appearance in a few episodes of the series but I didn’t release it yet. I didn’t even announce it yet. So, you’re the first one! I have 4 episodes so far and I’m planning to do 8 episodes and release them on YouTube every week, starting from January 1, 2015.
Oh that’s cool! But what about the new music video?
We don’t have a date yet but album release is probably on February :)
Your popularity has grown so much over the years and you’ve been playing at bigger and bigger venues. You’d often see the same people at the shows. Do you find that your fanbase has aged along with you?
It’s really interesting because we are all just trying to grow as people. We are living life and we are moving on so it’s really humbling to have people follow me on my journey and I feel like I’m following them too. Because we are all just trying to make it through life, all its difficulties and pleasures. It’s a cool thing to see somebody going through the phases of life from high school to college to getting a job. There are some people who I actually do notice them at the shows and when I see them, I would go, “Oh, how are you doing?” and I would catch up with them. It’s pretty cool.
I assume you’re going to do a promo tour soon, so how’s the plan coming along?
I’m not really sure yet but probably in 2015. I’m just getting everything ready right now and I am definitely coming back to Malaysia :)
Last one on the road! What are your guilty listening pleasures?
Umm, whoa. Sometimes I do like to listen to “Never Gonna Give You Up”. I don’t know, I just really like old songs. Sometimes, when I listen to these songs in my car, my friend would be like, “Why are you listening to these songs?” To them, it’s cheesy but to me, it’s not. I really love them so I guess it shouldn’t be considered my guilty pleasures.
UPDATE (2nd Jan 2015):
The trailer for David’s upcoming web-series has been released!
Check it out:
Tune in every week starting 8th Jan 2015 for new episode of David’s web-series, titled “David”. We hear it’s based off of his life so don’t miss out ;)
Oh, and of course, YouTube too ;)