WEEKLY

THIS HOUND IS NOT THAT GREY
這隻灰狗不太灰

在香港這個金錢至上的社會,很多人認為夢想不能當飯吃,現實才是王道。在赤裸裸的現實生活面前,年青時的憧憬逐漸被磨滅,為糊口不惜放棄自己的初衷,結果過著沒有靈魂的生活,這些事每天都在上演。而劉威煌的新歌《灰狗》就正正是關於夢想與現實的衝突。

新歌取名為《灰狗》,年輕一代大概不會知道,「灰狗」其實是一個香港舊日的地道俚語。形容人很「灰狗」,就是沒有希望的意思,藉以表達那種內心的感嘆。問到威煌當初的創作理念從何來,「《灰狗》活脫脫就是我從多年來的經歷裡累積的一些心裡話,如同把我整個內心剖開給大家看一樣。我自己,以至我身邊很多朋友對香港的社會現況都有同一個感受。為了生活或賺錢置業,每一日做着重覆的工作,過着沉悶、沒有自我的生活。」把《灰狗》跟威煌以前的歌做個比較,他覺得自己以前的歌比較「接地氣」,貼近大眾口味多一點,有些傳遞正能量,有些就關於懷舊及愛情觀,傳遞的訊息也相對比較淺白。而《灰狗》則是較為成熟的題材,把他入行七年最真實的內心感受呈現於歌曲中,道盡他內心世界中的黑暗面。作品花了大部分篇幅去刻畫那為現實而放棄夢想的灰色人生,但同時也告訴我們只要認清自己,撫心自問,就能做回真正的自己,灰到盡頭便是光明。

《灰狗》是劉威煌與梁柏堅的首度合作,問到柏堅當初為何決定為《灰狗》填詞,他笑言今次合作是為了一個男人之間的約定。「當年與威煌在酒局相見,大家好像說過有機會合作,今次是做找數真漢子,前後七年,男人約定,有時比情侶更浪漫。」《灰狗》的創作過程非常順利,威煌與柏堅可謂一拍即合。「兩個男人的作風都是快狠準,一個電話,一次見面,一支清酒,一個鐘內已經決定好內容和歌名。大家經歷有點相似,很容易代入,我一帶一傳,他再一扭起腳,球就這樣進龍門。」《灰狗》中「年少的我兇猛 捕獵無迷惑 年長的我收歛 軀體呈斑白」,短短兩句已道盡威煌的心聲。

有意義深遠的歌詞,當然也不能缺少一個有意境的MV。「對我而言,MV大部分也很藝術性,整個畫面的色調很配合。導演善用畫面去表達,予人很多想像空間,例如我突然在放煙那場景,以及我一邊唱歌、一邊在另一空間觀察的畫面,其實是我一個自我對話的過程,也是我內心世界的呈現,令層次更深一層。」至於威煌最深刻的場面,莫過於一大夥人戴着狗頭面具在天橋上奔跑那一幕。「那幕說我在跑的途中跌下,把狗頭掉了。當我爬起來時,一種豁然開朗的感覺由然而生。這是整個故事的高潮所在,也是我想拍得最有感覺的地方。拍攝當天正值七.一慶回歸那敏感時候,曾被警察阻攔過,幸好最後都能完成拍攝,並能夠拍出預期的震撼效果。」

MV裡幾乎所有人都戴着個狗頭面具,那些棱角分明的紙面具在片中的出現頻率非常高,原來全都是威煌親手造的。「最初買回來一疊卡紙,沒有模切,也沒有壓線,於是我就逐個逐個摺。每個狗頭有40多個駁口位,也是我用萬能膠逐個粘起來。製造一個狗頭大概需要一個半小時,一共造了25個。」我們可從中感受到威煌為成就《灰狗》這個夢想,到底可以去到多盡。

在這不鼓勵發夢的大環境裡,可以實現夢想,是一件幸福的事。對於威煌來說,無論最後對《灰狗》有共鳴的人有多少,製作《灰狗》就是一個完夢的過程,是在做一件最開心的事,「人隨心走 別再遷就」,那就一切都很好了。

撰文:鍾璐詩
相片:Chessman HK
美術:王曉澄

In the profit-oriented society like Hong Kong, many think that working hard in reality is way more rewarding than chasing for dream, as the latter one is less able to support a living. As teenage dreams are gradually broken in front of reality, having soulless live seems to be a common phenomenon in this society. “The Grey Hound”, a new song by Ryan Lau, is just about the conflict between dream and reality.

This new song was named as “The Grey Hound”. Being less known by the young generation, “grey hound” was a typical idiom in Hong Kong. When someone describes himself/herself as a “grey hound”, it means that he/she feels hopeless and wants to express his/her emotion with a sigh. Talking about the origin of his idea, Ryan said that ‘I want to pour my heart out from all those years of my experiences through “The Grey Hound”. It was like showing the audiences the dissection of my heart. A lot of friends of mine and I share the same feelings towards the reality in Hong Kong. In order to earn money to support a living or purchase for flats, people repeat their work every day and they generally have dull and soulless lives.’ Compare “The Grey Hound” with Ryan’s old songs, the latter one comes closer to the taste of the general public in which the messages are relatively simpler. Some songs convey positive energy while some are about nostalgia and the concept about love. However, “The Grey Hound” is about a more mature topic. In the song, Ryan shows us his truest self --the dark side of his inner world since his debut seven years ago. Most parts of the songs depict the dull life that one is living in when he/she gives his/her dream up for reality. At the same time, it conveys a message to us that we can be our true self if only we are true to ourselves. Every cloud has a silver lining.

It is the first time for Ryan Lau and Pakkin Leung to cooperate with each other in the production of “The Grey Hound”. Pakkin becomes the lyricist of “The Grey Hound” out of a promise between men. ‘I met Ryan in a gathering. It seems that we have talked about the possibility of cooperating with each other. We have made this promise seven years ago. Sometimes, the promise between men is more romantic than the one between couples. I’m here to fulfill our promise this time.’ Pakkin and Ryan hit it off immediately and the creating process of “The Grey Hound” was very smooth. ‘Both of us have the same style which is fast, determined and with vision. We nailed down the content and the title of the song within an hour in one single meeting. It’s rather easy for me to feel what Ryan felt as we shared similar experiences. It was like in a football match. I controlled and passed the ball to him, and then he got it and kicked it hard. That’s how we scored a goal.’ The lyrics ‘When I was young, I was as fierce as a predator that caught preys without hesitation. When I become older, I take it down a notch with my body whitened’ from “The Grey Hound” have spoken Ryan’s heart very well.

A music video with artistic mood is crucial apart from some meaningful lyrics. ‘In my opinions, most parts of the music videos are artistic in the way that the general tone fits with the dark side of my inner world. The director is good at telling stories visually, offering the audiences a lot of room for imagination. I was filmed releasing some smoke in a scene. In other scenes, I existed in a different dimension, singing while observing. These scenes actually convey some deeper meanings that they are implying my inner world.’ For Ryan, the scene which shows a large group of people, in the hound-shaped masks, running on the bridge is the most impressive among all. ‘I fell on the ground while running in that scene. When I rose again without the mask, I experienced a moment of enlightenment. The scene is the climax of the whole story in which I want the scene to bring the greatest sensation to the audiences. The day of filming was right on the HKSAR Establishment Day which is seen as a sensitive period. Luckily, we finally finished the filming and created a great shock as expected even though we had encountered interruption by the police.

Almost everyone is wearing a hound-shaped mask in the music videos. Those angular paper masks, which appear very frequently in the music videos, were actually all made by Ryan himself. ‘At the very beginning, I bought a pile of cards without die-cut and pressure lines and I folded them one by one. I glued all the forty openings on each hound-shaped mask with the universal glue. Finally I made 25 masks in which each of them took me an hour and a half to finish.’ It shows you exactly to what extent he has done in order to realize his dream of producing “The Grey Hound”.

As chasing for dream is not highly encouraged in this society, being able to realize a dream is definitely delighting. Ryan described the production of “The Grey Hound” as a process of realizing his dream and the happiest thing to do, regardless of the number of people who eventually might have the same feeling. Just like what the last sentence of the lyrics have told us, if we follow our own heart and refuse to conform, everything is just fine.

Written by: Rose Chung
Photo: Chessman HK
Art: Agnes Wong

ISSUE #151

THIS HOUND IS NOT THAT GREY

 

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