首頁 Main Page 》 他的開始 Sam Hui 》 Biography 在回憶中 (English 英)
許冠傑的往事 His Story
Samuel (Sam) Hui was born in Guangzhou on September 6th, 1948. Fourth child in the family, he had three elder brothers and a younger sister. The four brothers' names were given by their maternal grandfather, originally the names were Mun Mo Ying Hone, but their mother didn't like the sound of Hone and changed it to Geet. When Sam was two years old, his family migrated from main land China to Hong Kong, settling in a small hut in the poorest region of Diamond Hill. As the head of the family, Sam's father worked hard to support his family, sold air conditioners, worked as hotel staff, anything to earn a few extra dollars. Even though the family was poor, Sam's father frequently reminded his children to study hard and be a person who strives for better. The Hui brothers enjoyed music and acting from an early age, their father played the violin as a past time, their mother also loved Cantonese opera, so the family had a common love for music. With the exception of the second son, the Hui brothers all ended up working in the entertainment industry, their interest from childhood obviously never faded. The young Hui children also liked to put together skits to entertain children from the neighbourhood.
The childhood years passed quickly, and the Hui family soon moved to better housing when Sam entered high school. With a deep interest in music, Sam formed a band with a group of friends at age fourteen, practicing at home and performing at school functions. In 1964, he and a group of friend formed a band called Harmonicks, with Sam as the bass guitarist and main vocalist, performing in hotels and on Rediffusion Television (RTV) programme on a part-time basis. After Harmonicks disband, Sam joined the band Bar Six, and began performing at a hotel basement bar called Fire Cracker. In 1966, Bar Six changed its name to The Lotus, with Sam as the main vocalist. The name Lotus had two meanings: Lotus automobiles representing their youth and vigor; Lotus flower as it is a flower of the Chinese people, representing their uniqueness as an all-Chinese band.
At 18 while he was performing in a hotel called Grotto, Sam met 14-year-old Philippino-American Rebecca (Rebu) Fleming, who happened to be on holiday in Hong Kong. Sam was immediately attracted to Rebu. During that time, his was said to have been dating a model but this relationship did not blossom. After Rebu went back USA, the two young love birds started a long-distance relationship, frequently writing letters to each other.
Through the winning of a talent quest, The Lotus were signed by Diamond Records and recorded their first two singles, Just A Little and I'm Be Waiting. But due to the fact that the band later signed a contract with TVB against their manager Lal Dayaram's advice, The Lotus were put on the shelf by the record company. During that time, The Lotus hosted a popular television programme for TVB called The Star Show, broadcasting five nights a week. With his good looks and charm, Sam attracted many young female fans. In 1969, Sam Hui entered University of Hong Kong to study psychology, and due to the workload, The Lotus disband after their contract with Diamond Records was completed. In 1970, Sam signed with Polydor Records as a solo artist, recording his first solo single Time Of The Season.
In 1971, Sam and his big brother Michael Hiu created a family entertainment programme for TVB, where they entertained through short skits and comedies. This programme was broadcast once a week and was received very well by the audience. This programme not only raised the profile for the Hui brothers, but also established a direction for their films to come. During each episode, Sam would also perform some English songs, and his first Cantonese song also debuted on this programme with great positive response, thus driving him to pursue writing more Cantonese songs.
On December 30th 1971, 23 year-old fresh graduate Sam and 19 year-old Rebu tied the knot in California, USA. Sam's reluctance to hide his relationship with Rebu, as was the trend with most entertainers to conceal the truth about their own love life, revealed Sam's honest style, even becoming the new favourite in the music industry with the support of thousands of fans did not change him. After the wedding, the young couple returned to Hong Kong to settle down. In expression of his love to his young bride, Sam wrote A Carnation For Rebu and recorded it for his second single April Lady. In the same year, his first album Time Of The Season was released.
After getting married, Sam signed a contract with Golden Harvest to film his first movie Back Ally Princes, and later flew to Thailand to film The Tattooed Dragon. At the same time, Polydor Records also released songs such as The Morning After and Skyline Pigeon, with many songs climbing to number one on music charts. When The Morning After album was released, it sold a thousand copies in a day, causing quite a stir in those days. Oh September 19th 1973, Sam held his first solo concert at the city hall. Following the success of his television program with Michael, the Hui Brothers got together in 1974 and produced Games Gamblers Play, the movie's grossed six million at the box office, and became the highest grossing movie in the history of Hong Kong. Along with the movie, an album by the same name was released, the theme song also became the first Chinese song to be broadcasted on BBC radio station, starting off a wave in CantoPop (Cantonese Pop Music). The album sold 150,000 in Asia, broking all previous records. During this period, the movie Naughty! Naughty! and the single Theme for Jeremy (Blue Balloon) was released. In the same year, Sam held several concerts, of which include one on November 5 at the City Hall where he performed with The Lotus, and December 27th in the Caritas Centre. This period was the beginning of the Hui Brothers partnership in a chain of successful movies, and the beginning of the CantonPop revolution led by Sam Hui, who became a guaranteed drawing-card on record sales.
Sam's healthy image and hilarious lyrics attracted thousands of fans, his lyrics was able to capture and clearly reflect the issues and pressures society was faced with, and gave a voice to the common folk to vent their frustrations. In March 1975, Sam received a gold record for his album Games Gamblers Play from Polygram Records at the annual awards ceremony hosted by RTV. In May he released the English album Interlude, and on May 14th he held a solo concert at the City Hall. In August, the Hui Brothers followed their success with the movie The Last Message, grossing 4.55 million, and also became the highest grossing movie in 1975. The sound track of the movie The Last Message sold 200,000 in Asia, the theme song was also broadcasted on BBC's most popular programme Family Favorites, with an audience of 15 million. Due to the successes, Sam held 2 sold out concerts on October sixth at the City Hall.
In March 1976, Polydor released the English single Streets Of London, with the song becoming an instant number one hit. When Commercial Television (CTV, Hong Kong's third non-cable television station) started broadcasting, they invited Sam to guest star at the opening, unfortunately the station was only on-air for a short two years before it shut down. CTV produced a popular television series Condor Heros of which the theme song became very popular, later Sam took the song, rewrote the lyrics and released his version of Majong Hero. Sam's popularity was at it's all time high, and in May he held two concerts at the City Hall. In his family life, Sam also became a father, with his eldest son Ryan Hui being born on September 3. In December, Hui Brothers released the movie The Private Eyes, box office totaling over 8.5 million, the sound track The Private Eyes sold 350,000 copies in Asia, creating the first major milestone in Sam's entertainment career.
Sam Hui became a guaranteed box office hit, and his lyrics became popular slang. On March 26th 1977, Sam received the highest selling record award with his The Private Eyes album at the first annual Gold Disc Award. In April, Sam did a concert tour around Asia, then held two concerts on April 14, 15th at the City Hall, at the same time Best of Sam Hui album was released, this was Sam's first 'best of' album ever released. In June, Sam and Chelsia Chan recorded a duet One Tin Soldier, this song was released on the compliation album Gold Into '77. Chelsia Chan recorded another duet with Sam on his Wealth God Has Come album, a Cantonese song called I love you, and also rewrote Sam's song Pocketful of Music. On August 27th Sam performed at the Pop Folk '77 concert held at the Hong Kong Stadium. In the same year, an important event must be mentioned, that is the passing of Elvis Presley. The influence Elvis had on Sam's music is clearly seen, and on August 29th at an Elvis remembrance concert, he sang several Elvis songs as a tribute to him. In November, Sam released the album Spaceman Came Travelling, this became Sam's last English album. On November 28th, he held yet another two concerts at the City Hall, and in December he prepared for the filming of another Hui Brothers movie The Contract.
On February 14th 1978, Sam received the best Valentine's present: the birth of his youngest son Scott Hui. In the same month, Wealth God Has Come album was released. The album contained six Elvis Presley songs, it could be said that this was a tribute to Elvis's musical influence on Sam. This album sold 200,000 copies in Asia, and was the first album that didn't co-incide with a movie release. The song Price Rise Heat Wave was also released as a single. In April at the second annual Gold Disc Award, Sam's song Wealth God Has Come was neck and neck with Roman Tam's Xiao Li Flies Knife, in the end Sam won platinum records for The Private Eyes and Wealth God Has Come, gold records for Best of Sam Hui and Spaceman Came Travelling, and the century award for Wealth God Has Come. Afterwards, Sam expressed to the organizers that they should cancel this award, as gold records are designed to be a source of encouragement for the artists, not for personal glorification. In May, Sam was invited to be a judge for the sixth annual Miss Hong Kong pagent. In July, the movie The Contract premiered, box office reached 7.8 million, and also became the longest screening movie. The sound track The Contract also broke records with 550,000 copies sold in Asia. Sam held a concert in July at the City Hall, and also held Sam Hui's Christmas Concert at the Hong Kong Stadium on December 23.
In the beginning of 1979, Sam did a concert tour around USA and Canada, accompanying him was his old band The Lotus. CantoPop became more and more popular because of Sam's promotion in writing hit after hit in Cantonese. In February, Radio Television Hong Kong (RTHK) hosted the first Top Ten Chinese Music Award, and Sam received an award for The Contract. The Contract album and Best of Sam Hui also received platinum records at the third annual Gold Disc Awards. In April, the Hui brothers took the movie The Private Eyes to Japan, Michael Hui's character, Mr. Boo, created a huge popularity surge, the soundtrack album The Private Eyes was also released in Japan, selling over 100,000 copies in three weeks, and even making it on the Japanese music charts. The theme song was then re-recorded in Japanese. In May, the Hui Brothers followed up with the premiere of The Contract in japan, this movie also premiered at the same time in Taiwan, which became the longest and highest box office hit. This movie brought back a wave of popularity, and The Private Eyes was re-screened in Hong Kong, grossing 1.9 million in the first five days, setting the highest grossing re-screening record. On June 17th Sam became the first Hong Kong singer to participate at the eighth annual Tokyo Music Festival, and received the TBS award with the song You Make Me Shine. The show was broadcasted via satellite by TVB in recognition. This song was written half in Chinese and half in English, and was first released on the album World Music Festival (it has recently been re-released on CD in the Real Classics 2002 album), there was never a full Chinese or English version. In August, the album 79 Summer Collection was released, and Sam held six concerts at the Academic Community Hall (now renamed University Hall). In September, Sam flew to Japan to make a television special for a Japanese television station. In October, a popular Japanese magazine Screen published him in a poster feature, and a Japanese media team came to Hong Kong to interview the Hui Brothers. In December, Sam performed at the first Tung Hwa Charity, and held a concert at the Hong Kong Stadium before Christmas.
In 1980, the Hui Brothers preimered the movie The Private Eyes in USA, with the theme songs Private Eyes and Drifter's Song re-recorded in English to coincide with the movie release. On May 18th, Sam played at the Commerical Radio Hong Kong (CRHK) hosted first annual Superstar Basketball Match. In July, the album Leem Lo Geal was released, and during the filming of a television special he blacked out and was hospitalized after an accident on waterskis. On August 31st, Sam appeared as a mystery guest at Hong Kong 60's Music Concert held by RTHK. In December, at the fourth annual Gold Disc Award, he received a platinum record for the album 79 Summer Collection.
In 1981, the Hui Brother released a new movie Security Unlimited, and the soundtrack album Security Unlimited was also released at the same time. In March, Sam appeard on a tribute television show for Joseph Koo where he co-wrote a song with Joseph Koo, James Wong, Zheng Kuo Chiang, Deng Wei Hsiung etc. The song was sung with other guests on the show (this song was released on Susanna Kwan's album Passerby). Sam then held two concerts at the Hong Kong Stadium where fans from all around the world came to see his performance, he then went on to tour US and Asia. In August, at the fifth annual Gold Disc Awards, Sam received platinum records for the albums Leem Lo Geel and Security Unlimited.
Sam continues with his decade winning streak and went full speed ahead to create an international image. At the prime of his life, Sam trained hard and transformed himself from the white knight and common folk's buddy image, to a buffed muscle rippling hi-tech superhero. In 1982 Karl Mak, Shek Tin and Raymond Wong formed Cinema City, and signed Sam to film Aces Go Places for two million dollars, the amount created a stir in the film industry. The Aces Go Places movie duo, King Kong and Bald Inspector, broke the highest box office record ever with a record 26 million, and created great publicity for Cinema City. Although Aces Go Places created a phenomenon and the theme song also became a hit, they did not release the album in the same name as the movie as done previously, it was instead named Hard to Forget You/Paper Boat. In March, Sam held six concerts at the Queen Elizabeth Stadium for the first time, and the tickets were sold out on the first day. TVB also specially produced a documentary of the concert, even the famous Japanese singer/songwriter Shinji Tanimura came to see his performance. On April 3rd, Sam represented Hong Kong at the first annual Asia Music Festival in Japan, Kenji Sawada and Shinji Tanimura also performed. In August, at the sixth annual Gold Disc Award, Sam received a platinum record for the album Hard to Forget You/Paper Boat. In September, two Japanese singles were released in Japan titled Dream Chaser and I Love You.
In the beginning of 1983, Cinema City followed up with a sequel Aces Go Places II, premiering in 130 cinemas in Asia and Australia at the same time. Sam then flew to Taiwan to film a Chinese New Year television special for TVB, and the sound track for Aces Go Places II was released. In May Sam became the first singer to hold a concert at the Hong Kong Coliseum. Because of the capacity of the stadium, not many singers are able to draw the crowds needed for a concert at that venue. The income from one of the shows was donated to charity. In June, Sam signed with Contec Sound Records and released his first album New Beginning under that label. This album was also the only album with a double album cover design.
Sam's movie career continued to peak. At the beginning of 1984, the movie Aces Go Places III was released, once again it broke the Hong Kong box office record with 30 million, and the income from the premiere was donated to charity. In July Sam filmed A Family Affair for Cinema City, which became that summer's highest box office movie. The theme song Incredible is Love sung with the Jenny Yin was released in September in the album Like You the Most. In October Sam flew to US and Canada for a concert tour, in December he was invited to attend Tokyo and Hong Kong Friendship 84, this programme was put together by CRHK, Japan Shortwave Broadcast, and Hawaii K200 Radio, Agnes Chan also hosted the event.
The movie Working Class premiered the summer of 1985. As the father of two sons and often noted as a gentleman, this was also the only time when he was rumoured to have any links with his leading lady in movies. It was rumoured that he was after Joey Wang, the leading actress in Working Class, and even gave her a car. After Contec Sounds shut down, Sam signed on with Cinepoly Records, and in July released the album Just Gotta Have Fun. On August 29th Sam was invited to be the judge and performer for Miss Fitness hosted by TVB. In November Cinepoly released an extended combo album Full Weight, the song is 12 minutes long and comprised of 46 of Sam's old songs. At the end of the year The Legend of Wisely filming began, Sam flew to Nepal for filming at 8000 feet altitude and developed mountain sickness, there were rumours of death, but it was proved that there was no brain damage and he returned to Hong Kong for medical treatment.
In January 1986, Sam received the Gold Needle Award at the eighth annual Jade Solid Gold Awards for his contribution to the industry. At the awards, Sam sang the theme song to Aces Go Places IV. Despite being in recovery from mountain sickness, he still went to accept the award in person and won huge applause from the audience. Aces Go Places IV premiered in April in Hong Kong, this movie was part filmed in New Zealand. After he recovered from his illness, he held a concert in October called Just Gotta Have Friends, to raise funds for The Lotus's Wallace Chow and the Kidney Society. In the same month, Cinepoly released the album Top Heat, then during Christmas, released the single Unlimited Universe.
The movie The Legend of Wisely screened in the beginning of 1987, the premiere income donated to Po Leung Kuk for charity use. TVB's Jade Solid Gold Award awarded Sam as the first recipient for the Top Honour Award. In the same year, the song Thoughts also became one of the ninth annual Jade Solid Gold Awards. Cinepoly then released the album Trend to Be in Band, in reflection of the new raise in band groups in Hong Kong. RTHK hosted Band Fly concert at the Hong Kong Stadium and Sam was invited as the closing act, arriving in a helicopter. In July Cinepoly released the album New Tune and Best of which only included two new songs, and the song Cherish was written for Sam's fan in gratitude of their support. In order to get the best result, Sam recorded the song over 70 times to get it perfect. In October Sam held to know twenty years again to sing the meeting concert at the Hong Kong Coliseum, and because of extremely high demand, an additional show was added to make up four shows in total. During that concert, Sam saw that there were male fans waving flags in support of him, this touched him greatly as previously his fan based had been mostly girls. In the same month Sam performed in the nights of a thousand of stars charity show to raise funds for Tung Wah Group of Hospitals.
In the beginning of 1988, Sam and his fans filmed a MTV for Wealth God Has Come in celebration of the Chinese New Year. In March, he performed for the 30 Hour Famine hosted by CRHK. In June he guest starred in his brother Michael Hui's movie Chicken and Duck Talk, and also wrote and sang the theme songs for the movie. In the same month, Cinepoly released the album Sam And Friends, a collection of songs written for him by friends in the industry. In July Sam appeared as the special guest at Hong Kong Broadcast 60 Years hosted by RTHK, and also performed at the first annual Disabled Talent Show. In the show, Sam and over 100 fans used sign language to perform, and later Sam suggested the use of the hand signal 'I love you' as his fan club's symbol. At the end of the year, Sam wrote the theme song I Believe Music Is All Powerful for the 100% Creative Concert hosted by CRHK, and recorded the song with eight CRHK DJs. In November, filming for Swordsman began with director Tsui Hark, this is Sam's first ancient Chinese period movie, and also set off a wave of Chinese period movies. During Christmas Sam held Sam Hui To Accompany Your Boxing Day Concert in Sheraton Hotel in Tsim Sha Tsui to celebrate Christmas with his fans.
The movie Aces Go Places V screened in January 1989 in Hong Kong. The new partnership did not create the chemistry as in the previous movies in the series, and so became the end of the Aces Go Places series. In the same month, Cinepoly released the album 89 Collection, in which the theme song I'm Not Afraid sung with Leslie Cheung for Aces Go Places V was recorded. In April Sam held ten concerts of Hundred Thousand People Chorus Concert at the Hong Kong Coliseum, the atmosphere of which was said to have been the best of all 1989 concerts. This concert's live album was released in November.
In 1990, the filming of Crying Freeman began, but because of copyright reasons, the title was changed to The Dragon from Russia, and filming took place in Russia. After returning to Polygram Records, Sam wanted to address the issue of the handover of Hong Kong back to mainland in his new album Hong Kong Sentiments 90 which was released at the end of March. In April Sam held the Hong Kong Sentiment 90 Concert at the Hong Kong Coliseum, the stage was designed like a boat to fit in with the theme of 'helping each other in the same boat'. Every time Sam held a concert, his family were always there to support him, eldest brother Michael often did a talkshow segment, second brother Stanley and third brother Ricky helped with singing and performing, so as to allow their younger brother a change to change clothes and rest. Sam's eldest son Ryan also helped in accompanying his father on the guitar. The concert live album was released later. In August the Hui Brothers came back with a new movie Front Page, but possibly because the audiences' taste has changed, this movie did not create the stir of its predecessors. At the end of the year, the movie Swordsman was released, at the same time Polygram released the album 90 Movie Classics Collection.
Sam's father passed away in 1991, and a year later his mother was also injured in a car accident. His father was a major influence on Sam in his childhood, no matter how poor, he always encouraged his children to study diligently and keep striving for better. His father's passing changed Sam's view of life dramatically, life is short, why waste it on an endless pursue for fame and fortune? Sam decided to let go of the pressure of being a superstar to go back to a normal life, and use his retiring days to spend more time with his family. In the same year TVB flew a crew to USA to film a television music special with Sam, who was there visiting his two sons. It was during this special that Sam first publically announced his desire to retire.
On February 23rd 1992, TVB hosted a retirement tribute show for Sam at the Grand Plaza Hotel (now transformed into apartments), to pay tribute to Sam's contribution to the music industry. That night many stars and celebrities attend the event, singing one after another of Sam's greatest hit, and many also expressed their feelings toward Sam. During the program, Alan Tam gave Sam the title 'God of Songs', in expression of the part Sam has played in taking CantoPop into mainstream. In March to April, Sam held a record 41 concerts at the Hong Kong Coliseum, setting the highest number of concerts held at the venue. Following that, Sam toured USA and Canada. To pay tribute to Sam's retirement, Polygram re-released a set of 18 limited edition CDs plus one bonus CD. Polygram and the WEA Records also released their own compliation album of singers singing Sam's greatest hits. In 1993, the New year movie All's Well End's Well, Too was released. In March Sam returned to his place of birth and held his very last concert at Guangzhou Tianhe Gymnasium. The end of the concert signified Sam's official farewell to the music industry. In June the movie Laughter of "Water Margins" premiered, and is also Sam's last film before his retirement.
During retirement, Sam wrote a theme song for Hong Kong Broadcast 70 years and 20th annual Top Ten Chinese Songs, titled The Best Sound, this song was sang by a group of stars. In the same year Polygram released Heart of a Labourer '98 album, in it contained the remix of two old songs Half Pound Eight Ounces and Games Gamblers Play. In 1999 Sam came out of his retirement to experiment in the musicial the Midsummer Night of Rhapsody, a 20-show musical that comprised of his golden hits along with several new songs, performed by cast Ekin Cheng, Gigi Leung, Miriam Yeung, Jordan Chan etc. In the final show, Sam came on stage to sing with the main cast, to the delight of the audience. Same year December Sam and Raymond Wong was persuaded to film Winner Takes All. In the New Year of 2000, the movie Winner Takes All was screened, and Sam also wrote the theme song If You're a Lier sung by Nicholas Tse.
2003 was a year full of sadness and worry for the people of Hong Kong with the Sars outbreak, along with the passing of Leslie Cheung, Lam Jun Kern and Anita Mui, Hong Kong fall into a state of depression. In an effort to encourage the people of Hong Kong, in the new year of 2004 Sam Hui wrote a song 04 Bless You, and even sang the song along with Gigi Leung, Miriam Yeung and a bunch of young singers, to bless the people of Hong Kong and rid this despair in the new year to renew their hope for the future.
After 12 years in retirement, months of speculation and hype, Sam Hui finally made a comeback in June 2004 when he held 10 shows at the coliseum. It was every Sam Hui fan's dream, with young and old queuing for hours to purchase these precious tickets to the most talked about event of the year, with every show running well past midnight and organisers being fined for overtime, perhaps Sam was making up for lost time in the past 12 years. The success of the June concerts led to more shows throughout the year, in total 38 shows were held. Sam Hui also starteded his own production company 'Graceland' concreting his desire to make a full comeback and continue to bring surprises to fans in the future.