Oh God Why: ‘Despacito’ to get a Mandarin version thanks to Singapore’s own JJ Lin

Photo: Video screengrab
Photo: Video screengrab

Some things just refuse to die a dignified death. Despacito — the 2017 summer banger that just. Keeps. Playing. Everywhere. — will be getting yet another unneeded boost in the form of a Mandarin version. This aural crime is unfortunately aided by none other than Singapore’s own Mandopop star, JJ Lin.

At this point of time in the year, do you really need some context on what Despacito is? The Spanish pop-reggaeton hit by Puerto Rican singer Luis Fonsi and rapper Daddy Yankee with an accompanying music video that has four billion views on YouTube — the most viewed YouTube video of all time? The song that propelled further into the mainstream through a remix with Canadian pop idol Justin Bieber? Now the world’s most streamed song of all time with 4.6 billion plays? The one that got banned in Malaysia for having sexually-suggestive content not “compatible” with Islamic and Eastern values?

Yeap, that Despacito. In an interview with AFP, Fonsi announced his upcoming foray into the Asian market through a collaboration with 36-year-old Singaporean singer-producer Lin Jun Jie (more popularly known as JJ Lin). So aside from the Arabic, Punjabi and Portuguese versions that already exists, Despacito is getting a new Mandarin-language version that’ll be released sometime in the next couple of weeks.

“I sang a little bit in Mandarin. The song has become a worldwide phenomenon and singing it in Mandarin is an honor,” said Fonsi.

The collaboration may prove to propel the Taiwan-based Lin to greater heights worldwide — even further than what he currently enjoys, thanks to a tight relationship with Apple CEO Tim Cook after they jammed together with traditional Chinese instruments via GarageBand. That connection paid off nicely when Lin was invited to the new Apple Park campus in Cupertino, California, in September, and became possibly the first Singaporean to get his hands on the iPhone X.

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