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Giving thanks to frontliners

Singer songwriter Brian Yim pays tribute to those who are doing battle against the Covid-19 virus

25 Mar 2020 / 17:33 H.

A FORMER child prodigy who mastered the piano, keyboard and electone by the time he was four, Brian Yim has been making a name for himself not only as a singer-songwriter, but also as an entrepreneur through his fashion retail business.

Yim recently released a song, I Give the Best of Me, in which he not only pays tribute to those on the frontline helping patients stricken by the Covid-19 virus (which is now a global pandemic), but also reaches out to victims and their families.

Yim has always been a socially-conscious person. A few years back he taught a group of autistic children to sing and perform a song he wrote in front of a live audience at Dewan Filharmonik Petronas (DFP).

Known for his wide repertoire of music, Yim is perhaps most identified by his Christian worship and contemporary pop work.

I Give the Best of Me is a spiritually uplifting song, in which Yim duets with vocal powerhouse Ning Baizura.

Since we had to keep a social distance, Yim and I spoke by phone for this interview.

How did the idea to write I Give the Best of Me come about?

“First of all I want to thank God for protecting me. I was actually in Milan during the Fashion Week (Jan to Feb this year) and had got back just before Italy’s Covid-19 cases shot up practically overnight.

“Since then I have been following the news closely. My heart broke when I saw footage of so many families torn apart because of this pandemic.

“Every day I keep receiving negative news on social media and Whatsapp messages. Worst of all, some of these news are actually fake.

“The lyrics of the song are meant to spread positive vibes and give encouragement to listeners around the world.

“Initially I shared the song on Facebook but little did I realise that people started sharing it across the world.

“I have received many ‘thank you’ notes telling me the song has really given them hope and the courage to stay strong during these challenging times.”

How did you rope in Ning Baizura?

“Ning and I have been friends for many years. I want to thank her for being part of this meaningful song.

“We would like to encourage all Malaysians to stay strong, and tell them that we will get through this together not just as a nation, but as one people.”

Brian Yim with his friend and collaborator on I Give the Best of Me, Ning Baizura. – Courtesy of Brian Yim
Brian Yim with his friend and collaborator on I Give the Best of Me, Ning Baizura. – Courtesy of Brian Yim

Do you plan to release this song in other languages?

“I may record this song in Mandarin, but now that all recording studios are closed (due to the partial lockdown to prevent the spread of Covid-19), I will probably do it when the opportunity arises.”

You have written many songs that are uplifting and spiritual in the past. How do you remain optimistic despite what is going on around you?

“I am a Christian and I believe that God is in control of all circumstances. Although we may not understand why things are happening around us, especially now, there is nothing we can do by worrying.”

You have worked with autistic children before, and even wrote a song for them to perform at DFP. Do you still work with autistic children?

“Children with learning disabilities will always hold a special place in my heart. I don’t work with large groups anymore.

“I do give private lessons on weekends. It is hard to find a teacher who has the skill and patience to nurture their talents.”

What is next for you?

“The next big thing for me is to organise the International Junior Fashion Week 2020, which is scheduled to take place at the end of the year. It will be the first of its kind in Asia.”

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