I Met Him in Chinatown

Sunday, November 1, 2015
The Walcott

I remember everything, from the moment I first spotted the curly-haired man in orange hippie garb to the moment I tried speaking to him. My memory of that short time is so vivid in my brain, I hope it stays that way even as years go by. 

I was in Singapore with two of my friends and we were there for a music festival. I try to watch my favorite artists whenever I can so, I'm glad my friends do too.

I've always loved music for as long as I can remember.

I remember waking up very early one morning and sneaking off to one corner in the room to listen to Craig David's Born to Do It on my portable cd player. I was mouthing all the lyrics to Rendezvous, trying not make a sound because everyone else was still asleep. But of course, come breakfast, my sister calls me out on it and tells me it didn't seem like I was trying at all to be quiet. Busted! and Yikes! Why was I listening to Craig David at 9 years old?

Anyway, I came to Laneway excited to see a lot of great acts, especially Youth Lagoon. When I came across his music, I instantly felt a connection. It made me feel all sorts of things. Sometimes music does that to me and before I know it, I'm floating.

I started reading about Youth Lagoon and discovered the brilliance of Trevor Powers. I read somewhere that his music is to some extent an extension of himself and feels like pages off his journal. Flash forward to him on stage and me in the crowd. I kept remembering that little piece of information when I was watching him perform. I was in awe of him and his art and I couldn't believe I was there to witness it.

But before all of that, I met him in Chinatown. Here's how I remember meeting Trevor.



A day before Laneway, I was with my friends, Jenica and Yana, and we were on our way to Ann Siang Hill. We rode the MRT until the Chinatown station and chose to exit at the Pagoda St. exit. I remember this because I made a joke about it. We made our way out the underground and was greeted to a busy Chinatown with lanterns decorated for the Chinese New Year, I presume. 


We were right by the mouth of the exit taking photos to Instagram (duh!) when I suddenly saw this man that strongly resembled Trevor Powers. He was a mere 10 feet away with a group of 5 others, also stopped, discussing something amongst themselves.

At this point, I was internally freaking out and I immediately turned to Jenica. I pointed out that this guy looked extremely like Trevor but I wasn't sure it was him.

I was having this internal monologue that "IT TOTALLY WAS HIM!!!" but there is that slight off chance that it could not be him and we'd be embarrassing ourselves to this guy that wasn't Trevor. I just kept thinking how awkward that would be if it turned out to be not him. But then, he turned and I saw his face. He had his glasses on and I was given some reassurance that it could be him. 

Jenica and I were already freaking out and being really embarrassing fangirls. Yana was freaking out too because she had no idea what was happening. I told them I was 80% sure it was the Youth Lagoon and that if we were to approach him, Jenica had to do it. She said, "OK!"

Trevor and his gang have made their way back into the underground. We rushed back and ran down the escalator hoping to catch him. We saw them looking at the station map and so we lingered a few feet away from them. At this point, it was pretty obvious that we weren't there to ride the train. It took a while before Jenica approached Trevor. Once I saw him acknowledge her presence, I made my way towards them.

He immediately greeted us by saying, "Hi, I'm Trevor." We introduced ourselves and I nervously stuttered the words, "We weren't sure if it was you." "It's me! I'm here!" He was so nice to us and asked us if we were going to the show the next day. We then asked to take photos with him and bid farewell. 

I remember getting the shakes really bad. I was trying hard to calm myself and stop shaking but it was no use. Every single part of me was shaking. Even after leaving his presence, it took about 5 minutes before I was back to normal. I mean, who can blame me? It's not everyday you run into someone off Fat Possum in the streets of Singapore.

Laneway Festival Singapore

Having the time to finally detach myself from that experience, I have so many things that I wish I could've done and said. I keep replaying that moment and have all these alternate endings like a DVD bonus feature. You'd think that having met a few famous¹ people already, I'd be good at this. But you never get better, you just get a lot more awkward.

People say, "You should never meet your heroes" and I used to agree with that because after all, "you can't disappoint a picture ."² But after meeting Trevor, I wouldn't mind looking like a nervous wreck in front of Ezra Koenig or Wes Anderson. I'd take that over missing the chance to ever meet either of them. I'd at least have a story to tell my grandkids.


¹ I've met Bastille, Phoenix, The 1975, StarKid (sans Darren Criss), and Facehunter.
² Community reference
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