Usher Sings The Language

Usher performed his first-ever concert in China, at the Wukesong Arena in Beijing July 11 as part of his Asian tour, which also took him to Manila, Taipei and Seoul.

For two songs he shared the stage with Chinese superstar Wang Leehom. Usher sang a few lines in Chinese during a duet of Wang’s hit “My One and Only,” of which Usher said he has become a big fan. Then the two joined together in English on Usher’s hit, “OMG.”

“I wanted to make a great impression,” Usher told the Chicago Sun-Times earlier. “So I wanted to do something very special. After hearing [Wang’s] music, I wanted to collaborate with him.”

Wang Li, a spokesman for Taihe Media, the concert organizer, told the Global Times that Usher wanted to “see the current trend of mixing traditional Chinese music and R&B” at the concert, and had invited “counterpart” artists to perform with him on stage, including Wang, Jay Chou and Wilber Pan, all of whom have cited Usher as an influence. Only Wang accepted the invitation.

Usher also told the Sun-Times that he came to China because he knows there’s an audience for him.

Before the concert, many clubs in Beijing organized Usher-themed parties, with one venue reporting that more than 200 Usher fans showed up to show off their mimickry of the star’s vocals and dance moves.