Where in the world is Fazi? Can the internet help me find him?
Those questions are not rhetorical. I mean, If you know, or you know of someone who knows… shoot me an email or post a message to the board here on the site!
Because, honestly, I really don’t know myself.
Well, I have an idea. I figure that he is still in Beijing. The problem is, I don’t really know for sure. How could that happen?
Well, after several years in China I wanted to get home to somewhere that had In-N-Out, hot weather and beaches. So in early 1997 I came back to Southern California.
I worked for the Hollywood Reporter, wrote reviews for Dramalogue, and became fascinated with the new technology companies of the era and their presence on the stock exchanges. Soon I was working for Smith Barney (and then Citi Smith Barney and then Morgan Stanley Smith Barney).
I figured I would eventually find a way to raise capital and use it to help Fazi launch his successful music career. Meanwhile, email was a thing but after some time my ISP and his ISP went out of business and so our emails changed and we lost touch. That wasn’t really a problem as I sometimes flew back to Beijing and always knew where to find him.
But in 2003 when I visited I found that (as an inevitable result of the amazing expansion in the the city) Fazi had moved out of Hai Dian and into bigger digs above the Fifth Ring Road. I found this out by stopping by the the small apartment off Zhong Guan Cun where his mother and brothers were still living. They called Fazi and he came back and we went over to his new place which also included ownership of a nice new foot massage palace!
Beijing seems to double in size almost every year. Though I knew the city pretty well in 1994, today it stretches from Chong Ping (which used to be, or at least seemed to be, out beyond the semi-rural area to the wilderness) to Da Xing. As Fazi drove I lost all sense of direction and couldn’t find it again if you paid me. No matter, I had his address and phone written down on a card in my wallet. We stayed at his place a while, jammed some music, ate, discussed how having a family and buying a house can crimp a person’s working capital, and then I took a taxi back to my hotel.
The next day I went over to Guo Mao to visit some other old friends. I took out my wallet, paid the driver, and then slipped it back into my pocket. It was then, or shortly after, that the wallet fell out and was lost forever. (I noticed when I went to pay for a drink at the hotel). Retracing my steps was futile. I had lost my ID, my plane ticket, and of course, Fazi’s number.
I was able to replace the ticket at the very last second (only through the help of my amazing friends Felicity Song and Mark Moore, to whom I am forever in debt) but I wasn’t able to retrace my steps to reach Fazi again in time.
So… I’m hoping I’m not the only one who has ever heard of Fazi, or Fa Wei Mon of Beijing. He of the sturdy girth and hair flowing like a Xian warrior. The father of Yuan Ming Yuan rock and roll. The fat Elvis of China. The legend.
If you can help with his search, either by leaving a comment or by forwarding this website address to anyone who might know of him in an attempt to crowdsource the answer, it would be greatly appreciated!
My ultimate goal is to find him, fly him over here to America, cut an album with him, let him meet with music industry people, help resuscitate his career (if he wants to give up the lucrative foot massage trade), and reward him in some way for what I think he deserves (a little acknowledgement for his work, admiration for his songs and evocative voice).
With the help of the incredible reach of the Internet (thanks ARPANET and the National Science Foundation, you guys rock) to contact billions of people around the globe instantly, I want to help him see that his music can still reach a wide audience. And if we can earn him some money I will make sure he gets every penny of it. If that means this site gets a million visitors and his youtube videos get a lot of hits and earn him revenue, then that’s what I think he deserves.
Let’s help him do it! Let’s make the hunt for Fazi go viral! We’d sure appreciate it if you could help out by posting this to your Facebook page, follow and retweet his tweets, etc etc.
Fazi and his cohorts were rare and genuine, ground-breaking for their time, open-minded, fun and friendly, and cross-cultural in a way that was as cool as anything Sly Stone ever did IMHO! The fact that he looks like the guy from the Japanese Aum cult is old history Now I would say he looks more like Ai Wei Wei!!
So… please… pass the address to this website on to a friend or your Facebok page. When we get the results (we find Fazi, etc) I will keep us all updated as to the progress we make via this blog so keep visiting or have it update in your RSS feed or whatever you do to keep up with stuff on the net.