Gary Chaw

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Gary Chaw
Gary Chaw performing on 15 March 2009
Chaw Pak Haw (Chinese :曹佰豪; pinyin :Cáo Bǎiháo)

(1979-07-09) 9 July 1979 (age 39)
Kota Belud, Sabah, Malaysia
Nationality Flag of Malaysia.svg Malaysian
Years active2006–present
Spouse(s)Wu Sou Ling (Chinese :吳速玲; pinyin :Wú Sùlíng)
ChildrenJoe Chaw (Chinese :曹三豐; pinyin :Cáo Sānfēng) (son)
Grace Chaw (Chinese :曹華恩; pinyin :Cáo Huá'ēn) (daughter)
Awards Golden Melody AwardsBest Male Mandarin Artist 2008 Super Sunshine

Musical career
Also known asGary Cao, Cao Ge
Origin Malaysia
Genres Mandopop, R&B
LabelsJoe's Music
Associated acts SENSATION, MUSA's

Gary Chaw (born 9 July 1979 in Kota Belud, Sabah, Malaysia), also known as Gary Cao or Cao Ge, is a Malaysian Chinese singer-songwriter based in Taiwan, who has had achieved success in Taiwan, Mainland China, Malaysia, Hong Kong, and Singapore. He is renowned for his stage presence, wide vocal range, and rich voice. In addition, he composes for himself and other singers.

Kota Belud District Capital in Sabah, Malaysia

Kota Belud is the capital of the Kota Belud District in the West Coast Division of Sabah, Malaysia. Its population was estimated to be around 8,392 in 2010. It is roughly at the midpoint of the federal highway connecting the state capital, Kota Kinabalu, and Kudat, near the northern tip of Sabah. The town is considered as the unofficial capital and gateway to the heartland of the West Coast Bajau people.

Malaysia Federal constitutional monarchy in Southeast Asia

Malaysia is a country in Southeast Asia. The federal constitutional monarchy consists of 13 states and three federal territories, separated by the South China Sea into two similarly sized regions, Peninsular Malaysia and East Malaysia. Peninsular Malaysia shares a land and maritime border with Thailand in the north and maritime borders with Singapore in the south, Vietnam in the northeast, and Indonesia in the west. East Malaysia shares land and maritime borders with Brunei and Indonesia and a maritime border with the Philippines and Vietnam. Kuala Lumpur is the national capital and largest city while Putrajaya is the seat of federal government. With a population of over 30 million, Malaysia is the world's 44th most populous country. The southernmost point of continental Eurasia, Tanjung Piai, is in Malaysia. In the tropics, Malaysia is one of 17 megadiverse countries, with large numbers of endemic species.

Malaysian Chinese ethnic group

The Malaysian Chinese consist of people of Chinese—particularly Han Chinese—ancestry who were born in or immigrated to Malaysia. The great majority of this group of people are descendants of those who arrived between the early 19th century and the mid-20th century. They are traditionally dominant in the business sector of the Malaysian economy.



Chaw lived with his grandfather since he was 11 months old as his parents separated when he was 9 months old. He received his early education in Canada when he was 9. He later went on to continue his studies in Engineering at the University of Auckland in New Zealand. However, he left New Zealand before completing his studies. He can speak Mandarin, Cantonese, English, French, Hakka, Hokkien & Malay fluently.

University of Auckland university in New Zealand

The University of Auckland is the largest university in New Zealand, located in the country's largest city, Auckland. It is the highest-ranked university in the country, being ranked 85th worldwide in the 2018/19 QS World University Rankings. Established in 1883 as a constituent college of the University of New Zealand, the university is made up of eight faculties; these are spread over six campuses. It has more than 40,000 students, and more than 30,000 "equivalent full-time" students.



In 2010 he joined BMA and has since been dubbed "Asia Best Male Singer" by the media. His most recent concert tour of Asia, "Welcome to My World" was a great success. Chaw is renowned for his impressive vocal range, such that he was considered androgynous when he made his debut. He has often covered songs that ranged from tenor, such as "Moon River", to songs that are mezzo-soprano range, such as "Ting Hai". Including chest and mix voices, his vocal range is from G3 to C6. He also sang "My Way" by Frank Sinatra switching between low tenor to countertenor range. [1]

Androgyny is the combination of masculine and feminine characteristics into an ambiguous form. Androgyny may be expressed with regard to biological sex, gender identity, gender expression, or sexual identity. The different meanings of androgyny point to the complex interrelationship between aspects of sex, gender, and sexuality.

Tenor is a male voice type in classical music whose vocal range lies between the countertenor and baritone. The tenor's vocal range extends up to C5. The low extreme for tenors is roughly A2 (two As below middle C). At the highest extreme, some tenors can sing up to the second F above middle C (F5). The tenor voice type is generally divided into the leggero tenor, lyric tenor, spinto tenor, dramatic tenor, heldentenor, and tenor buffo or spieltenor.

A mezzo-soprano or mezzo (, ; Italian: [ˈmɛddzo soˈpraːno] meaning "half soprano") is a type of classical female singing voice whose vocal range lies between the soprano and the contralto voice types. The mezzo-soprano's vocal range usually extends from the A below middle C to the A two octaves above (i.e. A3–A5 in scientific pitch notation, where middle C = C4; 220–880 Hz). In the lower and upper extremes, some mezzo-sopranos may extend down to the F below middle C (F3, 175 Hz) and as high as "high C" (C6, 1047 Hz). The mezzo-soprano voice type is generally divided into the coloratura, lyric, and dramatic mezzo-soprano.

In 2008 he composed and sang a song for the 2008 Beijing Olympics that was released in a Rock records CD called "Far away" (一起飞). [2] The album was titled after the song he composed. Other Rock Records artists that took part include Genie Zhuo, 2moro, Alien Huang, Tracy Zhou.

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In 2006 Chaw won Hong Kong TVB8's Best Newcomer Singer award. [3] His big break occurred with the release of his Mandarin version of Karyn White's 1988 song "Superwoman". With this song, he won the Best Mandarin Male singer in the 19th Golden Melody Awards. [4] Since then he has released a number of albums.

TVB8 was a Mandarin language general entertainment television channel owned and operated by TVB International.

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Superwoman (Karyn White song) 1989 single by Karyn White

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Gary has written some chart-topping songs in Taiwan sung by S.H.E, Cyndi Wang, and Aaron Kwok (Aaron already had accepted songs written by him as early as his first EP, before Gary even started his career back in Malaysia). In a recent interview with MTV, Chaw admitted (fluently in English) that he is a shy guy who does not express himself well through words but relatively well enough in the songs he sings. His early influences came from admiration of Stevie Wonder and R. Kelly.

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Early years

Ting Hai, a song originally sung by A-Mei, was also a song he sang at a KTV bar in Malaysia in its original key right in front of its composer and arranger, Michael Tu (涂惠源), and he became his reference and supporter to start his career in Taiwan back in 2001. [5] (The other two songs he sang that night was Dark Humor by Jay Chou and Duo De Ta by Faye Wong (Cantonese version of "SuperWoman.) In 2002 Chaw left his home in Malaysia to go to Taiwan with hopes of joining the entertainment show business. He purchased a one-way plane ticket and brought with him only around RM1,600 (about HK$4,000). [4] He tried to get into numerous record companies who criticised him harshly for being ugly and lacking talent. [4] After many failures Chaw became an alcoholic, battled insomnia, unemployment, suffered from severe depression, loss of friends and confidence. [4] He soon hit rock bottom when he attempted suicide by sedative overdose. [6] It was only in 2004 that he was signed by Rock Records when he recovered from insomnia, but his alcohol-fuelled incidents still plagued him until 2013 when he finally decided to give up drinking.

One day he went out to Shilin Night Market. [4] He stumbled across a homeless cat with no owner. He took this cat home and raised it since they both were unwanted by society. [4] He named it "Lin Lin" and wrote a song for the cat "The world's only you" (世界唯一的你). [4] From then on, his career completely changed. After three years of hard work, he signed with Rock Records. [4]


Approaching the end of 2011, Gary, along with his producer & teacher, Michael Tu (涂惠源), launched "Project SENSATION" – a new experimental music project or the more appropriately, a new music label. At the same time the band released a limited debut single "All I Have to Do is Dream", solely available in the 1st mini-concert of SENSATION. The new-formed band members included Gary (vo.), and members from MUSA's: Martin "Musa" Musaubach (piano), Lautaro "LuKa" Bellucca (bass & double bass) & Adriano "Gaofei" Moreira (dr. & per.).

In 2012 June, "Gary Chaw Project Sensation 1: JAZZ" released. Soon enough the band started their tour in Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong during the summertime.

Competition Singer and in the Chinese market (2014-present)

In 2014, Chaw entered I Am A Singer 2, and was the first singer to be eliminated, but returned on the repêchage to finish in the top 5.

In 2015, Chaw entered The Chinese version of The Masked Singer, using the mask of Sun Wukong as a disguise, but was instantly recognised by fans online due to his previous performances in other competitions or appearances. He was the first replacement singer, and came second in leg 2, while being eliminated in the first round in legs 3 and 4, meaning he is at risk of being eliminated from the competition in leg 5.

Personal life

In 2008, Chaw married Wu Sou Ling. They have a son named Joe and a daughter named Grace, whose godfather is Alien Huang. In 2014, Chaw and his kids participated in season 2 of Where Are We Going, Dad?.

Awards and nominations

20066th Global Chinese Music AwardsOutstanding Regional Artiste (Malaysia)Gary ChawWon [7]
Hong Kong TVB8 AwardsBest New Male Artist (Gold)Gary ChawWon [8]
Guang Zhou Golden Melody AwardsBest New Male Artist (Gold)Gary ChawWon
Top 10 Golden Melodies"Superwoman"Won
Malaysia Entertainment AssociationBest Composer"少年" with Guang Liang Won
Top 10 Original Songs"少年" with Guang Liang Won
2007 18th Golden Melody Awards Best Male Mandarin SingerGary ChawNominated
7th Music Chart AwardsBest New ArtistGary ChawWon


Metro Radio Mandarin Music AwardsBest Performance (最佳演繹獎)Gary ChawWon [10]
Best Karaoke Song"兩隻戀人" (Two Lovers)Won
2008 19th Golden Melody Awards Best Male Mandarin SingerGary ChawWon



[11] [12]

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  1. Gary Chaw's reindition of "My Way"
  2. "" 一起飛. Retrieved on 3 April 2010.
  3. "" 曹格成TVB8金曲榜新科霸主 勇夺六项大奖. Retrieved on 3 April 2010.
  4. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 "" 曾吃唱片公司閉門羹 曹格重遊傷心地憶述奮鬥史. Retrieved on 3 April 2010.
  5. 10 Point Hall of Fame – Gary Chaw performs Ting Hai, live with Michael Tu on keyboards
  6. 10 Point Hall of Fame interview with Gary Chaw part 2 of 5 (Chinese)
  7. 6th Global Chinese Music Awards winners list 28 October 2006
  8. 2006 Hong Kong TVB8 Awards winners list 17 December 2006
  9. 7th Music Chart Awards winners list Archived 12 February 2009 at the Wayback Machine 8 April 2007
  10. 2007 Metro Radio Mandarin Music Awards winners list 4 August 2007
  11. Gary Chaw at
  12. Gary Chaw at