jj bassette

Official website of American musician, composer, and entrepreneur JJ Bassette, a 23 year old California kid currently banging on pianos all over China.

Dear Donald Trump

Everything I want to say to Donald Trump in 90 seconds:

JJ Bassette

P.S. "22," the official (English) EP of my work here in China, is now available on Spotify and iTunes.  Been hard at work on new material these last two months - am looking forward to sharing it with all of you once it's ready to go.

P.P.S. Remember that 3000-character, officially-fluent-in-less-than-a-year Mandarin Chinese exam I mentioned?  I PASSED! :D


The most ambitious deadline I've ever given myself.

I know, I know, it's been forever since my last post.  Truth be told, I've been up against one the most ambitious deadlines I've ever given myself, and have been working around the clock to make it happen:

Fluency in Mandarin Chinese, in less than a year.

And while no test can perfectly assess fluency, the HSK V test (Reading, Listening, and Writing 3,000 characters) comes pretty close.  It's used as the official benchmark for whether or not a foreign student can study at a Chinese-language University, and by employers to see if an applicant can handle a Chinese work environment.  Think the "SAT" of learning Chinese.

This level of the exam is expected to take 4-6 years of coursework to complete.  Exactly one year from the date I first started teaching myself Chinese, I'm sitting for the exam on Saturday.  

So, every day for the last month or so has been comprised of 30-50 new words a day, hundreds of flashcards, reading exercises, lessons, and the like.  I'm still rather nervous and am anxious to get the exam over with, but am proud of the fact that I expect to pass - thus completing one of my major goals in coming to China.  (Even if it meant my music being put on hold for a couple weeks.)

Needless to say, I'll be back up and running shortly, and am so excited to be sharing a new album with all of you in September!


My Religion

"My Religion," a rare live cut from JJ's first performance in China.


Exactly 6 months ago Sunday marks the first time I performed any of my music here in Shanghai.  Brand new to China and eager to get feedback on the bilingual songs I'd scraped together, I gathered a bunch of friends (and local friends of friends), crammed them in my apartment, and played them my work.  (Nervous, of course, that they'd hate my music and I'd moved halfway around the world for nothing.)

Thankfully, that wasn't the case, and their enthusiastic insight was the basis for what became my official channel 4 months later.  

Here's one of their favorite performances from that evening, as they heard it 6 months ago:

That night sometimes feels like yesterday, and sometimes feels like 6 years ago!  It's been so rewarding to see my audience in China and abroad grow from 20 people in a room to what it is now.  See you next Monday!

JJ Bassette

P.S. Happy 4th of July!  Not much of a holiday here.