Kevin Lien: Almost Famous

by Kathy Nguyen, The Poly Post

Dressed in a black jacket, blue jeans and Adidas shoes, Kevin Lien looks just like any other Cal Poly Pomona student as he nonchalantly strolls through the mall.

Out of nowhere, he is stopped by a group of Asian high school girls. They ask him if he really is Kevin Lien.

Yes, he is.

"I get stopped when there is a large amount of people in my demographic on YouTube," said Lien. "When I go to a mall from 4 to 9, it could happen. Whenever I'm in Rowland Heights or Hacienda Heights, it could happen. When I'm in Irvine, it always happens."

With more than 48,000 subscribers on YouTube and 13,000 "likes" on Facebook, Lien has been steadily rising in popularity and fame.

Lien, known for producing full studio tracks from scratch by himself, covers songs such as Taeyang's "Wedding Dress" and Katy Perry's "Firework."

"Every once in a while, when I was sick of school, I would just record songs in my dorm room," said Lien, a fourth-year chemical engineering student. "That's pretty much where I am now, except I don't live in the dorms anymore."

Lien was also the winner of a heated competition last week, where he won $5,000 after his opponent pulled out last minute.

He plans to buy more equipment with his winnings.

"Not that many people know about my equipment, but I have the cheapest equipment known to man," said Lien. "I've owned the same microphone and microphone interface since 2006. I bought both of those combined for less than $300. So I can finally upgrade my equipment and make some better quality faster, for everybody."

Lien said it takes from 100 to 150 hours to create and produce a full studio track.

"All the mixing, mastering, producing, arranging: it's all me," said Lien. "That's the main reason it takes so long."

His top priority is school when it is in session, but his weekends are reserved for making music.

"I don't look at music as being a practical, steady career," said Lien. "It's something that I love to do, and I'm blessed to be making some sort of income off it, but chemical engineering is what I want to do as a career."

Lien said he started singing as soon as he could talk, but his parents forced him into playing piano when he was six years old.

He took private piano lessons until he entered high school. He plays the violin, cello and bass.

"I picked up other instruments on the way because I was sick of playing the same instruments over and over again, and my parents would force me to play these instruments," said Lien. "I kept trying more and more until I got to the point where I realized I was kind of proficient in all the instruments I actually tried to get good at. I used that to my advantage and started producing music as opposed to just listening to it."

Lien said that his mainstream influences are Michael Jackson, Brian McKnight and Ne-Yo. He describes his own voice as pop rock but said the tracks he releases on YouTube can vary.

His voice is strong but versatile, easily adapting to tracks such as Beyonce's "Halo" and a soft, acoustic version of Jason Derulo's "In My Head."

"I think his voice sounds like pop rock and blues," said Michael Dehesa, a third-year chemical engineering student.

Lien's most well known track is his English cover of the Korean song "Wedding Dress" in June 2009, which garnered more than 800,000 views on YouTube.

Due to the track's popularity, Lien admits most of his fans are Asian. Lien said 75 percent of his fans are 13 to 17-year-old Asian girls from Southern California.

Lien's friends say he has not let his newfound popularity go to his head.

"He's always busy and I don't see him as often," said Largoza. "But he's still the same guy."

Lien said his success would not have been possible without the support of his fans.

"To be honest, it's my close friends who supported me from the beginning," said Lien. "It's my family for being supportive of me and they helped me spread the word but most of all, the people [who] choose to listen to me. And they choose to spread the love to their friends. It's just the average YouTube viewer that takes the time to show love. It's 100 percent the viewers.

"I'm going to make music either way. Even if people didn't like it, I'll still be making music the way I am now."

Serts' Facial Skin Care

WonTonDJ: lol serts, just wash yo face and drink alot of water
dj_serts: ahhhhh
WonTonDJ: and apply jizz
dj_serts: thats y i have a lot of acne
WonTonDJ: joke lanngg
dj_serts: i dont drink water
dj_serts: HAHAHA
veronicaty: pro active didnt work for my dad lol
dj_serts: i dont wash my face
veronicaty: but it worked for my cousin
dj_serts: i just jizz all over my face
kimmy0104: proactiv is too strong for me
melmyfinger: HAHAHAHA SERTS
melmyfinger: HAHAHAHAHA
melmyfinger: HAHAHA
dj_serts: made it bad
rheart: proactives sucks
dj_serts: HAHAHAHA
WonTonDJ: Great source of facial protien
melmyfinger: serts, do you peel it off then when it dries?
veronicaty: lol
melmyfinger: like a face mask!
rheart: lol
melmyfinger: HAHAH
KevinLien: peel?
veronicaty: omg mel!
veronicaty: lol
dj_serts: LMFAOOOOO
kimmy0104: ROFLMAO!
kimmy0104: sert
dj_serts: face mask
kimmy0104: LOLLL
dj_serts: WTF
dj_serts: like elmers glue bro
kimmy0104: WOW mel ROFLMAO
veronicaty: omg serts
melmyfinger: make sure you get that T-zone, serts
xo_ginalove: ............
veronicaty: lol
melmyfinger: hahahahaahahaha
veronicaty: !
veronicaty: wow

Why You Should Never Post Your Number in a Chatroom

@[RaelynneRosales]( i saw something protrude from your vagina today. what the hell?[kevinlien]( wthell are you talking about?! Lol[ÃœberTwitter](

What the hell is Kevin talking about? Let me take you back to the beginning...

About a month ago, Benny Luo is logging off Skype and he posts his phone number in the chat. "Everyone, just text me your name so I know which number is yours." logs off

Sorry Benny, but where's the fun in that? bwahahahahah

So instead, for the next few days, everyone from the Skype chat anonymously bombards him with dirty text messages.

As for me, I have two phone numbers (my Google Voice number which I always give out, and my non-Google number which I never use). I eventually 'fess up to Benny and tell him that the really gay texts were from me (my Google number).

But I never tell him about my non-Google number.

One night I overhear Benny on BlogTV asking Raelynne, "Hey, which one is your number?" Rae, my partner in crime, plays along and tells him, "oh, it's a 562 number." I quickly text him from my 562 non-Google number, "hey its rae lol".

"Got it, Rae! Thanks," says Benny.

Fast forward to this past week. I'm at the mall and randomly I see a mannequin that is modeling underwear. I figure "Eh, it might come in handy one day," so I take a close up shot of the crotch.

Anyways, last night, I find out that Benny is at the "Eat Drink Pink" event and he's had quite a few drinks. It was evident to me because when Gina asked him where he was, he texted back, "I don't"

I decide it is the perfect time to send him that picture...but of course, from the number that he thinks is Raelynne's.

Later that night I notice this conversation on Twitter:

@[RaelynneRosales]( i saw something protrude from your vagina today. what the hell?less than a minute ago via web

@[kevinlien]( wtheck?![ÃœberTwitter](

@[RaelynneRosales]( haha i'm serious!less than a minute ago via web

@[kevinlien]( wthell are you talking about?! Lol[ÃœberTwitter](

@[RaelynneRosales]( haha benny showed me a picture message you sent him. it was quite graphic hahaless than a minute ago via web

@[kevinlien]( hahaha ohhh from the number he thinks is my number??[ÃœberTwitter](

@[RaelynneRosales]( LOL! THAT'S SO SAD. WHAT?!less than a minute ago via web

Bwahahahahaha, mission accomplished!

And if you're wondering what the picture looked like, here it is:

The End.

Love you, Benny!