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Top American Musician Vies for Right to Compose Beijing Olympics Theme Song

  • Luis Ramirez

Leading American music producer Quincy Jones is offering to write a theme song for the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. The music star says he made the offer after being entranced by his first visit to China.

Quincy Jones beamed Wednesday as he told reporters about his first few days in China, with Olympic officials and television executives treating him to lavish meals and entertainment.

"Between the food, and the culture, and the beautiful people, beautiful ladies, incredible ladies - the most beautiful, beautiful women I've ever seen in my life, whew! Oh, good God. I don't know how you're going to translate that. It's amazing. I've several times considered selling my home in California and staying here," he said.

Jones, who is 73-years-old, has a music career that spans more than five decades. The albums he has produced, including Michael Jackson's Thriller, are among the best selling in history.

He calls the Olympics a fantastic event that brings the world together, and he says everything in his career has led up to writing the theme for the 2008 games.

The musician says he would not accept money for writing the song. He says he wants to do it simply because it feels good.

"I go with the goose-bumps first, something that turns me on, I go with it. My heart, my passion, I will do that until the day I die. The money comes later. That's something else. You could put $5 million on a piano and put it next to that. They do not speak to each other. This is not about [making] money. I've already done that," he said.

He also says he has no reservations about doing artistic work in China, a country where experts estimate that 90 percent of music and movies sold are pirated.

"I'm very aware of the 90 percent piracy here. It's bad everywhere on the planet," he said.

Chinese Olympic organizers say a competition for the 2008 theme song will continue for the next two years. They say 500 songs and 5,000 lyrics have been submitted so far.

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