You may not have heard of Harry Harding, or Hazza as he is known in China, but he is a familiar face on television screens to millions of people across Guangdong Province, the most populous province of the country. He is also the only foreign television host in the province signed by state media.
Hazza first came to fame in China in 2011, after posting covers of Chinese pop songs to Chinese video sharing websites, amassing more than 100 million hits.
Since then, he has scored a daily radio news segment, and anchors GDTV World’s flagship news program, but is also a regular on local entertainment programs for the GRT network, Guangdong’s largest state-owned television media group.
When not sitting behind the news desk, however, Hazza spends much of his time in a different kind of studio, recording music.
Amid growing tensions between Australia and China, the Australian television host released his latest single, “I Was Wrong,” on Apple Music and Spotify, among other platforms, on August 2. A video was also posted to his Facebook fan page.
“Music knows no borders, neither does love,” Hazza said in a statement about the song. The single is a ballad, and describes a recent personal loss he experienced, though further details weren’t shared.
“Producing this song was a form of therapy. I experienced a huge personal loss in December of 2019, and then COVID-19 hit, so I did not really get a chance to process. Releasing this song is a way for me to let go and move on,” Hazza said while speaking about the release of the song to local media.
A fiercely private person, Hazza has maintained a fairly low profile on social media. Though during the pandemic, he has become the foreign face in the fight against COVID-19 in Guangzhou, after he went viral online for asking China’s leading respiratory expert, Dr. Zhong Nanshan, how he could convince his friends and family back home to wear masks.
He was also awarded China’s most prestigious journalism award, the China News Award, in 2016, becoming the first Australian to do so.
In 2012, Hazza released his first single, “Let Go,” which peaked at #1 on the local music charts in Guangzhou, and remained on the “Guangzhou New Music Chart” for eight straight weeks.