Thursday, August 16, 2018

wara worawet: phleng banleng khrueangsai phasom, vol. 7

artist: วราห์ วรเวช / วงเครื่องสายผสม คณะ วัชรบรรเลง (wara worawet & wong khrueang sai phasom khana watcharabanleng)
album: เพลงบรรเลงเครื่องสายผสม ชุดที่ 7 แสนคำนึง (phleng banleng khrueang sai phasom, vol. 7: saen kham nueng)
01. แสนคำนึง (saen kham nueng)
02. ครวญหา (khruan ha)
03. แสนสุดสวาท (saen sut sawat)
04. สุดสงวน (sut sanguan)
05. สารถี (sarathi)
06. สาวสอดแหวน (sao sot waen)

this week's cassette is part of a generous bequest gifted to us by educator cliff sloane, a former professor of ethnomusicology and founder of, a major influence behind this blog.

this week, we'll hear our second entry from wara worawet! a physician by profession (graduating from the university of pennsylvania in 1961) mr. wara was also a prolific songwriter (having a number of luk krung & thai sakon-style hits to his name) as well as a leader of the musical association of thailand under patronage of his majesty the king. on this cassette, he tries his hand at the prayuk movement, a trend of "modernizing" thai classical music to appeal to an increasingly cosmopolitan local audience. in particular, this recording features a khrueang sai phasom or "combined string" ensemble, conducted by suwit bowonwatthana, and based on the traditional thai string ensemble (which typical featured so u and so duang fiddles, chakhe plucked zithers, khlui flute and percussion). to my ear, the phasom aspect regards the addition of accordion, chinese-style dulcimer, and perhaps some other elements that a more astute listener than i could divine? the repertoire features work from a number of prominent thai composers including luang pradit phairo (son sinlapabanleng), luang sano duriyang (thongdi thongphirun), luang sano duriyang (thongdi thongphirun), montri tramot, and phra pradit phairo (mi duriyangkun), several of which are based on more ancient melodies and which in turn feature further arrangement by mr. wara.. enjoy!


Monday, August 6, 2018

grand ex': duang duean

artist: แกรนด์เอ็กซ์ (grand ex')
album: ดวงเดือน (duang duean)
01. ลาวดวงเดือน (lao duang duean)
02. เหมือนไม่เคย (muean mai khoei)
03. ถ้าฉันจะรัก (tha chan cha rak)
04. ดวงใจในฝัน (duang chai nai fan)
05. เท่านี้ก็ตรม (thao ni ko trom)
06. จำพราก (cham phrak)
07. ร.รอรัก (r. ro rak)
08. ธรณีสายเลือด (thorani sai lueat)
09. ทำบุญด้วยอะไร (tham bun duai arai)
10. กาลเวลา (kan wela)
11. พรุ่งนี้ (phrung ni)
12. เนื้อทองของพี่ (nuea thong khong phi)
13. ลาวดวงเดือน [ดนตรี] (lao duang duean [instrumental])

this cassette was a generous gift from our pal sam of the (now sadly defunct) archive of southeast asian music!

this week, more great 1980's thai city-pop! founded in 1970 by nakhon wetsuphaphon and friends at bangkok's bophit phimuk college, grand ex' (like last week's royal sprites) got their start playing at nightclubs and string combo competitions around the capitol. the group carved out a niche for themselves by eschewing the hard rock image popular with other local groups, preferring a straight-laced look complete with dress shirts and neckties. they went through a range of personnel changes before settling on a line-up with chamrat sawetaphon (who would later found the ubiquitous new-age label green music) on lead vocals and starting their recording career. this cassette contains their 14th album, from 1984, wherein the group build slick, jazzy, electronic disco-crossover songs out of older classical and luk krung melodies. enjoy!