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The Leng Pleng Gig Guide comes out on a Thursday or Friday of every week

Weekly Wrap - Week Commencing Thursday the 8th May 2014

Friday sees the welcome return of The Underdogs to Equinox. The six-strong group of young Cambodian musicians carry a strong reverence for the 'Golden Era' of Cambodian rock'n'roll – the singularly bizarre and wonderful catalogue of songs recorded in the short historical period between the escalation of the Vietnam War and the fall of General Lon Nol's Khmer Republic. The Underdogs perform vigorous covers of classics created by great artists such as Ros Sereysothea and Sinn Sisamouth in the late 1960's and early-to-mid 1970's.

The Underdogs by Ken Edgar
Jimmy Kiss has a very direct link to the 'Golden Era' through his father Vor Sarun – the 'Bontorng Ksaey Ko Sak Seiy' singer once known as the 'James Brown of Cambodia'. Jimmy is a great vocalist in his own right comfortable performing in front of a bombastic rock'n'roll band, a traditional orchestra or even... a lone ukulele. The barrel-chested singer-songwriter from Phnom Penh is one part of the very successful Songkites project and also one of the latest voices to join the fantastic raggamuffin-reggae band Dub Addiction. Read more about Jimmy's story here in a recent Leng Pleng interview. On Thursday night, Jimmy performs solo at Doors Phnom Penh as part of The Acoustic Sessions, accompanying himself on guitar and ukulele. He is joined by Joe Wrigley and Roxane Dumonteach performing individual sets of originals and covers.

Corazon Latino are a slick and polished musical outfit operating out of Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. This Saturday they visit Phnom Penh for a show at FCC – The Mansion. Corazon spice things up with three energetic singer-dancers and a backline of keyboards, guitar and percussion. Their party-orientated Latino show should be something a little fun and out of the ordinary in Phnom Penh this weekend. The band told Leng Pleng that 'every scene is special because each one has a different magic. It is essentially the public who makes the night. It is our first time [in Phnom Penh] and we hope that the public can enjoy our music and Latin dances'.

Philippe Javelle and Lewis Pragasam continue to offer something different every Sunday evening at Riverhouse Asian Bistro. At this week's Velvet Moves they are joined by DJ Lefty Stryker for a night of funky music combining 'percussive loops, saxual notes and vocal improvs'.

Otres Beach, Sihanoukville is a good place to spend any given weekend but will be particularly fruitful for gig-seekers this Saturday and Sunday. Michelle Flemming returns from the Himalayas to headline a roster of acts performing at The Barn. Michelle ('The Voice of Holland') is a real musical talent and a great soul singer. The Barn is a live music venue on the site of Otres Market, a couple of kilometres inland from Otres Beach. Read more about the unique project in the Leng Pleng article 'One Night at Otres Market'.

Any cool cats languishing around Otres on Sunday evening can catch Khmer singer Miss Sarawan perform an acoustic gig at Wish You Were Here guesthouse. Like The Underdogs, Sarawan is on a mission to keep the flame of the 'Golden Era' burning with spirited renditions of Houy Meas and Pan Ron classics. The diminutive diva returns to Phnom Penh on Monday for a show at Cabaret Restaurant, followed by a performance on Wednesday at FCC – The Mansion
Miss Sarawan by Jim Heston
In parting, here is a video of the great Jimmy Kiss singing at The Mansion a few months ago.

Until next time, stay safe out there and.... see you around the traps!



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