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

Weekly Wrap - Commencing Thursday the 17th March 2016

For one day in the year, people all over the world suddenly remember that their third cousin's aunt's grandfather was half-Irish. St Patrick's Day is a great excuse to drink a few glasses of stout and listen to some questionable renditions of Irish folk songs. And why not in Cambodia? After all, the Sihanoukville-brewed 'Black Panther' is basically the same as Guinness, right? The 17th March has not yet been made an official public holiday in Cambodia, but that will not prevent the Irish diaspora in Phnom Penh from heading down to a couple of Celtic music flavoured events this evening. Kheltica will be bringing their full line-up (complete with an actual Irishman lead singer) to FCC – The Mansion tonight. The large ensemble includes fiddles, flutes, bass, drums and many other instruments. Meanwhile, at Paddy Rice, the O'Rigleys acoustic quartet will perform appropriately Irish material on fiddle, mandolin, guitar and cajon. 

Kheltica: they play Celtic music. pic - www.kenedgar.com

The Soundtrek Project have, once again, extended their visas and decided to stay a little longer in 'The Kingdom of Wonder'. As word reaches the Leng Pleng newsdesk of one final 'last gig' for this group of Parisian students, one cannot help but remember the Irish drinking song 'One More Drink For The Four of Us'. The residents of Battambang will surely not be complaining as Soundtrek bring their lively brass band performance into street number two-and-a-half, right outside Lotus Bar & Gallery, on Friday.

Two excellent early-evening musical choices are available in Phnom Penh on Friday. Conrad Keely will be reprising his solo acoustic show at Farm to Table, while Danzo Ke'aloha will perform an experimental live set at Show Box. Conrad is riding the momentum of his recent debut solo album release and some memorable Cambodian performances at Meta House, The Exchange and Golden Street. At Show Box, Danzo will be unveiling 'a unique infusion of 80's new wave, psychedelic & synth pop, performed with an arsenal of vintage electronic instruments, layered with dreamy guitars & ethereal vocal work' – sounds like a very interesting evening!

Oscar bringing the house down - pic: Jim Heston
Oscar's Pub is a new venue on Street 104, an expansion of the great-but-tiny late night live music staple Oscar Bar. Oscar will be opening his new venture in the space formerly occupied by the 'Colonial Bar'. Oscar's Pub will be launched in true rocking style by bands Bob Passion & The Schkoots (Friday night) and The Kampot Playboys (Saturday night). Details of the space are scant but any new stage for live bands to play in Phnom Penh is a good thing.

Proving that great music in Phnom Penh is not limited to weekends, Clay George will be performing for an event at Tama/D22 on the very top of the Phnom Penh tower this Tuesday night. On the same evening, Japan Guitar Shop – near Russian Market - will hold their monthly open mic jam session. Each weekday evening at Sofitel, Chaktomuk Band will perform at Le Bar. This sextet of Cambodian musicians is well worth checking out. The elegant band comprises of piano, violin, bass, drums, flute and voices. Some of the best musicians in the country perform classical instrumental pieces alongside Western pop tunes and Cambodian songs.

Leng Pleng will leave you with this cool video of Chhom Nimol and the Don't Think I've Forgotten Band performing some timeless Cambodian rock'n'roll during their tour of North America last year. Whatever you're up to over the next few days... stay safe out there and... see you around the traps!  


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