“Motown to the Mekong is a recording project for CSP and it's also something that is being filmed and documented for a movie. It's not your regular 'band goes to studio to record album' project as we're opening the studio door to the public and sharing the process through blogging and writing. ...there's a cross-cultural 'music friendship' outcome - something that looks into the back catalogue of Cambodian rock'n'roll and at the convergence points of Western (Motown) and Eastern music cultures: This is mostly music that we'd today describe as Vietnam War era soundtrack.” - Julien Poulson of The Cambodian Space Project – click here to read the full Q&A.
Space Project lead singer Kak Chantty, record producer Jim Diamond, author Clinton Walker, singer Em Vun and Drakkar Band leader Touch Tana will all be taking part in a special event at The Exchange in Phnom Penh this Friday night. The panel will be discussing the 1960's and 1970's era of Cambodian rock'n'roll: 'how and why the scene began, where it is today, and where Cambodia's flourishing music revival might be heading'. The event, part of the 'Motown to The Mekong' tour, will also feature a live performance of several leading 'Cambodian Women of Song' – including The Messenger Band, Miss Sarawan, Socheata Keo (Kok Thlok), Lue Thy (Bokor Mountain Magic Band) and Kak Channtty of CSP.
Here Be Dragons will be the place to be on Saturday night, when the 'Motown to The Mekong' tour bus will come rolling in to Battambang for a full show by The Cambodian Space Project. Dragons is a popular guest house which is occasionally transformed into a rocking music venue. To read more about the tour and all the latest CSP news, check out the Leng Pleng Q&A session with band leader Julien Poulson.
|Moi Tiet at The FCC – pic: Steve Porte|
In Phnom Penh on Saturday, Scott Bywater's Moi Tiet will perform an evening of all-original songs at Sharky Bar. Scott contacted Leng Pleng to tell us more about the evolving line-up of the band, featuring a muscular sound, emanating from three individual guitar-players: “more powerful than loud, with each instrument its own sound combining into something that resembles the kind of music you'd find on the radio when I was in high school. A recent burst of writing has also brought some new songs into the repertoire, including a couple of new Phnom Penh inspired tunes, 'On The Boulevard' and 'Many Ways To Love A City.'”
Scott Bywater has also been busy at the newly-revamped Oscar Bar on Street 104 (The venue has moved upstairs to the more spacious environs of the former 'Colonial Bar'). The excellent resident 'Oscar Band' features a rotating cast of local musicians. You can find Scott performing there each Thursday. There are also plans for a series of special gigs featuring guest bands – keep an eye on Leng Pleng for forthcoming news. In the meantime, Oscar's house band will be performing an extra show at Sharky Bar on Friday night!
The self-professed 'elusive, exclusive and reclusive' Phnom Penh-based band Krom have just released a new short film, produced by Tim Purdie and Bunhom Chhorn. Check out the Youtube link below for a twenty-minute journey into the music and history of this unique and uncompromising group.
Whatever you're up to over the next few days, stay safe out there and... see you around the traps!
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