Music lao  ປວັດ ເພງລາວ

                       Western music was introduced into Laos during the French colonial period, and from the 1920s light music was performed widely by local artists in the dance halls, clubs and restaurants of the administrative capital Vientiane, stimulating the composition of home-grown popular ballads in the French style.

                       One of the most prolific composers of this period was Dr Thongdy Sounthonevichit (1905-1968), who wrote the popular songs Lao Houam Samphan,ລາວ ໂຮມສັມພັນ, (‘Joining Together the Lao People’), Teuan Chay Lao,ເຕືອນໃຈລາວ, (‘Thoughts of the Lao Heart’), Lao Houam Vong,ລາວຮວມວົງ, (‘Unifying the Lao People’), Douang Rati,ດວງຣາຕຣີ, (‘Rati Flower’), Yam Leng Thi Vientiane ຍາມແລງທີ່ວຽງຈັນ, (‘Vientiane in the Evening’) and Douang Nhitho,ດວງນິໂຕ, (‘Nhitho Flower’). In 1941 Dr Thongdy wrote the music to Pheng Xat Lao,(ເພງຊາດລາວ), which was adopted in 1947 as the Lao National Anthem. The version performed today uses words by Sisana Sisane.

                        Other important popular composers of the late colonial era included Outama Choulamani ອຸຕຕະມາ ຈຸນລະມານີ,(Champa Muang Lao,ຈຳປາເມືອງລາວ ‘Frangipani of Laos’, Xao Noum,ຊາວໜຸ່ມ ‘Lao Youth’, Louk Seua Lao, ລູກເສືອລາວ‘Lao Scout’, Deuane Ngam Nham Nao,ເດືອນງາມຢາມໜາວ ‘Moon in Winter’, Ded Dok Hak,ເດັດດອກຮັກ ‘Win Your Heart’, Nay Ta Bok,ໃນຕາບອກ ‘Written in Your Eyes’) and Bounthamali Bounsouay, ທ່ານ ບຸນທະມະລີ ບຸນສວາຍ (Sai Lom Yenh,ສາຍລົມເຢັນ ‘Blowing Wind’, Koulab Pakse,ກຸຫລາບປາກເຊ ‘Pakse Rose’).

                        Following the introduction of western-style voice and instrumental training (piano/keyboard, violin, accordion, trombone, trumpet, saxophone, clarinet, flute, guitar, bass, drums) at the new National School of Music and Dance in 1959, a new generation of Lao composers began to emerge.

                         Foremost amongst these were Bounkhong Pradichit ທ່ານ ບຸນທອງ ພຣະດີຈິດ (Kila, Kila, ກິລາກິລາ ‘Sport, Sport’), Soukanh Vilaysane, ທ່ານ ສຸກັນ ວິໄລສານ (Chanh Lap,ຈັນຫລັບ ‘Sleeping Moon’), Phoui Siharath, ທ່ານ ຜຸຍ ສີຫາຣາຊ (Hak Bor Somvang,ຮັກບໍ່ສົມຫວັງ ‘Disappointed Love’), Nang Kongmi, ຍານາງ ກົງມີ(Dok Lila,ດອກລີລາ ‘Lila Flower’) and Kham Ouane Rathannavong, ທ່ານ ຄຳອ້ວນ ຣັຕຕະນະວົງ (Nhouwaxon,ນຸວະຊົນ ‘Boy Pioneer’, Nyouwanari, ນຸວະນາຣີ‘Girl Pioneer’, Champamay,ຈຳປາໃໝ່ ‘New Frangipani’).

                         Other important composers of this period included Chanh Som ທ່ານ ສ.ແສງສິຣິວັນ(Sor Sengsirivanh), Phomma Somsoutthi ທ່ານ ພົມມະ ສົມສຸທິ, Mr Somlith Xayabounsou Sayabounsou ທ່ານ ສົມລິດ ໄຊຍະບູນຊູ , Sanong Ounvong ຍານາງ ສນອງ ອ່ອນວົງ, Somlith Ouanesawatdi ທ່ານ ສົມລິດ ອ້ວນສວັດດີ, Phomma Phimmasone ທ່ານ ພົມມະ ພິມມະສອນ, Sourivath Rattanasawanh ທ່ານ ສຸຣິວັດ ຣັຕຕະສັວນ, Khamla Phetdara ທ່ານ ຄຳຫລ້າ ເພັດດາຣາ, william Ditthavong ທ່ານ ວິນລິອ້ຽມ ດິດທະວົງ, Voradeth Ditthavong ທ່ານ ວໍຣະເດດ ດິດທະວົງ and singer-songwriters Khamla Nokèo ທ່ານ ຄຳຫລ້າ ນໍ່ແກ້ວ and Prixa Tichanh ທ່ານ ພຣິຊາ ທິຈັນ(Potichanh ໂພທິຈັນ).

                          Popular singers of the 1960s and early 1970s included Khamteum Xanoubane ທ່ານ ຄຳເຕີມ ຊານຸບານ, Malivanh Voravong ຍານາງ ມາລິວັນ ວໍຣະວົງ, Chansamone Sinbandith ຍານາງ ຈັນສມອນ ສິງບັນດິດ, Somboune Laokhamthong ຍານາງ ສົມບຸນ ລາວຄຳທອງ, Chanhom Frichittavong ຍານາງ ຈັນຫອມ ຟຣີຈິດທະວົງ, Soumountha Sirimanotham ທ່ານ ສຸມຸນທາ ສິຣິມະໂນທັມ, Phomma Phimmasone ທ່ານ ພົມມະ ພິມມະສອນ , Chanthala Outhenesakda ທ່ານ ຈັນທະລາ ອຸເທນສັກດາ, Bounthong Vongsali ທ່ານ ບຸນທອງ ວົງສາລີ, Nith Vichittavong ທ່ານ ນິດ ວິຈິດທະວົງ, Bounthieng Manivong ທ່ານ ບຸນທ່ຽງ ມະນີວົງ, Phone Theph ທ່ານ ພອນເທບ, Khamphou Thavivanh ຍານາງ ຄຳຜູ ທະວີວັນ, Bang-one ຍານາງບັງອອນ, Malichansouk ຍານາງ ມະລີຈັນສຸກ, Somfong ທ່ານ ສົມຟົງ, Thantavanh ຍານາງ ທັນຕາວັນ, Koviseth ທ່ານ ກໍວິເສດ and the afore-mentioned singer-songwriters Khamla Norkeo ທ່ານ ຄຳຫລ້າ ນໍ່ແກ້ວ and Potichanh ທ່ານ ໂພທິຈັນ. Koviseth ທ່ານ ກໍວິເສດ later moved to Xieng Khouang Province ຊຽງຂວາງແດນງາມ, where he entertained revolutionary forces at the front.

                     Since 1975 patriotic anthems and revolutionary songs have dominated the country’s musical output, but romantic and sentimental ballads have remained universally popular.

 

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(Janvrier 2009)