Sai Gon Saigon
Collaboration between the wonderful Vietnamese singer Huong Thanh and French jazz vibraphone player Franck Tortiller with other French jazz musicians including Bertrand Lajudie, Alexandre Herichon, Vincent Tortiller and Richard Metairon. Traditional tunes are given a new lease of life, with the evocative atmosphere of French Saigon.
1. Quê Huong Là Gì? 2. Làng Tôi 3. Biet Ly 4. Xóm Quê 5. Trang Ðêm 6. Ðuong Lên Son Cuoc 7. Khúc Nhac Duoi Trang 8. Mot Thoáng Mo 9. Huong Xuân 10. Lòng Me
Cai Luong Music
Paris resident Vietnamese singer Huong Thanh has become known for her groundbreaking collaborations with guitarist Nguyen Le, that combine Vietnamese traditional songs and sounds with jazz and other roots styles from around the world. Thanh comes from a family of Cai Luong (renovated theatre music) singers and as a young girl used to travel around Vietnam with her family when they were performing. Cai Luong originated in southern Vietnam and blends folk music with Hat Van (classical theatre music) becoming eventually the national theatre music. When she first arrived in France, Thanh used to sing Cai Luong for the Vietnamese immigrant community, becoming quite a star of the scene. On this album she goes back to her earliest roots, with an album of traditional Cai Luong music, beatifully sung and performed.
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HUONG THANH & NGUYEN LE
Fourth album by Vietnamese long term Paris resident and singer Huong Thanh and Parisian born guitarist Nguyen Le. Nguyen Le receives co-billing for the first time as the artist, as producer, engineer, mixer, arranger of the traditional tunes, co-composer of the others as well as playing guitars, synthesizers and adding other layers of sounds. Le uses the fantastic voice of Huong Thanh almost like another instrument as she soars, glides and hovers around Vietnamese traditional melodies surrounded by a mélange of jazz and world influences. As on previous albums, the jazz elements are provided by Dominique Borker's piano, Paolo Frescu's trumpet and the double bass of Renaud Garcia-Fons. What differentiates this album from previous is the array of string and percussion instruments from around the world. Aside to the Vietnamese dan bao (monochord) and dan tranh (zither) is the Japanese koto performed by Mieko Miyazaki. Miyazaki is featured on most tracks some in superb duos with Le on electric guitar. Balafons, various shakers and congas add African rhythms, which expertly connect with Asian melodies on a beautifully crafted album. 1. Drifting On The Water 2. Weaving & Awaiting 3. Faithfulness 4. Plantation Song 5. The Five Calls Of The Night 6. Fragile Beauty 7. Rowing The Sampan 8. The Pavilion Of Cristallized Azure 9. At Dusk, From The West Balcony 10. Go Cong Blues 11. The Swallows' Bridge 12. Tales Of The Mountain Click here to email for availability
Moon And Wind
First album by Vietnamese vocalist with guitarist Nyugen Le. Thanh is a superb vocalist, accompanied by Le and a variety of other musicians on a mix of Vietnamese traditional instruments (dan tranh-zither, dan bao- monochord) and Western instruments (guitars, synth, piano, bass). The songs are all traditional from throughout Vietnam, cleverly modernized and adapted. A triumph.
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Thanh's second album is as stunning as the first. Her voice is still the central point, while the accompanying instruments and musicians add new dimensions. These include Richard Bona on bass and percussion and the Barbes Deluxe Strings. A lush sound that mixes ancient melodies with modern instrumentation, beautifully played. Click here to email for availability
Once again Thanh's voice soars magnificently over textured layers of traditional and modern accompaniment. The global influences are even more apparent (North African, Arabic) the usual jazzy guitars and trumpet all melded together with traditional songs in the best possible taste. Simply brilliant. Click here to email for availability