This Blog is a collection of my recordings from travelling around Asia

This Blog is a collection of my recordings and collectings from travelling around Asia...
expect lots of obscure instruments, strange sounds, electric and acoustic instruments, obscure records and tapes, and any other sounds i find on the road.
Please be Patient, as the site is very content heavy, the Soundcloud streams are a bit slow to load...

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Chinese Dragon Festival Nong Khai

I was lucky enough to return to Nong Khai the day before this festival started. A celebration of Chinese culture, and residents that occurs all over Thailand. The day is filled by two groups of paraders, who visit all the chinese shops in town. One group is the Dragon group, carrying three dragons of different sizes, from 20 people to around 60 people. Each Dragon is followed by a large drum/drummer in a push cart and a group of cymbalists. Here is a recording from the dragons passing through the local market.
Dragon Day Parade Through Market by EarSphere
The other set of Paraders is four groups of musicians/performers, who perform blessing ceremonies at every Chinese owned shop, the following recordings are from a blessing performed at the restaurant near the main communal rest area. The performance groups include a large group of male dancers with thick wooden sticks, followed by a cart drum, cymbal ensemble, and a group of children with hand drums. A girl group with a cart drum, many cymbalists, a gong, an amplified Yangqin, a few Erhus, and a flute. One other performance group, featuring mostly males, brightly colored silks and another drum cart.
Chinese Dragon Festival Parade, By the Rest Area by EarSphere
Next set is the same performers as before playing at the Police station. Seemed as if they played harder for the cops then anywhere.
Chinese Dragon Festival Police Station Performance by EarSphere
The day was also marked by thousands of firecrackers exploding everywhere, as you can hear. Got a fun recording of a kid trying to light a huge strand of fire crackers with a big crowd gathered. He fails a couple times, much to the crowd's dismay, then suddenly they all blow up at once.
Trying to Light Firecrackers by EarSphere
At night, there was an extremely long performance at the Chinese School in town featuring a group of performers from Udon Thani. It included the two person Chinese Lion, performing various acrobatics, In these recordings running across jars, later, running over ascending stilts to drum rhythms. It was hard to get clean recordings in such a big crowd, and the music was basically the same. The long Track is the Lion running over Large clay vases, to get to a bottle of booze on the other side, and precede to get stumbling drunk. Narrated by the Thai MC.
Chinese Lion performance Nk by EarSphere
More details on the Festival on the Log Blog soon.
Over and Out.

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Traveling, seeing, being, learning, growing. doing my little bit against homogeneous mass culture.