Pom Rak Plieng Thai!

Sawasdee Krab Took Kon,

Welcome to my first official ‘regular Monday blog’ ..sorry no ribbon cutting or cake, this one is low budget but the best things are free right?

One thing I love from Thailand is Thai music and not just traditional music with classical instruments but quite a range of tastes’ in Thai songs. Today I thought I’d share some of my likes and why ‘Pom rak plieng Thai’ or I love Thai music!

It’s only been about a year since I started experimenting with Thai music. Today I have roughly about 212 Thai music CD’s, VCD and movies (yes those are my actual CD’s in the pic at top) compared to only about 30 CD’s of western style music. When I do something I do it all out sometimes y’know.

When I discovered the website for learning Thai from Richards school in Samut Prakarn I also found links for listening to samples of a wide selection of popular Thai songs. From that website I found a link to buy music I heard. This was so cool!

My motto? “Have credit card, have internet access, will shop!” πŸ˜›

Now I have a weird sense of knowing what I will like or not when it comes to music it all depends on how it looks. If the CD or band looks cool or appeals to me visually then usually I will like it. I have a 98% success rating on almost every Thai CD I have. I’ll get back to you on the 2% not so good later.

My first time to order I picked out music by 3 bands and bought the CD and VCD of each album, so that 6 CD/VCD all total. The samples all sounded good so I whipped out the plastic and ‘presto!’ A new vice was born. πŸ˜€

I could have bought more because each CD was so cheap! They were only about $8.50 US each including the shipping! Thai friends tell me I’m nuts to spend that much when a CD in Thailand usually only costs about 215 Baht or about $4-5 US but then I tell them how much an American CD costs here ($16-$22) and they are really shocked!

After I ordered my stuff for two weeks I was on pins and needles waiting for it to come in then finally..they arrived! I LOVE to get stuff so when I got my CD’s I was like a little kid at Christmas haha.

I was so excited to open the box and finally hold in my hand what I had ordered ….

I got the debut album of two po/rock groups; Bang Kaew and Bodyslam and the second album of a pop/rock/hip hoppish group called Clash. I was really interested in checking out the VCDs first thing. For those who don’t know, like I didn’t know then, in Thailand when most bands or musicians release an album they also release a VCD which shows a music video of every song. Personally this is pretty cool and I can’t figure out why music exec’s don’t do that here with American muscians but then they are so paranoid about copyright infringement here they would think a VCD would somehow encourage American kids not to buy the music or something..weird, who knows.

Back then I only had my computer to play DVD’s so I was not sure a VCD would work or not. I took the Bang Kaew VCD and tried to get it to play. No luck. Nothing! Oh man, not a waste!! But I tried again until I found you have to open the path to play it on the computer they don’t start automatically like regular music CD’s..ooooh, that’s why! Now I have a nice Toshiba DVD that plays everything automatically no problem.

Anyway the first time I watched I was enthralled. ‘Bang Kaew’ is actually two Thai brothers who are twins, two high school boys that look about 14 and acted like they are playing ‘rock star’ in their basement, but they were serious! It was so funny! Geeky but cool too. The other CD’s by Bodyslam and Clash were more mature and the songs were better, well written and creative even if most of what they sang I didn’t know the meaning really but watching the VCD it was not hard to figure out, at least on the love songs which were, like, most of the album! Still VCD’s are so cool because you can read along (sort of) with the songs in Thai script AND in romanized Thai-English like in a karaoke bar. πŸ˜‰

It’s a great way to practice your Thai at home I watch and read along as I listen to the sounds of the words then I can listen to the same songs when I go out or sitting at my desk all day at the bank..I’m not kidding! I get paid a good salary to do stuff on a computer and listen to Thai songs all day..I love it!

Basically there are two types of Thai pop/rock songs, some really good ones with good stories like Carabao I recently saw in concert and then the majority is the usual pop song ‘boy mets girl, boy loses girl, boy never had girl but wishes he did, etc., etc.’ or some variation of the above. I actually don’t mind the redundant love ballads because when they sing in Thai it’s like being cussed out in French. You know what they are saying to you in French is crap but it just sounds so cool!

Another thing is the names some of these bands choose like ‘Big Ass, Coyote Sexy, Smile Buffalo, Perfect Rock Stars, Baby Bull and Fruity’ haha I mean..huh? But then some groups I listened to in the 80’s didn’t make sense either, remember Kaja Goo Goo anyone?

Here are some of the CD’s I have:

AB Normal
Bang Kaew
Body Slam
Byrd & Sek
LABANOON (my faves..love these guys they know how to rock!)
Little Rock Project (Awesome concert)
Modern Dog (My #2 favorite but #1 on my playlist this week)
Pattaya Music Festival
Ummarin Nitipol

And that’s just my pop/rock list. I also have several dozens of CD’s of all the classical Thai instruments, Thai Issan music, Thai New Age, or Green Leaf music and orchestra music (some composed by HM the King of Thailand Himself!) I even have the National Anthem and the Anthem of the Royal Thai Airforce. Don’t ask me how I got that one, long story for another time.

But the rock music will always be my fave, so when I am home I watch the VCDs and of course my walkman and several Thai CD’s are always in my backpack when I go out. When I sing to myself it’s usually in Thai. I guess it won’t be long before I think in Thai too.

Now I have branched out to buy Thai movies and movie sound tracks, like Beautiful Boxer I bought the sound track online but I bought the movie at the local Thai market here in Maryland. They sell a lot of CD and VCD movies too and everything is $10 US each in the local market. But my Thai friends think that is even more outrageous than online prices. Still it’s way cheaper than American music at the shopping mall and the Thai stuff is way cooler anyway. My life is a dedicated ‘No Britney Spears!!’ Zone.

I also bought just about every Muay Thai VCD I can find (that’s another vice of mine.) Wiwat, the manager of eThaiCD.com my number one supplier of my Thai music addiction, knows me as a regular customer and I always get first rate service. It’s a Thai thing. Thanks Wiwat!

As a matter of fact when I got home today my latest package was sitting on the porch waiting for me. I left a note for Fed-Ex to leave it for me since I knew it was due today. Wiwat is always sends me an e-mail with the FedEx tracking number so I can see online exactly where my order is in the world until it get’s to my door. If you want to follow along on where my latest order traveled this time then click here.

Well that’s it for now I got new CD’s to play and Muay Thai VCD’s to watch. I could tell some of the movies I bought had sat on the shelf awhile since they had dust on them. Wow, dust from Thailand..so cool! lol

Ok I am a geek, I know πŸ˜›

Oh, btw the 2% of music that didn’t meet my ‘standard’? Well actually a friend of my friend Mike went to Thailand and brought back for me a boy band CD (no, not D2B but the other one). He knew I liked Thai music and that was nice of him but it sucked. Living proof it’s a good thing the boy band craze is dead. My friend Mike laughed so hard when I told him that CD was finally something I didn’t like from Thailand lol

I guess all in all my record is still 100% so if you will excuse me I have my stereo headphones ready and great Thai music is a’waiting.

See you next week,



18 responses to “Pom Rak Plieng Thai!

  1. Will you stop buying everything Thai and start buying everything Western because you miss home?

    LOL… So true Richard, so true. Thanks for the good laugh to go with my coffee this morning. Your dead on, one thing I know I am doing in a way is short-cutting the dream by continually bringing Thailand here when I should be busy busting my butt to go there.

    As for expectations I always try to keep myself grounded in real ones. I expect some things to not be what I thought and maybe even disappointed and let down by that but I know from experience, usually when you least expect it, I can be pleasantly surprised by some things too. It’s a balance sort of.

    As far as my posting time slot, is it Monday, Tuesday? Coming or going? Bueller? Bueller? (sorry)

    I realize there is the 12 + hour time difference that is why in my previous blog, “Goodbye Thaiphile, Hello Thaiwriter” I laid it out as simple as I thought it would make sense given that time difference for everyone

    Since Richard has suggested we regular bloggers set up and stick to a regular routine for blogging I want to be one of the first to volunteer therefore from now on my regular weekly blog will post sometime between 12:01 AM and 11:59 PM, Eastern Standard US Time every Monday.

    As always anybody comes up with a better wheelbarrow I’ll be the first in line with my checkbook (in other words the door is open to any better suggestions na) πŸ˜‰

    Have a great week!


  2. As most people have no idea what “Eastern Standard US Time” is, I would humbly suggest you blog “Thai time”. When you log in, you will see at the top where it says “Blog time” which is the time here in Thailand. When you post your blog, it will use this time. So, I will look forward to reading your blogs every Tuesday moring!

  3. Welcome to my first official ‘regular Monday blog’ ..sorry no ribbon cutting or cake this one is low budget but the best things are free right?

    Actually, today is Tuesday here in Thailand! You posted your blog at 8.52 a.m. Tuesday morning. So, in future will you blog Monday or Tuesday?! Seriously, it is really nice to see someone picking a regular time slot. Something for me to look forward to every Tuesday (or is it Monday?).

    Anyway, I think many of us here are really looking forward to the time when you come to Thailand for the first time. Will everything live up to expectations? Will you stop buying everything Thai and start buying everything Western because you miss home? I know there will be a lot of blogs to look forward to from you.

  4. That’s cool Maitee, your an original Thai gal πŸ˜‰

    Many of my Thai friends are opposite of me they listen to more western pop and rock music than Thai! Probably same as me they want to learn English or maybe like the western pop star looks.

    Do you know that song that EJ likes? ‘Bo rak see dum’ .. I can translate it as far as “…love black” (rak = love, see dum = color black) Either this is not a happy song {ie ‘Black Love’} or someone has got a thing for the color black haha


    Glad you like my blog I always enjoy getting a laugh but I was serious about the dust..like I said moi es tres` geek for Thailand πŸ˜›


  5. Fun and interesting blog Wit. I stand amazed in you Thai geekiness and realize from your blogs the long road I have started on! πŸ™‚

    Nice to get some pointers for some music to try. I’ll take a list when I go to Thailand in Septemeber!

    Look forward to next Monday.

  6. LOL …thanks.

    I got a right good laugh that you are so amazed by my ‘Thai Geekiness’ maybe someday that could become a national institution and everyone can say..’I knew him when ….’

    Ok krab I’m wore out so time for the bed.

    Fan dee na


  7. Wow, Wit!

    Brother, you are buried (in the Thai culture)! Good for you. Probably a pretty effective way of learning the Thai language and some of its slang to boot.
    There is one Thai song that I really like; it’s an Issan song called “Bo Ruk See Dum”. Ever heard of it? I bet you have. Everytime I hear it in Thailand I get a smile on my face.
    You cracked me up with your “dust from Thailand” comment. I totally can see where you’re coming from.


  8. Interesting blog that you post here. Me, Thai my self, collect a ton of Thai tapes and CDs. My songs collection range from easy pop such as Birds, loog thung (mor lum), life music, and traditional music (including music by HM). I have over 200 tapes and over 50 cds my self. I kinda old style guys….have more tapes than CDs.

    I will post about my Thai songs collection some days. In fact, I collected more of Thai songs than American ones.

  9. Wow Khun Wit,
    I’m gobsmacked, for a lack of better words, truly Thai fanatic, I think even most Thai people wouldn’t have that many CD’s (or would they?). I like AB Normal, Bang Kaew (cute twins), Endorphine, Peacemaker and Potato (best). Usually I listen to Thai radio at night cos they play some nice plaeng look thoong!

  10. Very good first blog, I don’t buy much music any more as I don’t listen to the radio, and I have so much music already, some times I would like to here some thing different to this modern pop stuff.

  11. HI everyone,
    just want to say i like Thai music too. Especially rock music. i buy so many Thai cd & vcd when i m in Thailand. Thai bands are so cool. i m so happy that P’Wit also have a cd of Zeal. Actually i m fascinated with them. i saw them two times during staying in BKK. They are pretty cool and so nice to me. i took pics with them and asked for their autograph. i did have a nice trip in BKK becasue of Zeal. πŸ™‚
    (it seems that i advertise them… Sorry!)
    Best wishes,

  12. Hey great experience to meet your favorite band Nana. Zeal was a band I got turned onto, along with II-Zax, when I got the Little Rock Project CD/VCD and DVD …yep I bought all three of the concert. πŸ˜› It great fun reliving my concert days via the kids there in Bangkok haha

    When I am in Thailand I definately want to see Labanoon in concert and if I got to meet them that would be absolutely beyond awesome haha

    I sure sound like a teenager at 41 but mai bpen rai it’s all about having a good time with some good music and Thais are the best at having good times. Sanuk mahk!


  13. Paul_Au

    I know what you mean I have so much music now I should definately be content. I have about 20 more CD and VCD on my wishlist at eThaiCD.com and in a couple of weeks I’ll order them all to clear it out the list then after that I am taking a long break from buying music so I can save money for the real thing..coming to Thailand!


  14. Hello Thaiwriter,

    I think there are few farang who have prepared themselves as well as you for their first time in Thailand, preparation even down to having a ready reportoire at one of this country’s many thousand karaoke machines!

    Must say that pop-pop music doesn’t excite me much anywhere but I do enjoy Carabou – with the song “Mae Sai” a favourite (sad tune that), but have yet to go to a concert due mainly to a strong attachment and love of my teeth!

    Perhaps my opinion of that great band would change had I arrived here when the song “Welcome to Thailand” was all the rage. A friend of mine did and for his first three months here he had shopkeepers, lottery ticket sellers and anyone else you can think of calling out “Tom, Tom where you go last night!”

    Good luck on your plans to get here, you’ve certainly cushioned yourself for a few of the culture shocks!


  15. Thanks Inkslinger,

    Since you mentioned karaoke look for that in one of my future blogs. If you like Carabao you should check out my blog on their concert here in Virgnia this month. A lot of fun and no worries for loss of teeth! Our police here made darn sure nothing got out of control that’s for sure. It fascinates me this thing about the fighting and violence at their concerts. I may dare to experience that myself when I am Thailand.

    I’m a little daft on the reference to your friend Tom but then I’ve only had one cup of joe so far this morning πŸ˜‰

    I look forward to blogging a lot more on my experiences here and most definately there in the Land of Sunny Smiles and daydreams so stay tuned…


  16. “Tom, Tom where you go last night!”

    Okay. Scary. I started singing that in my head. Heh. Seriously, if Carabao would put out a “Greatest Hits” album, that thing would be a double CD. Or did they already? (What do I know? I’m so out of touch!)

  17. Ooooh so THAT’S what that’s all about..

    When me and my friends went to see Carabao here they were selling a new double CD ‘greatest hits’ box set. Several of us were thinking of getting it but at $20 a piece Dew that was with us said “your crazy! I will have my friend get them for us in Thailand, much cheaper …you’ll see!”

    So as it turns out one of our group is flying home to BKK next week and has marching orders from Dew to bring back several copies for each of us. πŸ˜›

    I’ll keep you posted if the song is on it or not.


  18. well yeah i was on yahoo and i serched for clash and this came up1 well yeah umm have yu gotten Clash’s new album Emotion!? haha well i have it but its not a good as Brainstorm just to let you know but it is worth buying!…i currently living in the US bored and raised i love thai music but i am laotian…but i do understand most of it i grew up listening to thai music and i agree that thai rock is better than american rock i have to say they beat Green Day by a long shot!