Psychedelic rock is generally thought to be an American and/or British phenomenon. You think “Thai” you think curry and massage.
However, the “psychedelic sound” was popularized in S.E. Asia during the Vietnam War.
Then one day, Dangerous Minds posted the following video of a modern day psych-rock band, Khun Narin Phin Sing from the Phetchabun Province in Thailand.
A handful of Thai psych bands emerged during the late 60s and 70s; some headed up by U.S. and U.K. servicemen.
There is a disappointing amount of information about the scene, especially considering Thailand’s rich cultural and musical history.. According to Wikipedia, the Thai rock genre was spearheaded by Laem Morrison who performed for American soldiers during the Vietnam war. Apparently, he played a lot of Doors covers. Today, Laem Morrison is known as The Guitar King of Thailand. You can check him out doing a cover of Pink Floyd’s “Another Brick in the Wall” by clicking here.
Here’s half a day’s worth of scouting for 60s/70s Asian psychedelia. Some of it’s great, some of it not so much. But it’s definitely interesting.
Cambodian 60s psych rock chanteuse Ros Sereysothea – Chnam Oun 16
Thai psych The Viking Band – Phom Rak Khoon Tching Thing (I Really Do Love You)
More Thai psych Don – Soul Dracula (from Thai Beat A-Go-Go)
Chladni Chandi – หมา ไมค์ กีต้าร์ (Dog Mic. Guitar)
The Petch Phin Thong Band -- Soul Lam Plearn
3 replies on “Yes, Thai Psychedelia Is A Real Thing”
This is really great. Some years ago I met this blind man with a small stereo in Bangkok who played this thai trancepsych. Followed him around for some 15 minutes just to check out the tunes. Blew my mind that thais listened to that type of music. Never expected it and have been searching since. Great collection from you. Should be material for Luaka Bops World psychedelic classics Series.
SO fascinated by this, my mum is from north east Thailand and bands like this would play all the time at big events and festivals. In my middle school music class I gave a presentation on all the different ‘Isan’ instruments hahaha. My favorite is the Phin.
Psych and even surf really remind me of this type of music. I always wondered when people would start making connections – perhaps they have for a while now and I didn’t realize, either way this makes me super inexplicably happy! Warms the heart.
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