Tuesday, April 12, 2016
Ploen Promdaen - "Glua Duang", as made famous by the Butthole Surfers!
For my first post I selected the song which initiated my interest in Thai Music. In 1987 I saw the Butthole Surfers in Hamburg Germany, when they had a supposedly deaf skin-headed dancer on stage that would dance to what I then believed to be an arabian belly dance tune. That song was called "Kuntz". Fast forward, 20 years later I found myself working in Thailand, when out of Nostalgia I listened to that song again, suddenly realizing it was sung in Thai and being able to understand some, but not able to make sense out of it. Playing that song to several people I found out it was sung by famous singer Ploen Promdaen. Remarkable is that the Butthole Surfers hardly changed the song, just a bit of echoe and a spoken KUNTZ mixed in. Mr. Promdaens lyrics play with words, so it is not easy to understand. The original says just "khan" which means it "itches", refering to a "spot" (duang, caused by ringworm infection) on the skin, but using "duang" ambigiously also for fate (duang) - "why is a good fate good, when it itches...!". The Surfers added the "s", making it sound like a rather impolite word. BTW, the Surfers said they got the Song of a tape (entitled simply "Thai Shotgun") that was send to them anonymously. So first post, first song, off the Album Glua Duang, here it is!