Monday, June 3, 2013

Nhia Moua - Week 8

One thing that I found interesting in Cathy Schlund-Vials' "Lost Chapters and Invisible Wars"  was the way praCh integrated traditional Cambodian music forms and language with American beats and words. Because to me, this registers as his way of understanding his Cambodian American identity. He could have just rapped in English about his Cambodian history and his experience as a Cambodian American. He could have just used beats that didn't incorporate traditional Cambodian music forms. But he didn't just rap in English--he mixed Cambodian into his raps as well, the same way he mixed the traditional Cambodian music forms with his rap beats.  Therefore, his music is a direct reflection of his Cambodian American identity--a bridging of two worlds. But by using rap to understand his Cambodian American identity, he also unknowing engaged in this transnational process that connected him and his Cambodian community abroad together, since his music was also listened to overseas.  It didn't matter where the Cambodians listening to his music lived, what matter was that they listened.

This makes me reflect on my own Hmong community and makes me wonder if Hmong music is also transnational.  My parents do listen to music from Hmong artists from Laos. To them, it doesn't matter where the artist is from, they prefer the traditional Hmong music over the more modern music the youth listens to nowadays. But then it makes me questions the music of the younger generation. Are those music transnational? Do the diaspora listen those music? What would make the Hmong music transnational?

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