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The Soul of Molam (1) – Isaan’s folk music from state censorship to rising global fame

Molam music has a spellbinding power. For generations, it has shaped the cultural soul of the Lao-speaking people on both banks of the Mekong River and their communities around the world. Often declared a dying breed, it continues to reinvent itself in new modern forms while serving as a source of cultural agency for the young generation.

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The Soul of Molam (2) – Inside the molam bus project: The Sound of Isaan’s political molam

A talk with Arthit “Fai” Mulsarn, the manager of the Molam Mobile Bus Project about the challenges of curating a molam exhibition and the political history of the genre.

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The Soul of Molam (3) – The dying capital of molam: Maha Sarakham’s molam agencies face their last days

Maha Sarakham was once known as the capital of molam. Dozens of molam agents were once busy taking booking requests from people from all across the region seeking molam troupes for festivals, temple fairs, weddings, and funerals. Today only two molam agencies are left in the city.

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Flying blind: What Thailand should learn from its neighbors to fight COVID-19

It may be too late to save Thailand from a severe outbreak of COVID-19 but the experience of other countries in Asia provides some valuable lessons, writes Anthony Kuster. The government should offer free testing without conditions, report new infections immediately and make public the recent travel details of infected people.

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#SaveOurFuture: A test for the awakening of Isaan’s students

In wake of the dissolution of the Future Forward Party, student activism networks are emerging all across the Northeast. They want Prime Minister General Prayuth Chan-ocha to step down and the military-drafted constitution to be rewritten.

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Sulak Sivaraksa: Behind the audience with the King

Sulak Sivaraksa has been charged with royal defamation no less than six times. Speaking to The Isaan Record, he tells the story of his audience with King Rama X, and how it purportedly led to a military court dropping the most recent case against him. He also talks about the need for Thailand to allow its Isaan Lao to celebrate their culture and ethnicity.

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LATEST UPDATE

Features

The Soul of Molam (13) – The ancient roots of molam: From ritual to entertainment

In molam music, the vocals of the molam performer and the sound of the khaen, a free reed mouth organ, are intimately linked. Panupong Thongsri looks at the evolution of molam lyrics and khaen music in Isaan.
Features

The Soul of Molam (12) – March to oust dictatorship

Molam artist Patipan Luecha performs the protest song "March to oust dictatorship" at a student protest at Khon Kaen University in February.[VIDEO]
Features

The Soul of Molam (11) – Pong Lang Sa On: A molam revolutionary

Thawit Sitthongsi, former member of Pong Lang Sa On, talks about the molam troupe's reputation as a leader in changing contemporary molam music and molam performances forever. [VIDEO]
Features

The Soul of Molam (10) – The legacy of molam revolutionary Pong Lang Sa On

Fifteen years ago, a molam troupe made history by taking the molam sound of temple fairs and village festivals to the stage of Bangkok’s Impact Arena. We talked to former band member Thawit Sitthongsi about the troupe’s reputation as a leader in changing contemporary molam music and molam performances forever.
Features

The Soul of Molam (9) – Meet the costume creators behind the marvelous molam show of Rabiab Watasin

Meet the costume creator of Rabiab Watasin, a molam troupe with almost 300 performers that takes its magnificent show all across the country.