Red Dao in Vietnam (KG 2006)

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Recorded by Laurent Jeanneau (King Gong) in Northern Vietnam in July 2006. Photo by Martin Kolner.

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Baozoo, strictly a cappella, is the style of singing of Dao people (pronounced zao). They come from China where they are called Yao but actually call themselves Mien.
They are subdivided in 8 different groups with 2 different languages.
On this cd you can listen to the local Red Dao singing star Li Man Mei (tracks 1 to 7) recorded in Taphin village, North of Sapa in Lao Cai province.
When sung in group, the baozoo is canon singing ; a female headsinger have her words repeated by one or more singers. The first track is actually responsive singing between a man and a woman. Li Man Mei, 30 years old, has high reputation in Baozoo singing among the Red Daos, she started to sing Baozoo at 13 and learned it from her parents. It is being used in festivals and weddings but also in everyday life farm working or also evenings when the moon is fully round while people gather in their yards and lovers go dating in villages.
Melody of Baozoo generally do not change, only the words do generations after generations. Everyone can have his or her own composed words for Baozoo suitings one's own context.


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