|Indie Rocker: Thao Nguyen is excited about introducing her music to Vietnamese audiences at ASEAN Pride 2015. — Photo from Thao&The Get Down Stay Down
HA NOI (VNS) — Musicians from Viet Nam, the US and the region will gather for a music festival and a lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans-gender (LGBT) pride event in Ha Noi on Saturday.
ASEAN Pride Music Festival 2015: Celebrating Family will mark the 20th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Viet Nam and the US. San Francisco-based band Thao&The Get Down Stay Down will headline the event at the American Club.
Lasting from 1pm to midnight, ASEAN Pride aims to showcase the quality and diversity of American and South East Asian musicians, and create a safe space to celebrate LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) communities.
The Ha Noi Flea Market will host an arts and crafts space, and visitors can indulge in various food and drinks.
One tent will offer information on US President Barack Obama's Young South East Asian Leaders Initiative. Other community and NGO booths will raise awareness about sexuality and gender issues.
Fast becoming one of the most popular indie rock artists in the US, Thao Nguyen's story is in many ways a classic immigrant success story. Teaching herself to play the guitar between long hours studying and working at her mother's laundry shop, she built herself a devoted following in the US and around the world.
Thao's breakthrough fifth album with her band The Get Down Stay Down was released to critical acclaim in 2013. Fluent in Vietnamese, Thao said she is excited to introduce her music to Vietnamese audiences at ASEAN Pride.
Also set to perform on Saturday, Malaysian singer, songwriter and producer OJ Law is celebrating the launch of his latest synth-pop album, 2015's Let's Be Adult.
A representative of Thailand's burgeoning indie music scene, the band Yellow Fang has been riding high on the release of their debut album, The Greatest. They're coming to Ha Noi straight from their Japan tour. The fest will also present one of the true leaders of the new generation of Vietnamese rock – the HCM City-based COCC, an indie/psych-rock trio whose debut album 6 Gio (6 Hours) has brought them widespread acclaim and cult status amongst Vietnamese rock fans.
Other musicians set to take the stage include 22-year-old DJ Nguyen Bong, aka Lotus Disco; four-member Ha Noi rock band Ngot (Sweet); San Diego-born drag performer American Rose; and Vietnamese artists Huong Giang Idol and To Lam.
Tickets are available for VND200,000 at the door or VND150,000 at www.ticketbox.vn or at CAMA ATK, 73A Mai Hac De Street. Entry is free for ASEAN nationals (passport or ID required). — VNS