Advertisements

In Rare Reversal, Vietnam Lifts Days-old Ban on Beloved Songwriter’s Work

April 18, 2017

In Rare Reversal, Vietnam Lifts Days-old

Ban on Beloved Songwriter’s Work

(This singer was featured in news pieces by Craig Spence back in 1968. It’s in Tony Hirashiki’s new memoir, “On the Frontlines of the Television War.”)


Trinh Con Son wrote, "The Great Circle of Vietnam," which envisions people holding hands in a circle large enough to encompass his nation.

Trinh Con Son wrote, “The Great Circle of Vietnam,” which envisions people
holding hands in a circle large enough to encompass his nation.

By Khanh An

Over the weekend, news filtered out that Vietnam had lifted a days-old ban on a beloved song by Trinh Con Son, who irritated the South and infuriated the North during years of fighting.

On April 11, Vietnam’s ruling Communist government decreed that “Noi vong tay lon” (“The Great Circle of Vietnam”) could no longer be broadcast or played in public.

The decision came in response to a request from Trinh’s family, who wanted to mount a tribute on April 21 at the Huế College of Medicine and Pharmacy.

Trinh wrote anti-war songs that each side felt sapped the fighting will of their soldiers, who, with their civilian counterparts, memorized the lyrics of his love songs as soon as they were released.

Song envisions people holding hands

The ruling Communist Party in the North banned Trinh’s music, which nonetheless provided the soundtrack to years of tumult.

Of all the hundreds of songs Trinh wrote, “The Great Circle of Vietnam,” which envisions people holding hands in a circle large enough to encompass his nation, may be the most significant. Within hours of the fall of Saigon in 1975, he sang it live from the city on the official radio station of the victorious north.

Popular during the war, the anti-war song overnight became a call for both sides to unite, a transformation engineered, in part by the Communist Party head in Ho Chi Minh City, Vo Van Kiet, who went on to become prime minister from 1991 to 1997, and then an outspoken critic of the party.

“Even though “Noi vong tay lon” is very popular, and has been played in many meetings and entertainment programs, in fact everyone sings it without permission,” Nguyen Dang Chuong, head of the Department of Performance Arts, told local media when issuing the ban.

Five other love songs banned

Pham Cong Ut, a Saigon lawyer, told VOA he found the government’s “without permission” argument disingenuous. “I think they’re more concerned with the song’s point of view more than the law.”

The ban came soon after the government had squelched five other love songs popular in the South during the war. But banning “The Great Circle of Vietnam” may have been a step too far.

Trinh’s sister, the singer Trinh Vinh Trinh, told local media the family was surprised at the government’s response. So were his fans, judging from the outcry on social media.

Although Trinh died on April 1, 2001, he remains huge throughout the Vietnamese diaspora as well as in Vietnam, which served as his muse.

Vietnam’s Bob Dylan

Trinh’s lyrics and attitude earned the title of “Vietnam’s Bob Dylan.” They also earned him several years of post-unification “re-education” despite Hanoi’s embrace of “Noi vong tay lon.”

“This song, I see nothing to be banned,” Phu Quang, a songwriter whose music is closely identified with Hanoi — the city, not the government — told VOA. “This is one of the anti-war songs of Trinh Con Son, and it is a good song. For a long time, we’ve talked about reconciliation, so why is this song seen as a song of the opposition?”

The reconciliation Phu Quang mentions refers to rapprochement between the North and South, and the people of Vietnam with those who have left the country.

People proved stronger than law

“Vo Van Kiet, he allowed this song to be popular,” Bui Chi VInh, a Ho Chi Minh City poet, told VOA when the song was banned. “So now, there’s a review of the song, which shows the inconsistency of the government and the different factions.”

“There is a power stronger than the law — the people,” said Phu Quang at the time of the ban. “Anything [the government does] that is unreasonable, they will not let it stand.”

And on April 12, Vietnamese media reported that Nguyen of the Department for Performing Arts said the ban was lifted because the song has “good content.

Advertisements

So What Do You Think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Diary of an Aesthete

A Spiritual and Artistic Pilgrimage Around the Globe

Chinese Numbers

Chinese, language, learn, speak, write, textbook, contract, beginner, advanced, intermediate, commercial, marketing, correspondence, characters, radicals, decomposition, business, numbers, numerals, contract

The Earth of Brain

Chinese, language, learn, speak, write, textbook, contract, beginner, advanced, intermediate, commercial, marketing, correspondence, characters, radicals, decomposition, business, numbers, numerals

Le Blog BlookUp

Imprimez et transformez vos contenus digitaux, blogs et réseaux sociaux, en magnifiques livres papier sur blookup.com

annotated audrey art

TUCSON ARTIST AND ILLUSTRATOR

Iridescentfox

There are no foxes here

Tamara Philip, Author

Where Love blossoms...

Adventures of an author's wife

Editor and publicist for my author wife Michelle McMurrie. Michelle is transgender and wrote her current books under her previous name of Michael Pugh.

Nostalgia Pie

Comfort food for the soul from a time when things were so much simpler...

Chris Brake Show Podcast

LIVE! Every Wednesday @ 8pm Eastern / 7pm Central on StrangeLabel.com

Mindy Ogg

Dreams and wishes are meant to come true.

WorldofHarley

Fun for the whole asylum!

Big Red Carpet Nursing

Fun & Progress!

lorellepage

Reader-to-Writer

Globe Drifting

Global issues, travel, photography & fashion. Drifting across the globe; the world is my oyster, my oyster through a lens.

The Honking Goose

something to honk about

Blinginitwholesale produces wholesale rhinestone apparel and hot fix crystals

Customized bling shirts and rhinestone heat transfers

tylersculinary

Tylers culinary blog

The Chalk Outline

the blog home of mystery writer Jeff Markowitz

KURT★BRINDLEY

writing ★ producing ★ editing

Mik Mob's Music Mass

share YOUR favourite tunes with The Mob

Riley Amos Westbook

A fantasy Author with too much free time on his hands that likes to Support Indie Authors.

terry73's Blog

A fine WordPress.com site

To Boldly Go

My mission to seek the Lord and to boldly go where He leads me

pgcps mess - Reform Sasscer without delay.

Fight corruption in PGCPS. Innovate, Change and Transform - Create Transparency and Accountability Initiative.

12 Week Weight Loss Course

Losing Weight & Looking Great!

On The Heath

where would-be writer works with words

Amanda Dyer

Founder & Creative Director at Maison by Amanda Dyer & Editor-in-Chief, Living 360 Magazine & Mompreneur 360 Magazine

Don Charisma

because anything is possible with Charisma

Journal Edge

An online blog with highly informative, cheerful and inspirational articles for people who love travel to India with passion and make a different Lifestyle. Vikas Acharya is the founder and managing editor at Journal Edge Online Blog. Contact me to find out how I can help you create high-quality blog content, lead magnets, ebooks, and web copy for your business.

Art Attack

Discovering art in everything

What's Good?

Around the globe..

The Digital Inkwell

If poetry be the food for love, pen on.

Harga Timbangan

Dunia Timbangan,081280780615,081291999252,0216016259,Harga Timbangan,Harga Timbangan Duduk,Harga Timbangan Digital,Harga Timbangan Analitik,Harga Timbangan Manual,Harga Timbangan Gantung,Harga Timbangan Duduk Digital,Harga Timbangan Duduk Manual,Harga Timbangan Lantai,Harga Timbangan Mekanik,Harga Timbangan Gantung Manual,Harga Timbangan Gantung Jarum,Harga Timbangan Buah Digital,Harga Timbangan Neraca Analitik,Harga Timbangan Elektrik,Harga Timbangan Digital Gram,Harga Timbangan Gram,Timbangan Duduk,Timbnagan Manual,Timbangan Duduk Manual,Timbangan Analitik,Timbangan Laundry,Timbangan Mekanik,Timbangan Salter,Timbangan Nagata,Timbangan Cahaya Adil,Timbangan Quattro,Timbangan Sapi,Timbangan Ternak,Timbangan Adam,Analitycal Balnce,Moisture Balance,Timbangan Sn Timah,Timbangan Oc Timah,Timbangan Chq,Timbangan Matrix,Timbangan Acis,Timbangan Lantai,Timbangan Gantung,Timbangan Gantung Jarum,Timbangan Gantung Manual,Jual Timbangan,Timbangan Barang Digital,Timbangan Pemancingan,Timbangan Galatama,Timbangan Obat,Timbangan Neraca Analitik,Timbangan Lantai Digital,Timbangan Camry,Harga Timbangan Laundry,Harga Timbangan Beras,Harga Bandul Timbangan,Anak Timbangan,Batu Timbangan,Timbangan Daging,Timbangan Buah,Timbangan Sayur,Timbangan Barang,Timbangan Balance,Timbangan Floor Scale,Timbangan Counting,Timbangan Anti Air,Timbangan Water Proof,Timbangan Jarum,Timbangan Duduk Jarum

Beautiful Life with Cancer

Discovering the Gift

Strictly for the Birds

The portable world of Anna L. S. Miranda

d|gI+Al hEGeM0n ...d|g|Z|nE

Works of Thought... And Pictures of My Soul

Setsu Uzume

Speculative Fiction

Jobsdhamaka Blog

Job Interview Tips and Career Advices

LOVE AND OLIVES

Just a regular thirty-something-year-old trying to capture the essence of life in writing. Join me as I journey through the ups, the downs and the adventures in between.

Predictable in Her Unpredictability

Doing What Makes My Soul Shine