Friday, 30 August 2019


records collection
“You can fool some people some times 
but you can't fool all the people all the time” 
Bob Marley...
If there is a filthy scammer that really makes me want to vomit it's with no doubt mister maft sai (zudrangma records, the paradise Bangkok molam international band, studio lam”, “toomturn molam group”). Mythomaniac liar, megalomaniac, pretentious idiot, clueless specialist... mini cymbals player and DJ...
In Esan music, the only DJ's are the people who run a radio shows, nobody into molam would ever go to watch a guy putting records on a turntable, they would find it miserable and ridiculous! When Esan people want to party, they expect a nice place with some great LIVE  Esan music!

Dj's from the popular radios ESAN 98fm and LUK THUNG RAK THAI
Introducing a free luk thung concert they organized
with the Esan anthem "people from the same village"

If there is one interesting thing about that maft sai guy, it's his talent to make reputed international medias such as Agence France Presse (France) Arte Television (France/ Germany), The BBC (England) and quite a few others medias of lower importance not only listen to him but also pay him as “molam specialist” and spread advertisement for his products... Even if he knows almost nothing on the subject.
Today, I'll take a look at some documents such as ads for his products on facebook and an (highlighted) interview for a book named “A geek in Thailand” from 2016 (all maft sai interviews pretty much all tell like the same story where, of course, he is the hero!).
"molam" sign on a concert stage
Obviously maft sai have a very blur idea of molam...
If I attended a few hundred musical performances of all kinds during over 5 years in Thailand, I also spent a lot of time buying lots of music from Esan, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia... I made lots of friends and talked to some of the most involved people in the molam scene. Eating together, visiting them in there villages, sharing points of view, talking about music... During that time I strictly never talked to maft sai, never met him, never saw him at any molam concert or cultural events of any kind (I saw his incredible Dj's talents and his shitty band during a silly teenagers event as I like to know what I talk about...).
I NEVER heard or read his name or his crap businesses mentioned by anyone in the molam scene. It's not such a surprise as what this guy talk about have very very little to do with molam.
Molam fans in Bangkok. Thousands as usual.
If you read or listen to what that maft sai guy pretends he is the super hero who discovered some lost molam and share it to the Bangkok population and the world (pretty much like those dengue fever guys... without the genocide). If in an early interview maft sai explains that he first heard of molam (understand the potential profit) through some Japanese friends he met in Australia, in another interview, he explained being totally clueless about Thai music but later he opted for a more epic version of his the one we enjoy today!
 "inexplicably linked areas":
CD's and tapes from the legendary 
RACHABUTE STEREO music shop and record company
that produced a huge amount of all kinds of live recordings
and some studio albums.
(Ubon Rtachathani)

MR MOLAM dj Maft Sai spends most of his time promoting old Thai music, in particular molam, through three inexplicably linked areas: a music label that reissues molam hits, his experimental molam band, The Paradise International molam Band and Studio Lam, a bar that plays and host regular molam events.
Wow MR MOLAM! That's surrealist! As I just mentioned, I have never heard or seen that jerk anywhere close to a molam concert. I don't say he never attended any, it's actually possible that he did long time ago, once or twice, if he did, he obviously did not like it!
On stage or in the audience, molam kids are really passionate!
I invite maft sai to prove me wrong if he wants, I offer him to answer 10 simple questions that anyone attending molam concerts could answer. As I am fair, I'll ask the same questions to a 10 years old kid into molam. If maft sai wins, I give him 1000$, if he fails he will have to give 1000$ that will go to support educational projects related to molam in Esan... In front of a little kid, and even if he loves money, maft sai for sure knows he have ZERO chances but you can contact him if you want...
dj Maft Sai spends most of his time promoting old Thai music, in particular molam
I have never seen maft sai promoting molam or any kind of Thai music while concerts happen everyday in Bangkok and while what he sells is available at many places for a tiny fraction of his crazy prices. Maft sai only promote himself and his products. It's easy to check on his facebook pages for exemple...
In  another interview published by "kaosod English" maft sai confessed: "Back then second hand vinyl was really cheap. So I bought as much of it"... To sell those as "super rare music" to tourists (who can't read Thai) sometimes over 150$ for an Lp he got for 10$, the kind you can buy on Cd for 3$ in Bangkok or 6$ online. I don't call it "promoting old Thai music"...
Dao Bandon and Angkhanang Khunchai with P.Chalatnoi:100 songs compilations on MP3 CD's
sold in 2018 at BIG C supermarkets in Bangkok for +/- 1.66$ each (49฿)
his experimental* molam band, the paradise Bangkok international molam band**
If I never heard of experimental molam, I also never heard of any "molam band" without any mo lam in it as molam is a form of "vocal tradition"! If dengue fever indeed covered "Khmer rock",  the paradise Bangkok international molam Band in fact covers kids practicing Esan instruments, well, a very basic version of it. Advanced kids usually join more elaborated musical ensembles such as pong lang or klong yao Esan. 

*I particularly like maft sai's naive teenager expressions such as "the more commercial luk thung and mor lam artists" (kaosod English interview)  to describe the 99% of the Esan music he have no clue about (which can be seen for free in concert and available at very decent price or just free online).
I also like his usual "more experimental molam" that describe the silly cover band where he plays... MINI CYMBALS like a 5 years old kid!
** As the paradise Bangkok international molam band have no kind of links with molam and as instrumental molam doesn't exist, I suggest to call this distinctive "music" genre TOURISTA, the french word for "Traveler's diarrhea". As it basically smells like it, looks like it and sounds like it. As it's the kind of troubles tourists easily get in Thailand it's a perfect description and a good way to avoid confusion between molam and some crap for tourists!

Young Esan musicians from pong lang ensembles playing phin, khaen, pong lang...
It's interesting to note that maft sai plays "ching" which is basically the most simple instrument played in Southeast Asia, an instrument that any 5 years old kids could play. He is the only "band leader" in the world playing such simple instrument.
5 years old? maybe less!
When I moved back to Thailand I started listening properly, and was more open-minded. I had no expectations but when I found it, it was wow, especially he 1970s experimental music, when each band was trying to get its signature sound and rhythm. 
As mentioned in the previous post the short form of lam phloen played during the 70's was relatively standardised (compared to the many lam later performed) but it sure can sound pretty incredible for someone having reggae and house music as only cultural references (I still never heard of experimental molam). During the 70's the 2 dominant kinds of molam troupes were performing "storytelling lam": "lam phloen ruang" and "lam ruang to klon" all the singers re-edited by maft sai or scamming colleges performed such storytelling lam as main activity (it's of course never mentioned by any scammers while it's the dominant historical forms).
molam legends wearing stage costumes:
P.Chalatnoi (lam ruang to klon)
Thongmee Malai (lam phloen)
late 70's / early 80's

People were generally negative about it and asked me why I was into taxi driver music
What kind of people are you talking about maft sai (your family? your friends? Not random people in the street I guess... It's nice to be surrounded by fellow racist people).
Bangkok have about 1/3 of Esan people in it's population, obviously maft sai did not meet any of them at that time!
If maft sai never had a positive word about Esan people I could notice, he use the same style to look down on Esan people as some racists politicians would to talk about migrants. There is nothing innocent in this sentence about "taxi driver music". Maft sai use a 3rd person to show a point of view "people" here is a figure of style that is used in many of his interviews it's similar to some populists and neo-nazi propaganda found for example in France during the 90's. Repeated often, it becomes a "fact" while maft sai keeps a distance "people say". Marine Le Pen (french national front) often used "the honest french citizens" of "the people who give us their trust". In a famous racist incident J.Chirac who was the french president  at the time use "the french worker" complains "the noise and the smell" from African migrants, (it even became a famous anti racist song).
Such technique of propaganda works smoothly and many press articles and web pages end up describing molam as "music for taxi drivers", "music for poor people"or even “music for prostitutes”. Such propaganda also put maft sai in a superior position of "the man able to find some good thing in uncivilised culture and able to give a civilised experimental version of it". At no moment maft sai gave a counter point or mentioned anything nice about the people listening to molam or performing it (while he makes all his money on the retarded crap he pretends to be molam). 
We should do a party that showcased all this great music. wasn't a business plan...
Ha ha ha, not a business plan, seriously?

First party was in 2009. It had very title promotion. About 200 people turned up...
200 people? WOW that guy is a genius!
Thousands of molam fans in Bangkok for a regular concert.
Molam concerts needs very little promotion to bring
large amount of fans as the community share the information of
most concerts pretty well by itself, there are only a few posters in the streets.

I started wanting to see these artists play live, so I went to Isan to knock on some doors and ask them to come to the capital to play. Some of the artists were difficult
to get hold of. Many had retired or gone back to the rice fields, Some thought I was joking: "You're going to pay me to come down to Bangkok?”.

How did molam veterans take to performing in Bangkok? After I booked one of the artists, Angkanang Kunchai, a huge star from the 1970s, and showed her at the venue...

Banyen Rakkaen, Dao Bandon, Chawiwan Damnoen, Angkhanang Khunchai, P.chalatnoi
and Yenjit Porntawi. All performing free concerts in Bangkok!
Here, I must admit that "Mr MOLAM" (as this crap interview says) really did something incredible! Bringing to Bangkok "molam veterans" who could not even believe someone would pay them to sing in Bangkok... If he forget to mention that tickets were sold for more than a day of  the salary of a worker, he also obviously forget to mention that every singers (plus or less) in activity can be booked by phone within minutes and could sing at your home or any other place if you want (but this hero was brave enough to go to the rice fields!).
Ex members of the Phet Phin Thong band: Noppadorn Duangporn (R.I.P), 
Noknoi Uraiporn, Tonsai Taptanon and Wisset Waynika.
Also seen in Bangkok for FREE (exept for N.Duangporn met in his hometown)

Well, I was kidding saying he did something incredible... The truth is radically different as usual. Many veteran molam are national artists, it mean they have been honored by the Royal Family of Thailand and receive an income from the government as they are important parts of the Thai cultural heritage. In return they teach younger generations and often perform during cultural events and festivities. They can of course be seen on stage in Bangkok... Not for a day of salary: FOR FREE and performing like they want! As you an see on my photos I could see all of them and many more (everybody can) without the help of the heroic maft sai! Banyen Rakkaen, Dao Bandon, Chawiwan Damnoen... All of them (featured in tourist scam CD's)...
Non Esan lukthung legends:
Waipod Pethsuphan and Kwanjit Sriprajan
who often perform free concerts in Bangkok.

According to mister gossip, maft sai got in troubles with the highly respected Kwanjit Sriprajan as he tried to make her sing Pleng Lae against her will (I have never seen a concert promoter doing such thing anywhere else in the world). Kwanjit could confirm if necessary (I never asked her but I can).
What I know is that this disrespectful clash signed the end of the "lucrative veteran mini concerts tourist trap" which as been replaced by "The Paradise International molam Band"... Less troubles, more cash and maft sai and his cymbals IN THE MIDDLE OF THE STAGE!

The logo of the "studio lame" is an obvious symbol of the megalomaniac 
personality of maft sai as it shows the "ching" cymbals he plays
(I have more little kids at play videos if requested...)

Maft Sai spends most of his time promoting old Thai music
Maft sai only promote what brings him DIRECT PROFIT. When I saw 15mn of one of his lame concerts and his ridiculous "Dj set" he did not even promote the free event (where he got payed to "perform"), instead he promoted some crap Dj at his bar at the same moment. I did not notice maft sai ever promoting any "old thai music" concerts I attended in any way. Of course I never saw him at any of those concerts of singers he pretends to "likes a lot"...

Puy Roungtiwa... Homage to maft sai
and his legendary "ching" cymbals?
sing along:
"ching chab ching chab ching ching"

About the beginning of his "kids at practice" cover band: and the older isan guys, a 75-year-old khaen player and a mid-60s phin player. There's also Chris on percussion.
If I mentioned the total lack or respect maft sai have for Esan people, this example is particularly dehumanised as the 2 musicians from Esan (who bring a large part of his income) are simply described here like slaves used to be described in cotton fields in USA! State, age, ethnicity and function... Giving them a name seems totally unnecessary while his idiot English friend playing "poum poum" is named! (I of course have never seen that "chris menist" guy at any molam concert ever).
when we first started, it was very hard and there were arguments. They had the same kind of troubles in cotton fields I guess...
What's next? We want to do 21st century molam, so we're focusing on more reinterpretation projects and remixes, We want to do dub and reggae versions and also some electronic remixes. A lot of the time we're working with molam musicians and they're poor. When they're struggling to find food for the family, they're not thinking creatively. They get a gig and they have to do what is asked of them to get paid. This is a platform for them. All entrance fees for the nights go to the musicians, so at least they have a platform to be creative and they get to keep all the sales of the vinyl records.

SON OF A B... this part is extremely RUDE! maft sai seems totally uninhibited and free to express himself at the end of this interview.

We want to do 21st century molam so, how should it looks like? Not sure maft sai even knows? 

Let's try to understand what
 21st century molam
looks like:
FIG1: A notorious liar and his cymbals (toy version)
FIG2: A notorious liar and his cymbals pretending to be the leader of a "21st century molam band" standing in the middle of a stage dressed like a beggar.
FIG3: Wirapong Wongsin, leader of a contemporary molam troupe (founded in 2004). He is standing in the middle of a stage surrounded by his dancers. You don't see his 12 musicians as they stand behind the decorative elements on the back just like in other molam troupes.
Any questions?

more reinterpretation projects and remixes More covers of kids practicing, right? From which school? Maybe I know them?

Or maybe some more "American influenced" superman style phin...
Sure that kids could teach maft sai a things or two... About respect first...
By the way there are many kids like him in Esan!
 (I can post 100 videos like that if requested!) 

Next time, a BABY if you want!

I always Dreamt of forming a more experimental molam band. 
REALLY? Why not doing it then? Weird idea from someone who obviously have no respect for Esan people and no clue about molam.

“It took me four years to paint like Raphael,
but a lifetime to paint like a child.”
Pablo Picasso 
It took 15 minutes of the precious time of maft sai to learn to play mini cymbals, his musical experiments never got any deeper... 

In the "kaosod English" interview maft sai clearly confessed:  
"I didn’t know anything about Thai music
when I moved back to Bangkok"
At least now there is something maft sai said which I agree about! What about now? Still, nothing, right?
How can you dream of things you have no clue about?

Actually playing "ching" in a molam band can be real fun...
Even if it's nothing incredible

It took me four years to paint like Raphael, but a lifetime to paint like a child. Pablo Picasso
It took me four years to paint like Raphael, but a lifetime to paint like a child. Pablo Picasso
We want to do dub and reggae versions and also some electronic remixes When I say maft sai only have very limited cultural references...

Some beloved mo lam (like there are many), receiving over a year of the salary of a Thai teacher
given by fans during a concert!

When they're struggling to find food for the family, they're not thinking creatively ARE YOU SERIOUS OR UNDER THE EFFECT OF DRUGS? It really sounds creepy. How could someone publish such humiliating propaganda in a book? Esan people are very serious about food, I have always seen many dishes on the table for each meals shared with friends in their villages: Various kinds of  vegetable salads (som tam, soup normai...), soup (gaeng saep...) Grilled fish or meat (or both), other meats, fish or insects based salads (laarb, koi...), some fish or insects based dippings (nam prick) some preserved and fermented fish or pork (pla som, nehm...), fresh herbs and leaves, fresh vegetables sticky rice... Delicious, strong well balanced flavours and extremely spicy! In Esan villages, most people are farmers and of course self sufficient for most of the ingredients they use...
7am, breakfast with 6 friends in Bueng Khan

They get a gig and they have to do what is asked of them to get paid.  BACK TO THE COTTON FIELDS AGAIN BOSS?

August 2018, While all kinds of Thai singers and bands organised concerts in Bangkok and all around the country to help the victims of an historical tragedy in Laos, no traces of the involvement of maft sai or his band... If the molam scene always been generous and involved in philanthropic actions, maft sai never showed any kind of compassion for anything bringing no direct profit.

All entrance fees for the nights go to the musicians*, so at least they have a platform to be creative and they get to keep all the sales of the vinyl records. I don't know who he talks about but as they seem to always get some "vinyl records pressed" by maft sai the messiah, they should not be hard to be found, please check and tell me as I did not see any of those records on maft sai's website.
I guess those vinyls are not "sold out" as this "sold out" 9$ pirate CDr Of "early molam" is still on the "zudrangma" website...
I posted real early commercial molam recordings HERE and obviously maft sai have no clue at all about how such "early recordings"sounds like as it have nothing to do with this CDr (9$ is 2/3 of a worker's daily salary in Thailand).

A tourist complaining being scammed by maft sai
*As I never saw any live molam promoted as "performing at studio lam" I guess he talks about his other employees "toomturn molam group" and as usual, nothing about molam at all.
30 or 40 meters away from "studio lame" (2017)
During his incredible philanthropic activities, maft sai did not find any time to give any attention to that musician and his gorgeous double neck electric phin who was often playing for spare coins at the sky train station entrance (a platform to be creative), about 30 or 40m from the entrance of the "studio lame"... Impossible that maft sai did not notice him... That guy was not bad at all (an amateur would not carry such instrument).
the full interview 
"a geek in Thailand"

toomturn molam group
Last but not least the second "instrumental molam band" of maft sai. That product has been fully created by maft sai, he is credited here as EXCLUSIVE PRODUCER...  A producer who apparently never found the time to produce any records for his prodigious musicians!
Those are just here have cheap musicians employed at his bar. and of course have no kind of link with molam. It's interesting to see that the promotion of that product pushes the limits of absurdity to another step...
If the description is very stupid it's still quite entertaining: We got some acoustic instrumental early molam...
Well, well, well pretending to be an experimental super hero of molam to foreign people who have no clue on the subject seems easy but pretending that this music is acoustic is very stupid or the guy don't know the meaning of "acoustic".
Once again we got the "instrumental molam joke" but this time it's "early molam". you can search on youtube and see if that joke have anything to do with early molam recordings
A space that allow them to develop their musical future... That maft sai is such a generous guy! Sadly the development seems very very slow as nothing came out yet except over priced mini concerts for tourists at his shitty place. NO TRACE OF ANY ALBUM RELEASE...
Moddaeng Jiraporn in concert

I really wonder how could some professional journalists from well known medias such as Agence France Presse (France) Arte Television (France/ Germany), The BBC (England) can get fooled by any clowns without any difficulties and how they can spend the money they often get from citizen's taxes to sponsor their holidays in Thailand. Where did those journalists spent their nights... not at concerts for sure! They did not even check the local tv channels at their hotels, they would have see lots of molam there! They obviously did not even take 1mn to do some basic researches on the subject like copy/paste the word "หมอลำ" (molam in Thai) that you can find on wikipedia into simple search engines like google images or youtube... Within 1 minute, you get thousands of videos and photos not relating at all to maft sai... But all about molam! Such medias covers culture and also wars, politics, human rights... SERIOUSLY???
You are free to google those names to see their interviews of maft sai and they are free to give their point of view here if they have any kind of answers to give about how they could believe, pay and promote such fraud! 

Note: A ticket for "contemporary molam" concert in Bangkok cost +/- 4.33$ (140฿) for a 5h concert performed by a band of 200 to 300 members. Comparing it to the "The Paradise Bangkok international molam band" would make such concert ticket price around 0.014$. If you payed more... YOU GOT SCAMMED!
For example, on the advertising for the "toomturn" product, the price is 200฿ (6$) so I guess for this price they should have played around 14285h to have a price you could compare to a molam concert!

-All the photos signed "Saobao Esan" are all taken by myself. Those only show regular events in their most usual forms. Nothing unique or exceptional, nothing tricky. What you see here happen very often.
-All the tapes and other formats cover pictures signed "Saobao Esan" are from my personal collection.
-Everything you read here is part of my personal researches and not some copy/pasted unverified information. If you want to quote anything from my work, you should contact me first. 
-The documents I quote are not information and can't be seen as "work", those are fraudulent propaganda I compare to facts. Such propaganda not only discredit Esan culture but it also fools YOU. The people paying those frauds are either victims or "partners in crime", Their reaction (or absence of reaction) following my publications will show their positions.
All the people mentioned in this serie of documents are welcome to express their point of view here (I can add more document showing they are clueless liars upon request).


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