Cambodia's Khmer Rock


Here is an excellent article by Sarah Cuddon at the BBC on "Khmer Rock", a style of fusion rock that emerged in the pre-Khmer Rouge era of the 1960s and 1970s with the introduction of Western music from American Forces Radio out of Vietnam into society. Sadly, many of the artists were later killed with the anti-Western crackdown in the 1970s, including the "Cambodian Elvis" Sinn Sisamouth.

The style is a combination of traditional instruments and singing tones, but with elements of doowop, rock n roll, surfer, rythym and blues and classic garage rock. If you become really into it and want to learn more, the BBC Radio also did a piece called "Khmer Rock and the Killing Fields" covering the genre.

There is also a modern day band attempting to revive the movement called Dengue Fever. Here is their myspace page.

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