Music is influence people since in the past until today and music seem like to be one part of peoples’ life. Music can become a friend or thing that heal people feeling that is why people cannot live without it. There is a lot of type of music in the world such as pop, rock, jazz, hip hop, soul, etc. that people can choose what they want and prefer to listen to.

Someplace or country also has their own way of music such as Kpop that use reverse communication flow which is make their content—series, music, food, and culture—popular and impact to other big countries like the U.S. In each country, they also have their own identity style of music that mold by their own culture.

I do believe that you as a Thai people will know that we also have the identical style of music as well for example Thai hip hop, Phleng phuea chiwit, Luk thung, and Mor Lam which some of the teenagers does not prefer to listen to because they will listen to Kpop, American song, and Europe song instead. They will choose the music that seems to be a modern style and on a trend.

However, some group of teenagers is still listen to those Thai song styles base on their place of residence. For example, in northeastern Thailand most of the teenagers will choose the Thai song style to listen to especially Mor Lam that they prefer the most. Don’t you curious why this teenager still interesting and want to listen to Mor Lam rather than modern style song? Let get to know more and find out together on why those teenagers choose Mor Lam.

What is Mor Lam?

Mor Lam is one type of Thai country music that popular and originates in northeastern of Thailand—for Thailand but some said it originated in Laos. It has many subs of it but mostly they using local language to sing and tell the whole story. Basically, Mor Lam means the expert of telling a story including happiness, sadness, loneliness, and mad with the music or beat. 

Why some group of teenagers still love and interesting in Mor Lam rather than Kpop?

I have done some research and interview with the local teenager in northeastern about why he is really into Mor Lam. An eighteen-year-old boy who lives in Loei, one part of Isaan, said that the reason why he is into Mor Lam because he thinks this type of song is very attractive. His beginning starts for six years ago. At first, he did not like it and think that it is really hard to access he did not get the point of Mor Lam but when he starts to open his mind about it and give it a try by going to the Mor Lam event a couple of time since his friend always goes to Mor Lam event and he wants to find out why his friend really likes it. After he keeps going to the Mor Lam event he sorts of likes it and sees the charm of it. And of course, he knows about Kpop but still likes Mor Lam rather than Kpop because he thing Mor Lam is more attractive due to the connection of culture. He feels like he gets and feels more connected with Mor Lam. Actually, Kpop fans and Mor Lam fans are just the same because, the factor that makes the audience listen to it, of culture that makes people feel connected.   

So it can say that depends on personal interest and you really have to open mind with it. Not every teenager in northeastern will love Mor Lam but mostly does due to their culture that creates a connection with this type of song. It means that it also depends on other factors as well such as family, friends, and environment. If you live in town or the center of Thailand you might not into it as much as people who live in the northeastern. Then how people in this era and people who live in other provinces notice and interest in Mor Lam.  

How Mor Lam is noticing in this generation?

There are many factors such as the background of each people, family, friends, environment, and culture but there is also because of another type of music that using some unique of Mor Lam which is Lukthung Mor Lam. It was a combination between Lukthung and Mor Lam that use each strength to become a new type of music. This type of music is very popular in this era and this type of song is very catchy. Moreover, Lukthung More Lam makes people, especially teenagers, easy to access, see the charm, and want to know more about Mor Lam.

How different between Mor Lam and Lukthung Mor Lam?

Lukthung Mor Lam song usually reflect the hardship of life among rural area and sing it with Isaan language. Moreover, they use the Isaan musical instrument which is the charm of this new type of song. However, not every song that contains Isaan language is Mor Lam. The difference is the beat, melody, and music for Mor Lam is very unique it has its own style. Nowadays, the Thai music style tries to adapt to other types to make it more trendy that is why we have Lukthung Mor Lam. Normally, those old types of Thai songs using only folk instruments but today they change it and use some of the modern instruments such as saxophone. Moreover, the development of Mor Lam which is Lukthung Mor Lam is spread to the big city and makes others know more about Issan culture.  

Lukthung Mor Lam singers

For Lukthung Mor Lam singers they will have basic of sing only Mor Lam first then adapt the uniqueness of Lukthung and combine it together. If Lukthung singer they will only sing Lukthung not More Lam but Lukthung Mor Lam can sing both Lukthung and Mor Lam. The most popular Lukthung Mor Lam that most of Thai people will know her is Jintara Poonlarp.

She also starts with Mor Lam at first and signs the contract with grammy then she has changed her agency to RS but currently she is a freelance singer or she does not have any agency anymore. The song that really can show that she is Lukthung Mor Lam and show how popular she is is “Tao Ngoi” song. This song was published on September 24, 2017, or published for 3 years now and people watch and listen to this song for around 137 million views. It is a result that shows how she succeeded as a Lukthung Mor Lam in this generation.

Event that using Lukthung Mor Lam

Lukthung Mor Lam is essentials for music entertainment. It is usually contained with fun music or beat and open in the party to an important event that needs fun music such as an after-party at a wedding, ordination ceremony, and Thai music car parade. Mostly, those events are Thai events because they have the connection and people understand the message clearly. The most popular event that uses Lukthung Mor Lam and gets a lot of attention from audiences is the Thai music car parade. 

Thai music car parade. 

This is one kind of music concert that using a car to be part of it. This is a way that can spread and go to every place with music because only this type of car can do entertainment fully. Some of it also has a singer or live music band. Some people that love this type of car is because it is more cheaper and it is very popular. Sometimes they gather those types of cars and create a music festival on their own—like a concert. When it comes to a festival it does not have only Lukthung Mor Lam but also Mor Lam, pop music, rock, and western song the main point is to make listeners happy and fun along with that music. Or if you personally love Lukthung Mor Lam and want them to only turn on this type on your event then you can hire only one car and request to open only Lukthung Mor Lam or you can hire the Lukthung Mor Lam singer with the car as well. This event I never have a chance to visit but once in my life, I hope I can go to this kind of festive and experience on my own.  

As you can see, Mor Lam is popular among Isaan people because Mor Lam is a their local song so they use local language to tell the story. Besides, the Mor Lam lover can be passionate with a different subtype of Mor Lam some might love fun and fast beat so they can dance along but some prefer to the type that tells the story by doing a show like drama show and the whole story is telling by singing with Mor Lam for sending the message. Moreover, some people might love Lukthung Mor Lam because of it seems to be a bit modern and easy to listen to. Isaan people can move or change places to live but still carry their culture and spread it to other people. Then other people might be able to sink into this music culture. I feel like Mor lam maybe will stay with us for a while because even the child or teenager who younger than me still love and really into it during this era then in future there might be some people who pass this type of song from generation to generation. So we should preserve Mor Lam and other Thai country music and try to open mind as much as we can with our own type of music and not only consume other country music or culture. If we can do like that then, in the future, we might be able to develop Mor Lam and make it more popular and go to the international level since nowadays Mor Lam also adapt with many types such as Mor Lam with Rock and with Jazz. Looking forward to the success of Mor Lam.