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Friday 4 November 2022

Mightier Than The Sword

Back in August we did a couple of posts with music from the golden age of Cambodian pop featuring Sinn Sisamouth and Ros Sereysothea, who were respectively the king and queen of the Khmer scene.

At the time I had intended to do at least one more post featuring other Cambodian artists from the same era but then I got all distracted and forget, as tends to happen with increasing frequency these days. But then yesterday a certain lady popped up in my Shuffle and it all came flooding back.

The lady in question is Pen Ran, who was probably the second biggest female star in Cambodia in the 1960s and early 1970s after Queen Ros. Deservedly so, she made some belting records. 

Here are three of my favourites, with English titles courtesy of Google Translate. The first sets us off at a cracking pace, I'm pretty sure the second is her take on "Well All Right", while for the third she teams up with King Sinn, an organist and a sax player to create a masterpiece.

"ជេរណាស់តាមណាស់ (Very Damn)" - Pen Ran

"ឡាឡាឡាយើងឡើងរាំ (La La La We Dance)" - Pen Ran

"ចិញ្ជៀនត្បូងប្រាំ (Five Gemstone Rings)" - Sinn Sisamouth & Pen Ran 


  1. Track 1 is outrageously good. I found this
    that features a Pen Ron, who might be the same person you feature today

    1. It is the same person. Depending on who has done the transliteration she gets billed as Pen Ran, Pen Ron or Pan Ron. I have no idea which is closest to her actual name in Khmer.

  2. Track 3 is fantastic!!!!!!!11

  3. There was me thinking you were announcing the title of your autobiography ...

  4. The fuzztastic first tune and Ethio-jazz flavoured third are both outstanding.