Famous Vietnamese folk song beats an anti-Covid-19 drum

By Tam Ky   April 4, 2020 | 06:11 pm PT
Famous Vietnamese folk song beats an anti-Covid-19 drum
Singer Kyo York has translated several Vietnamese songs into English. Photo courtesy of Kyo York.
A famous Vietnamese folk song, "Trong Com" (Rice Drum) has been given an anti-Covid-19 twist by a Vietnamese musician and an American singer. 

The "Rice Drum" is a cheerful folk song from the Red River Delta region that is known and loved by Vietnamese across different generations. 

In a new twist to the song, musician Khuc Dao Minh has penned anti-Covid lyrics and American singer Kyo York has translated it, sung both Vietnamese and English versions.

The lyrics warn about the dangers of the novel coronavirus, and the song’s chorus urge people to wear face masks, avoid crowded places and clean their hands. 

With upbeat music and Kyo York's energetic performance and good command of Vietnamese, the new version has quickly become popular, gathering more than 180,000 views on the singer’s YouTube channel just a day after it was posted.

Many viewers praised the lyrics for being easy to understand while keeping the main vibe of the original.

"A very Vietnamese Covid-song. Kyo York must have such a great love for Vietnam to use "Trong Com" (Rice Drum) to promote epidemic prevention," comments viewer Bach Qui. 

Kyo York said a catchy song that integrates good information from media can cheer people up, reduce stress and cope with quarantine boredom. He recorded the music video himself before sending it to a team of editors. 

Before "Rice Drum", Kyo York had translated the song "Ghen Co Vy", composed by Khac Hung, into English, attracting more than 500,000 views. 

"Ghen Co Vy" released on February 23 by Min and Erik, was a project initiated the Vietnamese Ministry of Health to increase awareness about Covid-19 prevention.

The song went viral worldwide after being broadcast on HBO's Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, who praised Vietnam for many useful propaganda measures on the disease.

Kyo York, 35, came to Vietnam in late 2009 to teach English to young people in the southern province of Hau Giang. Later, he moved to Ho Chi Minh City and has been living there since. 

He taught himself Vietnamese and is passionate about Vietnamese music. 

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