Thao Nguyen – A Role Model of the Indie Music Variety

I first stumbled upon Thao Nguyen three years ago.  I was immediately in awe of her smokey infectious voice, well crafted lyrics, and beaming stage presence.  Of course it helped that we shared numerous things in common. We were both from Northern Virginia, both moved to San Francisco in pursuit of our love for the arts(for me writing for her music), and of course we were both Vietnamese.  It was inspiring for me to see a Vietnamese singer songwriter make music on her own terms.  And through this she was still able to gain much acclaim from tough music critics like Pitchfork and other music blogs.

She writes about family, childhood, and growing up in a way that’s both personal and universal.  The details in her lyrics are written with such a fresh and crafted eye that you can’t help but linger in the tiny telling details she sings about. “We Brave Be Stings and All” her first full length record was on repeat on my ipod for months. I still have not be able to see her live in concert yet, however, maybe YOU can change that for me tonight and I can live vicariously through all of you because  unfortunately I can’t make it tonight but Thao Nguyen will be playing a show in San Francisco at The Great Meadow tonight and then touring across the country  through out the summer.

Below is a clip of her playing a Tiny Desk Concert for NPR and a link to an oral history she gave of herself for the rumpus. I am highly convinced you all will fall in love with her as well as soon as you hear her voice and listen to the her words that we can all relate to.

Anhvu Buchanan

An Oral History of Thao Nguyen by Thao Nguyen

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  1. I wasn’t originally a fan of Thao’s sound but I kept coming back to it. This was years ago. She’s a regular on my playlist now, haha. So much for being picky about genres, Thao just stuck. Thanks for the write up! I hope she shows up on Diacritics again!


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