Staying dry at Kodindy
Put off because of the flooding, the indy festival slides into a dry season slot
A stalwart of Thailand's rainy season, the Kodindy Music Festival has been hit by torrential rain during each of its six editions yet has managed to continue despite soggy fans and a muddy venue. Last year, however, the floods proved too much for the organisers to contend with and it was postponed. Now it's back and everyone is hoping that next Saturday won't see any unseasonal showers - at least over the Royal Turf Club.
The original concept, "Piek Mai Klua Klua Mai Piek" meaning "don't be afraid of the rain" has been dropped in favour of "Krasae Nam Mon Ja Raeng Kwa Krasae Namjai Dai Ngai Wa!", which translates as "affection is greater than flood".
This year's festival will have six stages and 150 bands, fewer than the previous event, which had 14 stages. The stages are named after six of Greater Bangkok's most seriously flooded districts: Tawee Watthana, Khlong Sam Wa, Rangsit, Bang Len, Bang Bua Thong and Lam Luk Ka.
"This year, we're adding a DJ stage for people who are interested in turntables and synthesisers," says Burinthorn "Heng" Saelor, talking after the press conference at TK Park in CentralWorld. "For the artists, we're bringing in many more of indie bands from several provinces such as Bu-Lood from Sangthong Wittaya School in Hat Yai, Songkhla, Satree Niyom from Khon Kaen, and Yim Krim from Chiang Mai.
"I expect a crowd of more than 10,000 people this year," he adds. "Kodindy is the stage for indie bands to show off their abilities. Kodindy doesn't focus on big-name bands but invites indie bands to come together with their friends."
Among those bands is Casino 14, formed just a few months by Pholkrit "A" Viriyanuphap, former guitarist of Pause and Siblor, who's teamed up with Jirayu "Pao" Arunwisut on bass, Yuthaphum "Ped" Khaphromraj, former drummer of Mon Rak Bola Bola and young guitarist Yoswaris "Buddy" Sapaekkawat.
"We compare our profession of musicians as to as challenging as any casino game and 14 is the number of the soi where I live. It also means 'Four Teens' and that sums up the band," says Pholkrit. "But we don't gamble."
"We play rock 'n' roll with a variety of beats like dance. The rock is rather raw and suitable for my voice," he adds. The band recently completed a five-track EP.
For the last four years, Kodindy Music Festival has adhered to a "No Smoking No Alcohol" policy and cooperated with Thai Health Promotion Foundation.
"We don't ban the bands from smoking and drinking but we do ask for their cooperation. I'm confident that most of bands don't smoke or drink," says founder Heng.
The festival will also feature more than 100 booths selling products hand made by students, artists' clothing and CDs.
_ The Kodindy Music Festival will be at the Royal Turf Club of Thailand at Nang Lerng from noon and midnight on January 21.
_ Tickets are Bt150. Check out Facebook.com/Kodindythailand.
_ Part of the proceeds will go to help flood victims.