Tom Vater

Tom Vater

Irreverent, informed and downright eclectic crime fiction and reportage from Southeast Asia and beyond

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Posts tagged music

The Tom Vater Collection at the British Library to be digitally preserved

This recording is part of the Tom Vater Collection (C799) at the British Library. A longer extract has been published on The Moken: sea gypsies of the Andaman Sea (Topic Records TSCD919, 2001).  The full collection also includes recordings from India, Laos and Cambodia. It will be digitally preserved as part of the Unlocking our […]

British Library launches campaign to save the sounds of history

My writing career started right here, at the British Library’s National Sound Archive. I went to see them in 1993 after my first return from India. I was interested in the music of indigenous communities in the region and approached the National Sound Archive’s International Music Collection with an offer of recording and documenting the […]

RocknRoll Interlude – On Tour with The London Dirthole Company

I’ve been on tour with The London Dirthole Company, legendary London based noise creatives. The music made by The London Dirthole Company is a joyful ride into the world of the modern Outsider artist as a musical phenomena. As out of time and place and unreservedly important as The Fall, The Monks and The Velvet […]

Thai Hardcore Bands Are Risking Prison Just To Thrash – Interview in Noisey/Vice

I was recently interviewed for an article on Thailand’s punk rock scene for Noisey/Vice. Read the full story Thai Hardcore Bands Are Risking Prison Just To Thrash by April Welsh here.

Moken: Sea Gypsies of the Andaman Sea CD Still Available!!!

In 1999, I first visited the Moken sea nomads/sea gypsies in Ko Surin Marine National Park in Thailand. I had been  recording indigenous music around Asia for the British Library for some years. Thailand had not been on my usual routes, I spent most of my time in India, Pakistan and Nepal in the 90s. […]

The Kalash – My 1998 trip to Pakistan as The British Library researcher

In 1998 I traveled from Kathmandu to Istanbul overland. At the time I was recording indigenous music across Asia in collaboration with The British Library’s National Sound Archive/International Music Collection. I recorded street musicians, folk musicians, religious performers and street corner drunks. I worked in Nepal, India, The Philippines, Thailand, Iran and Pakistan. In Pakistan, […]

Michael LaPalme captures Pussy & The Learjets, Bangkok’s seminal RocknRoll Band!

Bangkok based photographer Michael LaPalme witnessed many of the 2011 shows of Pussy & The Learjets, Bangkok’s loudest RocknRoll band. The Learjets have been defunct for more than a year with Pussy absconding to China and the rest of the band involved in other projects. Michael also shot The Learjets in the studio. Now he’s […]

From the Vault: Pussy & The Learjets: You’re Gonna Miss Me

From the vaults…a new track by Pussy & The Learjets, who played Bangkok punk rock for twelve months and then crashed and burned, as any great band should. This is a cover on The Thirteenth Floor Elevators You’re Gonna Miss Me, a huge song. And yes, I played guitar for The Learjets. With Manis on […]

Phnom Penh’s Cultural Revival in Bangkok 101…Again

Seems like British hip hop legend Gobshite aka Grant Mgc Massey, currently based in Phnom Penh, continues to get mileage out of my recent story on the Cambodian capital’s cultural resurgence. The feature, which first appeared in The Guardian in April is now online at Bangkok 101, the Thai capital’s most exciting English language magazine, […]

Pussy & The Learjets celebrate Bangkok

Bangkok’s loudest RocknRoll band, Pussy & The Learjets, featuring my alter ego, Tom Learjet, on guitar, may not be rumbling through the Thai capital’s music venues right now, but the band led by the amazing, incredible Om aka Pussy still has a pulse. Bassist Manis On Fire has been digging through our extensive back catalogue […]

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