Note: I am writing these reviews in English hoping the younger generation will pick up Ngoc Lan’s CDs.
Although 1982-1991 Ngoc Lan Asia contains only a portion of Ngoc Lan’s works (34 out of 800-something songs), it definitely proves that she was one of the most natural artists of her time. This special collection is not only a memory of one of the greatest Vietnamese singers of all time but it also showcases her talent of performing several languages including: Vietnamese, French, English, and Chinese (Cung La Buon).
Ngoc Lan’s vocals are indelible and Asia production had done a great job of allowing that beautiful voice shines through in every song. “Xin Thoi Gian Qua Mau” and “Rung La Thay Chua” are my favorites because she chose simple over flamboyant and she was able to captured the aesthetic qualities of each song. In tracks like “Khuc Thuy Du,” “Tieng Ca Dem,” “Nhung Kiep Hoa Xuan,” etc., she never held a note too long, which made the songs enchanting and pleasing to enjoy. Although I don’t speak French fluently, I could feel the way she delightfully released the words in “Nang Da Tat,” “Chuyen Tinh Yeu,” “Tinh Yeu,” etc. It’s simply an amazing experience. If you’re into ballroom dancing like me, you’ll appreciate tracks like “Mua He Vo Tan” (Bebop), “Loi Tinh Ai” (Tango), “Khuc Luan Vu Ngay Mua” (Valse). With her mesmerizing vocals and Asia’s elegant beats, my feet get real itchy when I emerge into these songs. I might not be as good as Nguyen Hung in ballroom dancing but I can break it down like James Brown.
With Asia’s superior musical arrangements and Ngoc Lan’s godsend vocals, this 3 CDs special collection is priceless. If you’re a fan of Ngoc Lan and you don’t have this collection, shame on you. I was ashamed of myself for waiting too long to purchase these CDs. It’s not my fault that I didn’t know about it. Asia should have marketed more effectively. It’s a timeless work of art and I am sure this collection lives on just like her legacy will remain forever in our hearts.