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Video: Like Me’s “Behdong Khmean Kongval”

In Culture, Music
Like Me's

Since 2009, four San Jose women, known at the Like-Me’s, have been at the forefront of modernizing Khmer (Cambodian) music. The fact that only two of them are Cambodian makes the story that much more interesting.

The Like Me’s take folk, rock, soul and classic Khmer music—singing in both English and Khmer—and fuse the genres into one. Their newest song, “Behdong Khmean Kongval,” adds electronic dance-pop to that list.

The key to the Like Me’s success, or at least how they’ve garnered so much exposure in Cambodian communities worldwide, is their videos on Youtube. While always on a shoestring budget, their videos are well-produced thanks to so much donated assistance from friends and admirers in San Jose. One of their previous videos, “Sva Rom Monkiss,” a remake of a classic 1960s Khmer song by by Pan Ron, is basically a period piece set in 1960s Cambodia.

The video for “Behdong Khmean Kongval” opens in a drab office where singer Laura Mam presumably works. She walks in and decides she’s had enough and throws all her papers in the air. She grabs the other members of the Like Me’s and starts to dance. As the music changes, so does the setting. They sing and dance in a low-lit dance club, perform on stage at a large rock venue and do synchronized dance moves in what looks like an 80s hip-hop video. At the end, it’s all just a fantasy in Mam’s head one day before work. Watch the last 30 seconds of the video. The punch line at the end is priceless.

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