Thai Elephants on Parade

Hear traditional Thai music, Beethoven’s Pastoral Symphony, and even Hank Williams, all played by elephants: Prathida, Luuk Kob, Luuk Khang, JoJo, Phangkhawt, and Phumpuang. How is this possible? A human, like composer/performer Dave Soldier or Richard Lair of the Thai Elephant Conservation Center, cues the elephants when to enter and when to stop playing. The music that is made in between these signals is entirely up to the elephants. Fun aside: imagine the human “leader,” trying to let the 10,000 pound animal know that it is time to stop playing the drum. The other way this works is the “hocket” style, where each elephant plays one pitch of the scale on tuned angalungs. Composer/arranger/neuroscientist David Soldier joins John Schaefer for this edition of New Sounds, Program #2329, to present the new album by the planet’s most potent passel of pachyderms, The Thai Elephant Orchestra. Really!

PROGRAM #2329 Dave Soldier Presents The Thai Elephant Orchestra (Tues. 10-12-04)





Dave Soldier & Soldier String Quartet

Inspect For Damaged Gods

In Time [2:00]

Mulatta #008

Dave Soldier/Richard Lair/Thai Elephant Orchestra

Elephonic Rhapsodies

Bamboo Dreams [3:00]
Phong’s Solo [1:30]
The Ganesha Symphony [11:00]
An Adult’s Guide To The Elephant Orchestra [3:00]
Little Elephant Saddle [3:30]
Floating Down The Pin River [5:00]
Pin Pia [3:00]

Mulatta #009**

Dave Soldier & Zebra Finches

Private tape

Gamelan [1:30]

Not commercially available.

*, ** - Find the recordings you've heard - go to the New Sounds Recordings Information page