Doan Nho’s ballads and marching songs

(VOVworld) –Doan Nho has received the Ho Chi Minh award for his contribution to Vietnamese music. Doan Nho wrote a lot of great songs like “Marching under the national flag”, “The woman on La River”, and “5 brothers on the same tank”.

Doan Nho’s ballads and marching songs  - ảnh 1
Musician Doan Nho (Photo: VOV)

The melody of that song, “Marching under the national flag”, lives in the hearts of generations of Vietnamese soldiers who fought for national independence. The song is still played at flag hoisting ceremonies in Ba Dinh Square. War veteran Dinh Van An said: “Marching under the national flag” was a song that soldiers often sang before they went into battle. Doan Nho is a talented musician. He has written many songs for soldiers”.

Doan Nho was born in Tu Liem, Hanoi. At the age of 17 he joined the army, where he met musicians Nguyen Xuan  Khoat and Do Nhuan, who advised him to study Vietnam’s folk melodies. This influenced Doan Nho’s later musical style, which combined grand marching songs with gentler folk melodies. In the song “Five brothers on a tank”, Doan Nho used a touching folk melody to highlight the close comradeship between soldiers, while his popular song “Pieu scarf” echoes a typical folk melody of the Kho Mu ethnic people. Doan Nho said each of his songs owes something to the typical folk melodies of some area of Vietnam: “Musician Do Nhuan told me that it is folk melodies that most easily touch people’s hearts and souls. My songs borrowed from Cheo (traditional opera) and traditional music of different regions”.

Doan Nho was constantly writing songs during his time in the army. In 1951, when he was attending army school, he wrote “Foster mother” and “Following the moral example of La Van Cau”. In 1954, while working for the art troupe of the General Department of Politics, he wrote “The woman by La River” and “Five brothers on the same tank”. Doan Nho said he found musical inspiration during every journey. He wrote the song “The woman by La River” about heroic La Thi Tam and the 10 female volunteers at Dong Loc T-junction. The song has the melody of Vi Dam, a folk melody of Nghe Tinh province. The song has been popular with generations of music lovers. Musician Nguyen Thi Minh Chau said: “Doan Nho’s music is catchy. It is a combination of popular and academic music, of marches and romantic ballads”.

People’s Artist QuangTho said: “Doan Nho was a soldier. Many of his songs have become official songs of the Vietnamese Army”.

Doan Nho also wrote chamber music and was the author of a well-known academic pieces like “A journey to the Hung King Temple” and “Hoa Lu Thang Long – a song about relocating the ancient capital”. He said: “Instrumental music is real music, highly appreciated in the music world. My musical piece “A memorial song”, which combines the folk music of 3 regions, won a prize from the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism. The song commemorates those who sacrificed their lives for national independence and freedom”.

Despite his advanced age, Doan Nho is still tirelessly working to contribute to Vietnam’s musical heritage