Nguyen Nhat Huy’s Van No Cuoc Doi is rather successful because of Dam Vinh Hung and My Tam performances. It was a smart decision for Nguyen Nhat Huy to choose these two extraordinary artists to perform his music. His lyric is more for older (40s) folks but Dam Vinh Hung and My Tam attract the younger crowds. It’s like killing two birds with one stone.
Dam Vinh Hung starts off the album with Hay Song That Long. His strong and smoky voice is perfect for the slow rock beat. Follows by My Tam’s striking voice in Loi Hua Chong Phai. Dam Vinh Hung once again brings out his uniqueness in performing Nhac Tru Tinh (Vietnamese Love Melody) in Tren Nhung Tan Phai. It’s the perfect mix between a beautiful melody and a handsome voice. My Tam gives a radiance touch on Xin Doi Cho Co Do while Dam Vinh Hung gives all his soul in Thu Tha Mot Lan. With Hat Ben Troi Lang Quen, My Tam lets her sweet voice ring through without hitting a high note. Uoc Mo Xa Tam Tay is another track fits Dam Vinh Hung nicely. He is good at starting out soft and gradually screams on top of his lung at the end. Specially the emphasis on the line, “Ai da mang em sang ben kia Dai Duong?” Nguyen Nhat Huy probably dedicated this song to his lover who left him for someone oversea, a Viet Kieu (Vietnamese American) maybe. Speaking of dedication, Tinh Me (Mother’s Love) is an inspiration and My Tam gives a mesmerizing performance. I just love the lyrics, “Khi tho au con nao dau co biet, me lang le trong ngan noi muon phien. Du bao gio mua, tinh me van thiet that em dem.” This song hits straight home for me and my mother, in particular the line, “Me da co phut giau nuoc mat cho con tho ngay nu cuoi.” Which literally means, “There are moments when mother hid her tears in order to give her innocent child a smile.” I am so glad Nguyen Nhat Huy wrote this song. In contrast to Tinh Me, his dedication to his father in Nghi Ve Cha (Thinking of My Father) fails miserably. Although Dam Vinh Hung gives all he can, he still can’t pull off this song. Finally, Van No Cuoc Doi wraps up the album. This is another beautiful lyric that touches on life. Nguyen Nhat Huy acknowledges people, places, and things he owes in life.
This is the first time I get to know Nguyen Nhat Huy’s music. I have listened to this album several times and each time it brings me closer to the lyrics. Not only I like the music, I also like the packing design of the album. It puts together like a book where you can flip to read the lyrics and look at the photos of Nguyen Nhat Huy, Dam Vinh Hung, and My Tam. Because of the well-designed format, Van No Cuoc Doi is a perfect gift for a friend who appreciates Vietnamese music.