Concert theme: Singing high praises of the exploits of General Secretary Kim Jong Il and the leadership of Kim Jong Un
Place: Samjiyon County in Ryanggang Province, in the vicinity of Mount Pektu
Audience: Local people
KJU: Not present
KCNA: Highly approving; calendar>> April 2>> April 4>> April 6>> April 9>> April 11
Wrong scale 720:420, which makes it look as if the ladies have become 20 kg fatter; should be 4:3 = 720:540 = 640:480. Can be corrected in VLC or Flip player.
This Ryanggang Province tour was launched in Pyongyang in a screening concert in 2 April, with a number of new songs, and with KJU attending – the next day after MB finished its previous 10-day string of concerts. In Samjiyon County they had 1 or 2 concerts, then in Taehongdan County 1-3 concerts (KCNA is not clear here), and finally in Hyesan City 3 concerts (this is clearly stated). MB thus played in a row at least 16 concerts, but perhaps as much as 19 concerts.
Sonu Hyang-hui has returned to the ensemble, and strings are again a quartet. They are again arranged into the centre, and guitars are as well placed at the same row on both sides of them. Drums, synthesizers and saxophone now form the back row. Ryu Jina has also returned; they both appear to have been cleared of trouble. Kim Yu-kyong on her turn has become invisible again. If she was absent, we could think of a bad cold that would prevent her from singing, but she is on stage. She has been taken away from all solos, duos and trios, where she could easily be noticed, but she participates at the end in quintets and sextets, such as 58.00 인민의 환희, where she can be hidden in far away corners of the stage. There is no doubt that also she herself notices the way she is being treated.
After the non-blood line concerts in March, the blood line is again introduced here in the vicinity of the holy Pektu Mountain. Elements of the earlier MBB concept also return in the form of increased use of violins in some songs, a rare Sonu Hyang-hui violin solo included. The change into a new concept thus was not total yet.
The seconds below are not accurate; they refer to the extinct DPRKMusicChannel version.
00.00.36 희망 넘친 나의 조국아 Hwemang nŏmchin naye joguka My country overflowing with hope 希望に満ちた我が祖国 《充满希望的我国哟》
Composition: An Jong-ho 안정호, lyrics: Cha Ho-gun 차호근, 2013
Solo: Jong Su-hyang
00.03.11 대홍단는 살기 좋은 고장입니다 Tehongdannŭn salgi joŭn kojang imnida Tehongdan is a good place to live 大紅湍・テホンダンは暮らしよいところ
No creation info.
Solo: Kim Sol-mi.
Of all the singers, she knows best how to sing in the traditional Korean style. This points to the age of the song; it probably is a KJI era song. During the famine years the Tehongdan area would have suffered a lot had it not been near the Chinese border where illegal trading helped. Because it is so north, rice does not grow there very well. For this reason the basic staple of the people was changed during the 1990s from rice to potatoes, which explains the video scenes. It is said to cause some grumbling, as rice is valued much higher than potatoes as a food item, but it keeps a larger amount of people from starvation.
00.07.20 흥하는 내 나라 Hŭnghanŭn ne nara My flourishing country 栄える我が国
Known in YouTube also as ”O my motherland full of hope”
Composition: Hwang Jin-yong 황진영, 2000
Duo: Kim Sol-mi, Jong Su-hyang
00.10.20 뜨거운 정 Tŭgŏun jŏng Hot Feelings 熱い思い
No creation info. New KJU song.
Solo: Pak Mi-kyong
00.14.24 우리 어버이 Uri ŏpŏi Our father 私たちの慈父 《我们的慈父》
Composition: An Jong-ho 안정호, lyrics: Pak Kyong-sim 박경심, 2014
Duo: Pak Mi-kyong, Jong Su-hyang
Jong replacing Kim Yu-kyong here has increased the sweetnes of the song. The leading Kim, irrespective of his age, is called the father of the nation, while the Party is the mother. Yet, the metaphor obviously fit better both KIS and KJI, who rose to the position in a more advanced age, than KJU, who was supposed to be 29 years old in 2014. The ladies singing are not many years younger. KJU appears often with young children, and being also himself the father of a small child, the metaphor is quite natural in those situations.
00.19.00 백두의 말발굽소리 Pektuye malpalkup sori Sound of horse hooves in Mt. Paektu 白頭の馬蹄の音
Composer: Sin Un Ho 신운호, lyrics: O Yong-je 오영재, 1992
Instrumental, string quartet
A performance with the earlier MBB concept: a dramatic melody where every musician is allowed to display her artistic virtuosity. This kind of performances are refreshing, especially as most of the other numbers follow the new MBB concept of slow and sweet eulogies for KJU.
00.22.22 자나깨나 원수님 생각 Janakena wŏnsunim senggak I think of the marshal day and night 寝ても覚めても元帥様を考える
Composition: An Jong-ho 안정호, lyrics: Cha Ho-gun 차호근, 2014. A new KJU song.
Solo: Ra Yu-mi
00.26.56 우리 원수님 Uri wŏnsunim Our marshal 我が元帥様
Composition: Kim Un-ryong 김운룡, lyrics: Cha Ho-gun 차호근, 2013
Duo: Jong Su-hyang, Ryu Jina
00.31.15 하늘아래 첫집 Hanŭrare chŏtjip First home under sky 空の下の最初の家
Composition: U Jong-hui 우정희, 1995
Trio: Pak Mi-kyong, Kim Sol-mi, Jong Su-hyang
00.34.59 매혹과 흠모 Mehok kwa hŭmmo Glorious and admirable 魅惑と欣慕
Composition: An Jong-ho 안정호, lyrics: Yun Du-gun 윤두근, 2010
Violin solo: Sonu Huang-hui
When a great artist plays, you notice it. She is the real soul of MBB, and should have been nominated Merited Artiste long ago.
Cello: Yu Un-jong
Accompanying violins: Hong Su-kyong, Cha Yong-mi
They also were very good. One of An Jong-ho’s best melodies.
00.40.03 대홍단 삼천리 Tehongdan samchŏlli Tehongdan of 3 000 ri 大紅湍三千里
Composition: An Jong-ho 안정호, lyrics: Pak Jong-e 박정애, 1997
Trio: Jong Su-hyang, Kim Sol-mi, Pak Mi-kyong
Text at the bottom of the screen simply announces that the KCTV is now broadcasting a live recording of the Moranbong Band Samjiyon concert.
Growing potatoes and wheat is one of the images of the Tehongdan district. The other one is the 3000 ri. That is a metaphor for the whole Korea, as the peninsula is roughly 1200 km or 3000 traditional Korean ri long; both North and South Korea use the metaphor in their respective national anthems. Here it refers to the fact that Tehongdan is at the northof the nation, where also the holy Pektu Mountain is situated.
A second An Jong-hui composition in a row. Although he composed on a lot on usual North Korean subjects, he was a specialist on songs of the north. By 2014 he had composed altogether 15 songs about the Jong-il Peak 정일봉 (a part of the Pektu Mountain, named after KJI), 3 about Mount Pektu 백두산 itself (白頭、White Head), 3 about the creek running in front of the mythical log cabin in the mountain where Kim Jong Il was supposed to have been born, named Sobeksu 소백수 (小白水, Small White Water). He made also other songs about the northern areas, such as Tehongdan 대홍단 (2), one of which was presented here, and Samjiyon 삼지연 (2). However, the following song is not by him, but by his female composer colleague, also a vice director of MBB:
00.44.00 빛나라 정일봉 Pinnara Jŏngil pong Shine, Jong-il Peak 輝け正日峰
Composition: U Jong-hui 우정희, lyrics: Ri Jong-sul 리정술, 1988
Duo: Ryu Jina, Ra Yu-mi -> quintet
00.49.15 내 삶의 보금자리 Ne salmye pogŭmjari Resting place for all my life 我が人生の安息所
Composition: Pak Jin-guk 박진국, lyrics: Kim Un-suk 김은숙, no date, but most of Pak’s compositions are from the 1990s and early 2000s. A heavily dynastic song about Mount Pektu and KIS.
Solo: Ra Yu-mi
00.53.45 그이 없인 못살아 Kŭi ŏpsin mossara We cannot live without him あの方なしでは生きられない
Composition: Kim Un-ryong 김운룡, lyrics 작사: Cha Ho-gun 차호근, 2013
Female quartet: Kim Sol-mi, Ra Yu-mi, Jong Su-hyang, Pak Mi-kyong
The practice of avoiding pitch order continues in KJU songs
00.58.00 인민의 환희 Inminye hwanhwe People’s joy 人民の喜び 《人民的欢喜》
Composition: An Jong-ho 안정호, lyrics: Cha Ho-gun 차호근, 2014
Violin: Hong Su-kyong
Same quintet as in the 20140314 concert, where this was first heard, but the order of singers is different; in the beginning: Ra Yu-mi, Jong Su-hyang, Kim Sol-mi, Pak Mi-kyong, Kim Yu-kyong. The order is changed later, Sol-mi being now the axis around which the others turn. Not only is the pitch order avoided, the main idea has been to move Kim Yu-kyong away from the axis position to the extreme ends, so that the camera can present shoots of several singers at the same time, but keep her out of any close view. The light is so dim that she is recognizable more by her unmistakable way of movement rather her looks. Her invisibility is so deliberately created that it stands out clearly. Whatever it is, trouble has returned upon her head.
01.01.43 우리는 당신밖에 모른다 Urinŭn tangsinbagge morŭnda We know you only 私たちはあなたしか知らない
Known also as ”We will follow you only”
Composition: Hwang Jin-yong 황진영 & Kim Un-ryong, lyrics: Cha Ho-gun 차호근 & Ri Ji-song, 2013
Sextet: Pak Mi-kyong, Kim Sol-mi, Jong Su-hyang, Ryu Jina, Kim Yu-kyong, Ra Yu-mi
This is almost a pitch order, except that Yu-kyong should be in the centre on Ryu Jina’s right side, but she is not.
01.04.33 인민은 일편단심 Inminŭn ilphyŏn dansim Single-minded people 人民は一片丹心
Composition: U Jong-hui 우정희, lyrics: Ri Ji-song 리지성, 2012
Sextet, same order
The repertoire was composed by alternating dynastic songs related to Mount Pektu with new KJU songs.
An Jong-ho: 6 compositions, 4 new KJU, 2 older dynastic
U Jong-hui: 3 compositions, 1 new KJU, 2 older dynastic
Kim Un-ryong: 3 compositions, new (1 with HJY)
Hwang Jin-yong: 2 compositions, 1 new KJU, 1 older dynastic
Cha Ho-gun: 6 lyrics, new
Ri Ji-song 2, new
Pak Kyong-sim 1 new
No creation info: 2
17 songs; 9 new, 8 pre-KJU. 14 or almost all by MBB vice directors.
The ladies were now wearing wartime guerilla uniforms, while the String Quertet added to that white cloaks. Sonu Hyang-hui was back for a while.
But her role was not as central as before; Hong Su-kyong had been playing a larger role in the numerous concerts held before this. Behind Hong Choe Jong-im.
Ryu Jina likewise was back, but in a minor role. Ra Yu-mi had eclipsed her.
The singers had thus become six: from left to right: Kim Sol-mi, Kim Yu-kyong, Ryu Jina, Ra Yu-mi, Pak Mi-kyong and Jong Su-hyang.