These recordings were made by reknowned ethnomusicologist Gerald Dyck during his years in Chiang Mai (1967-1971). They are rare documentations of six of the many minority ethnic groups found in Thailand and the neighboring countries of Myanmar and Laos: the Akha, Hmong, Karen, Lahu, Lisu, and Mien. These people are frequently lumped together under the heading of 'hill people' by the Thai in the same manner that native peoples of America are called 'Indians.' They are peoples of unique Sino-Tibetan language and culture who have migrated into southeastern Asia from the mountainous regions of southern China during the past centuries.
This compilation contains an incredible variety of instruments and musical styles. To better help the listener appreciate the music, both a 29-page PDF document and Microsoft PowerPoint slideshow detailing Mr. Dyck's experiences meeting and recording the Hill Peoples, with photographs of the instruments and musicians heard on the CDs, and selected transcriptions, is included on the CDs.