Trịnh Công Sơn (February 28, 1939 – April 1, 2001) was a Vietnamese composer, musician, painter and songwriter. He, along with Phạm Duy Cẩn and Nguyễn Văn Cao, is widely considered one of the three most salient figures of modern Vietnamese music.
Trịnh Công Sơn wrote over 600 songs, and, during the 1960s and 1970s, Joan Baez dubbed him the Bob Dylan of Viet Nam for his moving antiwar songs. He became one of South Vietnam’s best-known singer-songwriters, after his first hit, Ướt mi (Tearing Lashes) in 1957. He was frequently under pressure from the government, which was displeased with the pacifist’s lyrics of such songs as Ngủ đi con (Lullaby, about a mother grieving for her soldier son). His songs were restricted by the South Vietnamese government. After the reunification in 1975, Son was sentenced by the new communist government, to “retraining” in a labor camp after his family fled to Canada. However, he was eventually honored by the government and many officials sent their respects with floral tributes. His often melancholy songs about love and postwar reconciliation earned new acceptance and popularity in later years.
There are two singers’ names often associated with Trịnh Công Sơn: Khánh Ly and Hồng Nhung. –last.fm
Watch the 10 year anniversary performance celebrating the life of Trịnh Công Sơn below: