Yunnan-彩云之下-和云南人讨论山川,河流,和电子音乐

彩云之下——和云南人讨论山川,河流,和电子音乐

Words by Bohan Qiu

Bohan Qiu的文字

一头蓝色的帘盖,一身缠绵的绑带。

一片透明的天空,一束无邪的嫩芽。

三月的云南,是彩云之上最迷人的一抹青。

在心里停留的,是一种被山峦紧抱的寂寞。在唇舌缭绕的,是一种隐隐作痛的干燥。

在这里,山是美的,地是灰的,花是开的,人是锁的。

自幼甚少在国内跑,虽然曾两次到访过云南,一种混杂的心情还是挥之不去。以前对云南浅淡的印象,在这一趟旅途中彻底深化改变。

从幽静的白沙古镇里的巴黎北玛黑式买手店,到束河里上海租界一般的法式小酒馆;从孤独却不寂寞的大理柏林Warschauer straße式的techno夜店,到洱海边博斯普鲁斯海湾一般的碧蓝天际。

雪山脚下的油菜花映着不同民族对自然万物的爱,苍山头顶的无尽宇宙照亮着千万年前让人敬畏的荡气回肠。

在自然的壮丽之下,同样让我感到惊喜的是云南独特的时装风潮。从民族图案拼接的灯笼裤和裤裙,到棉麻布制成的及膝折领大衣。在这里,只要你细心寻觅,会发现许多珍宝。在白沙,我为刺绣工艺不输巴黎Lesage手工作坊感到钦佩;在大理,被迷醉在烟雾中随着电子音乐摇晃的青年们冲击了世界观。在总体统一的云南时装风格下,每翻过一座山,经过一座城,人们都受到了不同民族文化和性格的影响,用着服装的语言在表达着自己的思想。

在大理的深夜,原已沉醉在这里静谧的艺术气息之中。一个拐角,不远处隐约传来了让我难以置信的techno house,直接让我陷入更深的文化冲击。径直走入,酒吧里零星的颓废青年,不大的地方,另一端的DJ在微微的高台上叼着一根没有点燃的烟,散乱的及肩长发,粗犷的神色,用力地放着也许这里懂得人不多的音乐。每一张不大的高桌,摆满了密密麻麻的风花雪月,看似暧昧的男同志们毫不忌讳的牵着手,毫无牵挂。

老板冬冬正是一位年轻的大理人。自从毕业于民族舞蹈专业之后,冬冬跑遍了北上广深,结识了各路音乐,时装,舞蹈人。辗转回乡,便和几个同样爱电子音乐,爱玩DJ,爱调酒的哥们儿在这雪山脚下聚集,等待前来欣赏共鸣的夜路人。这家凤凰酒吧(Phoenix Bar)开业以将近十年,四年前由咖啡馆转型为地下音乐酒吧,给大理古城注入了玩世不恭的血液。

混迹于巴黎,北京和香港的DJ Oshi, 来自法国常驻大理平日是法式糕点师夜晚是电子乐魔法师的DJ Siku 和各路北京上海的地下电音玩手都会时不时做客Phoenix。

谈到云南DJ,冬冬甚是骄傲。“云南是一个非常培育DJ的地方。早在十五年前或者更早就已经开始了party文化。那个时候大陆除了北京上海就基本上在云南搞活动了。云南的DJ音乐很全面,跟全球也很同步。问题是中国文化音乐中心在北京,所以很多人都会跑到首都去寻求更多的机会。我口头所说的云南DJ指的是处于本土长于本土的那帮人,同时也包括常住云南的外国DJ。但由于地理交通问题,很多世界上优秀的人没办法来到这里一起交流玩耍。”

谈到Phoenix的来者不拒,冬冬说到,“我们这个地方不收门票,因为懂的人,听到了这个音乐,自然就会进来的。不懂的人,也不会被这音乐所吸引。同时这个bar不是一个gay friendly的地方,而是一个开放的没有拘束的地方。要知道,如果没有这些同志拉拉,我们也不会有今天的电子乐。”

的确,这么一想,全世界地下音乐盛行的地方,甚至具体到夜店酒吧,从巴黎东京宫地下的YOYO, 柏林的Berghain, 阿姆斯特丹的Ontrouw, 香港的XXX, 到上海的Shelter, 全都弥漫着一股性别模糊自由放荡的气味。到最后,到底是先Gay再电子,还是先电子再同性,早已变得模糊不清。

“这几年,越来越多的‘伪文艺’涌进大理。之前的那些有才之士,对他们所爱的艺术执迷不悟的人,都被新的开发和发展项目赶走了。本地的少数民族虽然物质水平提高了,但是由于物价房价上涨,许多也被迫卖出自己在古城里的地产,搬到下关附近的高楼大厦居住。”

在云南的旅途中,我们似乎最不想回到的,就是城市化和工业化所带来的丑恶的污染,实用主义的建筑风格,粗制滥造的楼宇,堆积成山的垃圾,甚至是过度开发的旅游景区。云南省内各个民族的自治州,都在某种程度上为当地居民争取了一些防止被过度开发的时间。因为就像一位藏族哥哥跟我说过,自然界的生命在他们面前都是和自我平等的。这些最基本的自然法则,早已消失在许多都市人的道德观里。取而代之的是驾驭自然的人类优越感。每到一个路上,我们都想用心记下那些瞬间。谁知道哪一天,政府不会因为金钱所冲昏脑袋,把自己依赖了千年的苍山洱海夷为旱地呢。

这一期的主题——“Green”,我并没有把它纯粹理解为受到环保,自然所启发的都市文化潮流。更加让我感触的,反而是人们在自然环境下不同的适应、理解方式,以及在开垦和服从之间的适度体验。在云南遇见的许多人,都无一不让我感受到他们对土地的尊敬,对山川的仰慕,对天空的向往,以及对生活和人性的热爱。

Yunnan—Talking About Mountains, Rivers and Electronic Music Under the Colored Clouds

Words by Bohan Qiu

The headbands of the minorities’ women reflected the transparency of the blue sky.

The clarity in the air heightened the senses of the spring blossoms.

Yunnan in March is the most charming splash of verdant paint in the western part of China.

What lingers in my heart is the kind of solitude being surrounded by the vast mountain ranges that appeared as merely a silhouette. What stays on my lips is the kind of dryness that continues to remind me of the altitude.

Spending a large portion of my youth overseas, I have rarely been traveling around inside China. Even though I have been here in Yunnan twice before, the kind of intertwined feeling never faded away. The shallow impression of Yunnan intensified and deepened after this trip.

The golden rape flower field on the foothills of a grand snow mountain shines the glorious love for nature of these different minorities that live in this region. And the infinite universe filled with sparkling starlets aluminate the thousand-year-long respect of the creatures beneath them. Yunnan is filled with pleasant surprises. From the Nord-Marais like buyer store in the ancient town of Baisha, to these adorable French Bistros in an alleyway hidden in the town of Shuhe; from the techno club in Dali that transports one to the center of Warschauer Straße in Berlin, to the dark blue skyline of breath-taking ocean-lake in Shuanglang that reminds one of the Turkish Bosphorus. I was mind-blown on a daily basis.

What also surprises me is the unique fashion scene in the Yunnan province. Here, the design is inspired by the local culture and dress codes, while adding a hint of modernity that makes it international. The line between the world and the locality is blurred. One could say that there is no clear identity or label directly related to these clothes, accessories and artifacts, but the stories and origins behind them are what make them worldly yet ethnic. The patched bloomers with ethnic prints hand-made by a Bai minority woman could be from Commes des Garçons, while a sleeveless ankle long linen coat with brocades and damasks that could compete with that of Dries Van Noten. Due to the natural mountain barricades, whenever we arrive at another town, the style sense varies. The light, practical and human-conscious clothing in Lijiang is much more tender than the smoke-infused, rebellious and statement pieces at Dali. They are all using clothing as an art to convey themselves, in variously different methods.

Into the night, I was wandering around the old town of Dali after a strangely delicious hand-grab Dai minority meal that is more of less a fusion between South Asian and Chinese cuisine. At a turn of a street, a subtle yet unbelievably toxic techno music came from a small house where green, red and blue disco beams are shooting out from. This space teleportation dragged me into this mystical place, where I found the kind of sounds that has been missing from my life in Hong Kong for over 6 months. On a Wednesday night, with a few alcohol-infused crowds, this small bar/café is a smoky loose atmosphere, searching for some lost souls. The DJ, with an unlit cigarette in his mouth, is spinning some minimalistic tunes in a nonchalant gesture. Each tall tables is filled with countless bottles of the local Fenghuaxueyue (direct translation would be wind, flower, snow and the moon. Later on refer to those flowery language that has little true meanings to them) beer. Some ambiguous homosexuals hold hands in the dark, carelessly swinging to the beat.

Dongdong, the owner of the bar, is a young Dali local, who returned to his hometown after being an ethnic dancer touring around the country for years. On the road, he met people who are into music, fashion, art and dancing, and eventually gathered a few mates who are share the same passion at the foot of the snow mountain, waiting for those nightwalkers that understand and appreciate. It has almost been ten years since this place—Phoenix is open, and it has injected a shot of rebellious blood into the old town of Dali. He invites DJs from Beijing, Shanghai, Paris and London to travel to this mystical little town and introduce their view of fun and good music to Yunnan. There is even a French DJ who is a Pâtissier by day, and a techno DJ by night.

“Yunnan is a great place to nurture good DJs. Even as early as 15 years ago, there was already a party scene. They would organize raves in the mountains, or in an old town, and invite people from the bigger cities nearby such as Kunming and Chengdu to exchange and communicate. Our music is diverse also, and pretty much in sync with the global crowd.” Speaking about the music culture in Yunnan, Dongdong is more than proud of his hometown. “But the problem is that Beijing is the culture hub of China, so most people would go there to pursue a bigger audience. This results in the underdevelopment of Yunnan, which is also understandable.”

When I asked him about the gay-friendliness of Phoenix, Dongdong replied, “Since we do not charge for entrance here, we welcome anyone who appreciates our music to come in. Those who do not understand this culture would never step inside. We did not intend to make it a gay-friendly place, but an open and limitless place. But you have to know, without homosexuals, there would be no such thing as the electronic music as we know of today.”

Indeed, to think about it, almost all landmark underground electronic parties in the world is filled with an ambiguous environment of sexual liberation. From YOYO at Palais de Tokyo, Berghain at Panorama, Ontrouw in Amsterdam, XXX in Hong Kong and Shelter in Shanghai, we can all smell the air of gay energy. Today, we can no longer tell which came first.

“Maintaining this place in Dali has been difficult”, says Dongdong, “Especially in recent years, Dali has experienced the gentrification that changed the cultural scene. More and more ‘pseudo-artists and pseudo-intellectuals’ flushed in, opening basic bitch cafes and shops, raised the housing prices and forced those true artists to leave this place. The minorities have a higher standard of materialist resources now, but are also pushed to sell their properties and move to towns further away to give way to the developers.”

When I was traveling in Yunnan, one thing we always tried to avoid, and are sometimes petrified of, is the ugly Chinese urbanization. The constructivist architecture, the bland tasteless concrete blocks, the garbage that flows down the rivers and the overly developed tourist spots are all like slaps of reality. Most of the province is semi-autonomous, managed by the local minorities. They have had a tradition to respect the nature that nurtured their culture for thousands of years, and have implemented many rules and regulations forbidding the destruction and pollution. A Tibetan guy once told me, lives when faced against nature are all equal. But this simple rule of nature has been long forgotten by urban citizens. Perhaps one day, they will also be forced to let in the horrid, ruthless money making machines and diminish the picturesque unreality in front of me.

I did not interpret the theme of this issue—“GREEN”, as solely sustainable fashion. What touched me even more was the adaptation and admiration of human beings towards nature, and the balance between obeying and reclaiming our motherland. Many people I have met in Yunnan, all showed to me their passion and their respect towards the mountains and the rivers, and taught me a powerful lesson to pay it forward.

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