by Zhang Jianhua, Ling Shuo
VIENTIANE, June 30 (Xinhua) -- "Belt and Road, listen as I say, working together for prosperity. Belt and Road links you and me, overcoming obstacles may they be big or small..." Lao singer Athisack Rattanavong sang to Xinhua reporters, showcasing his hit "Belt and Road" in his unique husky voice at a coffee bar in Vientiane recently.
Athisack Rattanavong, whose nickname is Sack, is a famous rock n' roll singer in Laos. As to the melody of the song, the young man said he fell in love with the "Belt and Road" Initiative before falling for the song.
"To be honest when I first saw the lyrics, I knew that it talked about Laos-China friendship, but at that time I didn't understand what the Belt and Road was," Sack told Xinhua. "Then I asked Vilayphone (the lyricist) and learnt that the Belt and Road Initiative is one of win-win cooperation, including that of railway construction. I then knew that this initiative is good and is able to motivate the willingness of cooperation between Laos and China, and create forces for both countries' common economic development."
The Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road, known as the Belt and Road Initiative, was proposed by China in 2013 with the aim of building a trade, investment and infrastructure network connecting Asia with Europe and Africa along the ancient trade routes.
Sack's recognition of the Belt and Road Initiative urged him to create a song that can encourage Lao people to learn more about the initiative. Sack then chose the rock n' roll style for the song, as he said this music style will make it more appealing to youngsters, thus making it easier to convey the message of joint development along the route of Belt and Road.
"Then I changed it so that this song can not only give people a sense of happiness, but also give them strong hope for country building," he told Xinhua.
Talking about his connection with China, Sack said his grandmother is a Chinese national. Therefore, since he was a young boy, despite living in a country of finger food culture, Sack is adept at using chopsticks to eat.
"In the past 10 years, many Chinese investors have come to Laos for businesses... they mingle very well with each other, like a big family," he said.
Sack's love for the Belt and Road also extends to the China-Laos railway, a major part of the initiative. The young singer was especially excited while talking about the railway project, which is now under construction.
"The Laos-China railway will be a major trade channel and an important route linking China and the Indochina Peninsula. This will be a high-speed, safe and convenient route for trade activities, thus promoting the development of Laos," he said.
In his view, the Belt and Road Initiative will inject vitality into the Laos-China cooperation, and the Silk Road Economic Belt will directly promote the production and life of Lao people and affect future generations.
For Sack, the Laos-China railway is not only for trade and financial cooperation, it will witness the exchanges and integration of culture, including love. "I will write a song for the Laos-China railway, and that song will be named 'Boarding the train to find love'," Sack said with a husky laugh.