Xeng Moua had the opportunity to interview legendary Hmong singer Tsabmim Xyjoob she has produced 30 albums the past thirty years and has been a defining voice in the Hmong music industry.
Interviewer: Xeng Moua (XM). Interviewee: Tsabmim Xyooj (TX)
XM: Where were you born?
TX: I was born in Thailand in the Tak Province in Northern Thailand in 1977.
XM: What life experiences shaped you or had the most impact on you?
TX: There are two parts to this question, life experiences and the most impact. Growing up as a poor uneducated farm girl in Thailand definitely has an impact on everyone. My family and I were never on the brink of starvation. However, we always struggled in those early days as most Hmong families did.
Being hungry and never knowing what the future holds help shape a young person’s mind, in particular a young naïve farm girl and their outlook on life. When you say the most impact in my life, it would have to be my tumultuous two -year marriage and eventual divorce in 2001.
Divorce is already a frightening and painful experience for anyone. It was the most traumatic experience of my life. It took me from being at the apex of a Hmong singer to the darkest, deepest hole of human suffering. Yet, it is from this experience that gave me the strength that I have today to start a fresh chapter of my life.
XM: Who or what inspired you to become a singer?
TX: Poverty and Ms. Mai Moua, the famous Hmong singer from Laos that preceded me inspired me to be a singer. There are many individuals that contributed to my success along the way, and I would have to say that Povmeem Her and a few of my initial sponsors gave me the opportunity to become a successful singer.
XM: Have you come across other Hmong women or girls who are interested becoming a singer?
TX: There are so many young ladies who aspire to sing, however, the will to sing alone cannot make you become a successful singer. A natural singing voice is given to you by God and the first “talent” that a person must have, is the ability to use that voice. That voice can be trained and controlled, however, that natural ability must be present.
XM: Do you have any advice or tips for the Hmong women/girls out there striving for their own goals and dreams?
TX: I would encourage to do their best, however, they should know their limitations. If your voice is suited for a certain style, don’t force it. For example, I could never sing R&B, it’s just not my style and it would sound funny.
XM: Do you have any new albums coming out soon?
TX: Yes, I have a very special “Ultimate Collection” which includes all of my 29 previous albums and my new album due out by the end of June. This is the “definitive” Tsabmim Xyooj Collection. It includes every album that I have ever recorded for my fans. The title of my new album is “Spread Your Wings – Nthuav Tis Ya.” I hope that my fans will continue to support me. You can Pre-Order my “Ultimate Collection” Album from my Official FB. https://www.facebook.com/commerce/products/1861075000610473/
XM: Are you excited for the tour? What are you looking forward to the most when it comes to touring?
TX: This is an exciting time for our team. Our next concert is in St. Paul, MN on June 29, 2018 at the Inter-Continental Hotel. We are very happy that US Trading Company has decided to sponsor our concert tour and we are looking forward to do other exciting projects with them. Here is the website to purchase tickets for our concert. https://tsabmim.ticketspice.com/j42018-tsabmim-xyooj–tou-ly-vangkhue-the-music-and-the-memories-tour