Rock star dreams give way to reality for sukiyaki chef

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Like so many kids, Wuthisak Phanuram grew up dreaming of being a rock star. And, like so many adults, this cook at a central Pattaya Japanese restaurant found reality got in the way.

“There’s still a chance I can play music, but I don’t want to make it my life anymore,” said the 23-year-old Buriram native. He now spends his days serving up sukiyaki and restocking the sushi bar at Central Festival Pattaya Beach’s Suki-shi restaurant and playing guitar in his free time.

Wuthisak (right) plays with friends in the Teamshow band. Wuthisak (right) plays with friends in the Teamshow band.

Such was the case Jan. 4 when the Pattaya Mail found “Wid” jamming with three band mates at the Music2Gether store on Soi Yumet. He said the band, called “Teamshow” has been together for seven years, spanning both his time in Isaan and the four years he’s spent in Pattaya.

“I came to Pattaya with my guitar at 19 and ended up doing a number of jobs,” Wuthisak recalled. “Then one day I met a friend who worked at Central Festival. That was a turning point in my life from being a musician to a cook.”

Having grown up poor, he now found he had savings and, as it turned out, he liked his new profession.

“I love my job,” Wuthisak said. “I gave up the idea of music full time because I’m now older and in a different place. My dreams started to change.”

He acknowledged, however, that if a solid opportunity came up where he could support himself through music, he’d pursue it “like a hunter.”

So, at least for now, Wuthisak still listens to his idol, Poo Pongsith Khamphir, but realizes that not everyone can be a star. What’s important to him now, is that he can have both a career and his music.