K-Pop Nation

Hello again blogosphere!  I apologize for the time delay between my two posts, but I have been fighting of a pretty crazy sickness.  Yesterday was awful… I was so feverish from head to toe!  However, I feel a bit better today, after about 10 hours of sleep last night.  So, I decided to come back here and update.

This entry is just one for fun, hopefully it will help me feel a bit better.

So, as most of you know, I am living in South Korea.  In my nine months here so far,  I have had a little bit of time to experience the culture of being in this wonderful country.  However, when I think of Korean culture, I don’t think of the typical things that would come to most people’s mind when they think about “culture.”  That’s not saying that his place doesn’t have its fair share of culture, but honestly when I think of Korea the first thing that comes to mind is their music, K-Pop.

K-Pop, is a shortened version of Korean Pop, which would be very similar to what we know as American Pop music.  However, there is one huge difference in American Pop music and K-Pop, most of the K-Pop acts are groups, as opposed to mostly solo acts in American music.  It has been something I have found interesting in my time here, and the music is very catchy.  I absolutely love K-Pop! Granted, I have no idea what they are singing about mostly, except when they sing the title of the song in English.

So, if you would indulge me just a little, I would like to share with you a few songs that are very popular here at the moment and a few of my favorites from the past nine months.

Right now the most popular song is going to be  “Gangnam Style” by PSY.  He is a rare solo artist, who has found a lot of success with this funny and catchy tune.  The video is pretty funny, but the dancing is what makes this video what it is.  You are barely able to escape this song here in Korea, it’s played at Korean clubs, foreigner bars, and even blared from loud speakers at cell phone stores.  No matter where you hear it, you will always see people doing the “Invisible Horse Dance” and you can’t help but join in.

Another song that I am absolutely obsessed with is “I Love You” by 2NE1!  They have easily become one of my favorite girl groups here in Korea, which is special because I LOVE GIRL GROUPS!!!  This song is a bit slower than the previous song, but I constantly have this song in my head!  I love it!  If I’m not mistaken, I think that 2NE1 just got back from a show or two in the states.  K-Pop is trying to take over the world!!

Boy bands are also very popular in K-Pop and they generate just as much pandemonium as they do back home in the states.  This is BigBang, one of the most popular boy groups here in Korea.  This song is “Fantastic Baby” and definitely will go down as one of my favorites in my nine months here.  The tune is catchy, the dancing is good, and the boys aren’t too bad to look at either!

This next clip is from SNSD or Girls’ Generation as they are more popularly known. I’m not sure why they have two names, but they’re fabulous, so I’ll let it slide!  This isn’t the best song I’ve ever heard, but it was a HUGE hit when I first came to Korea.  If you notice in this group there are nine members, it is not unusual for the girl groups, and sometimes the boys groups, to have that many members.  I’m not even sure what all of them do, but the music is usually pretty good!  Enjoy “The Boys” by Girls’ Generation!!  Oh, also they performed this song on David Letterman earlier this year!

The next group I’d like to highlight is another Korean boy band, BEAST or B2ST, which I believe stands for “Boys 2 the East.” They are very popular with teenage girls all over the country, and usually release some pretty good hits.  This song is “Beautiful Night”.  I’ll admit I’m not as familiar with this song as much as the others.  I believe that this is their come back song, which I will explain a bit later.

I promise I’ll only post a couple of more songs here.

The next video is from Wonder Girls, who are by far my absolute favorite girl group!!  I love them so much and this is my favorite song by them.  I am going to post the English Version of the song, so you can hear all the words and because I want to sing along with them!  “Nobody” by Wonder Girls has a funny video and features JYP, who is a performer as well, and also owns the label Wonder Girls are a part of.

The last song I would like to share with you all would be my absolute favorite K-Pop song!  This song is called Trouble Maker and is performed by HyunSeung of BEAST and Hyuna of 4Minute.  Hyuna is also a solo act at times.  This was probably the first K-Pop song that I heard when I came to Korea and I have loved it ever since.  If you mention this song to students they will often say that it’s dirty because of the dancing, which only makes it that much better, I think!  Anyways, enjoy this song!

Now, before I sign off, I’d like to talk more about the “come back song” that I mentioned early.  It is a common practice for K-Pop artists to “retire” their songs.  When they do this, they perform on the “Retirement Stage” and that is supposedly the end to that song.  Whenever the artist wants to release a new song, they perform on the “Comeback Stage” and launch their new song for all of their screaming fans.  This happens with every track, I believe, that is officially released by the artist.

Also, I’d like to share that every K-Pop group contains a rapper.  I think you’ll be able to hear them rap on all the tracks I posted.  I’m not sure why I’m mentioning this, but I think it’s funny that the protocol is to have a rapper in every group!

I hope that this post has provided you with a little bit of entertainment as you read it.  Now, try not to get these catchy songs stuck in your head. I know they’ll be in mine all day!!