Korean Pop, better known as Kpop, is popular music from South Korea. Kpop has also had a solid following all over the world since the 90s. One South Korean everyone might be aware of is Psy, who created the Gangnam Style dance craze that went viral back in 2012. Since his insane popularity the South Korean government has giving the Kpop industry money to continue its work in the hope it would put South Korea on the map and encourage tourists to come to the country.
What makes Kpop unique is that it has managed to merge all genres of music from rock, pop, and metal, to jazz, rap, and R&B. It has taken all these genres and made its own brand. It’s not strange to hear several genres played in one song. Kpop also features boy and girl bands alike that can have up to 10 members. Unlike U.S bands Kpop bands tend to have several more members and they start training really early. The school teaches students to sing, dance, and play instruments at a young age. They compete with thousands of other teens just as skilled. They practice 12 hours a day, including time for studying, because education is important in South Korea. They attend Kpop private schools where one 3-month semester can easily cost $1,000. Keep in mind that they can start as young as 6 and at roughly $4,000 a year, by the time they reach 18 a private school can cost up to $48,000. Even then they are not guaranteed acceptance into a group, but with their extensive study, they are still able to go on to college and get well-paying jobs.
Kpop has opened its arms to all genres and culture. It takes the best parts and makes it unique. The Kpop industry has marketed its music and videos for global appeal, with 44% of song titles in English, and a lot of the choruses and hooks in these songs in English as well.
Below are three different songs. Which one is your favorite? I’d love to know why.
This song is to showcase a very popular boy band as well as how this expensive music video has found a way to merge different genres. This song is likely a party song as it encourages people to dance. “Put your hands up, like you got your country back. Jump up, like you would sprain your ankle. Shake, like you have a seizure. Sing a song together everyone. Ringa-linga-ring Ringa-linga-ring”
This song is to show that Kpop bands can have many people and yet they find a way to showcase everyone almost equally. This chorus is essentially telling a guy that if he likes me “very very very much” then call me. The rest of the song goes on to describe how the girl doesn’t know if the guy is serious about her or not and she wants to know either way, all while her friends and family call the guy a snake.
The song, “crazy” couldn’t be better named. By crazy, she does not mean insane, she means more like wild. In the song she states she is crazy, everywhere she goes it’s crazy. Don’t fight the crazy, embrace it.