In an attempt to get better at speaking Korean, I’ve been listening to more K-Pop. K-Pop stands for “Korean Pop” and is known as Korea’s most popular music genre: All of the Koreans know and LOVE K-Pop. And you know what? Now that I’ve been listening to so much K-Pop lately, I know and love it, too. It’s gotten to the point where I don’t just listen to it to help me learn Korean anymore; now I listen to it at work, at home, and even when I work out! The funny part is, I used to think K-Pop was kind of silly at first, and even made fun of it sometimes. Not anymore.
I heart K-Pop now, and since I love it, I want to share it with you. I’ve picked five K-Pop videos that will help give you an idea of what popular Korean music is like, and maybe even show you why I enjoy it so much.
“Be My Baby” by the Wonder Girls – This is a popular song out right now in South Korea and also a personal favorite of mine. I like this song because it kind of has a Christmas-y sound, but without going over the top. Also, I like the use of English in it: The chorus is perfect and I enjoy the random English words sung throughout the song. Finally, I love the choreography! The dancing is simple, yet the musicality is strong: I love that I can see the music in the Wonder Girls’ movement.
Question: Does this video remind you of a certain American pop music video?
“Mr. Simple” by Super Junior – I always laugh whenever I watch this video. There are SO MANY members of this group! Really? You need 12 guys for ONE boy band? Even if Backstreet Boys and Nsync teamed up, they’d still be outnumbered by Super Junior. I bet the guy with the blond hair bleached his hair in the first place just so he could stand out among his fellow boy banders. Regardless, this song is catchy, and I dig it: It has good energy, and the dance moves are fun.
“You and I” by IU – This isn’t a favorite of mine, but I wanted to include it to show you what a female Korean solo artist is like. Plus, it’s a popular song out right now and it has a “winter wonderland” theme to it. My favorite part about this video is how they implemented “clock” movement into the choreography to coincide with the concept of time travel.
“Americano” by 10cm – Here we have a male Korean solo artist. This song is a little less pop and a little more indie, but the song was still really popular over the summer: I heard it everywhere!
“Roly Poly” by T-ara – I love this video! I love the dance-able song, the retro 1970s theme, and of course, the choreography. Again, simple dance moves, yet still fitting for the theme. NOTE: This version is 12 minutes long, but it was the only version I could find that would give me the “embed” code for my blog. If you don’t want to watch the whole thing, skip to 4:20.
This is what my ears have been been consuming for the last few months. I’m sure once I go back to the States, I’ll start listening to American pop music again. But while I’m in Korea, I’m going to do as the Koreans do, and that means listening to K-Pop.