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K-POP: the Korean Wave

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Kristy Choi

on 27 April 2016

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Transcript of K-POP: the Korean Wave

Experimental group
As our music genre, Korean Pop, is quite new and recent, it's influence on future musical generations cannot be determined.

A History to the Korean Pop Genre
Seo Taiji & Boys
The 21st Century

Wednesday, April 27th, 2016
Vol XCIII, No. 311
The Korean Style
influential solo-artist

Korean Pop was highly influenced by Western music: electronic, hip-hop, pop, R&B, rock, jazz, classical, folk, blues, and ballad.
K-POP: the Korean Wave
second generation girls' group
Girls' Generation/ SNSD
Musical Development
Korean Pop typically utilizes vocals, rapping, drums, piano, electric bass, keyboards, samplers, sequencers, and synthesizers.
Korean Pop was greatly influenced by protest-themed, experimental hip-hop mix-tapes which represented the peoples' great, unvoiced frustration due to the political conflicts.
The Korean Pop genre offers a variety of themes: such as soft, powerful, innocent, alluring, emotional, rough, etc.
Korean Pop was carefully engineered and matured through a trial and error basis to entertain all audiences.
Korean Pop places great emphasis on middle-class values. "These values resonate deeply with cultures other than Korea's regardless of the language barrier."
A Country of Ruins
- the separation of North Korea (Russia) and South Korea (USA)
- the end of WWII
- Yi Seungman is elected as President of South Korea
- the land capping law is passed
- the Korean War (civil/proxy war, Soviet Union vs. USA)
- Land Redistrubution Act is passed
- student revolution and protests = resignation of President Yi
- Park Chung Hee (military regime) rises to power
- Japanese economy blooms -> Korean economy kick-started
- the Vietnam War
- the Marial Law is introduced
- chaebols dominate the working class
- Park Chung Hee assassinated
- Chun Doo Hwan (military regime) rises to power
- overcoming a huge debt
The Turning Point
The Korean Teenage Subculture
“…a country with barely 50 million residents could provide entertainment content that appeals to hundreds of millions around the globe — regardless of the language or even the cultural barrier.”
Technology has allowed Korean content to "literally breeze through the Internet."
The entire country is throwing itself into supporting and promoting their culture.
Musical Predecessors
1. Seo Taiji & Boys: first recorded k-pop group, experimental, American influenced music
2. H.O.T. / Fin.K.L./ BoA: first generation idols that established a foundation for later generations
3. Girls' Generation / Super Junior: second generation idols that further established and improved the k-pop formula
4. PSY "Gangnam Style:" made the world turn around and look at South Korea
Perfecting the Idol Formula
SM Entertainment
- Lee Soo Man
JYP Entertainment
- Park Jin Young
YG Entertainment
- Yang Hyun Suk
Seo Taiji & Boys
the 1997 Asian Financial Crisis
IMF Loan
November 7, 1998
-Formed by Bando Eumban and Yedang company
-Debuted in 1992 and disbanded in 1996
-Korean boy group
-Bold, strong charm
-3 group members: Seo Taiji, Yang Hyun-suk and Lee Juno
-Debut Song: Nan Arayo (I Know), 1992
-Changed Korean-pop music
-Heavily influenced by western music
-Various genres of music:pop,hip-hop,rock
-Produced 4 albums

Achieving the Korean Hype
Quality vs. Quantity
-> music, videos, audio-visual, emotional experience
Traditional vs. Modern
-> musical trends, fashion, style
Just the Right Amount
-> not taken to the extreme, but not too bland
Immigration + The Proud Korean + Strategy
Social Networking + Social Media + International Forums

K-pop is engineered to entertain all audiences through it's choreography, visual backdrops, synthesized music and performers, and their wardrobe.

-> clean-cut appearance, high-quality live and recorded performances, strong emphasis on middle-class values

Key Word = Charisma
“K-pop and K-dramas often translate into a direct influence on consumer purchases.”
The government actively supports the production and expansion of Korean Pop as an export that would potentially "feed the nation."
recruitment at a young age
-The 21st century was manly focused on the spreading of the "
Korean wave

musical commune
strict and intense vocal, dancing, acting, language classes
-Kpop owes majority of it's recognition towards the gaining of Youtube views, kpop fan clubs and fan club members members.
public relations building + knowledge, etiquette, and rules regarding the k-pop system
-The "
Korean wave
" is a term describing the popularity and spreading of South Korean culture from asia, to western countries.
-The korean wave increased the total exports of the country, providing loans and credit guarantees towards korean entertainments.
-> copy-cat groups
-> the unmentionned innovative artists

-Other events that contributibuted significantly towards the spreading of the korean wave include:
-Baby V.O.X - "Coincidence" became popular in many asian countries after being promoted during the World Cup in South Korea
-BoA became the first kpop star to reach number 1 on the Japanese Oricon music chart
-Rain gives a sold out concert of 40,000 fans in Beijing
-Baby V.O.X's chinese single- "I'm Still Loving You" topped the Chinese and Thailand music charts
-sucessful domination of the East Asian music market by K-pop groups

-Rain became the first kpop music artist to perform at Japan's bigget concert hall consisting of 40,000 fans
-Rain had 2 sold out performances at the theater at Madison Square Garden
-South Korea's cultureal exports rose to $2 billion (USD)
-Wondergirls entered the Us Billboard Hot 100 with their single "Nobody", passing with over 40 million views on Youtube
-SM Entertainment held it's concert with SMTown Live '10 World Tour in Los Angeles
-SM Entertainment had 2 solf out concers at the Zenith de Paris a few months later in France
1945-1959 = sad, melancholic
1960s = "the Golden Age of Trot"
Trot developped from Japanese Enka and Western Foxtrot.
1970s = Folk (jeans + acoustic guitar) voiced the thoughts of the repressed. Songs of hope for a better future.
1990s = Ballads were Mainstream.
-Billboard launched the Korea K-pop Hot 100 music chart (discontinued in 2014)
-Google announces that Youtube will launch it's own Kpop channel
-Youtube views generated by Kpop videos in 2011 surpasses 1 billion, gaining viewers from Europe and the Middle East
-Big Bang held their "Alive" Tour in 25 cities worldwide; 800,000 fans in from around the world in total

Recently, korean pop artists have been working on remaking classics and collaborations with other groups under the same agency.
It is said that Korea now aims for underdeveloped countries...
-Fans in Turkey surpasses 100,000 fans for the first time.
-70 Kpop fan clubs in Mexico, with at least 60,000 members altogether
-The release of PSY's "Gangnam Style", which had over 2 billion views on Youtube; being the first ever internet video to reach 1 billion views; topping the record charts of 27 different countries
-Girls' Generation's appeaared on the "Late Show with David Letterman and Live!"
K-pop incorporates international musical concepts.
-> well accepted sentiments, new and unprecedented sound/music, pure approachable image
-Girls' Generation's YouTube video for its 2009 single "Gee" surpassed 100 million views.
Girls' Generation was awarded with the "Video of the Year" at the 2013 YouTube Music Awards for their music video "I Got a Boy".
-Exo sold a million coped of their 1st album "XOXO", becoming Korea's best-selling album in 12 years.

-EXO's album Overdose sold 300,000 copies of the Korean version of the album
-Microsoft recruited 2NE1’s I Am the Best to promote the Surface Pro 3
-Girls' Generation's Japanese version of "Mr. surpassed 100 million views on Youtube.
-Girls' Generation became the first K-pop group to have 4 oficial Youtube videos; "Gee", "I Got A Boy", "The Boys" and
"Mr Taxi" with 100 million views or higher
-Exo's album Exodus sold 6,000 copies; being the largest sales week ever for a K-pop album in America
-Exo holds the record for biggest sales week for a Kpop album ever and the higghest-charting album for male group
-Jung Ji-hoon, known as Rain is a South Korean single-songwriter, model, actor and music producer
-Primarily influenced by R&B, pop and hip hop
-Born on June 25, 1982
-Voice has a tenor vocal range
-Rain incorperates both vibrato and falsetto in his songs, with the addition of rapping
-Mentioned in the Time Magazine website article for “100 Most influential People Who Shape Our World”

-Rain has had many top chartting albums and sold out tours that have contributed greatly to the Korean Wave of the 21st century
The prime example of when "a developping country becomes developped."
"Trial & Error" - the idol formula has been modified on what works and what doesn't and passed down from generation to generation
Korean Pop has influenced East and Southeast Asia, Latin America, Northeast India, North Africa, the Middle East, Eastern Europe, and more...
K-pop inspires the youth of Korea to dream of stardom.
-> collaborations with Western artists and inclusion of Western language
Today, Korea has the 13th largest economy.
example: fan service, mixed-gender groups
- formed by SM Entertainment, debuted in 2007
- Korean/ Japanese girl group
- clear goal: "create the broadest appeal possible"
- nine group members: Taeyeon, Sunny, Tiffany, Jessica, Seohyun, Yuri, Sooyoung, Hyoyeon, Yoona
- cute and simple, not overly sexualized
- old school style/ moves reinterpreted
- sticks to the classic, standard Korean girl group sound of pop (hip-hop, R&B, ballads)
- each member has an aside/ specialization, but the group remains unified
- TTS (TaeTiSeo): official sub-group of SNSD (Taeyeon,Tiffany, Seohyun)
- last year, Jessica left the group to pursue her personal interests in fashion, business, and marriage
- http://colorcodedlyrics.com/girls_generation_sonyeosidae
My Thoughts
Birth of Korean Pop (Late 1800's-Early 1900's)
Late 1900's-Modern Korean Pop
Initial Reaction
Aesthetic Response:
- bubble-gummy, cute, sweet, cheery pop
- very catchy, i found myself humming
Japanese Colonization (1910-1948
1885, Changga (Folk music and Hymns) by Henry Appenzeller
"Huimangga" (The Song of Hope)
1920's, Trot music was introduced (combination of Gospel and Traditional Korean music)
Korea was seperated into two regions (1945)
Korean War (1950-1959)
Influenced by Western culture
Marilyn Monroe, Louis Armstrong
Blues, Jazz, Rock
Heptachords replaced Pentatonic music
Rock music was imported, refer to as the "Great Sound"
-Vietnam War (Late 1960's), anti war movement
-Hippie era, formed Korean hippie folk pop (1970's)
-"Where Have All the Flowers Gone?" (1980's)-Kingston's Trio's (Music was banned)
-Era of Ballads (1980's)
-"You're Too Far Away to Get Close to" (1985)-Lee Gwang-Jo
-1990's,rap, and techno were introduced into K-Pop
-Seo Taiji & Boys (1992), debut song: Nan Arayo (I know)
-S.M Entertainment, Y.G Entertainment, and JYP Entertainment
-Inspired artists: Drunken Tiger, Deux, (Hip-hop and R&B musicans)
-Idol Groups: H.O.T, S.E.S, Baby V.O.X, Shinhwa, G.O.D
-Punk rock (Crying Nut), Underground Music Clubs became popular
- more catchy than before
I like it.
I like it more.
- something you would find on my phone
Initial Reaction
Aesthetic Response:
Rain- Love Song
My Thoughts
Initial Reaction:
Aesthetic Reaction:
-Many instruments
-Various genres
-Sounds like American music
-Poor video quality
Analysis of the Music
-Demographics: Youth
-Voiced unfair treatment to Youth and anger of school system
Analysis of music:
Lyrics of a pure-hearted girl's first love.
"Gee" Analysis
-Sounds very soft
-it's nice and slow, I enjoy it very much
-voice is very calming
-don't understand the lyrics
-something I would listen to during a sad day
-Song about breakup
-A lot of listeners can relate to the lyrics

8/8 Time Signature (240BPM)
Cultural Context
Typical, limited setting, synced performance
-Lyrics about love, breakup
Leader in Modern Bubblegum Pop Trends
-I enjoyed the song much more
Korean Version - January 5, 2009
Japanese Version - October 20, 2010
Award Winning Song
Chart Topper
- the lyrics give off warm feelings
Seo Taiji and Boys
Leader, Main Vocalist
Lead Vocalist
Lead Vocalist
Main Dancer
Lead Dancer
Main Vocalist
Lead Vocalist
Lead Dancer
Lead Dancer
Yang Hyun Suk, Lee Juno, and Seo Taiji

-I think the lyrics are very nicely written and constructed
Trivia Quiz!
1) Where did Rain's sold out concert of 40,000 fans take place in 2002?

2) What is the name of Rain's drama that was broadcasted in 16 different countries?

3) What are the two singing effects that Rain incorporates in his music?
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