By: Jocelyn Li
Any fan of Korean culture, whether it be the food, the language, or the entertainment, is bound to have heard of K-pop. Korea’s entertainment industry includes TV shows and dramas, music, and gaming, and their distinct way of portraying things is known by people all around the globe. A booming music genre in the 21st century, K-pop has expanded beyond South Korea and is now enjoyed throughout the world.
Many of my friends listened to K-pop, and constantly being exposed to it really sparked my own interest in the music genre. Unlike most of the music in America, bands are put together by music companies, the largest ones being SM, JYP, and YG Entertainment. Why is South Korea’s music and entertainment industry popular in so many different countries now? K-pop isn’t just about the music, it’s also about dancing, charm, and charisma.
Record labels train their artist for years before their debut, and what attracts people the most is the hard work and effort the artists put in to improve their vocals, dancing, and rapping skills. Training and practice lasts up to 14 hours a day, and even with the stress and lack of sleep, the artists put on their best attitude in front of the camera.
Another large aspect of K-pop is the entire band’s charisma. As a fan of the boy band EXO, I can say that what attracted me to the group is their never ending love for each other and the fans, their hilarious antics, and how, despite being extremely popular idols, they show us a humble and normal side of themselves that allows us to relate to them. What fans love about their favorite band is how close and comfortable, how sisterly and brotherly they are with each other, while most other artists from different countries are in a coworker/coworker type of relationship. To fans of this distinct and appealing music genre, K-pop has become a large part of their lives, and they can’t go a day without listening to at least one song or watching at least one episode of a variety show.