As for the Korean war in the past, South Korea has come a long way economically and globally . Especially the success of the music industry in recent years. The spread of Korean dramas, music, beauty product and culture referred to as to Hallyu or Korean wave. Korean Hallyu has recently become a global sensation. K-pop captivating many youths around the world regard of language and cultural difference. For example, Bangtan boys or known as BTS is one of the K-pop boy band that is captivating youth. South Korea adopting American ideas of pop culture has created an international sensation that surpasses language and cultural barriers. If you examine K-pop economic growth, cultural influences, transformation, how gender plays a role and international interest. Furthermore, in order to explore K-pop, it is important to address famous and successful Korean singers and idol groups, major record labels, and other key factors in order to truly grasp K-pop. The research presented will show why K-pop has become valuable as it is, the importance of fans and to the country of South Korea itself.
How Kpop spread internationally?
The spread of Korean media was through k-dramas. K-drama is unlike American drama they are interesting and have confusing plots. Many people can relate to and understand the drama which is one reason why it became popular. However, people watch k-drama is because of the actor and actress. The growing of idol singing group is where the K-pop industry really became popular. In the late 20th century, idol groups were around but not as popular as today. Some of the groups were Seo Tae Ji and The Boys, S.E.S, and BoA. However, the K-pop industry back then was not popular outside of Korea. The idol trend was gone for a few years and the K-pop industry slowly started to spread first around Asia with the influences of Actors and solo singers. In the beginning, ballads were the most popular form of Korean music before the international audience expended and the style of the music. The return of idol groups has been success. There are to many of idol groups and only a handful of them actually succeed. Some of the idol groups that actually succeed are BTS, Seventeen, and Blackpink. Most of these groups have impressive singing and dancing skills. They do SNS (social media) with fans, concerts and fan meetings. Recently one group has made so many achievements in K-pop history. The Boyband BTS is successful internationally and a global sensation for many youths. BTS is so successful out of many K-pop idols is because all of there songs are about students in Korean society. The stress, education, pressure and expectations students go through unlike many idol group songs. This shows that K-pop can appeal to fan through sound especially for does that don’t understand Korean. This shows that music can bring everyone together. Kpop is breaking language and cultural barriers. More students go to Korea as foreign student to learn the cultural and language. This knowledge can advance society cultural and emotional. Music can make us feel a certain way. In Los Angeles there is Koreatown where young people hang out. Koreatown has food, music store and concerts.
KPOP Then and Now (History)
K-pop beginning in the 90s, group like Seo Tae Ji and The Boys and S.E.S. Independent music production did not exist and rock music was banned. Music in South Korea was not the music today. It was slow ballads or trot a fusion of traditional music. Radios and music shows were important in introducing music groups to South Korea audiences, they still have an cultural impact and remin the single biggest factor in South korea bands success. Seo Tae Ji and The Boys are the first Korean rap trio to combining Western popular culture and music with the Korean language. K-pop has changed over time in Music videos, fashion, global success and music styles. Music videos now tell a story. The clothes the idol wear is important because of the brands. The music style change with addictive melodies, choreography and production values. The songs are written by the idols not by a producer. You can watch music videos on Youtube and download music now. K-pop album has changed over time. K-pop album in the 90s was just the cd. K-pop album now looks like a book. Inside the album, it has the cd, photobook, and one photocard of members. The value of the album has increased over time. Now there are digital music sites to download music. Many idols have lean more towards rap and dance style songs to maintain relevance to K-Pop’s. In the past, only Korean listen to K-pop nowadays people all around the world listen to K-pop. People do cover dances or reaction videos of their favorite artist. Cover dances of artist has became popular recently.
Production of KPOP
Only three K-pop record labels are recognizable out of thousands labels. The three most famous record label are SM, YG and JYP Entertainment. SM is behind names like EXO, Shinee, and BoA. YG is behind names like Blackpink and Big Bang. JYP is behind names like Day6 and Got7. Recently there is a record label that became popular it is BigHit Entertainment. BigHit is behind the names BTS. There are other record labels that have well-known groups. A K-pop singer begins training during at a young age. A trainee needs to have good looks, ability to sing and dance. All the trainee are not Korean some are Chinese, American or Japanese. Kpop trainee is recruited by auditions or on the streets of Korea. The auditions are a long process. If you pass the audition does not make you K-pop singer you need to go through training camp. Most kids that become a trainee lose childhood and education. Most Korean parents think education is important. The training period is 4 to 8 years before you become an idol. Those that succeed in the training period will be given a contract. The contract binding period of 10 to 15 years under the company. After signing the contract you will move into the company dorm and get ready for debut. Not all groups become successful after debut some disband. Some disadvantage of being a trainee is you don’t know when you will debut, lessons are long, lifestyles, image and you don’t earn a lot as people think. Advantage are the fans, gifts, money and fame.
K-pop is not only a success for the entertainment business. Also the value of the country economy and appeal altogether. Tourism has increased since k-pop internationally success. People visit Korea to see K-pop concert, shopping, food and cultural. Korean makeup,stationary, accessories and clothing are popular among teens.You can do nonstop shopping places like Hongdae and Myeongdong. There are a lot of street food that are popular. Everywhere you go in Korea there is foods. Korean desserts and breads are popular. People visit korea because of K-pop or K- dramas. Hair salon are one of thing you should do if you visit korea it’s different from American hair salon. Hair salon in Korea are popular because of the service the staff gives you and hairstyles. You can try on Korean traditional clothes called Hanbok and visit Korean Old Village. Hanbok are silk clothes that Koreans people use to wear. You can visit some of the places they filmed music video or drama. Also, there are cafe and restaurants run by the celebrity that you can visit. This benefits store owners in Korea because more foreigner will come and buy korean product, K-pop star merchandise and accessories. Most product have Korean celebrity on them making people to buy the product.
Gender Roles in Korean society
The way male beauty is recognized in South Korea. It makes no sense to people that men in Korea wear makeup and spending more time on appearance. Kpop male idols would wear makeup, have ear piercing and care more on appearance. In the past male in Korean didn’t wear makeup, have ear piercing and care about appearance. The role of men in Korean society is to get an education and become salarymen or have a profession in law, medicine, and government. Recently thing has change young adult wants to become a singer or actor. The way people think about males wearing makeup, having ear piercing and appearance changed. Most people know that Korean have flawless skin. Male beauty corresponds to the rise of K-pop. Korean like to buy skincare and makeup product. Some men buy skincare and makeup product. This is beneficial for male K-pop idols from the way they look on media to the rise of skincare and makeup advertisement. If a popular idol group is on a product people will buy the product because of the idols. Many male groups are on skincare, makeup, phone and food advertisement. Korean male idols care about their appearance because of it in the media.
Many American may think it weird or uncomfortable for males to wear makeup or skincare. Today’s teenager are accepting new ideals and trends that K-pop follows.
In signing a contract with a label, they are put in a competitive industry. K-pop artist don’t earn a lot of money at the beginning. The company has to regain all the money they put in the group before the artist earn money. Company says that Kpop group are expensive to produce because the the company has to get a team of managers, choreographers, stylist, lessons and living expense.These K-pop stars are giving up the right to live as normal people. They always have to smile and be happy in front of the camera and fans. Many lose the right to sleep when they want, date and visits family. They must attend dancing, singing and acting lessons for long hours. This may seem unfair but this is the road to success for the Korean music industry. Plastic surgery is a big topic for K-pop. Plastic Surgery is big in Korea and popular. Some idols do get plastic surgery. Many idols in training male or female will get nose jobs, Botox injections, and eye lifts. Eye lift surgery is most talk about because widening eyes to make them look bigger and rounder. Most young people in 20s will get plastic surgery.
I learned about how K-pop become internationally popular, history of K-pop music, production of artist, and the economy benefits. The possible impact of my finding on people and the society is people don’t care about language and cultural differences. The way Korean culture is very different from American. But K-pop can break the language and cultural barriers. I have friend that loves Kpop and Kdrama they didn’t understand what was going on in the beginning after a while they understand. This shows that music can bring people together even if it in a different language. I think only the young generation can accept the language and cultural barriers.Some unanswered question are why only certain group are successful than other?, why do K-pop star end there life when they are successful?, Why are there so many members in a group? Why do you have to get plastic surgery to become K-pop star?