A Beginner’s Guide To K-Pop

In case you missed the Korean wave, you missed the fun and upbeat obsession that is K-pop. Short for Korean pop music, K-pop isn’t just a hobby in Korea, it’s a full on religion complete with devoted followers and concerts to “worship” at around the calendar.

Korea_KOINMO_10If Psy’s pop hit “Gangnam Style” is the only thing that comes to mind when you think of Korean pop music, then you’ve clearly never had the chance to live in Korea before. Here for your convenience is a nice and tidy list detailing all the most important aspects surrounding the cult that is K-pop.

 

1. Fans

First and most importantly, unless you have a death wish, keep out of the way of any die hard K-pop fans. This wild, unpredictable, and homicidal group has only one mission in life, to love and adore the K-pop group of their choice all the days of their life. Hate the group Big Bang? Don’t mention it in front of a fan. I promise you those will be your last words.

The scariest characteristic of K-pop fans is that they look harmless and blend quite easily with the rest of normal and civilized society. Anyone could be one of these terrifying fans. Your middle school children are, of course, all obvious choices, and rightly so. However, you probably didn’t know your 60+ year old vice principal is also apart of the K-pop fandom until his phone rings in the office one day and you realize his ringtone is a Sistar song.

In case of an emergency like this one, back away slowly while saying these three crucial words, “I love K-pop. I love K-pop. I love K-pop.” Retreat slowly until you’re safely home then proceed to count your blessings and be thankful you survived.

2. Gear

Remember the good ole days when showing you supported a boy band meant having their CD and posters in your room? That’s all child’s play in Korea. From socks to dolls to a full stationary set, everything and anything in Korea is created so you can always keep your favorite K-pop band close to your heart. (For more awesome information on the wonderful world of stationary stores in Korea, check out my article on Chasing Glitter My Latest Creative Obsession: Stationary Stores!

3. Concerts

If you are brave enough to venture into the chaotic and terrifyingly upbeat land of K-pop concerts, kudos. You’re a much braver soul than I ever was when I lived in Korea. I do have some tips for those of you wishing to see the madness that occurs at concerts for yourselves.

First, know that getting a ticket is harder than winning the jackpot at the penny slots at Vegas, i.e. a complete waste of time and you’ll probably be competing with old ladies for the grand prize. However, if your little pop beating heart is dead set on going to a concert, then be prepared with all the ticket information beforehand. You’ll have to click at the absolute perfect time to buy tickets the millisecond they go on sale.

4. Actors

K-pop idols aren’t just one-trick ponies. These superstars are typically cast for all of your favorite k-dramas as well. It doesn’t matter what movie or soap you’re watching, expect to always see at least one K-pop star shoved onto the screen somehow.

5. Product Promotion

There truly is no escaping the flawlessly chiseled faces of K-pop stars because in Korea not only do they star in your favorite soaps, but they also model all high-end name brands as well as consumer products. Feel like grabbing an ice cold can of Hite after work? The shirtless and giggling fellas from 2PM will be staring you down from a banner as they party with Cass beer, persuading you to choose their promoted product of choice instead.

Whether you love or hate K-pop, it’s here to stay. Thanks to its never ending fan base of men, women, and children from all over the land of kimchi, it isn’t going anywhere. You can bet your last won that it’s here to stay for a long, long time. What are your thoughts on the ever growing cult of K-pop? Do you love it or hate it? Tell us in a comment below! We’d love to hear!

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