K-pop is a Global Sensation (Research Paper)

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Korean pop music, also known as K-pop, is becoming very popular in the couple of past years. People mostly knew of K-pop by listening to the three major entertainment companies YG Entertainment, JYP or SM Entertainment. The most popular groups to this companies were/are to former girl group 2NE1, BigBang, Psy under YG entertainment. Miss A, 2PM, Wonder Girls under JYP. As for SM Entertainment are the artist EXO, Girls Generation, Super Junior, Shinee, BOA and F(X). Even though some of this groups are world known as well there is one group that has gotten much more attention than any other group, this group is no other than BTS but surprisingly BTS is not under any of the 3 major companies.

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To become a K-pop idol, the person usually trains for years but some get lucky and debut under a year. From being a K-pop fan for some years already, some like BigBang’s leader G-Dragon trained since he was 13 years old. Not all the trainees that train around the same time get to debut together some of the groups are formed and usually the person that has been training for a longer time becomes the leader. But why has K-pop gotten popular if it is not for their history of training, some would say because of their visuals like stated on The Korean Popular Culture Reader, “One might cite, for example, the rise of Korean soft masculinity via the kkonminam (lit. “flower-­ handsome man”)” (p316) it is true that most people start by liking boy/ girl groups because of their visuals but like JungBong Choi and Roald Maliangkay stated on K-pop- the international Rise of the Korean Industry, “ It is a mosaic that blends storytelling, music, group dance, body performance, and fashion show. In terms of musical and performative conventions, it draws on hip hop, Euro techno, grunge, pop, and rap, all the while incorporating contemporary choreographies, acrobatics, and runway acts.” (p5) BTS is known for dances and music.

BTS has become popular due to their music the message they send. For their new album Love Yourself: Answer, one of the lyrics say,

You’ve shown me I have reasons

I should love myself

I’ll answer with my breath, my path

The me of yesterday, the me of today, the me of tomorrow

(I’m learning how to love myself)

With no exceptions, it’s all me

BTS has been giving this message to all their fans. They are the first group that was invite to speak at the United Nations, as Kim NamJoon said in his speech, “Looking back, that’s when I began to worry about what other people thought of me and started seeing myself through their eyes. I stopped looking up at the stars at night. I stopped daydreaming. I tried to jam myself into molds that other people made. Soon, I began to shut out my own voice and started to listen to the voices of others. No one called out my name, and neither did I. My heart stopped and my eyes closed shut. So, like this, I, we, all lost our names. We became like ghosts. I had one sanctuary, and that was music. There was a small voice in me that said, ‘Wake up, man, and listen to yourself!” But it took me a long time to hear music calling my name.” This is another reason BTS has been popular, their songs have some of their real experiences and some struggles they have gone through that other people are also going through similar events. For their recent concert here at Los Angeles, BTS added extra dates to their tour, they performed 4 days at the staples center, as stated on the Billboards, “holding 21,000 people and four shows now happening, there’s no doubt BTS have a LOT of fans in the US. Resale tickets are already appearing online for over USD$1000” they are so famous that people actually paid the $1000 and even more. Besides their tour, BTS has performed at the Billboards, AMAs, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Jimmy Kimmel Live! and The Late Show.

Kpop fans spend a lot of money on concerts, CDs, posters and other products related with their idols, like stated on, K-pop- the international Rise of the Korean Industry, “many fans joyfully succumb to the siren call of cosmetic, fashion, gastronomic, digital products, which is endorsed by deified idols and deceptively associated with images and songs of K-pop.” (p8). I have bought many K-pop products just because my favorite groups would use it or that make-up brand belongs to the company they are under. For example, the girl group BlackPink use the make-up brand Moonshot which belongs to YG entertainment and I had gotten a lipstick from that brand at Kcon just because of BlackPink. I had spent more than $800 at Kcon 2017, the concert tickets where $400 each I bought 2 one for myself and one for my younger sister, plus items at the convention which was make-up that cost around $20-$30, face mask, lotions, CDs, posters and more items just because we did not have those items or we had a different version and wanted to have all of them. Besides Kcon 2017 and 2018

There are fans that want to support their idols and there are fans that go overboard, there are some fans known as seasang fans that just to get a glimpse of there idols they follow them, try to kidnap, or even cross-dress just to see them up close. I had noticed this at one of the concerts I had gone to last year, I had gone to the Exo concert and one of the fans had bought tickets to all their locations around their world tour and got GA tickets and would campout to be closer each time, during the concert she had thrown her under garments to the boys. This are the type of fans that give other fans a bad reputation

K-pop has gone from being popular in South Korea and in Japan to be a global sensation. The most popular groups are BigBang, Super Junior, Girls Generation, Miss A, 2NE1, PSY, Wonder Girls, but the most famous recent has been BTS. BTS has been getting popular global wise with their recent Love Yourself tour and albums where in their lyrics they tell their fans to love yourself. Before people would say that they could not sing and it got to them but as in their new song Idol, You can call me artist (artist) you can call me idol (idol) No matter what you call me I don’t care I’m proud of it (proud it) I’m free (free) No more irony (irony) Cuz I was always just me. This is a message saying that no matter what people call them they don’t care if they know who they are. K-po music has a lot of meanings behind the lyrics and the music videos that capture fans hearts and sometimes they can relater and the music can get people through difficult parts of one’s life.  

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K-pop Is A Global Sensation (Research Paper). (2021, May 22). Retrieved December 10, 2022 , from

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