K-pop craze drives summer sound
K-pop is a trend setting music style that originates in South Korea according to Los Angeles Film School. Despite its name, K-pop actually has a number of different influences such as pop, experimental, rock, hip-hop, R&B, electronic, and dance. There is quite literally a different style for every single group. The style also likes to sprinkle both Korean and English together in the lyrics.
K-pop is mostly girl and boy bands. For each group, each member is given a certain role, such as lead dancer, Lead English singer, lead Korean singer, or rapper. For a massive girl group that produces straightforward pop hits there’s Girls Generation. However, for a pop with rap breaks inspired by Nicki Minaj there is BLACKPINK. For a more emo styled taste, then there is F.T Island. For a more slow and R&B sensation, then there is g.o.d. We also can’t forget to mention the insanely popular BTS. For me personally, I like songs that have a more electronic pop dance sound to it.
Thanks to social media and TicTok, the popularity of K-pop has pretty much skyrocketed. The songs have such an elegant design, story, and personality. It’s hard not to get pulled in. The multilingual and diverse nature of the music means that there is something for everyone. I personally have found that “Russian Roulette” by Red Velvet, “Not Today” and the “Steve Aoki Remix of Mic Drop” by BTS, as well as this cover of “The Boys” by Girls Generation are a few of my favorites, alongside every song from a band that I’ll talk about later.
According to Doug Hyde, pretty much everyone has heard of K-pop, with the majority of the listeners being Gen Z. Strangely enough, the ethnicity that listens to K-pop the most are white people, with a steady mixture of other races also listening in.
The popularity of K-pop has even led companies to even try to mimic the style. One of the most well known examples of this would have to be K/DA, a virtual K-Pop group created to promote the gaming company Riot’s game, League of Legends. They cast some of their most popular ladies as different roles in the band such as Ahri being the lead Korean Lead Singer, Akali being the rapper, Evelynn being the Lead English Singer, and Kai’sa being the Lead Dancer.
Riot has been known to have a stellar music department, and K/DA is no rule breaker to its amazing track record. In fact, by combining many different styles of K-pop, K/DA’s first music video “POP/STARS” is one of Riot’s most viewed videos, clocking in at 442,392,014 views. People who didn’t even play the game liked the video, and it was so popular that years later Riot actually gave the group their first album, titled All Out. These songs are already among some of my favorites with hits like “The Baddest”, “More”, “Villain”, “Drum go Dum”, and “I’ll Show You”.
Between the intense popularity of K-pop, and how diverse it is, it’s safe to say that this style of music isn’t going away anytime soon. This style of music has influenced much of our culture and style. It brings the Korean style into western music, giving way to more dance and style in American music videos.