What is special about K Pop

What is K-Pop anyway?

Maybe you've heard of it in the last few years: K-Pop. Without wanting to sound like an entry in an online reference work, but K-Pop is pop music from South Korea. The music has its origins in the 1990s, but K-Pop did not gain its status as an export hit in the South Korean economy until the 2000s. The sounds of K-Pop are wide-ranging. Some of the Korean pop music draws on electronic dance music, R&B and hip hop as well as folk, country and rock. Even gospel, jazz and reggae are included. And on top of this balancing act between all the different musical styles, elements of the classical music and traditional roots of Korean music are also placed. So K-Pop is very experimental, but doesn't forget its home either. Korean Pop has made a significant contribution to the fact that the contemporary music scene has also reshaped Korea and given a different dynamic. An idolization of K-Pop musicians began with the boy band H.O.T. 1996, when the group gathered a very large fan base. When, in the new millennium, the internet and later also social media asked the possibility to distribute images, videos and texts worldwide, the wave of K-pop finally spilled over the borders of Korea and became a popular music genre worldwide. The band that has recently been courted by fans in Germany is BTS, a band that has also strongly established K-Pop in this country in recent years.

Korean Pop: The typical characteristics of Korean electro music

Not only audio, but also visual effects: The electro music from Korea is characterized by many visual effects in its performances. This is why Korean pop music is often referred to as a mix of synthetic music, sophisticated choreographies and eye-catching, colorful costumes. The dances during the performances are unique. If you have ever watched a performance - whether live or fan video on Instagram does not matter - the stars of Korean Pop keep changing places with each other and with their dance steps cause real screaming storms among the mostly female viewers. The steps are specially tailored to each song by the artists and meticulously rehearsed in order to put a glamorous “shoe on the bell” on stage. The groups' costumes are always pretty colorful. But although they are all very eye-catching, the outfits always match each other. In addition, Korean electro music is not only sung in Korean. Many bands and groups around Korean Pop also use English phrases again and again in order to be able to include Anglophone artists in the production of the next hit single. Producers and musicians such as Sean Garrett and Kanye West have already been hired for quite a few K-Pop singles.

Government support for Korean electronic music?

While in Germany independent labels produce, market and, above all, finance the music of the artists themselves, in Korea K-Pop is actually subsidized by the state. A few years ago, the South Korean government recognized the potential of boy and girl groups. Not so much because of their singing, but more because of their ability to make Korea better known, more popular and more popular beyond Asia. In the opinion of the state, the economy should be stimulated and strengthened by the coming tourism. And fact: Korean electronic music hit like a bomb and Korean pop spread in a flash. Tourism in South Korea increased. The government's plan to bring the economy out of recession through state funding for Korean electronic music paid off. But not only economic achievements could be achieved through state support for Korean electronic music. After initial difficulties, around 190 South Korean musicians were able to perform in North Korea in 2018. K-Pop thus makes a significant contribution to improving diplomacy between the two countries.

K-pop sounds way too perfect. Is there also a weak point?

The answer to this question depends on the perspective from which you see Korean electronic music. Die-hard fans will probably want to explain to us why K-Pop is just great because of the title alone. From the point of view of us as dancers, however, one weak point is that there is no uniform dance to K-Pop. There is no such thing as an excellent “K-Pop dance” like there is in jazz dance, for example. Fortunately, K-Pop consists of different dances. Maybe a taster lesson in the hip-hop course around the corner from you would be just the thing? Or jazz? Feel free to use our search function to find a dance class that is made for you! Here in TanzWiki we have also put together a lot of tips, tricks and information about dancing. It should serve as a reference work about dances such as salsa, bachata and tango, but also suggest the best festivals, open air parties and clubs to dance to. We look forward to helping you with your search!

This entry was posted in TanzWiki and tagged Electronic Music, K-Pop, Korea, Korean Pop, Dancing, TanzWiki.