During the American Idol Season Finale, Psy performed “Gentleman” live alongside a handful of talented backup dancers. The impressive choreography got the audience up on their feet dancing and even earned Psy a standing ovation from the American Idol judges. Other performers of the night included current American Idol judges Keith Urban and Mariah Carey, and former judge Jennifer Lopez. Check out Psy’s impressive stage presence and energy below:
There’s only one Kpop queen in my heart – and her name is Hyori Lee. With the recent release of “Miss Korea,” you can understand how excited I am for her comeback (it’s since 2010!) to the music scene. As usual, she’s looking gorgeous as ever as a pinup beauty queen. I wonder what her next album will pack in store.
Check out the video below!
You can also check out more goodies related to Hyori’s comeback below!
Holy moly. Actor Jung Seok-won (Rooftop Prince and Haeundae Lovers) makes hearts race in his latest editorial for Esquire Korea by showing off his well-sculpted body (those abs! that back!). Unfortunately the 28 year old is taken – he recently announced his upcoming marriage to singer Baek Ji-young (who’s 9 years older than him!). In any case, all we can do is appreciate his good looks (and body) from afar. More pictures after the cut!
Happy 26th Birthday to today’s Daily SHAG (Smoking Hot Asian Guy), Jay Park! In honor of the singer, dancer, rapper, b-boy, music producer, songwriter, model, choreographer and actor, we’ve put together a collection of something he seems quite proud of- his body. Click on for the Jay Park Shirtless Megapost. Enjoy!
G-Dragon’s release for his highly-anticipated video for “Michi Go” is here! The video well matched the high energy of the hip-pop tune – complete with wild styling in terms of fashion and and hair (oh all those hairstyles GD!) and special appearances from fellow YG mates Taeyang, Se7en, and Teddy. Even comedian Ahn Yeong Mi has a quick cameo as well!
Check the video below!
AUTHOR Kanara Ty
ISSUE Winter ’12-13
Associate Editor Kanara Ty wonders, are K-pop stars performing to break through — or just to be accepted?
While the global phenomenon that is Psy and his latest hit single continues to amaze me to no end, I find that the media masturbation of “Gangnam Style” and, more broadly, K-pop has parallels to the Latin Pop craze back in 1999, which was singlehandedly led by one man and his gyrating hips: Ricky Martin. While Americans quickly bought into the media craze behind the specially packaged (read: super-diluted) Latin music of that time, the fad died out by the early 2000s, not maintaining any true staying power. K-pop, as a musical genre trying to break into the American music industry, is following the same sort of trajectory. Two months following the release of “Gangnam Style” (at press time, the second most viewed video on YouTube following Justin Bieber), Psy singlehandedly helped K-pop crossover to American shores after he signed with talent manager Scooter Braun (who represents Bieber, Carly Rae Jepsen, and The Wanted). But just like the Latin pop craze, Psy has given Americans a product that they can buy into — and can also easily dispose of.
There is a long history of Asian pop stars who have tried to crossover into the American music industry (Utada Hikaru, BoA and Jin Akanishi come to mind) and have failed miserably. Why is that? Because rather than just giving American audiences what has made them popular in their respective home countries, they presented themselves as pop stars who conformed to what they thought American audiences would appreciate. Basically, performing to be accepted by Americans. I realize that Psy may have taken a different path from his predecessors, since he probably wasn’t envisioning that his catchy little tune would go viral worldwide. However, given all the promoting he did in the States, taking “Gangnam Style” and the horsey dance on a circus tour of numerous television and stage appearances — something that left a huge impression on Americans — I fear this is what they will continue to expect from him in the future: an Asian man who will serve as the court jester on the American stage. I firmly believe that K-pop will have some sort of future in America — not as the Korean K-pop we all know and love, but an American K-pop. Since the U.S. has the largest music market in the world, the fact that the music industry is paying attention to acts like Psy, Big Bang and 2NE1 means it believes K-pop will have some sort of success in the States in the future. But they’re still going to want to package K-pop in a way that Americans will understand (singing in English, working with familiar American talent). Contrary to belief, we don’t live in a completely post-racial society.
I’m not arguing that K-pop shouldn’t make its way over here; but as a fan, I don’t want K-pop being ripped apart by American producers either. I’m sure the sentiments as to why I love K-pop and Asian pop music in general are shared by other Asian American fans: the music resonates with me more because people who look like me are performing on stage. Even if I self-identify as an Asian American, I can’t find even a shade of myself in American pop culture. I feel more connected with what is going on in Asian pop culture (even if I don’t understand the language) because I see myself within these individuals performing on stage. So while K-pop may seem cool for now (and maybe even make Asians seem cool in the short term), I’d rather not have the crossover happen if that means putting forth a product that does not represent K-pop in the least bit.
Ga In and Cho Hyung Woo has released the music video to their single “Brunch”. To the excitement of their fans, the two have combined as a duo to create the mini-album “Romantic Spring “.
Although the song is soft, sweet, and pleasant to the ears, we couldn’t help but be distracted half the time. The food looked amazing! (We should have expected this- the song is called “Brunch” after all) While we enjoy pancakes and orange juice just as much as the next person, we wanted to show off food thats a little close to our hearts. In honor of the new music video, we’d like to share some Popular Asian Breakfasts:
We live in a society which pressures its women to look beautiful. We are surrounded with images of women who set unrealistic standards of beauty and make us question every inch of our body. Its strange then to think that we may actually have it easy compared to women elsewhere. Where can the pressure to be beautiful possibly be worse? How about a country that produces flawless celebrities- Korea.
In South Korea, the need to be beautiful is alarming. With the popularity of Kpop becoming national, the pressure to be attractive has people dishing out thousands of dollars to do so. People strive to be as beautiful as their favorite celebrity and turning to surgery has become normal. In fact, many students even receive surgery as a highschool graduation gift. When asked, students say that just about everyone gets at least one surgery done and celebrities get tons of procedures to look the way that they do. Has Kpop set the standards for beauty too high? Has it become a necessity and a normality to go under the knife? Watch The Kpop Effect- South Korea below and let us know what you think.