Crimson staff writer

Soyoung Kim

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Columns

The Next Chapter of K-Pop

Perhaps those unaware of Korea’s history will listen to K-Pop and bob along to the exciting beats or find intrigue in the foreign language lyrics or highly stylized clothing and choreography, but the music is not to be mistaken for an imitation or spin-off of American pop music. The light, playful, and youth-driven music is more than the glitz and glam of a multi-billion-dollar industry and is more than a genre that has gained international fame and hyperactive fan bases.

Columns

The K-Indie Scene

Some people are still arguing over whether “indie” constitutes a real genre on its own, but for the sake of clarity, K-indie can be understood as an umbrella term for certain subculture music genres of South Korea—whether hip-hop, R&B, alternative rock, or another genre in nature. K-indie music is produced by artists who work independent of the major producers and entertainment corporations on the scene in Seoul, such as the “Big 3” companies: SM, YG, and JYP Entertainment.

Columns

Men in K-Pop: From “Flower Boys” to “Beast-dols”

The confusing and at times contradictory portrayals of males in K-pop are all part of a greater multi-layered, culturally mixed, and strategically manufactured marketing ploy, but also extremely fitting to the greater social changes witnessed in the nation of South Korea.

Columns

Female Empowerment or Exploitation?

In her recent open letter to Miley Cyrus, Sinead O’Connor warns of the consequences of letting the music industry “pimp” singers. She claims: “It is absolutely NOT in ANY way an empowerment of yourself or any other young women, for you to send across the message that you are to be valued (even by you) more for your sexual appeal than your obvious talent.”

Columns

K-Pop Wages Coup D’état

“People, the revolution will not be televised / the revolution is in your mind / the revolution is here / this is my coup d’état,” raps hip-hop artist G-Dragon in the title track of his sophomore album, “Coup D’état.” A collaborative effort with famed producers Diplo and Baauer, the eerie, thumping song takes listeners by surprise, devoid of the frenetic beats fans have come to associate with these producers.

Columns

Look Out, World: K-pop Acts Worth Watching

While there are numerous sub-genres under the greater umbrella of “popular Korean music” (such as talented ballad singer K. Will, indie-folk group Busker Busker, or rock band CN BLUE), here are a few groups worth watching for a potential breakthrough in the U.S. mainstream market.

Columns

K-pop and Social Media

Imagine it’s the morning of your birthday, or the afternoon you’re headed to the airport, or the evening when your new relationship status (#taken) was unveiled. You turn to your cell phone to share this news with your Twitter fam and discover that the top trending topics in the Twitterverse are actually already about you. Sound exciting? Frightening? Bizarre? Welcome to the social media world of K-pop.

Columns

The Breaking Point

The U.S. has witnessed its share of fans-gone-obsessive, including occasional celebrity stalking cases. However, in the U.S., even the most devoted fans don’t physically interfere with artists’ lives (except for the occasional crazy fan who might make a tabloid headline for trying to steal Britney Spears’ wig). In contrast, there is an entire breed of K-pop fans who have taken fandom to an alarming level.

Arts

Image

Soy Kim

Music

Old-School K-pop

Just as American blues evolved into modern day mainstream pop, rock, and hip-hop music, “pansori”—or Korean opera sung along to a drum—was the cornerstone for what developed into K-pop.

Music

B-List Star to Worldwide Phenomenon

On a sweltering August evening in 2012, a plump, 34-year-old hip-hop artist, father of twins, college dropout, and self-proclaimed “B-list star” dropped his sixth album. Within hours, he became the world’s most sought-after musician. Twelve years into his career, Psy (Park Jae-sang) witnessed his fame skyrocket overnight. A few short months later, the music video for his song “Gangnam Style” hit a record-breaking one billion views, becoming the most watched video in YouTube history.

On Campus

Portrait of an Artist: Christine Bennett

Assistant Dance Director Christine Bennett gives dance advice and discusses her high-risk choreography.

Film

Breaking Racial Boundaries

The BAAFF returned this weekend with the aim of empowering its community.

On Campus

Elizabeth C. Walker ’11

Walker graces Harvard’s stages with ballet of a professional caliber.

Senior Portrait: Benjamin J. Nelson '11
On Campus

Benjamin J. Nelson '11

A boundlessly energetic and versatile artist leaves Harvard

Data Sculpture
Visual Arts

Painting by the Numbers: Data Visualization

School at School
Columns

What We Forget About School: School

Head of the Charles
Men's Crew

Head of the Charles 2014

CS50 in Mather
Columns

CS50 and the Humanities