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Old 01-08-2018, 08:01 PM
 
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So glad someone bumped this thread. As indicated earlier I am a BTS fan. (Understatement, really). They are currently on track again in the Billboard Top 100 with “Mic Drop”. Their win as BB Social Artists last round was mentioned earlier in this thread as I recall. BTS’s performances on Ellen and on Jimmy Kimmel were great. At the AMA’s their space seemed constrained and camera work was poor, sketchy, too far away and panned audience more than anything.

A couple of things re: Kpop. There are LOTS of Kpop artists, but here are those that stand out. BTS of course, but acts such as Shinee (you may have heard of recent death of one member) and EXO are two HUGE Kpop groups that have been around a while, maybe not as long as BigBang, though. I forget the timeline. I ADORE Lee Taemin, a member of Shinee as well as a soloist. Heavily influenced by Michael Jackson and I love his song “Move” which is award winning in Korea. BTS members collaborate with other Kpop groups (Jimin of BTS with Taemin of Shinee for example).

I don’t really follow the girl groups as they are more ‘bubble gummy’ I guess, though they certainly dance well and make wonderful visual presentations.

There is something about BTS that is difficult to describe. They have a ‘concept’ that goes far beyond that of your run of the mill ‘boy band’.

Some things I wish more attention to regarding BTS are their short films and their ‘concept(s)’. They have/have had since the beginning a ‘storyline’ that connects all their music, videos, short films, and are related to literature/philosophy/religion/culture/youth and coming of age and all the other social/cultural topics explored in their music. It’s important for youth. Their productions contain clues or ‘references’ to past or future songs/music videos I guess would be a good way to describe them.

Their fan base (called ‘ARMY’) is ‘different’. It is something ‘more’. It is huge and it is a powerful driving force and it is all due to BTS’s hard work, dedication, talent, humility and grace. Ex. Fans in Asia buy Times Square billboards (costs in the 100’s of thousands) for BTS members:



Also see:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uXI-fRE6tjE

Another thing that, though mentioned often, is not studied in depth (IMHO) is the connection BTS (and Kpop in general) has to American popular music, and predominantly R&B and Rap. BTS’s music is heavily influenced by these as well as Blues, Jazz, with special emphasis on Michael Jackson. MJ’s influence on Korean entertainment, esp. Kpop cannot be discounted, nor is it by Kpop groups. Sure there is EDM and pop and some rock, but to a lesser degree comparatively.

BTS’s music is ...GOOD! The orchestration, the arrangements, combination of various elements of popular music is superb. Their albums ‘Wings’ and ‘Love Yourself: Her’ are amazing.

Someone really knows what they are doing in crafting the group and their art (I understand that the songs are either written by or at least heavily influenced by the members of the group). BigHit (the parent company of BTS) has studied (Literally! Check out “American Hustle Life BTS” reality tv program) aspects of American popular music and entertainment well, and IMHO as frequently happens, Asia has taken the American ideas and made them bigger and better.

Another point, BTS songs are not completely in Korean. Most songs contain some English expressions, verses, and some even have English titles. They also record in Japanese for that market which is huge for them. BTW, I am currently studying Korean!

The sheer work that goes into their art is impressive to me. It’s difficult to fully explain how captivating, mesmerizing?? BTS is to those of us who champion the group...It’s love.

Okay, I’ll stop here for now.

Last edited by tangelag; 01-08-2018 at 08:54 PM..
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Old 01-08-2018, 08:34 PM
 
Location: Howard County, Maryland
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Originally Posted by attisbons View Post
Again thank you for being so open-minded! and what great questions! I don't know much but I'd be happy to share my thoughts anyway (sorry it's long):

Thank you for such a complete and detailed response. Your enthusiasm for this subject comes through loud and clear.
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Old 01-08-2018, 09:14 PM
 
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Originally Posted by ABQConvict View Post
I predict Kpop in America and the West is a fad, and much of its appeal to fans is as much out of novelty and/or irony as anything else.

That is not to say that there isn't genuine niche interest, but its current apparent popularity is, I predict, going to be a short lived.

Even more entrenched Asian pop forms like anime and manga are, while widespread and with dedicated fans, still basically niche pop art forms in the West.

Hmm, maybe...

BTW, just the other day a young lady at a local business was telling me how her sister ‘got her hooked on Kdramas’. LOL, here, in the US and especially where I live, this is a culture that LOVES Telenovelas, and those are huge. Who knows what may come? Kdramas are kind of a side ’niche’ of Kpop.

In fact, one of BTS’s members’s, Kim Taehyung (Tae or “V”), was a member of the popular Kdrama ‘Hwarang: The Poet Warrior Youth”. Sadly, his character died in the drama. However, the cast also included another Kpop star, Minho (of the Kpop group SHINee I mentioned in an earlier post). Many, internationally, now know of him because of the ‘stir’ he caused recently:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EkiWMWdf02A

LOL. This ‘movement’ is something ‘different’. Best comparison would be to the Beatles and the comparison has been made often. Only time will tell for sure.

On a side note, BTS fans know that the members of the group will only be in existence as we currently know it for a time limited by: their age, as they grow and expand in their professional interests and even the military requirements of their country. We are happy to have the experience for however long they want to share it with us and I am sure this will be true of upcoming Kpop groups that we might enjoy as BTS et al in Kpop continue their journey. Such is entertainment.


Also, re: Manga, Anime, niche? Hmm, not sure. Ask any middle/high school student...Lots of careers are being dreamt of in those areas...

Also, to reiterate from an earlier post, MUCH (MOST?) of this phenomenon is driven by YouTube. YouTube (and of course other social media) is HUGE with youth. Somehow, this is being overlooked in many ways...but that’s another discussion.

Last edited by tangelag; 01-08-2018 at 09:25 PM..
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Old 01-09-2018, 11:11 AM
 
Location: Howard County, Maryland
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Originally Posted by tangelag View Post
However, the cast also included another Kpop star, Minho (of the Kpop group SHINee I mentioned in an earlier post). Many, internationally, now know of him because of the ‘stir’ he caused recently:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EkiWMWdf02A

As someone who admires Melania, and had never heard of Minho, I gotta admit: that's kind of funny! And Melania handled being "upstaged" quite gracefully, IMO.

Really, though, would we expect anything different? Pick any country you want, and put one of that country's reigning popstars on a stage with the wife of a foreign leader. If you're a teenage girl, who are you going to get more excited about?
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Old 01-09-2018, 01:00 PM
 
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Originally Posted by bus man View Post
As someone who admires Melania, and had never heard of Minho, I gotta admit: that's kind of funny! And Melania handled being "upstaged" quite gracefully, IMO.

Really, though, would we expect anything different? Pick any country you want, and put one of that country's reigning popstars on a stage with the wife of a foreign leader. If you're a teenage girl, who are you going to get more excited about?
Yeah I completely agree lol And yes, Melania really handled it well.

A bit off-topic, but did you see the ROYAL reception S.Korea gave to Trump and Melania? I thought Trump got a pretty warm welcome. And Melania seemed to enjoy their visits in Asia. Very cool.
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Old 01-09-2018, 08:13 PM
 
Location: Howard County, Maryland
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Originally Posted by attisbons View Post
Yeah I completely agree lol And yes, Melania really handled it well.

A bit off-topic, but did you see the ROYAL reception S.Korea gave to Trump and Melania? I thought Trump got a pretty warm welcome. And Melania seemed to enjoy their visits in Asia. Very cool.
I watched Trump’s speech to the Korean National Assembly. I thought he did a great job there. And yes, he seemed very well received. I think his visit helped cement the ties between the U.S. and South Korea.
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Old 01-10-2018, 06:35 AM
 
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I wouldn't really call that being upstaged. Imagine if the spouse of some other country came to the US and was on stage with some crazy popular pop singer. Majority of people here would be hard pressed to identify and name politicians from the US but they could all name the popular celebs.

I don't think k-pop is "dominating" the west. Majority of people don't even know what it is. There is a void currently in music though that k-pop could take advantage of. Music genres tend to peak then fall in popularity and quality. They start out as edgy and groundbreaking then you have an explosion of talented artists who define the genre then it gets taken over by industry kingpins that slowly change the genre in an attempt to commercialize it and profit from it.

Country peaked in the 50s, 60s and early 70s. It was king. Then Nashville took near complete control of the industry and slowly changed into more of pop/slow rock sound that isn't really country any more.

Rock blew up in the 60s and peaked in the late 70s and 80s. Then the classic sound that made it great was lost to the screeching guitar hair bands and the oversynthesized 80s pop bands. The whole alternative/grunge rock movement is the only thing that saved it from a complete falling off and allowed it to stay more popular than hip-hop/rap/r&b.

Rap took off in the late 80s and exploded in the 90s and started the same decline in 2000s. Like the previous examples, besides a few standouts its awash in mediocre talent that are pumping out industry directed songs with nothing that made the genre great to begin with.

In the early 60s nobody saw what was gonna happen to Rock, same with Rap in the 80s. What genre is going to step up next? I doubt its edm or K-pop.
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Old 01-24-2018, 10:05 AM
 
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We have a general pandora station playing at our offices and I just heard BTS playing and bunch of (mostly White) coworkers started singing along and dancing!
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Old 01-26-2018, 07:24 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Ebck120 View Post
We have a general pandora station playing at our offices and I just heard BTS playing and bunch of (mostly White) coworkers started singing along and dancing!
^ That's truly awesome!

I saw a BTS album in the "New Music" rack category at Target the other day - they're not "dominating" the U.S. market yet per se, but still a big achievement given that they're an Asian artist singing in their own language. They're also still charting on Billboard Hot 100 for straight 8+ weeks, which is an accomplishment even for a mainstream U.S. artist.

They're soon to come out with some collaborations with names like Maroon 5, Fall Out Boy and Charlie Puth so I think in the future more Americans will probably hear about them, and I can only imagine the collaborations will help both parties.

In Japan, China and SE Asia, BTS and other Kpop groups are already household names.
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Old 01-26-2018, 11:26 AM
 
Location: Howard County, Maryland
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Originally Posted by attisbons View Post
I saw a BTS album in the "New Music" rack category at Target the other day - they're not "dominating" the U.S. market yet per se, but still a big achievement given that they're an Asian artist singing in their own language.
What few K-pop songs I've heard, I've noticed that they'll slip in some English lyrics every now and then. I'm not sure if this is intended to broaden their appeal (given that English is the world's most popular second language) or if they just like the sound of the words in this language. But still, I find it interesting. Apart from K-pop, how many other acts will sing a song primarily in one language, but still insert a line or two of another language into the song?

As an example, check out their song "With Seoul" that they did for the Seoul Tourism Organization.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A36Iyt5748g

The lyrics are in Korean, except all of a sudden, at 3:46, the singer tosses in "I'll be by your side forever" in English. Go figure.

Oh, and at 2:05 and at other places in the song, right after they sing "Oh Seoul," it sounds to me like they're saying "Everybody comes to Seoul" in English, instead of something in Korean that's translated as "Yeah right here." I'm sure I'm hearing it wrong, but even so, I like to imagine that they're slipping in subliminal messages to attract English-speaking tourists!
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