The Truth Thus Far

Korean Pop Culture 101

G Dragon of Big Bang

I’m just going to assume that none of my friends or family know a darn thing about Korean pop culture. I’ve found that most people don’t really think that Koreans could possibly have anything cool or interesting, and are always surprised to find out how big their music market is. ITS HUGE! Although Japan definitely has a much larger entertainment market, Koreans are really making their imprint on it these days. Lee Hyori, Wondergirls, Shinee, and Rain (ranked #3 most influential man in the world)…the list goes on and on. Some of them I like, some of them I hate, but I admit a lot of it is really catchy or just outright adorable. All that aside, Korean guys dress FIERCE…and this is just the outright truth. Metrosexual? Maybe….but still, their television dramas are full of guys that could school even the Clinton on “What Not to Wear.” It’s an Express for Men in human form.

Anyway, here are some little bits of Korean pop culture- music, movies, fashion, and much much more.


From what I’ve observed, the music industry in Korea is run a lot different from how it is in the states. Essentially the record companies are like training grounds for young stars. You go there when you’re pretty young and study singing and dancing as a “trainee,” and then once they think you’re good enough to debut they’ll put you in a group or release you as a solo artist. So it seems that the stars start out pretty young. The truth: I’m not so impressed with the female singing talent in Korea (at least as far as Kpop is concerned), but the guys are definitely starting to step up.


Take the Wondergirls, for example. Looking at their video you’d think they were in their 20s, but the oldest one is about 19 and the two youngest only 15….and they’ve been out for a few years! What’s gross is that lots of ajusshis (the korean word for creepy old guys…although it also has other meanings) are in love with the young prostitots.

Lee Hyori. She’s Korea’s answer to B Spears. She’s got big tits (a little had commodity in Korea), slutty clothes, and a good enough voice to carry a tune. I definitely get her appeal, even if I’m not her #1 fan. It’s funny to see how boys drool over her. I’m pretty sure she’s even done a few advertisements in America…I think she models but I cant remember.

BoA. Everytime I see that name I can’t help but think of Bank of America. I have no idea what it really stands for though. She’s actually trying to release in America, but that definitely wont work. Good luck to her though.

Here’s a hodgepodge of some current popular songs.

Kara- “Rock U” – And they are saying “Rock your body, I say.” not “Rock your basai”….took me weeks to figure that out. They are another one of those under 20 groups…I think the youngest and newest member is only 14.

Da Vinci- “Love and War”

Uhm Jung Hwa ft TOP (of Big Bang) “Disco”- If what I’ve read is correct, she’s an oldie making a comeback.


Honestly, the boys are doing a much better job. These guys are studying hip hop like woah, and honestly I think they do a pretty good job at mimicking the US style while still having little elements of Korean culture embedded. Remember, this post is about Korean top 40…I’ll do something on alternative music later.

As you’ll see a lot of the groups are really trying on the hip hop front. If any of you watched America’s So You Think You Can Dance this season, then maybe you’ll recognize runner up, Twitch, teaching pop sensation Se7en how to get down.

Epik High. This hip hop group, with one member a graduate from Stanford, have really started to shake things up in Korea. They aren’t as popular as some of the other groups, but they’ve really brought hip hop to Korea in a big way…I’m a BIG fan…I’m not gonna lie….(even if i have NO idea what they are rapping about)

One of the less promoted Big Bang (ill talk about them in a minute) guys has released a mini-ablum…solo. And how nice…his BB brothers are right there supporting him. Check out “Look at Me”

Shinee. They have the worlds WORST haircuts (not to mention they look like 5 year olds), and the follow-up single was far less impressive. But I’ve gotta be for real on this one… I love “Noona Is So Pretty (Replay)” It’s just so catchy. I’ve also included this youtube girls english remake cuz I love it. The youngest one in this group is also about 15 or so…the oldest maybe 19.

Big Bang- another HUGE one. G-dragon and TOP being the fan favorites. Although I’m kind of over Big Bang now, Roomie got me into them with her obsession with the only mildly attractive TOP.

Ah, this post is getting LOOOOOONG. So I guess I’ll cut it here. Maybe tomorrow, or later tonight, I’ll post some stuff about Korean drama stars. That’s a long post all in itself.

Ciao for now.


7 Comments so far
Leave a comment

BoA means Best of Asia, I believe – and ou should really check out the subbed versions of Epik High’s songs on Youtube. I think you’re doing yourself a disservice by listening to them and not knowing what they’re saying – their songs are so deep! Oh, and I agree – some of those Korean boys can really dress. Adios.

Comment by yumimaki

My first comment! haha. thanks so much.

Actually…I have looked up the words to most of their songs…I’m a big Epik High fan. haha *^^* It’s just that their voices sound so smooth, so while I’m listening its hard to try and recall the lyrics. I just “sing along”…mumbling Korean words that I’ve made up haha.

Anyway, thanks for the BOA thing..I was too lazy to look up what it stood for.

Much Love,

Comment by thetruththusfar

BoA stands for Beat of Angel…

the Best of Asia, Bring on America acronym crap is from SM trying to brag about her -_-

Honestly she is not the best, there are far better female vocalists than her.

Comment by uhno

Oh, I thought I might be wrong – Best of Asia seems like a really ambitious name to come out with.

I’m not saying she’s the best but I like her and I’m excited for her US debut. I don’t expect she’ll be extremely successful but I hope she finds a new fan base.

Btw, you’re welcome, 50.

Comment by yumimaki

omg, you’ve almost surpassed me in all things asian… except for the fact that i am asian… haha i actually ate at tofu house today… sooo good. i guess i should email you but it’s easier to just post here… BoA has been around since high school… all the guys drooled over her, but i really hated her song, ‘every heart’ because she couldn’t say heart right. i can’t believe you listened to haru haru hahaha and for epik high def get the lyrics, just type in ‘subbed’ in youtube as that girl said… i still love ‘one’ to death (they were playing it in tofu house) and another favorite is ‘scapegoat’… also watch the video for umbrella (ft. youhna, who you should be listening to right now… she sings in japanese and korean) although you probably already saw it… i love tablo brushing his teeth in the rain… and don’t forgot park bom (she hasn’t debuted yet, but listen to her audition, she sang a faith hill song i think). i can’t believe your first picture was GD. i don’t know what to do with you. it’s like you ran off and i can’t chase after you anymore. when do i get to visit?!?! you have to introduce me to your oppas. Yes, you must. Also… I thought I’d ^__^ smiled at you before. No? Weird.

Comment by roomie

i dont really like boa that much…to be honest. i watched almost all of her videos and theres something a little to 80s about her…like she’s trying to hard to harness Janet Jackson.

i’ll check out park bom…havent heard of her.

and hahaha…i picked the gdragon picture because i thought it was cute…plus, you already know i dont see what the fuss is all about when it comes to top. sexy voice…but he looks….he looks so….bleh. (dodges punches)

anyway…its my farewell dinner tonight. ciao.


I just realized i got the 50 cent thing from 10centlemonde….you are subconsciously always with me.

Comment by thetruththusfar

For me G-dragon and Tae-yang are the best
yea sure I love TOP and hes one of my favorite but if I have to choose between G-dragon Tae-yang and TOP I would choose G-Dragon and Tae-yang
btw I really love this group :p ( and seung ri too) haha

Comment by Keyla

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