You have questions about K-Pop? We have the answers!

by Helen Bosch
BTS Break the Silence: The Movie Poster
BTS Break the Silence: The Movie Poster

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The fact that you've landed here means that you've come across the term "K-Pop" at least once. Maybe someone you know hears K-Pop, or you've picked up something yourself. But what exactly is it?

Catchy music, colorful music videos, lots of boy and girl groups, and a lot of screaming fans. That's the first thing the media answer to this question. Generally speaking, it's true, but there's a lot more to it than that, of course!

In this article, we'll clear up a few questions about the topic that you might be looking for an answer to:

  • What exactly does the term "K-Pop" stand for?
  • How was K-Pop created?
  • How did the genre become known worldwide?
  • What makes K-Pop so special for fans?
  • Why is it so much fun to collect the CDs of K-Pop artists?

What exactly does the term "K-Pop" stand for?

It is an abbreviation for "Korean Popular Music" or "Korean Pop" and simply refers to Korean-language pop music. However, K-pop is not necessarily pure pop music, but often contains hip-hop, rap, electronic or techno elements, to name just a few examples.

Here, the best known are the boy and girl groups, which are notorious for their good looks and the complex dances that accompany their music. An example would be the worldwide popular boy group BTS or the girl group Blackpink. K-pop artists are usually called "idols".

In fact, many K-pop fans have very different tastes in music. If you were to ask 10 of them, they would all name other groups they like to listen to. There's a lot to choose from, so there's actually something for everyone!

How was K-Pop created?

Korean trio

The genre's origin is attributed to a trio called "Seo Taiji and Boys," which was active in the early 1990s. The trio mixed Korean pop with Western music. Among other things, they released one of the first Korean rap songs and incorporated English lines into their lyrics. They then accompanied the new music with hip-hop choreography and synchronized dance moves. Finally, in 1996, the boy group H.O.T made its debut. They are considered the first K-pop group because they combined the new style of music with easily memorable melodies, coordinated outfits and rehearsed synchronized dances. They also placed a focus on good looks.

How did the genre become known worldwide?

Back in 2012, a K-pop song went around the world: "Gangnam Style" by Psy. The music video found its way into the Guinness Book of Records because it was liked more times than any other Youtube video before! The whole world danced to the crazy song, but even at that point, few would have been able to tell that it was a Korean song. Even in the following years, less than one in ten people could recognize the term "K-pop".

The big breakthrough came with BTS! The now world-famous boy group debuted back in 2013, slowly working its way up and making it into the top 5 of the Korean charts for the first time with the single "I Need U" in 2015. The next releases not only made it to the top of the Korean charts, but also appeared on the American Billboard charts. In February 2017, BTS broke sales records in South Korea with the album "You Never Walk Alone", At the end of the year, the boy group also became the first K-pop artist to play completely sold-out concerts in the United States.

BTS's international breakthrough was also a breakthrough for the entire K-pop genre. Suddenly, the term "K-pop" was no longer a foreign word, and new fans discovered other talented K-pop artists, such as the girl group Blackpink. Today, there are hundreds of thousands of K-pop fans around the world and countless Korean singers and groups regularly filling concert halls in America, Europe and other continents.

BTS Break the Silence: The Movie Poster

What makes K-Pop so special for fans?

bts photoshoot

The biggest aspect, of course, is the music itself. Many are enthusiastic about happy and poppy songs that spread good cheer, but they love the quieter songs with profound lyrics just as much. And there are quite a few of them. Among other things, they deal with depression, insecurity and many other problems that young people have to deal with. Fans can empathize with the lyrics and thus feel connected to the singers.

Then there's the whole surrounding content. Fans can not only listen to the artists' music videos, but are offered a lot more content. The singers appear in numerous entertainment shows whenever they release a new album, some of which are even produced just for them. In addition, for example, stage performances and behind-the-scenes footage are broadcast, as well as dance videos that allow fans to learn the complex choreographies themselves or simply admire them in detail. So if you want, you can spend every day with your favorite singers without getting bored. At some point, fans know their stars so well that they almost feel like friends. They provide comfort to fans or just distract them from the boring daily grind.

Why is it so much fun to collect the CDs of K-Pop artists?

bts 2022 album proof - standard edition : product image

You can probably see at first glance that K-Pop albums are different. Buyers get not only the CD, but also a photo book and a number of extras; little gifts like bookmarks, stickers, buttons and photo cards. Also, each album is different. Sometimes they are big, sometimes small, thin, thick, black, yellow, rectangular or square. Sometimes they are bound books, sometimes magazine-like notebooks and sometimes real boxes. So each album in itself is a unique collector's item!

The extras included also vary from album to album, but photo cards are almost always included. Most of the time it's random which photo card a buyer gets, so each of them is like a little surprise. Fans trade them with each other, staple them into collection folders, or display them on their shelves. So K-Pop fans simply collect photo cards instead of stamps.

In our store , you can easily order the albums and other fan items to your home with just a few clicks. We get the products from South Korea and save you customs and high shipping costs.

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