Do you want to be an active participant in the K-pop fandom? Have you ever wondered what it’s like to work for a website that covers Korean entertainment? Do you have a lot of opinions about Hallyu that you have been dying to share? Are you good with social media and enjoy sharing K-pop related content? Here is your opportunity to be a part of the Seoulbeats staff!
Writers who are interested in writing about music, dramas, film, variety shows, and socio-cultural topics. We want writers who can contribute at least once a week for up to six months. We do a lot of workshopping and training with potential applicants so we’re looking for writers who are open to suggestions and serious about improving their writing skills. We are very flexible and will work around your schedule.
If you’re interested in applying for either position (or both), just send us the following items in an email to recruiting[at]seoulbeats.com with the subject line “April 2019: [Your name]”
If you have applied in the past and wish to apply again, you are more than welcome to do so!
Best of luck to all applicants and feel free to ask any questions in the comments or in the body of your application email.
(Images via SM Entertainment, Banana Culture.)
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This… has been a long time in the making.
We as fans always toe the line between genuine admiration of craft and the almost desperate affection of a persona. We’re all guilty of it. It’s like when you fell in love with your favorite fictional character from literature, or from a television show. The line between fantasy and reality becomes blurred in our psyches as we come to grips with inexplicable emotions for someone we don’t know, and who will most likely never know us.
When the image is shattered, when these people we admire do things to highlight their hubris, their magnificent and terrible human frailty, something in our minds wants to rebel against the inescapable truth. That our favorites aren’t saints or statues. That sometimes people who we perceive as good can do horrible things.
In light of all this fervor over Seungri and his associates, I was forced to remember a time when someone I counted as a “fave,” in fact my ultimate bias, forced me to reevaluate my entire view of this thing called K-pop.
This is my attempt to finally leave that part of my life behind.
Note: I’m not writing this for sympathy. I don’t want pity. I don’t want anyone to pat me on the head and feed me any sentimentality. I just want some damn peace.
For pretty much everyone (or at least all the people in my circle of K-pop friends and acquaintances), Park Yoochun‘s case was open and shut. You either believed in his innocence or reviled him as a sex offender. Open. Shut. Nothing in between.
However, for nearly the past three years I’ve sat in cold silence, still unable to actually reconcile my love of this man (for one reason or another) with my personal moral code. Now that he’s taking steps to come back to the entertainment world, all these emotions, all this self-doubt has started brewing again. An acidic, painful stirring in my gut that has me anxious and continuing to question my moral fiber.
I started my journey with K-pop when a friend introduced me to Dong Bang Shin Ki (DBSK/TVXQ). Almost instantly I was drawn to the one they called Micky. It was the way he approached the entire idea of fame. For him it wasn’t a destination. It was a means to an end, a way to make enough money to bring his mother and younger brother back to Korea, back home. I also have a deep affection for people who don’t take any of it seriously. Who walk a path contrary to what people expect because of preconceived notions of what it means to be a “celebrity.” He’d go ghost for weeks at a time. Would laugh at things that were completely ridiculous, including himself. More than anything else, he reminded me of friends that I had growing up. Guys whom I counted as part of my circle.
Micky Yoochun was, essentially, one of us.
For two years I only had eyes for DBSK and, inevitably, for the semi Korean-American member with the deep voice and the goofy laugh. I combed through all the music, the dramas (on screen and off). When he finally started making films I was standing in the proverbial wings, looking on with pride at all the success, the accolades, the praise from his seniors.
Then in 2016, all of that screeched to halt. I heard the news, as everybody did. Yoochun was suspected of sexual assault. My instant gut reaction? I wanted his head on a platter. With the rampant sexism and previous instances of abuse and assault either going unreported or leaving the actual victim punished, I was out for blood. I wanted his ass under the jail.
Then more details started to trickle in. The more I learned, the more that fire turned into an ice floe in my chest. I was frightened for him. Frightened for myself, for all Cassies. We’re already a fandom heavily divided. This would do nothing but give more fuel to those who tout the members of JYJ as traitors who deserve whatever they get.
So, yes, from the moment the allegations came about my mind and heart were torn asunder. I don’t mean to wax poetic here. I’m being completely honest. I didn’t know what the hell to do. Being old enough to remember in vivid detail everything that happened to Michael Jackson, his history with allegations, and the current “situation” with Wade Robson (which I don’t want to talk about here. I’m not here to argue or debate about a situation that I’m already too close to), I’ve been through the circus. The hate. The anger. The whispers of uncertainty from fans. The bold and boisterous claims of those who really want to see someone else’s life destroyed for whatever reason. Been there. Done it. Hated every second of it.
During the year and half or so of the trials, interviews, and eventual prosecution of parties found to be attempting to extort money from Yoochun, there were countless op-eds, debates, knock-down, drag-out arguments both among fans and between either apathetic parties or ardent “anti-fans.”
When the smoke cleared, the dust settled, everyone had their say, and the fandom was yet again thrown into disarray, there was… silence. Absolutely nothing. Yoochun was vindicated in the eyes of fans, forever demonized by everyone else. And Yoochun? He was just… gone.
Two years. It’s been two years since anyone has heard anything from him. Two years where no one was even thinking about him. Two years where the scope of the entire Hallyu Wave has completely transformed into a global conglomeration. Two years in which the second generation of K-pop has become dismantled. Two years where I constantly battled within myself. Internal moral struggles between the feminist and the fan. The scales of my Libra personality tipping in either direction from the facts of his case.
Like most people, I want all the facts about Seungri’s case before I even speak on it with any clarity. I know for certain that everyone involved in this case played a part. As far as any powers-that-be who might have significant roles, I have my suspicions just as everyone else. With this case comes the usual barrage of think pieces, fan and “anti” bickering, name calling, and dysfunction. Just as with Yoochun, this case is being cast in a worldwide light for all its ugliness. Only now with the depth of the “scandal,” the sheer amount of parties involved, and K-pop’s visibility globally, the Hallyu world and all those affected are paying a much bigger price.
The feelings the situation engenders in me are still the same.
As Yoochun makes plans for a comeback, and with a new lawsuit lurking in the wings, I find myself yet again in a state of limbo. I’m still attempting to navigate just exactly what I feel about this. About him. So much of what I believe as a woman, as a fan of music (and more specifically the Dumpster fire that is K-pop) was challenged in 2016.
Now I’m sort of left wondering: Where do I go from here? What’s going to happen when he does start releasing more music? When he stars in more dramas and films? My mind wants to just block him out. My heart is still conflicted. In the end, what does that say about me, about my moral fiber, about my loyalty?
I’m still unsure of so much. What I am sure of is I can no longer hold on to him. Can no longer allow the discomfort of my now seven-year connection to keep me trapped. Make no mistake, that’s exactly what I am. However, in writing this out, in purging my clouded thoughts, confronting my guilt of both supporting him and at times genuinely being disgusted, (whether of him or the situation, I’m still unsure), I’m hoping I can begin on the road to closure. After almost three years, it’s about damn time.
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[MV] WJSN(우주소녀) _ Save Me, Save You(부탁해)
When Shinee‘s Minho was a kid he wanted to play soccer like his father, defender-turned-coach Choi Yun-kyum. Not wanting to see his son suffer the long training hours and abusive environment, he dissuaded a then-five-year-old Minho by threatening to kick him out. Though that seemed to have worked, I can only imagine what Choi Sr.’s reaction was when his younger son was street cast by SM and started on the road to idoldom, with its long training hours and abusive environment.
I guess you could say it worked out in the end, with Minho established as part of a successful K-pop act and building his acting career as well. Now, it is time for him to complete his military service and it comes as no surprise to Minho’s fans (AKA Flames) that he will be joining the Marines.
Considering Minho’s enduring love for sport and physical activity, it seems logical that he would apply for one of the toughest military roles available. I mean, have you seen him at ISAC? Moreso than that, Minho is someone who is constantly pushing himself to do more, and do better. It comes off as extra at times (again, ISAC), but the genuine enthusiasm and effort are there.
Even if the result is nowhere near the level of his peers, Minho is someone who will endeavour to do the best he can. I may have called him a black hole of musical talent in the past, but goddamn he has been a black hole that tries. And whatever your thoughts on the military in general, you have to admit that joining the Marines is peak Minho.
This peak Minho is also what we’ve been seeing in the lead up to the Shinee rapper’s enlistment, with fans being lavished with a fan meet tour and now, an actual solo single that really exists. SM’s Station was created for exactly this type of project: a special release from an idol who may not have the time or direction to carry a full album promotion.
In “I’m Home,” Minho stars as a jet-setting, corporate ladder climber — or at least said corporate ladder climber’s inner-, or younger, self. looking back at what he’s left behind to pursue his career.
It’s cuz I’m alone
Cuz I’m so tired
It’s not that I miss you or anything
It’s just my young heart
That’s trapped between the narrow door of emotions
Wants to be comforted
(Baby I’m Home
Baby I’m Home
Baby I’m Home alone)
The scenes become littered with telephones and alarm clocks, representing Minho’s ties to his personal and professional lives, respectively. He is almost haunted by these objects, being called out of tired slumber by two different types of rings. Then there is the ring box itself, representing a chance to choose a different path.
The MV ends with Minho running out of his business-trip suite, ring in hand, in a better-late-than-never moment, though this isn’t reflected in the song. The message of the lyrics are actually rather disheartening upon closer inspection — so, you feel lonely even with all your expensive baubles, but you don’t miss the other person (or, rather, the work needed to maintain a healthy relationship)? — but Minho sprinting “home” gives the MV a more romantic, if not necessarily hopeful, ending.
Another morally questionable choice was the use of a gentlemen’s club as a filming location. The State Room does seem to allow women for filming, at least. And it’s not like Minho and SM are politicians who have booked the place for an International Women’s Day event, a MV shoot isn’t that cringeworthy. At least the MV producers can be appreciated for their economic thinking: just about every scene not in the plane cabin is filmed at the club. You can even see the same black backdrop Minho runs past in the short lift scene that introduces the ring box.
Despite these hiccups, the song and MV do succeed at their main goals of giving Minho an opportunity to achieve a major K-pop milestone, showcasing both his singing as well as his signature rapping style, as well as give back to his fans. “I’m Home” was performed as part of the Best Choi’s Minho fanmeet tour, where the idol acquitted himself quite well. It is a shame that the studio version doesn’t allow Minho the same chance to go lower like other Shinee members have with their solos, but we get hints of it on stage (mainly to stay within a comfortable range, but I am still grateful).
Minho joins Marines training on the 15th and I admit that I am going to miss good ol’ Flaming Charisma. After so many years as a K-pop fan, I now join the ranks of those who have farewelled biases marching off to enlistment. And while I’m more likely to fondly remember his Taemin and Key dance covers/cosplay, here’s hoping that “I’m Home” is the first entry of more in his solo discography.
[4K][ALL CAM] 16.08.27 레이샤(LAYSHA) @밤비노 달빛샤워 쇼케이스 무대
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모모랜드 (MOMOLAND) – BANANA CHACHA Release Date: 2019.04.03 Genre: Dance Language: Korean Bit Rate: MP3-320kbps Track List: 01. 바나나차차 (BANANA CHACHA) 02. 바나나차차 (Inst.) Download Album File: MOMOLAND – BANANA…
나윤선 – Immersion Release Date: 2019.04.02 Genre: Jazz Language: Korean Bit Rate: MP3-320kbps Track List: 01. In My Heart 02. The Wonder 03. Isn`t It A Pity 04. Here Today…
By – Hamtaro Gasa
By – Hamtaro Gasa
By – Hamtaro Gasa
Last year, BOL4 delivered their version of a summer song, and Travel went on to become a huge crossover hit. New single “Bom” takes its cues from spring — a season where K-pop goes crazy with drowsy mid-tempos and wistful ballads. As such, the song isn’t as much giddy fun as Travel was, but its …
Seungri and Yoo In Suk were recently booked for allegedly embezzling funds from Monkey Museum, and now police have reportedly found that he also embezzled money from Burning Sun by routing club funds to shell bank accounts which were routed to him. According to the report, police found these suspicious accounts while tracking the flow …
Listen and download on iTunes & Apple Music
Listen and download on iTunes & Apple Music
엑소(EXO) – 으르렁(Growl) + 늑대와 미녀(Beauty and the Beast) at 2013 MAMA
The first ever ‘Feel The K-Pop’ Music Festival is bringing a star studded lineup to Virginia! Presented by C&U Entertainment and SenSor Promotion, the inaugural event will take place on Saturday, April 6, 2019 at George Mason Universiy’s Eaglebank Arena in Virginia. Confirmed artists to perform include Ailee, Kimg Jong Kook,Wheesung, Haha & Skull, and Huh Gak.…
The post Ailee, Kim Jong Kook, and More to Perform at ‘Feel The K-Pop’ Music Festival in Virginia appeared first on K-Pop Concerts.
Hara recently posted pictures on Instagram in which her eyes looked quite different. When a netizen pointed this out, she replied by admitting to a procedure but says it was for blepharoptosis (sagging eyelids). On March 31, Goo Hara shared selfies she took backstage at the Japanese fashion festival Tokyo Girls Collection, and a netizen …
Reports emerged recently that at least 16 individuals involved in the Jung Joon Young/Seungri molka group chats, and among those were yet unnamed celebrities. Now it’s being reported that singer Roy Kim is one of those celebrities, which shouldn’t come as a surprise since his name has been tied to this in rumors due to …
KARD is trading in their days in the tropical sun to take over the night with their next digital single, “Bomb Bomb”. Since their (unofficial) debut in 2016, KARD has captured the attention of fans with their tropical house music and rare group dynamic. At the time, their debut as a co-ed group in an over saturated girl/boy group world was a
fail-safe way to stand out and the tropical house genre was at the peak of its popularity. Fast forward to three years later, 2019, those two statements are now quickly becoming excuses in attempts to stay in the spotlight. In recognition of these issues, KARD’s new single “Bomb Bomb” marks a shift in their music as KARD strives to maintain their unique identity in the K-pop world.
Being a co-ed group is not easy, especially when marketed as idols. There are co-ed groups in different markets such as indie and folk-pop, i.e. Akdong Musician, Clazziquai and Urban Zakapa. In the idol market co-ed groups generally do not see much success unless the group is over-sexualized, i.e. Troublemaker, Triple H, and Nasty Nasty. KARD’s strength of as a group has been through their pragmatic male-to-female lyrical conversations, gender neutral choreography, and through their friendship in actual day to day life.
So how does this translate to their current release? In “Bomb Bomb”, KARD begins to test their waters as to how they can express their sensuality. Somin slinks in a black nighty, Jiwoo bares her back, BM dances topless and J.Seph attracts the viewer to him. There was once a K-pop fan that mentioned to me how impressed she was by boy band members staying relativity modest, that even a glimpse of a collarbone would send a fan blushing madly. Likewise, it would be difficult for a girl group member to adorn a black nighty or to be revealing without being viewed through an objectified lens.
KARD’s unique group dynamic allows for each member to safely express their own sensuality without repercussions. That is not to say that there will not be any repercussions, but the group dynamic may allow for a safer route in expression. The way the members protect their own inner friendships with each other can translate to how they can be protected with their relationship to the world.
This is important to note because “Bomb Bomb” is about a fun/wild night and the members want to be seductive. Musically the song retains the heavily influenced moombahton and reggaeton foundations of what KARD has built their discography around; however, the track picks up on some new influences. There are sounds of horns and trumpets replicating a Middle Eastern melody, there is a heavier emphasis on the thumping beats and rap, and the chorus is almost purely 100% a instrumental dance break. It is exactly what you would expect for the perfect “club-banger” type of song, it makes you want to dance the night away.
The lyrics of the song follows what the heavy beats are trying to imply:
Bewitched by your movements, she want it
Drippin like faucet
Getting drenched with sweat beads of passion
Even after this song ends. No pares y dame woah
“Bomb Bomb” is riddled in night club lyrical illustrations. The heat of the packed room combined with the dark of the night creates for the perfect moment for the members to be lost in their movements. Their inhibitions are low and their current desire is to convince their night’s prospect to not sober up, but to continue to “get drunk with the vibes”.
As mentioned before, the members of KARD want to be seductive. J.Seph takes on a role of a delicate passion as he is shown in red in his individual shots. J.Seph is also seen with a red cape and red smoke bombs. The red cape is used to entice and beckon the viewer closer and the smoke creates an allure. Jiwoo is J.Seph’s female counterpart as she is shown in red/orange in some of her individual shot as well. Jiwoo’s bare her back attracts the viewer with her willingness to be vulnerable but a glance back tells a coy story.
I see u eyeing on me
If you want, come get a taste
I’m sending you a sign
It’s written in your eyes, you thirsty all thirsty for this
BM and Somin represent straightforward types of sensuality. BM’s individual shots are filled with his powerful dance moves and literally being surrounded by fire. Fire can be hypnotizing and represent the pull power can have. Somin’s sensuality involves smoldering looks directly into the camera. Unlike Jiwoo who is being coy, Somin locks her eyes to pull her victims in.
KARD has been struggling to grow from their initial formulaic sound with their last few releases. They grew dependent on the sound that had skyrocket their popularity. “Bomb Bomb” is a strong step forward towards the venture away from that formulaic sound and image. Although it still has a Latin influence, it captures the essence of what made KARD so appealing since debut. It’s different and shows the willingness of the group to continue exploring their unique narrative.
볼빨간사춘기 – 사춘기집Ⅰ 꽃기운 (Puberty Book Ⅰ Bom) Release Date: 2019.04.02 Genre: Folk Language: Korean Bit Rate: MP3-320kbps + iTunes Plus AAC M4A Track List: 01. 나들이 갈까 02. 나만,…
Music Video Director/Editor : August Frogs
JAY PARK – Metronome Feat. SIMON Dominic & GRAY (By TASTEmakers)
AVAILABLE 04/11/14 12:00 KST
NOW AVAILABLE WORLDWIDE ON iTUNES MUSIC STORES