kim yunsun, Jaurim,

From an Artcle from

Jaurim (자우림) is one of few Korean Pop music bands I listen to. I read this article that lead singer of Jaurim stirred many over-patriotic Korean fans by her comments saying that there will be death to Korean Pop Music soon if they don’t support indepently produced music. Honestly, as an outsider, I could relate to her comments. Well, some people who commented to this article even wrote, “isn’t it dead already?”

I’m really sick and tired of 20 years of copycat R&B musics by pretty faces and pretty dances – mass produced by the main stream commercial music producers who only think about their profits. (I personally don’t like R&B so I could be biased) Very often, some of my New Yorker friends ask me if there are any good Korean bands to listen to or ask me about underground & indie music scene in Korea. Well, I don’t know. Is there? Can anyone tell me if there is any? Couple of bands were introduced to me but, I wasn’t impressed. Therefore, I could only sigh~ as an answer. Where is new 들국화(Dulkukwha, wild Chrysanthemum) where is new 시나위(Sinawi)? like good old 80s?

Why can’t we stand Korean pop music on network TVs? Why? Becasue it’s all boy band and girl band dancing and singing about whatever top hit producers gave them to sing. No exploration, no invention… just safe rythme and safe melody. Something big (such as soul, social comments and art)is missing if you listen to the most of them carefully. I was saddend by the fact, that I often have to defend awful taste of Korean pop music fans to foreigners who are already open minded to foreign pop musics. I blame the mop of commerical producers who only calculate that pretty faces and shallow musics will bring money in their pockets. (I’m generalizing to point out for the majority. I’m sure there are few true music producers.)

Sometimes, I watch Korean music TV shows and think about all those truely talented gifted artists who don’t get any chances. I had to turn the channel within a minute…. sigh~

Few years ago, I stumbled into Jaurim in a small article and got CD, “Purple Heart” and I liked what I listened to. This was one band I acutally could refer to friends who have despeckable taste in music. Even Jaurim gets okay review among them but, I wanted to give them extra points for trying to make their own music with social comments and trying new things. In America, main stream pop music still sucks and real RAP music (that used to be political, social comments but now it’s all about boobs and butts) is gone but, you would still hear new good music once in a while like Cold Play, Green Day, Artic Monkeys and TV on the Radio – even Radiohead.

The reason America and UK has creative new music artists found continuously is because there are good number of underground independent music scenes in every major cities. That’s what gives young aspiring artists the nurturing environment to create and grow. Even for my neigbhorhood (LES), there are tons of live music bars and they are populated by aspiring young musicians and and their new young fans. When their music is good, you can see fans are forming rapidly. There are stages for young musicians and there are audience who refused to listen to pop music that were selected by money hungry producers.

Japan has their own Punk music, India has Bangra music, which is by the way very popular in the US and UK and influencing a lot of other artists and Portugal has good singer song writers who sings Flamenco spanish tune. What do we have? We do have our own tune and I’ve listened to some of our artists tried to integrate them with Jazz, which was cool. I want to listen to new young good Korean musicians. If audience doesn’t give a chance to new young underground artists who sing their souls without rich sponsors, who would? ok… enough ranting.