oK Pop
  • UKISS album cover

    K-Pop idol group U-KISS is back and KISSMEs all over the world are rejoicing.

    "Stop Girl," U-KISS's new single and music video offers a significantly more mature concept which U-KISS fans will surely welcome.

    Even without rapper AJ (on hiatus since he is studying at the prestigious Columbia University) the remaining six members—Soohyun, Kiseop, Eli, Hoon, Kevin and Dongho—show their manlier style in the new track.

    "Stop Girl" is a lovely R&B track about the end of a relationship. I personally find it melodically accessible, the type of song I wouldn't mind listening to over and over again.

    The  choreography on the video is also smooth and sexy, revealing a sleek adult charm from U-KISS. members.

    Check out the classy black and white concept expressed in the music video and costumes.

    Watch too for the crazy cool K-Pop hair.

    What do you think of "Stop Girl"? Share your thoughts with us through our comment box!

    Catherine Deen blogs for Yahoo! Philippines OMG! She lives, eats and breathes

    Read More »from U-KISS returns with ‘Stop Girl’
  • The Hallyu phenomenon or the Korean Wave has become an unstoppable force in today's pop culture and the past month has become a milestone for the K-Pop industry as PSY's "Gangnam Style" continuous to conquer charts all over the world. The addicting song which inspired a dance craze is now number 2 at the Billboard Hot 100 and does not show signs of stopping its chart reign.

    Psy (SportsKorea)This recent development inspired me to write an addition to my previous blogs titled "Lessons from the K-Pop Industry" and "More Lessons from the K-Pop Industry." In past blogs, I discussed how the K-Pop industry invests on local talent, thinks out of the box, puts in the hard work and offers fan service. With the success of "Gangnam Style," as well as the recently concluded Manila run of the Korean Film Festival, let me share some new lessons from the K-Pop industry.

    Use the power of the Internet

    Scholars and media observers alike agree that the Internet has played a huge role in the proliferation of Korean Wave.

    Read More »from Lessons from the K-Pop industry, Part 3
  • Spellbound (Publicity photo)A movie that incorporates romance, comedy and...horror?

    "Spellbound," one of the films featured in the ongoing Korean Film Festival, is  a top-grossing Korean romantic comedy which sold more than three million tickets during its South Korean run. The movie, which is also known as "Chilly Romance," spins the classic romantic comedy by incorporating a healthy dose of horror.

    Jo-Goo (played by Lee Min Ki) is a street magician who found inspiration for his successful "Horror Magic Show" after meeting Yeo-Ri (played by Son Ye Jin), a single woman who lives on her own because she is constantly haunted by ghosts.  Their unusual love story develops as Jo-Goo discovers the reasons behind Yeo-Ri's mysterious life.

    "Spellbound" is one of the best romantic comedies I have seen. The film is fast-paced and full of interesting scenarios that elicit laugh-out-loud moments. I love the fact that writer-director Hwang In-ho was able to present comedic moments at the most unusual times. Who would have

    Read More »from Korean movie ‘Spellbound’ offers chills and romantic thrills
  • The world has gone crazy over K-Pop sensation PSY's "Gangnam Style."

    With over 225 million views and counting on YouTube, along with several high profile appearances in "Ellen," "Good Morning America," "Today" and "Saturday Night Live," PSY has made the catchy song and accompanying cheesy choreography this year's "Macarena."

    But is "Gangnam Style" really just all fun and games?

    Versatile artist

    Psy (SportsKorea)PSY, also known by his birth name Park Jae Sang, is a 34-year old singer, songwriter, rapper, dancer, comedian, and record producer.  Few know that PSY was quite a controversial artist. When he debuted in 2001 with his album "PSY from the Psycho World!" his sharp and blunt lyrics were not welcomed with open arms. In fact, his second album "Ssa 2" was controversial and was banned from being sold to younger audiences.

    Yet PSY gained the respect of his  peers. His unique style, often satirical, was appreciated by sophisticated listeners. In 2010, PSY joined YG Entertainment, the powerhouse behind

    Read More »from ‘Gangnam Style’ pokes fun at status symbols
  • Big Bang Alive Tour ManilaK-Pop royalty Big Bang is coming to the Philippines.

    Yes, my dear K-Pop fan, Big Bang members G-Dragon, Taeyang, T.O.P., Seungri and Daesung are set for the Big Bang Alive Concert Tour in Manila on October 24 at the SM Mall of Asia Arena.

    If you are a VIP, the official name of a Big Bang fan, I am sure you are counting the days until you see them. The days might feel longer because of the anticipation and excitement. To cope with the wait, let me share with you some things you can do while waiting for Big Bang.

    1. Find your VIP Concert Buddy

    For those who have attended concerts in the past, the experience is definitely more fun with a concert buddy or buddies. When finding your concert buddy, I strongly recommend you go with someone who does not have any shame in experiencing the whole concert experience.

    You concert buddy must not be ashamed to dance her heart out, sing her lungs out and shout her voice hoarse. I mean, how annoying will it be if your concert buddy keeps on tapping

    Read More »from 3 things to do while waiting for Big Bang’s Manila concert
  • G-DragonBig Bang leader G-Dragon is back after a three-year hiatus as a solo artist and he does not disappoint.

    G-Dragon or GD offers his multitude of fans "One of a Kind," a 7-track mini album filled with well-crafted music that's ingenuity at its finest. This is not surprising since G-Dragon caused a musical "revolution" with his debut solo album "Heartbreaker," the top-selling and most awarded album in Korea in 2009.

    His new mini album consists of the title track, "Crayon," "Ultimately," "That XX," "Missing You," "Today" and the bonus track, "Light My Fire."

    'Explicit' track goes to No. 1

    Filled with music that obviously took time to create, "One of a Kind"  combines genres, breaks formula and pushes the envelope. Lyrically and melodically, it also speaks to G-Dragon's core audience: those in their teens and 20s.

    Yet, it also appeals to wider age groups. In a track described as "explicit," G-Dragon's "That XX" has been deemed restricted for minors but has gone to the top of the music

    Read More »from G-Dragon shows musical ingenuity in new mini album
  • Korean Film Festival 'Family Time' poster Celebrating the cultural similarities between Filipinos and Koreans when it comes to close family ties, the embassy of the Republic of Korea chose "Family Time" as the theme of this year's Korean Film Festival.

    The annual filmfest, sponsored by the Korean Cultural Center, will feature seven movies that will be shown starting Sept. 18 at the SM Mall of Asia in Manila before being shown in Baguio and Cebu.

    It's an event anticipated by local filmmakers and fans. The Korean film industry has grown in leaps and bounds in the past few years, with "Pieta" being recent proof of its position in the world stage. The movie by Kim Ki-duk won the Golden Lion for Best Film at the 69th Venice Film Festival.

    The top-grossing movies that will screen, free of charge, are the following:

    "Spellbound," a romantic comedy with horror elements starring the beautiful actress Son Ye Jin ("Personal Taste," "April Snow"). It's about a road magician and his muse who is haunted by ghosts.

    "Jeon Woo Chi," the story

    Read More »from Korean Film Fest set for Manila, Baguio and Cebu
  • South Korean rapper Psy poses backstage after presenting an award at the 2012 MTV Video Music Awards in Los Angeles, September 6, 2012. REUTERS/Danny Moloshok (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT) (MTV-BACKSTAGE)I recently wrote a post titled "World goes crazy over PSY's 'Gangnam Style'" and it seems the response has not died down. Since then, the video has become a certified viral phenomenon with over 100 million views to date and counting!

    PSY, the rapper-singer behind the addictive song, has reaped the benefits of his success by having Justin Bieber himself say that he is not worth being compared to PSY. The rapper has since signed on to Bieber's label, Island Records, for worldwide representation—a sure sign that the world is just waiting to be totally PSY'ched!

    What makes "Gangnam Style" so hot? The tongue-in-cheek irreverence of the video coupled with the hook-laden novelty of the track seems engineered to win over even the most cynical of persons.

    Here are my unforgettable "Gangnam Style" moments.

    The Funky Dancing Boy

    In the opening salvo, PSY is lounging on the beach with a little boy prowling around like a boss. Suddenly, this mini-PSY bursts into dance moves that take the viewer

    Read More »from Seven top ‘Gangnam Style’ moments
  • ‘The Moon Embracing the Sun’ won silver award at STVF"The Moon Embracing the Sun" has become one of this year's most successful Korean dramas. Now airing on GMA Network, the historical romance tells the fictional love story of Lee Hwon, Crown Prince (and eventually King) of the Joseon era, and Yeon Woo, Crown Princess (and eventually Royal Shaman).

    Thanks to the unique take on a royal love story, K-drama fans were hooked and turned the series into a huge national hit when it aired in Korea early this year.

    I have seen this drama and I have no reservations in recommending it. Let me offer you the "spoiler free" review below:

    "The Moon Embracing the Sun" is not a typical "sageuk" or historical drama. The story is really more of a romance than a traditional "sageuk," which often focuses on politics and history.

    The story follows the love story between the King and the rightful Queen of the Joseon era, with elements of the dark arts thrown in because the lead character becomes a shaman at one point. Aside from romantic love, familial bonds

    Read More »from TV REVIEW: Magic and romantic love in ‘The Moon Embracing the Sun’
  • A dance group performs during the 3rd Philippine KPOP Convention held at the Megatent, Meralco Avenue, Ortigas, east of Manila, on 30 December 2011. The convention is a project for Gawad Kalinga and PAWS aimed to give better lives to fellow Filipinos. (Ibarra Siapno/NPPA Images)Subcultures, a distinct group of people differentiated from a larger group, typically form around a common interest. In the past few years, a subculture passionate about the Hallyu phenomenon or the Korean Wave has grown tremendously. Judging from the approximately 25,000 mall attendance (Yes, mall attendance, not a show!) during the last Super Junior members' visit, the K-Pop subculture is indeed huge and is still growing.

    Here are some reasons I think it's great to be part of the K-Pop community.

    1. K-Pop and Passion
    No doubt about it, K-Pop fans are passionate about Korean dramas, music, movies, television, and Korean culture in general. Outsiders not part of the K-Pop subculture will never truly understand the reason for this passion. The seemingly extreme emotional response is similar to those expressed by enthusiasts of anime, J-Pop, Star Trek, World of Warcraft and Twilight, which are subcultures of their own.

    Observers of the K-Pop phenomenon cannot deny that a K-Pop fan's

    Read More »from Experiencing the K-Pop subculture

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