It's always said that you never forget your first. And it's the same with K-Pop. We all started with with one song, a song that got so ingrained in our heads with its catchy beats, hypnotic melody, and vibrant music video that it pulled us into this wonderful and accepting world. From the newer fans to the K-Pop veterans, we all remember that single song that had us hooked and exploring this new genre of music. Everyone is different, but there are those few songs that many fans refer to as the songs that really got them interested in K-Pop. Here are just 10 of the many songs that brought us into K-Pop:
Psy "Gangnam Style"
Psy shot into the public eye with this gem of a song way back in 2012. K-Pop was still considered a niche thing back then, but with the release of "Gangnam Style" the world was introduced to a small taste of what this genre has to offer. With its over-the-top music video, horse-riding dance, and earworm chorus, millions were intrigued and flocked to the streets to dance along with this song. While some of us may cringe now at how embarrassing we might have been back then, "Gangnam Style" hold a special place with many of us.
Girls' Generation "Gee"
The original queens of K-Pop, Girls' Generation released this sickly sweet bubblegum pop song back in 2009. From its incredibly catchy beat to the adorably sweet vocals and visuals of the nine members, it's not hard to see how people were pulled into K-Pop with this song. While Girls' Generation's future seems a touch uncertain nowadays, "Gee" brings us back to those days where some of the older fans were still exploring what K-Pop had to offer.
Big Bang "Fantastic Baby"
"Kings" is one of the many terms people call Big Bang, and "Fantastic Baby" shows us why. With "Fantastic Baby," Big Bang showed us that K-Pop could be so much more than bubblegum pop and sweet harmonies. It can be intense, powerful, and dynamic, things that got some hooked on the K-Pop drug. Its heavy electronic beats, powerful vocals and rap, and vibrant music video grabs us so easily, and for some it has never let go.
Twice "Cheer Up"
Twice has risen to the top of all K-Pop girl groups thanks in part to their stunning visuals, incredibly catchy songs, and popular point dances prevalent in many of their songs. But their rise started back in 2016 with the release of "Cheer Up." Many of us were instantly addicted after giving it a listen or twenty, and there are so few K-Pop fans out there that haven't tried the "Shy shy shy" dance sequence. Put all of the charms that make Twice so addicting together and you've got one fantastically fun song loved by many.
BTS "Blood Sweat and Tears"
The record-breakers that are never afraid of trying something new, BTS cemented themselves as K-Pop legends with this 2016 song. "Blood Sweat and Tears" shows off BTS' powerful visuals, intricately difficult dances, and angelic vocals, all tied together in one hypnotic music video. Once many listeners gave this song a chance, they found themselves indoctrinated into ARMY and have given no indication of ever stopping being fans of BTS and K-Pop.
A powerful girl crush group, Black Pink came onto the scene with "Boombayah" back in 2016. And come onto the scene they sure did. An intense clubby beat along with fantastic dancing and rapping from the members, it's easy to see how this song became an instant hit for many, and an introduction for many more. Even with their small discography, Black Pink has managed to rope in many new fans to K-pop.
While I don't follow EXO very closely, this song is the one that really got me addicted to K-Pop. The one-take music video of "Growl," together with the perfect harmonies and sick dancing is what had me hitting the repeat button many times. And I know I wasn't the only one. "Growl" shot EXO to national prominence in Korea, but also helped them get immensely popular overseas, while managing to get many interested in K-Pop.
2NE1 "I Am The Best"
Even though they are sadly no longer together, 2NE1 was one of the most popular girl groups in K-Pop history. "I Am The Best" exemplifies just how amazing this group really was. With amazing visuals that fit perfectly with the intricate set design of their music video, coupled with the addicting electro house sound of the track, many were enthralled with 2NE1 and flocked to see what else this group and K-Pop had to offer.
For me personally, "Lucifer" was the very first K-Pop song I was introduced to, and it's still one of my favorites. SHINee showed everyone just how precise and in sync K-Pop groups could be with their dancing, and that's exactly what brought so many people in to K-Pop. The members' stunning visuals and vocals match perfectly with the dance of "Lucifer," and it's that standard that SHINee set that kept bringing in more and more K-Pop fans.
f(x) "Electric Shock"
Even though they haven't had a comeback since 2016, f(x) is still one of the most beloved girl groups in K-Pop. "Electric Shock" shows just how talented these girls are, with their fantastic vocals and visuals, and really cool dance moves. These girls had something different that set them apart from other girl groups, and many who listened to this song and saw the intense music video could see that and wanted to learn more about both f(x) and K-Pop.
What others songs are there that really got you into K-Pop? Be sure to let me know in the comments! ^^