Monday, May 21, 2012

Multimedia Monday: Korean Hip-hop Edition

This was the last weekend of the International Music Festival up here in Uijeongbu. Because I'm a cheap clueless git, I didn't see any of the performances except the guy playing the piano on an old-timey penny farthing bicycle:

Don't ask me to explain, because I can't.

This past Sunday night was the finale concert at the Uijeongbu Arts Center (a very posh place, by the way). The big deal was that Tiger JK, a Korean-American rapper of some renown, was giving a free concert with his wife Yoon Mirae. Since this was the festival's grand finale concert, it was stupendously well-attended. Not surprising, since Tiger JK was born up here in Uijeongbu and lived here until his family moved to America when he was twelve. Definitely some regional pride involved.

It was a good time; I wasn't blown away musically, but that's to be expected. Hip-hop is a genre I've only recently begun to appreciate. Plus, with rapping, a lot of the enjoyment comes from knowing the language and appreciating turns of phrases and word play. My Korean is just not up to par for that. That said, Yoon Mirae has great stage presence. I loved her.

It was also cool to see a pop concert that was obviously about showcasing talent and not just being a pretty face on a hot bod. Before Tiger JK and his wife took the stage, there were of course some opening acts of a similar ilk, whose talents seemed far more focused on singing and rapping than on choreography. The gorgeous weather and ambiance of the venue was just the cherry on top: not too humid, comfortable temperature, clear skies, families laughing, old guys selling goofy flying light-up toys or ice cream on the outskirts of the audience.

My mind wasn't really properly blown until after the concert, when I looked up Tiger JK on YouTube and found this:  the multicultural hip-hop group "Sun Zoo," featuring Tiger JK, Yoon Mirae, and Roscoe Umali, produced by Illmind. Don't worry if your Korean is as bad as mine, it's in English. It's very NSFW, so plug in your headphones; Mom and Mom-mom should probably just skip this one entirely.

Yoon Mirae has the second verse and Tiger JK has the last verse. I'm going to be listening to this on repeat for the next few days.

What I want to see happen (or what I want to find out about if it has happened) is a K-pop/Korean hip-hop star from Uijeongbu sampling "Suicide is Painless." That would make my life.

1 comment: