The Rise of Korean Pop

Music,Entertainment, EventsHallyu. It’s the Korean version of the British Invasion of the 1960s. As we become a more global society, music from around the world is sweeping the US. In the last 5 to 10 years Korean pop, or K-pop, has been increasing in popularity with groups such as Exo, BTS, and Psy, and hits like “Fantastic Baby” and “Gangnum Style.”

Hallyu is a Chinese word that translates to “Korean Wave.” K-pop is characterized by light, catchy lyrics, immaculately-groomed performers, and precision choreography to rival America’s hottest groups. During the 2018 Olympic Games in Pyeongchang, a 2-hour K-pop concert was part of the celebration and fans generated over 8 million tweets in just 4 hours.

This latest craze is influenced by music genres from around the world including rock, jazz, gospel, Latin, reggae, and Japanese pop music. Groups undergo grueling schedules to perfect their vocals, choreography, and style to deliver an all-around polished performance. K-pop music appeals to people from many different ethnic, national and religious backgrounds. A University of California commentator attributed the music’s appeal to “transnational flows” and the positive values the music and performers exude.

The dance routines and the fashion of K-pop are part of this growing phenomenon. Choreographers for these groups work to create an exciting and polished look while keeping routines simple enough for fans to copy.

Over the last 10 years, K-pop fashion has evolved along with its popularity and growth. Some of the earliest styles mimicked the hip-hop and rap musicians in the US including sagging pants, reversed baseball caps, and windbreakers or shirts with branded American sports teams. Retro style featured patterns from the 1960s to the 80s, such as dot prints and other clothing such as denim jackets, wide pants, and hair bands.

Other fashion trends have been a markedly sexy look with see-through shirts, corsets, net stockings and textiles like satin, lace, and leather. Some groups sport the “black and white” trend which is more elegant and chic than some of its predecessors. Accessories such as headphones or ski goggles worn around the neck and oversized bows, ear muffs, and pompom hair ties.

Regardless of the ever-changing world of music, Bialek’s artists are on trend and ready to help you make the most of your event. Call Bialek’s Music at (301) 340-6206 in the Washington DC area, or at (410) 484-7978 in the Baltimore area to set up an appointment or go to our website at

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