Earlier this week, we blogged about Rolling Stone magazine releasing their list of 10 K-pop groups most likely to break in the U.S.
I had the great pleasure to attend the Google/YouTube sponsored MBC K-Pop concert – MBC Korean Music Wave – at the Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View, California. The event was free, though tickets were “sold” out fast via the ticketing website within a few hours. Luckily, Google employees were able to get tickets in advance, and I received a pair from my cousin, who works there. K-pop bands MBLAQ, SISTAR, f(x), KARA, BEAST, Girls’ Generation, Wonder Girls, Super Junior and TVXQ performed – though I had to leave after the Wonder Girls performed. The event took place in celebration to MBC’s content partnership with Google/YouTube – which the audience was reminded often by the bands that performed and also happened to be YouTube’s 7th anniversary.
My only exposure to K-pop to date has really been seeing Girls’ Generation perform on The Late Show with David Letterman this past January. The concert was quite a spectacle with about 99% of the audience being Asian or Asian American. I had heard that fans were lining up since around noon, but I got in line about 5:15 PM and was in the Amphitheater by 6:15 PM or so. People had been camping out since the early hours of the day according to some reports. A total of about 22,000 tickets were available and the place was pretty well attended (I had heard maximum capacity of the Amphitheater is over 30,000).
The music itself is of course, very “pop” and manufactured, yet somewhat catchy for most of the groups. The appeal at least for me (and I’m sure many of their male fans) is certainly the hot Korean female performers – the cute faces, sexy bodies, long legs and short skirts in harmony with the highly choreographed dancing and singing, with the large video displays in the background along with the light show and screaming fans. Below, you can see a collection of video clips I strung together to get a feel for the concert atmosphere. Unfortunately, I was in the back, so thankfully I have 25X optical zoom with my camcorder.