While some people may not consider music to be a healing power of nations, we have certainly seen evidence of that very fact within recent years. Thanks to the internet, our everyday lives have expanded to include other countries and cultures. Young people have a desire to travel and experience the world. Ethnic restaurants are on every corner, international supermarkets are common and a fascination with foreign languages is at an all-time high. Slowly but surely, the young people of the world are pulling together by finding common interests in everything from fashion to movies.
At the forefront of this global movement is music. With the recent rise of stars like Pitbull, Shinhwa, Shakira and PSY, people have been exposed to bilingual songs, where a mixture of languages and rhythms work together to form a more universal music. Whether it includes a smattering of English, Korean, Japanese or Spanish, there is often enough of any language to appeal to people from many different countries, ranging from Brazil, the United States, Turkey or Japan.
Within the last decade, K-pop has proven itself to be the leader of this movement- a tidal wave of Korean culture slowly washing its way over the globe. K-pop artists have become experts at appealing to all cultures- their fashion a charming mix of reality and fantasy, their music an alluring blend of everything from rap to techno, their natural, fresh beauty appealing to people all over the globe and their youth and vitality inspiring the youngest generation of music lovers. It is a music genre which knows no boundaries and has been happily embraced by people all over the world.
The overwhelming popularity of K-pop has greatly helped in healing relations between Japanese and Korean people and conquering former prejudices from the past. It has brought tourism and considerable income to the South Korean economy. Thanks to the internet and websites like youtube, in the past few years, K-pop has branched further out of Asia to reach all the way to Europe, the Middle East, and the Americas. Every day, netizens are discovering groups like B.A.P., ss501, 2ne1 and Super Junior, thus thrusting them into the fascinating world of K-pop and converting them into instant fans.
Whether it is the breaking down of such racial and cultural boundaries which has allowed K-pop to garner such success or if it’s that K-pop and other multilingual artists are the ones who have advanced the breaking down of such barriers, the simple truth remains… K-pop is in the height of its popularity and shows no signs of slowing down! So, we simply put on our Big Bang cd, sit back, and watch with pleasure as the Korean tidal wave continues rushing over the globe, washing away borders as it goes.