January 12th 2016 marks the beginning… of the end? Well, not the end really, more like a beginning that at the same time leads to a new form of personal downfall. It marks the day I discovered KPop.
My exam period had just begun the day before and I was determined to succeed this time round, after I procrastinated first of course. While I was browsing the Internet, mainly YouTube, I came across a video of the Fine Bros entitled “YouTubers react to KPop” and somehow I was curious to see what was going on there, so I clicked it.
While some of the YouTubers seemed quite opposed to what was going on, I knew that I discovered something that I needed in my life! I finished the video and at first I said to myself “Let’s move on, you got stuff to do!” but I caught myself still thinking of that one KPop music video, even humming the melody, and so I went back to the Reaction video and searched the description box for a clue as to what videos were shown. I was rewarded with a direct link to that one particular music video of those fine Korean men in crisp white shirts with skinny ties and in black suit pants, doing hip thrusts in formation. It was the moment I discovered BTS (방탄소년단, Bangtan Sonyeondan) and there was no way back from there.
At this point it might be interesting to mention that I also happened to fall in love with one the members. Of course I had no clue what his name was or even knew how to describe him outside of this particular music video’s setting. Also at such an early stage of KPop craze, every Korean man looked the same to me. But that cutie in grey shorts, red bow tie, glasses and fluffy hair had my heart in an instant. (Btw, this fine specimen I am talking about is V or Kim Taehyung!)
So, I spent the next 2h repeating the video over and over again while getting some studying done next to it. I then decided that maybe my best friend Alicia might be interested in them too. As an avid dancer, I thought she’d appreciate their dance skills and might be into maybe learning the dance at some point after my exams. After posting the video on her Facebook timeline, turns out she was just as hooked as me. She even guessed my favorite (hers is JHope 😉 ) and we said we’d learn the dance after my exams. (We do know how to dance to Dope and some other songs of them too!)
Five hours later, since at some point I realized that maybe they also have other songs, I watched and listened to every music video available of BTS, even learned their names and was able to distinguish them in every single video. I felt proud! While I could feel my text books hardcore judging me… Yeah, I’m not so proud of not getting a lot of studying done but I discovered a new passion in my life that still lasts up until today and that I want to continue persueing for many more months, years. I also had the problem that I discovered their dance practice videos as well as Bangtan Bombs, live performances and fancams and I could kiss life goodbye at that point. What would you do in such a state of utter fangirling but nobody to share it with? You get your sisters hooked! 😉
Being the oldest of 12 children, there are many younger ones to influence, but I started with my teenage sisters first. The oldest of them (17) first said “Ew! Becky, what the hell?! I don’t care if you like them, they suck!!! NEVER!” And look at her now, completely in love with JHope whom she lovingly calls “TaTaTa” (because Boy In Luv). My second sister (16) first had no opinion at all, but the next day, after doing her own research, was full on that band wagon and Jimin-crazy like no other. My third sister (13) had no statement to give for 2 weeks and couldn’t care less about us going KPop-crazy, but now she as well is gushing all over the Golden Maknae JungKook, “Kookie”. We are all 4 of us multi-fans by now cause we got enough of love to go around for everyone. The 5 other younger ones (between 6 and 13), 4 out of them are also KPoppers and even know all the dances to almost every song from whatever band! My 6-year old baby sister is the biggest RapMonster fan I have encountered so far and she can dance the entire Fire choreography in one go! They make me so proud 😉 I also found a Luxembourgish KPop Facebook group of which I became a member and it’s great to know that I am not alone in this tiny country with a love for Korean music. I found great friends through this group with whom I went to KCON in Paris, France in June. (Hey Anne, Daniela & Patricia)
Although my very first encounter with KPop was back in 2012 when SNSD/Girls Generation just released the music video to their song “The Boys” and I listened “Gee” on repeat as well as BigBang’s “Fantastic Baby“, there was an element missing that could draw me in completely to stay. And look at me now, a few years later and I’m KPop-crazy and a proud Noona fan!