Mutjin Saram in Seoul!

IMG_0738 Finally my dream came true; to visit Korea! Seeing historic temples located amongst the modern landscape of the city, walking down the vibrant streets of Myeongdong crowded with shoppers and couples, taking pictures with idol cutouts, eating the most delicious (and not to mention cheap) street ddeokbokki, and listening to Seoul’s indie music scene in Hongdae. There is so much happening in Seoul and the city seems to come alive especially into the night. To anyone who has ever watched dramas or music videos which show scenes of the city, being here will give you a surreal feeling as if you have stepped into a drama yourself. Although the journey to this country is not cheap, everything else here is absolutely affordable and I highly recommend visiting sometime.

Stay tuned for future posts and articles to get an insight on what life is like in Seoul!

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[BIBIMBEATS] June 2013: The Rap Heavyweights of K-Pop

Think K-Pop is just flashy clothes and cool choreography?  Think again.  Beneath all those layers of BB cream lie quite an intimidating pool of talent.  In fact, the genre is home to some of the most versatile rappers the country has to offer.  Evident recently in PSY’s booming popularity, K-Pop rappers are a force to be reckoned with.  Here are a few that Bibimbeats ensures can make the most skeptical hip-hop fans nod their head.
 

First we’ve got maknae-leader duo Bang Yong-guk and Zelo of B.A.P.  The group has seen increasing success since debuting earlier last year, from selling out international venues to earning Best New Artist recognition from four separate award shows in 2012.  Some critics attribute their early success to Yong-guk’s solo collaborations and Bang & Zelo’s sub-unit work prior to B.A.P’s debut.  But then again, maybe it was Zelo’s killer 16-syllable-per-second rap in smash single “Warrior”.  Either way, it’s safe to say Bang & Zelo are only getting started.

Bibimbeats Recommends: “Rain Sound”

As a member of a group that’s seven strong, it’s probably easy for a guy to get lost in a band like INFINITE.  But with debut album “Fly High” released this January, rappers Dong-woo and Hoya of sub-unit INFINITE-H were able to do so effortlessly – and with some pretty well-respected back-up.  Enlisting veteran hip-hop producer Primary and the talent roster of Dynamic Duo’s Amoeba Culture brought the album an ‘old school’ feel.  Title track “Special Girl” enjoyed public praise from idols and rappers alike, and “Fly High” even bumped national darlings SNSD’s comeback off the top on charts across the board.  (Whoops! Sorry, girls!)

Bibimbeats Recommends: “I Can’t Tell You” with Gaeko of Dynamic Duo

Next up we’ve got the only idol to make it as one of CNN’s “50 Reasons Why Seoul is the Best City” – BIGBANG leader G-Dragon.  GD’s no newbie, beginning his rap career when he was just 13 years old.  Citing Wu-Tang Clan as a major influence, his love for hip-hop doesn’t stop there – his vibrant, ‘fashion forward’ music videos being something of a reinterpreted nod to that of mid-90s Hype Williams.  Last month, his second solo album “One of a Kind” reached platinum status in South Korea, selling over 225,000 copies and breaking a record that – and here’s the kicker – he previously set with his 2009 solo debut “Heartbreaker”.

Bibimbeats Recommends: “A Boy”

Maybe he doesn’t have a string of solo album successes, but B2ST’s Jun-hyung is easily one an idol rapper to watch.  His determination as a lyricist has taken him to a holding his own in collaborations with esteemed rappers like Beenzino, Verbal Jint, and Outsider.  Fans can currently check him out in production duo Brave Brothers’ project Absurd with fellow idols LE of EXID and FeelDog of BIGSTAR.  With a 19+ language rating, Absurd’s “You Got Some Nerve” definitely breaks him away from the squeaky clean B2ST image.  It will be interesting to watch Jun-hyung continue to evolve.

Bibimbeats Recommends: “Be Quiet” with Kim Wan-sun

When someone’s a protégé of one of the genre’s greatest, they’ve got to have something going for them – especially when it comes to Cho PD-trained Block B leader Zico.  While Block B and their record label are currently in quite the legal battle, Zico remains a top rapper, evident in both his 2012 mixtape ‘Zico on the Block 1.5’ and pre-debut work with bandmate Kyung.  Zico fans can check out rookie group OFFROAD’s comeback “Head Banging”, a summer anthem he both composed and produced.


Bibimbeats Recommends: “Feel So Young” with Ugly Duck & Crush

[Event] Remembering the Korean War – June 23rd 3pm

An afternoon of stories, reflection, and gratitude with the Korean war veterans, family and friends, hosted by members of K-Konnect SD.

• Write a story/poem/song or bring a photo or piece of artwork to share at the event and/or for the KKonnect online scrapbook with instant upload at event.
• Bring a dish to share with your new friends. Drinks, servingware and some food will be provided.

Korea Daily building Room 206
7750 Dagget Street, San Diego 92111

RSVPs encouraged: hello@kkonnect.net

Friday Drama Review – “When A Man Loves”

When_a_Man_Loves_-_Korean_Drama-p1Gangsta Love (No, it’s sweet, really.)

 

I fell in love with this drama when Han Tae Sang hit the internet for serious dating help. With no experience of his own, he was seeking advice the best way he knew. With the naiveté of a young teen he takes advice from all sources and self-consciously attempts to put into practice what it takes to woo a woman. For a rough-around-the edges former loan shark enforcer, it’s pure charm.

Yet it’s also dark, sexy, full of tension and angst.

 

Storyline/Synopsis: My rating 6/10

Honest and uncomplicated in love, Han Tae Sang is a character that brings something new to the table when it comes to Korean dramas. He does not play the usual games or follow the standard formalities because he simply does not know how. It’s a refreshingly delicious combination that excites and confuses the heroine of the story. The charming and adorable way that he attempts to court Seo Mi Do, the young woman he once terrorized, draws the empathy of the viewer as he obsessively bumbles around creating a romance.

 

 

Yet the dark past that was forced upon him as a young man remains as a stain that colors the way he handles potential loss – be it business or love. And that same dark past makes it difficult for the woman he pursues to completely trust him, especially when suspicious incidents inspire distrust. Her past is colored with the shame of poverty, the memory of injustice, inexplicable mercy, and unwanted financial support from the man who humiliated her father. And now that same man is pursuing her as a man pursues a woman.

Enter the sweet, young Lee Jae Hee, raised by his brother, educated by Han Tae Sang, and who fatefully runs across Mi Do in Guam and falls in love with her. Her attraction for the young, earnest, fun-loving Jae Hee threatens to complicate a life that is finally settling into something resembling a secure and settled, if not entirely satisfactory, existence.

 

Script/Acting: My rating 8/10

Looking back, the storyline itself was not the main focus of the drama. The extremely interesting cast of characters and their development throughout the drama provided the focus and charisma. Indeed, there were parts of the script that seemed a little sensationalized and not necessarily true to the characters. In order to pull off this sort of production, extra care had to go into casting and I believe some excellent choices were made.

When_A_Man_Loves-KD-0005Song Seung Hun (“Dr. Jin”, “Autumn in My Heart”, “Summer Scent”) was cast in the difficult role of Han Tae Sang. As a gangster manager he was rough and tough, but still had the integrity to instill complete loyalty in his friends and subordinates, much to the dismay of his mobster boss. His ability to empathize with Seo Mi Do’s strength was the beginning of a journey towards love for the first time in his tragic life. The ability to show such strength and determination in one scene and be so completely, emotionally vulnerable in another was stirring.

shinThe fickleness and coldness of Seo Mi Do’s character made her a difficult one with which to empathize. However, the ‘cold fish’ aspect of her character is one of the defining features that made her uniquely compatible with Han Tae Sang’s stoic personna. Shin Se Kyung (“Fashion King”, “Deep-Rooted Tree”) was intriguingly enigmatic throughout the drama. Unlike so many of today’s heroines whose motives are easy to parse and who emotions are displayed for everyone to see, the character of Mi Do kept her thoughts and feelings a little closer to the vest, partly because she was growing and changing, but also because her character maintained an uncertainty of purpose and will throughout. This sense of indecision was something that did not have to be spoken, but was conveyed through the script and acting. I know that this style of acting is not going to be everyone’s “cup o’ tea”, but an overdramatic portrayal of the Mi Do character by a more expressive actress would have, I feel, ruined the ambiance of the drama.

When-A-Man-Loves Jae HeeYeon Woo Jin (“Arang and the Magistrate”, “Cinderella’s Sister”) was Lee Jae Hee, Lee Chang Hee’s ‘dongsaeng’ (little brother), and Han Tae Sang’s employee. Chang Hee and Tae Sang were best friends, so to accidentally fall in love with his boss’s girlfriend, (the man who also put him through school) was a tragedy indeed. Yeon Woo Jin’s manner of portraying the sweet, honest yet recklessly in love Jae Hee was definitely entertaining and in some places rather spicy. His character grew and changed into something darker as the competition for Mi Do’s affections intensified.

Kim Sung Oh (“Man Of Honor”, “Midas”, “Secret Garden” and countless others!) was Chang Hee, Jae Hee’s brother, Tae Sang’s friend and right-hand man. When I first looked up this drama on koreandrama.org I admit to being more than a little disappointed when I saw Kim Sung Oh listed in yet another minor “cameo” role. I was gratified to find that the site was wrong! This is not a cameo role! Sung Oh-씨, I am indignant on your when a man - chang heebehalf! This was a fantastic role and I was thrilled to finally see Kim Sung Oh in a major part. OK, he was still type-cast as a thug, but at least he was a caring, empathetic man with the scruples to care unceasingly for his younger brother, and to always do the right thing when it came to friends. It must have been an interesting challenge to play an ‘enforcer’ who ‘mother-hens’ his baby brother and is caretaker and moral compass for the other guys as well. Additionally, his role was one of the main sources of character inconsistancies in the script. Despite the discrepancies, Kim Sung Oh created a much-loved and credible character.

When_A_Man_Loves-Korean_Drama-0034Baek Sung Joo was the head mobster’s woman who actually loved Han Tae Sang. (This, also, did not endear Han Tae Sang to the head mobster…) Chae Jung Ahn played a character who single-mindedly pursued – nay stalked – Tae Sang throughout the entire drama. As one of the ‘villains’, she went too far in her pursuit of Tae Sang, but in some ways it was difficult not to empathize with her. The character was predictable and one-dimensional, but necessary to the story.

when a man gapAn interesting person orbiting around the main characters was Goo Yong Gap, right-hand-man to the head mobster, and the man who had a long-standing one-sided love for Baek Sung Joo. Also a ‘bad guy’, his personality changed little throughout the drama, although his character brought in many a plot twist. This was the villain that everyone wanted to hate and Lee Chang Hoon did a superior job in provoking that ire.

 

blackboardCinematography: My rating 6/10

Part of the drama was filmed on location in Guam. The scenes were lovely and photography was fun. Costuming was nice. Using the cinematography to play up the ‘classic movie’ melodrama feel that the musical scoring lent to the ambiance would have been an interesting touch. There were a few recurring themes/props that were especially touching: the blackboard – used to express what cannot be said in words, the bean-sprout soup – used to express comfort and remembering.

 

Music: My rating 8/10

The violin-laced music had a texture that sometimes gave the drama a feel similar to classic romantic movies from the 40’s. There was definitely a quality to it that was unique with respect to current dramas. Then the mood would shift to a funky 60’s beat. The background melodies were indeed moving. The vocal music was also first-rate:

“Introduction to Love”  Bae Ah Yeon http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aBpUuta3Gjc

Fabulously, smoky, jazzy, feel: “First Button” Jung Dong Ha http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V-TB8mowFRM

Soft, sexy: “Same Place” Hwa Yo Bi http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X5_YfAs1GYk

“Bye Bye Love” BEAST & BTOB http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ASV3UeAY_58

Another haunting, sexy, ballad: “Secret Note” JeA of Brown Eyed Girls http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TqnyH6gFOY0

“Goodbye Is Coming” Sung Hoon of Brown Eyed Soul http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4zFiLqbOx4k

“Don’t Go” PIA http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ugLvm-oOoyQ

 

WhenOverall Charisma: My rating 7/10

A stronger, more consistent storyline was really all this drama needed to created a truly masterful piece of dramatic work. Since character development was accomplished so nicely, the story is still worth following and the characters are ones in which you will want to invest. I think an appreciation for subtlety is key in recognizing the value of this drama. Because it does not follow the same ‘formulae’ as many Korean dramas, I predict a somewhat less than stellar popularity rating for this drama. I, on the other hand, appreciate the elusiveness and restraint used in the acting and filming of this drama. Perhaps you will, too?

 

Happy Drama Watching!

When_A_Man_Loves-Korean_Drama-0028

 

Writer: Kim In Young

Director: Kim Sang Ho & Choi Byung Gil

Millie’s Top Ten May K-Pop Music Videos

Millie’s Top Ten May K-Pop Music Videos

This month, the K-pop music scene has seen the return of many groups that had taken long hiatus. We see the return of “beast-idols” 2pm, rookie group “EXO” makes a reappearance after making their fans wait impatiently for a year and a half, the Sexy Queen Lee Hyori comes back with multiple singles, and Shinhwa celebrated their 15th Anniversary (wow!) with a new album for their dedicated fans.

10. Vixx – Hyde

Vixx-Hyde

One of the few rookie groups to make it out of the 2012 explosion of debuts is Vixx, coming back with their new title track “Hyde” for their first mini-album. “Hyde” is a dark and dramatic song about a guy who is apologizing to his girlfriend for showing her a darker side of himself. He says it’s not his fault, but sometimes he feels like he changes between two people, like “Jekyll and Hyde”, and to believe in him. The music video mirrors the lyrics with the boys chasing after the girl who is leaving them, except the screen jumps back and forth between the “white” version (the good side) that is trying to be gentle, and the “black” version (the bad side) that is ready to tear apart the girl. Vixx presented us with a bipolar music video to match the bipolar feels.

9. Lee Hyori – Bad Girls

Lee Hyori-Bad Girl

The Queen is back! Lee Hyori has been absent from the K-pop scene for three years but has now returned with her fifth studio album “Monochrome”, as well as promoting her pre-release title tracks “Miss Korea” and “Bad Girls”. Both tracks had similar themes of women empowering (“Miss Korea” however was more retro than “Bad Girls”). “Bad Girls” was my favorite of her comeback titles because not only was the music video funny but the song is also amazingly catchy, and proves that Lee Hyori, despite being in the Korean music industry for so long, can still keep up with the younger rookies that are dominating the charts right now. “Bad Girls” is a comical video about the life of a bad girl; from when she was four and pulling pranks, to high school when she didn’t let anyone bully her, to an adult where she refuses to let men get away with just looking at her looks.

8. Shinhwa – This Love

Shinhwa-This love

Shinhwa debuted in 1998 and is still coming out with new singles and album, proving that the k-pop group curse (that k-pop groups only last five years before disbanding) does not apply to them. The group came back with their 11th studio album, titled “The Classic”, and they are promoting their title track song “This Love”. This song surprised me, for when I heard it the first time, I instantly fell in love with it. It surprisingly has a modern sound, yet, doesn’t sound like any of the other songs that are being promoted at the current time. However, as much as I like the song I can’t say the same about the dance. It has such exaggerated movements that it seems almost comical, except I think they were trying to be serious about it. It’s okay though, I forgive them for this because the song and their live performance makes up for it.

7. Hello Venus – Do You Want Some Tea?

Hello Venus

This is a very good, yet underrated single. “Do You Want Some Tea?”  tells the story of a girl who has been dating this guy for only a short time, yet she really likes him and the relationship seems to be moving too slowly for her liking. She talks about how she is going to have to make the first move and invite the guy over for “tea” in order to get closer. Now, this could be taken as a very suggestive song but since the song and music video are very innocent, I’m going to just accept the fact that the motives behind inviting the guy over for tea are also innocent. The music video is simple but matches perfectly with the song and lyrics with its pastel colors and graphic patterns, and portrays the girls all going on dates trying to suggest to the guy to show more “skinship” and it even goes to the comical extreme of slipping him a homemade love potion.

6. EXO – Wolf

EXO-Wolf

EXO made their long awaited comeback with the hip-hop/dubstep title track “Wolf”. SM Entertainment’s style as of late has been to mash-up their artists title tracks, and this song being no exception with the constant change of pace throughout the song. The choreography is fantastic, with many signature dance moves and the twelve members are able to transition their places effortlessly. However, the song is another thing. I’ve accepted some of SME’s past mash-ups but this one is just jarring for my ears. Perhaps after listening to it several times over I’d be able to tolerate this piece but as of now I’m going to enjoy the live performances and just watch these handsome boys dance.

5. CL – The Baddest Female

CL-The Baddest Female

CL, the “Badass” rapper from 2NE1, came out with her first solo single “The Baddest Female” and became the second member from 2NE1 to branch out in a solo promotion (the first one was  vocalist Park Bom). “The Baddest Female” is a hip-hop song mixed with dubstep, and holds a catchy chorus that is easy to follow along with. CL surprised me by not only showing her signature swag and edgy style, but also mixing it in with a sexier image. My only request is that I wished this single showed off her singing abilities as well and not only her rapping. We know she is an excellent rapper, but she is capable of more.

4. Nine Muses – Wild

Nine Muses-Wild

Nine Muses is the nine member k-pop girl group made up of models. Throughout their past releases they have shown that they are not only pretty faces but also talented singers and dancers. “Wild” is another great song that shows off their sexy and seducing sides as the music video is filmed with a black and white filter letting only a blood red color pop throughout the frames. This is a music video that their male friends are sure to love; not only for these lovely ladies and their gorgeous bodies but because the song expresses the girls’ desires to stay forever with the one guy they love.

3. B1A4 – What’s going on?

B1A4-What's happening

B1A4 came back with their new crazy title track “What’s Going On?” (Otherwise known as “What’s Happening?”) That rivaled their famous music video “Beautiful Target” for being one of the weirdest music video I have ever seen. Even watching it several times over I still had difficulties understanding the strange way this video was filmed.  I’ve boiled it down to the plot being that the five B1A4 boys are trying to catch their cheating girlfriend on a date with another. B1A4 finally had their first win on a music program with this title track and I could see why, the live performance shows off the great energy despite the sad nature of the song. I’ve always had a soft spot for the country-side idols, and now “What’s going on?” has become one of my favorite songs that was released this month.

2. Secret – Yoohoo

Secret-yoohoo

Secret has always been able to switch between the sexy concepts and the sweet ones. “Yoohoo” is a fun summer song that shows off the cuteness that the Secret girls previously expressed through “Shy Boy” and “Starlight Moonlight”. The music video seems to have nothing to do with the lyrics; it is about the four members on vacation when they suddenly get stranded on a deserted island and have to travel through the jungle to get back to civilization. The lyrics are talking about finding out you are slowly falling in love with your best friend, someone who has always been by your side but only now are finally noticing.  While this music video was cute, it really didn’t feel like anything special, with its saving grace being the beautiful scenery behind the girls in most of the shots. However, I love the song. It’s super infectious and the choreography that goes with it is very fun. This has to be my favorite comeback song from Secret with their cute concept.

1. 2pm “A.D.T.O.Y”

2pm-adtoy

2pm enjoyed pushing the rating limits with this steaming hot music video. “A.D.T.O.Y” (All Day I Think of You) was released directly after “Come Back When You Hear This Song”, so at first this song lacked in views because fans were not aware of it being uploaded. But after seeing this music video once, it’s hard to forget. The 2pm “beast-idols” showed off their signatures abs in black and white scenes, many of them containing passionate moments with a female that I think most fans were jealous of (I volunteer to take place of the next leading lady in their music video, 2pm, call me?) The choreography differed from their usual style as they enabled chair props that were constantly changing places and position, making it a very clean and interesting visual for this promotion. But it’s not only the sexy music video that is making me play this track on replay but also because I can proudly say that this is my favorite 2pm song to date.

Millie’s Top Ten April K-Pop Music Videos

Millie’s Top Ten April K-Pop Music Videos

This year, April releases have brought out a combination of cute and crazy comeback. It seems to be either cute, bubblegum-pop love songs about Spring, or funky tracks with crazy music videos. It’s either one or the other for this month!

Note: This chart is just my personal favorites and does not reflect any music video views or digital/album sales. 

10. M.I.B – Nod Along

M.I.B-Nod Along

M.I.B made their comeback with their new single “Nod Along” that expresses their desire for their girl to ‘nod along’ and say yes to getting back together. The music video is quite ordinary but the song is beautiful, and it makes me feel sad that this four member group is so underrated. This is the group’s third comeback with “Nod Along” being the promotional song for their album “Money in the Building”. Previous hits have been “Only Hard For Me” and “G.D.M”, along with all the members debut singles.

9. K.Will – Love Blossom

K.Will-Love Blossom

K.Will came back with a new fresh single “Love Blossom” that actually has the solo singer appear in his own music video (granted it was for only around ten seconds but still, making progress). “Love Blossom” is a typical spring love song but with a not so typical love music video. The two leading roles are played by Infinite’s L and Sistar’s Daesom; L’s character has the lowest position in his workplace, and when his bosses decide to visit an amusement park (what are they doing at an amusement park in the first place?) he is treated badly and taken advantage of for being the rookie. In retaliation, when they all go on a spinning ride he gets a gun, kills the person working the ride and traps his tormenting bosses on the never ending spinning ride. Then later he meets Daesom’s character and they have endless ice cream and explore the grounds like a couple in love. I enjoyed the song, but can’t really understand how they thought the music video plot would match.

8. Ga In and HyungWoo – Brunch

Ga In - Brunch

Gain In and Hyungwoo (contestant in MBC Star Audition “Great Birth” Season 1) collaborated, making this Ga In’s first duet album, “Romantic Spring”. Their title track is called “Brunch” and is a very cute song (like “nauseating couple in love” cute), that has a couple expressing their love for each other as they eat brunch together. The music video follows this theme with the two singers meeting for brunch and then they spend the rest of the day as a romantic date; visiting the beach, the amusement park, and feeding each other street food. This is a sweet song that shows the softer side to the fierce Ga In.

7. U-kiss – Should have treated you better

U-Kiss-Should Have Treated You Better

U-Kiss has unleashed a new sub-unit onto the K-pop world called “U-Beat”, made up of rappers Eli and AJ (and for these promotions also includes Vocalist Kevin). U-Beat has made their debut very soft and sorrowful with their title track “Should Have Treated You Better”; a song expressing regrets of not showing enough to the person they loved. I would have expected something stronger since this is a sub-unit with the rappers of the group, but U-Beat has assured fans through interviews that they will come back with a new song in the future that will show their other sides. I’ll be waiting for you AJ and Eli!

6. G-Dragon – Michigo

G-dragon-michigo

Just when I think G-Dragon can’t get crazier he comes out with a new music video that always proves me wrong. “Michigo” follows the G-Dragon style strictly with absurd props such as a pink elephant, big feet, evil minions with masks, crazy hairstyles and outfits only Big Bang’s leader could pull off.  Let’s put it this way; it’s what you would expect, just double the crazy.

5. Shinee – Why so serious?

Shinee-Why So Serious

Oh where do I begin? A lot of fans are quite upset that since Jonghyun was injured from his car accident, why SME decided to go ahead with this follow-up track when their lead vocalist would be absent from almost all promotions. Even though I too miss our “Bling Bling Dino”, I thought Shinee did a good job of pulling it together. However, it didn’t really feel like a Shinee comeback, more like a “Taemin + others”. I’m not hating on the maknae, just observing that he got some more screen time and lines in comparison to the members. I like the song itself though. “Why So Serious?” is exactly how it sounds; it’s a very funny, and upbeat song with very relaxed choreography compared to some of Shinee’s intense choreography. Not the best Shinee song, but still a fun song.

4. Jay Park – Joah

Jay Park-Joah

Sexy solo artist Jay Park came back with several songs lately with my favorite being “Joah” a…cute song? Yes, that’s right; when Jay Park actually has his shirt on, he is a very cute boy with a charming smile. Jay Park has not disappointed me yet, especially not with this song that is so simple but happy-going. It’s bound to leave anyone who hears this song in a good mood. Paying respects to his hometown, this music video is filmed in Seattle as Jay Park takes you through the streets he grew up in.

3. 4minute – What’s your name?

4minute-what's your name

Squeezing out its release in the last days of April, 4Minute came back with their latest single “What’s Your Name?” Spunky and sexy at the same time, 4minute went back to their roots and gave their fans another colorful and sexy music video to match this infectious song. This music video however became very strange, very quickly. Apparently if 4minute rejects anybody they turn into Zombies and attack. Not my favorite 4minute song, but it didn’t disappoint.

2. Psy – Gentleman

psy-gentleman

Psy made his first comeback after the amazing global success of “Gangnam Style” (which I’m pretty sure everyone has seen by this point), with his new title track “Gentleman”. Psy’s new music video had the same amount of craziness as the last one; with Psy acting like a jerk towards everyone but in the end gets bested by the leading lady (Ga In). Nothing can beat Gangnam Style but Gentleman was a strong follow-up that defiantly made me go back to the “Abracadabra” phase.

1. BtoB – Second Confession

BtoB-Second Confession

This is a new cute comeback from Cube’s latest boy group, BtoB (Born to Beat). The BtoB boys themselves picked out this concept – it’s about a broken relationship with the guy asking the girl for a second chance to start over. The music video shows the boys in different parts of Seoul, with the “confession letter” magically passing by all the boys. Even cuter is the dance version, or more known as the “Pajama” version, where all seven boys dance away in cute pajamas. It only took one time but I fell completely in love with the song.

Friday Drama Review – “Baker King Kim Tak Goo”

Baker-King-Kim-Tak-Goo-Poster-1Bread is served! (But with a box of tissues, please…)

Somehow I had expected this 2009-2010 drama to be much more lighthearted than it was, partly because of the misleading posters, showing an impish grin on Yoon Shi Yoon’s face, but also because of the casting of Yoon Shi Yoon himself. The young man is delighfully ‘elven’ in his mischievious appearance and demeanor. How could he possibly carry off a melodrama? Continue reading “Friday Drama Review – “Baker King Kim Tak Goo””

Supersize Me!

pat

The new Monster-Sized Patbingsoo now available at Maru!

 

Owner-Chef Ben Park showed his playful side and created a mountain of snow adorned Patbingsoo-style at Maru on Convoy.

The creation features all the tasty accoutrements of the regular Patbingsoo featured on the menu plus a plethora of fresh fruit cascading down a mountain of ice. The staff Maru-ites were on hand to taste-test the new creation and gave it a thumbs up – or would have if they had put their spoons down long enough….

So how many does it feed? I’d recommend bringing a good sized party to find out. 😉

patyum

KKonnect’s Exclusive Survey – Respond by June 12!

Screen Shot 2013-06-05 at 2.11.57 PM

* Update as of 6/4: We have extended the deadline of the survey to Wednesday, June 12!  Click here to be directed to the survey website.

Calling all fans of Korean culture in Southern California!

K-Konnect is holding a survey to explore the perceptions of Korea and Korean culture as viewed by Americans. (Sorry, if you are a citizen of Korea, you cannot participate!). No right or wrong answers, we are just interested in your current perceptions of Korea and Korean culture.
It will take approximately 5-10 minutes and there is a chance to enter into a drawing for a $25 Amazon giftcard. Survey closes on Wed, June 12. We look forward to your participation!