The most recent debut of K-pop band K.A.R.D (카드) not only brought to us, the internationals K-pop fans, the surprise of having girls and boys making music together for the first time in the same group without the need of a collaboration, but it also shows us how we, the people on the other side of the stage, can influence their music.
Have you hear the title of the mini-album debut of K.A.R.D. (카드), Hola Hola? Revealed on June 30 of this year, it’s the first album in the history of K-pop in having a title not in Korean, not in English but in Spanish, which in my opinion is the clearest proof that K-pop plans to conquer Latin American making one new K-pop fan at the time!
At first, it was normal that only Korean and a few drops of English were used in K-pop songs, however now it is more and more common to hear Spanish words in the songs not only in this group but also on another ones, like EXO, Super Junior, SISTAR, Aliee, SHINEE, GFriend, etc. Some of them even doing covers completely in Spanish like back in 2014 at the Music Bank in Mexico City where all the artists performed famous Mexican songs, like…
- The dreamy and emotional performance made by Sunggyu, Yoseoband Youngjae, when they sang “Corre!” (Run!) byJesse & Joy.
- The wonderful Aliee (에일리) who never fails to impress us with those vocals and her perfect pronunciation in “Donde voy” (Where I go) by Tish Hinojosa.
- The epitome of perfection made present when EXO took the stage and the hearts of thousands of fans with ‘Sabor a mi’ by Alvaro Carrillo, song that has been interpreted in more than 13 languages and has been recorded by more than 150 national and international artists(1), but I swear this is one of the best!
The interest shown in winning over Spanish-speaking fans has not stopped with those covers but can also be seen with the collaboration between the K-pop band Crayon Pop and the Mexican band CD9 back in 2016 resulting “Get Dumb” a song in both Spanish and Korean.(2) But the presence of Korean music not only have been confirmed with that, it has found the way to travel with the increasing numbers of presentations of Korean artists and conventions in the Latin American region, countries such as Mexico, Peru, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, and Colombia have been the lucky witnesses of this encounter between two worlds apparently different but united by the colorful music and the impressive dance of idols.
Another effect of this relatively new relationship between the two regions has caused a wave of Latin American and Korean YouTubers interested in the each other’s cultures. They talk about fashion, ways of life, tips for traveling to Korea or Latin America, and even doing interviews with some K-pop groups or international collabs with another YouTubers, etc.
I’m going to introduce a few of them.
‘Hablemos de doramas’ for example is a YouTube channel by Tania, a 28 year old girl who make videos for those interested in K-dramas. She can initiate you into the dark and addictive world of Korean drama series. She also takes care of taking you on the right path of good taste through her suggestions and honest opinions about the series, and of course you can’t beat her lists of the best, the worst, the funniest and the most iconic K-dramas. In conclusion this girl can turn you in all a ‘doramanica’.
Suggested video – Hablemos de doramas:
‘Latina Saram’, this Peruvian girl show us South Korea through her daily life videos, she also talk about the cultural differences between this Asian country and others Latin American countries like Mexico and Peru, and even made some interesting videos featuring another Koreans YouTubers and idols!
Suggested video – Latina Saram:
‘MeikJC’, this a Latin girl living in Korea so…yeah! She is leaving the dream of all us, which also means that her videos can tell us about the shock cultural we can have once there, the Korean way of life, some beauty tips and of course she works hard to give us, through her videos, some Korean language lessons.
Suggested video – MeiKCJ:
In her own words ‘Lina Woo’ is a Korean girl who has studied Spanish for a year in Seoul and her videos talk about her life in this Asian country, but also speak about prejudices about Korean people, the Korean way of life, what Koreans think about the Latin American people, basic lessons of Korean language and she even tries to teach some of her friends Spanish and even give us some tips for cooking some Korean dishes!
Suggested video – Lina Woo:
And finally a bit of diversity is added with ‘Todo sobre Corea del Sur’, these two Korean friends who lived in Mexico thanks to their work, narrate some of their adventures on this side of the world, things that made them curious about the Mexican culture and even give you tips to conquer your oppa and recipes to prepare some of the most famous Korean dishes in their videos!
Suggested video – Todo sobre Corea del Sur:
The interest generated in the region not only for the music but also for the stories incredibly told through their K-dramas has inevitably motivated cross-cultural collaborations, both Latin American and Korean artists jumping into new adventures on both sides of the world. Who knows maybe one of these days your oppa surprise you with a cover of ‘Besame mucho’ (Kiss me a lot)… yes please!
Aliee– ‘Besame Mucho’
For further info, here the pages I consulted: