Under Comes Over; Indie Seeping Into Major Outlets
In the past, indie musicians could only be found performing in live cafes or clubs in Hongdae, but these days their music are making it into the charts of music shows, and some musicians are collaborating with idol singers onstage. There’s even a variety show that features indie musicians as its stars.
The female duo Dalmoon is one of those that was recently active in the major scene. Dalmoon and indie rapper VerbalJint topped off 2011 with a first-time-ever appearance in Mnet’s M Countdown.
On the January 6 broadcast of KBS2’s Music Bank, Dalmoon also collaborated with the idol group My Name to perform an acoustic version of the group’s single Message. The performance helped place Dalmoon on the top of search keyword charts on various portal sites for what was probably the first time in its career.
Mnet’s OK Punk is being even more aggressive. The program shows how various musicians from different indie bands come together to form a punk rock band centered on actress Kim Ok Bin. It features The KOXX’s Lee Hyun Song, Dr. Core 119’s Devin, Go Go Star’s Lee Tae Sun, BandToXic’s Kim Seul Ong and DickPunks’ Kim Hyun Woo.
MBC’s I Am a Singer is also thinking of bringing in an indie musician to fill in for the band Jaurim, which made it through 7 weeks to an honorary graduation.
Jaurim’s leader and drummer Goo Tae Hoon actually appeared on the January 10 broadcast of YTN’s News and Issue-Issue and People to say, “I highly recommend a band called Crying Nut from among those singers who have been active in Hongdae for a long time.”
Gukkasten, which signed a contract in 2011 with Yedang Entertainment, Im Jae Bum’s agency, is also steadily popping up as a possible candidate for the empty spot.
The possibility that we’ll be seeing another indie musician make it big among the public, like Jang Giha or 10cm did, is heightening, as more indie musicians make their way into major outlets.
Because the quality of their music is practically guaranteed, many evaluate that it will only be a matter of time before they start reaching into more people’s hearts if they just become more known through televised appearances.
In a recent interview with enews, Hongdae’s singer/songwriter Mystery Curtain said, “It’s mostly that they don’t know about it, so they don’t listen to it. Once they start listening, they’ll naturally become interested and start encountering it more. I really hope indie musicians appear on more broadcasts. It’ll be a chance for popular song to become more solid.”
Of course, there are downsides. These new ventures of indie musicians could turn out to be short-lived, soon coming to pass like a trend. Previous broadcasts that were centered on indie musicians were quickly discontinued due to their low ratings.
An official stated on the matter, “We need to realize how much we need musicians from other genres to coexist with the idol music of today for a wider variety of long-lived music, not just try to seek immediate gains. Korean indie musicians can fill in the empty gap that the current world of popular song carries.”
Photo credit: CJ E&M, Yedang Entertainment, KBS2, Mnet, YTN
- 10cm 20120116 Kiha and The Faces 20120116 The KOXX 20120116 Indie 20120116 VerbalJint 20120116 Dalmoon 20120116 OK Punk 20120116 Mystery Curtain 20120116 Jaurim 20120116 Crying Nut 20120116 Guckkasten 20120116