Korean pop music finds growing following in India
After having regaled Indian fans with a first-of-its-kind performance in the capital, members of South Korean band N-Sonic hope more artists from their homeland get to perform K-POP in the country.
Formed in 2011, N-Sonic is a K-POP band of six boys - J. Heart, Sihoo, Byeol, Minkee, Black J and Zion, who are popular for giving hit numbers like "Crazy" and "Run and Run".
They were here to perform and judge the finale of the recently concluded K-POP (Korean pop) India Festival, which saw participation from Indians who sang and danced to catchy Korean numbers. They felt "honoured" to be part of the event, which was presented by the Korean Cultural Centre and co-organised by the Korea Tourism Organization.
"The chance given to us is important for further relationship (between South Korea and India) too. More artists can come if Indian audiences like us. That way we feel responsible and honoured. We hope it encourages more exchange programmes. We would love to come back here," J. Heart told IANS here.
Their genre is Korean style of western pop music and emerged in the 1990s. It is a combination of popular music like dance-pop, pop ballad, electronic, rock and hip-hop.
So, it is no surprise that the vocalists of the band look 'up to American band 'N Sync' that was a pop sensation in the 1990s.
"We liked their dancing style and their music was also quite refreshing," said Sihoo.
Along with singing and dancing, presentation is equally important for the boys, who are in their early 20s and brimming with energy and enthusiasm. They ensure that they give a personal touch to their attire before performing.
"Our stylist comes up with a concept and within that boundary we discuss and try to find our own style," said J. Heart, who was dressed in a deep blue suit and a crisp white shirt. That music knows no boundary was a fact that resonated when they arrived here for their performance and were greeted by excited Indian fans dressed in t-shirts with their photographs on them.
The rise of participation in the fest from mere 37 entries in 2012 to 130 for the third edition this year proves that there is no slowing down when it comes to fan base for the K-POP genre.
The boys only have encouraging words to share with their fans in India.
"Never give up. If you follow what you like, success will be guaranteed. We were touched to see Indian contestants singing and dancing to Korean numbers," said Sihoo.
Divided into song and dance categories, the fest saw participants from Chennai, Mumbai, Guwahati and Delhi.
While Indian music lovers are grooving to the tunes of South Korean artists - remember Psy of "Gangnam style" fame - the N-Sonic band members are also all praise for desi beats.
"India has a strong unique style. It is a good place to learn music. We would like to collaborate with Indian artists some day," said J. Heart. Though they are not good with names of Indian music artists, they are familiar with Bollywood's beloved 'badshah' Shah Rukh Khan.
When asked about Bollywood, Sihoo promptly said: "Shah Rukh Khan. I got to watch 'My Name Is Khan', then I searched for his details online and became his fan!"
J. Heart also nodded in agreement and said that his favourite SRK movie is "Om Shanti Om". In fact, when his fans got to know about his liking for the film, he delivered the film's popular dialogue - "Ek chutki sindoor ki keemat tum kya jaano Ramesh babu", with a little help from an Indian emcee.
(Natalia Ningthoujam can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)
(Posted on 02-09-2014)