In the past decade or so, Korean music has transformed dramatically and with that change, comes a diversity in fans; in aspects of both generation and region.

Now, if you’ve been up to date with current events, you’d know Kpop fans are freaking out over- EXP, Jaden Smith, and Coco Avenue. Doesn’t ring a bell? Okay, I got you, starting now!

EXP
-Started off as a thesis project for a Columbia University graduate
-They’re a non-Korean kpop group
-Originally started off as a 6 member group but became 4 recently
-Debuted an official Kpop song with MV and all (in 2017)
-Apparently, it’s cringeworthy
-Fans are freaking out

Jaden Smith
-Last year Jaden Smith shared his interest in working in the Kpop industry
-Jaden Smith will debut in the Summer of 2017
-Fans are freaking out

Coco Avenue
– R&B/Hip-hop duo that incorporates Korean into their songs
-Just released an original song entitled “Eottae”
-Fans are freaking out

The news of these artists has gained mixed reactions from Kpop fans. The majority of the reactions are of course, bad. Which is slightly hilarious to me and here’s why.

The same people that laugh at EXP, Jaden Smith, and Coco Avenue for trying to make a career in the kpop industry are the same ones who are either trying to make a similar career for themselves or have asked for diversity within kpop. And it’s obvious that the fans’ intentions are only to meet their “oppar”. Why even waste your energy on hating when you could put all that focus into bettering your dance or vocal covers? I mean, I’ve seen a handful of cringeworthy covers. The shade isn’t valid if you’re going to create bare minimum. Right?

A comment that I found interesting throughout the breakout of these three artists’ debut/new release news was “It’s not Kpop, if they’re not Korean”. Okay, well, tell that to: Jackson, Mark, BamBam of Got7, Lay of EXO, Amber  and Victoria of f(x), Jun, The8 of Seventeen…do you see where I’m headed?

The contradiction within the Kpop community is so hilariously annoying. But another commenter stated that they’re not Asian, so they don’t get a pass. Kpop is heavily influenced by American pop, right or wrong? American pop has features from the genres of ragtime, blues, R&B/Soul, Hip-hop, doo-wop, house, and i.e. These subgenres that are listed are deeply rooted from Africa. So when idols, such as BTS or EXO, rap or sing, people from Africa or America do not say, they’re not such and such. They’re not allowed to sing our music. Music is universal, who made you the music fundamental police?

Lastly, fans have expressed how they’d love for Kpop to become mainstream. Now that it’s happening, why are people freaking out? Let’s be honest, when the kpop industry creates these new groups to debut, often there has to be a foreign member in the group. Want to know why? They want the visuals to be diverse in hopes of becoming somewhat mainstream in whichever region they desire. Now speaking from the perspective of an American, whitewashing does exist here. It’s evident within films and within music. How many kpop artists came to America for a US debut and failed? One too many. Did you really think that Kpop would become mainstream in America because of a Kpop idol? Leave your thoughts down in the comment section, I’d love to read your insight.

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