For music lovers, what a person listens to can make or break a relationship before it even has a chance to mature. When we are young, a lot of us identify so strongly with what we listen to that we are willing to hang with complete idiots because they will let us control the radio dial on their 1983 Volkswagon Jetta on the way to school. As we grow and develop into some semblance of adults, we learn that having common ground with a friend is important, but it is just as vital to have some differences. It is even better when the common ground is Kpop and the differences lie in those sub-genres….forcing us to push past our own proclivities to try something new…and maybe even like it.
Or maybe not…but the trying was fun.
Kdramas and Kpop have been a part of my life for going on four years. For the first three, I was totally solo. I was alone, adrift in this world of an overwhelming amount of content, cultural and language barriers, and irrepressible beauty (theirs, not mine). In January of 2016 I managed to, after over a year of needling, convince my girl Alix to join me on the dark (bright?) side. She fell, eyes wide open, into the abyss that now, to a large extent, consumes her life as well as mine. This stuff, this music, the videos, these shows, the YouTube clips, the gifs… They were really all just a catalyst for us to deepen our relationship from work buddies to real friends . It’s pretty great.
As I have forced my way into this little Kchat community that Stephanie has fostered, I have had the opportunity to observe dynamics and relationships from a kind of 30,000 foot view at the same time as I have participated in a more direct way. What I have discovered is that it is quite the norm for some strong-minded individual to get into this crazy #KLife and drag their either already best friend, or future best friend into the mix. Or for two people discover this thing they have in common and spiral out of control in mutually assured destruction. I am looking at you KPopontheDL and Corinne…Stephanie and Cherry….Alix.
I have also noticed that it is common that ONE of the pair loves the harder stuff. They started with Kpop because… Kpop… but they pretty quickly found that their bias was the idol rapper, that the idol rapper does some solo stuff with some underground guys, that the underground guys are amazing…..and so on. The other, well, the other is into the cute stuff. This friend wants 5-15 adorable, and completely in sync, guys taking turns singing about how much they freaking love her. This friend likes, no, needs, aegyo on the regular. And these two friends need each other to balance this shit out…A generalization, I’ll admit, but examine your pairing…tell me I am not at least kind of right.
So this is all a very long winded way to say that, for my girl Alix, I considered for like 5 whole minutes going to see B1A4 when they come to the US in 2017 (not happening – I am really not that nice). Because of her, I watched the new video (A Lie) and I didn’t hate it. Like really. I wouldn’t throw the song on while chilling by myself, but I would listen to it with her. I like it a lot better with the video on (um, when did B1A4 grow up? Who said that they could look like that?), but I don’t hate it without the visual…What’s even stranger, I don’t think Alix even likes it all that much.
So, thanks, Alix. Really.
And I will still never listen to Astro again. That just hurt.
B1A4, A Lie