Monday, October 29, 2012

Ali, Shin Joong-hyun, and new Korean artists doing old Korean music...

It's no secret that I REALLY like Shin Joong-hyun, one of Korea's original rock'n'roll badasses.

And I LOVE his signature song 미인, which takes the sounds of that majestic Korean chanting and call-and-response sound that you hear in traditional performances, and lays a blistering guitar lick over it... and makes it really, really work...

I generally like what I've seen of Ali (알리), the singer who does this version. She can actually sing, and she's sexy in the way real people are sexy, not in the way Kpop stars or cardboard cutouts are sexy.

Ali does a version of Shin's song here - I saw it on TV this weekend... and I liked it.

It goes in three movements, laying out, in a way, three of the features of Shin Joong-hyun's original song -- the primal wail of sexual energy turns into a slinky come-on in the first part, the messy fun of Korean folk culture (which animates the vocals of Shin's original version) somes out (to varying degrees of effectiveness) in the second part [in my opinion, the rap section could have been dropped], but I liked the samulnori bit (the part with ribbons on hats and Korean drums) and then flying with the energy charge of psychadelic rock and roll at the end.

I like that young Korean artists are listening to older Korean music, and bringing it to a new generation.

The Wondergirls also did a version of Mi-in as well, with the (slightly dirty sounding) name "Me, In"

And let's not forget Big Bang doing Lee Mun Sae: Sunset Glow

the original

Oh, BTW... in 2006, Shin Joong-hyun still had it... I mean, REALLY had it:

Enjoy the music, readers.