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The perfect storm happened in 2012, when a Korean record by Psy, became an international Youtube phenomenon with over 1 billion views at that time(now 3.5 billion views).
K-pop wasn’t just a flash in the pan, and the Korean music producers knew how to package catchy music, doll-face models as stars, colourful backgrounds and great dance moves
K-Pop, or Korean pop music, became a rage across the world in the last few decades. It is now a multi-billion dollar industry.
It started when in 1992, a band Seo Taeji & Boys created history by being on top of the record charts for 17 weeks. Now bands like BTS are globally renowned and give competition to Drake in sales figures.
K-Pop popularity and hysteria among the young have led to a rise of other popular industries like the beauty industry while also boosting the attraction towards cosmetic and plastic surgery for young people influenced by the K-Pop stars.
K-Pop continues to thrive and marketed for the billions of dollars it generates, often at an ugly cost.
In the late 90s, K-Pop started getting international fame when artists like Clone made it to China and other Asian countries. Then in 2002, during the soccer World Cup, BoA topped the charts in Japan.
In 2008, K-Pop made strides across the western world with the advent of Facebook, Twitter and Youtube, making itself available on international platforms.
.. or the Korean culture wave has been extremely influential, successful and therefore ripe for control by the ‘Establishment’, which is the South Korean business and political leaders. The government, sensing the huge opportunity to expand the South Korean influence and soft power status abroad, started to back the music industry, giving it tax benefits.
Pop music is manufactured all over the world, but in South Korea, things are a bit extreme. Kids as young as 10 are spotted, recruited and groomed to become future pop stars.
The kids are trained in a military-style regime, where they train for up to 18 hours a day. Once the kids hit stardom, they sometimes cannot even afford more than two hours of sleep.
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