At least, that’s if I’m a Korean conforming to the profile of the sample selected by Gallup Korea for their 2008 K-pop poll. OK, I’m reasonably happy listening to her first album, but there are other albums I’d much prefer to have in my CD player. Jang Yoon Jeong (장윤정 – right) is the younger face of Trot music, designed to bring the genre to a new audience, and she has been remarkably successful. She’s the favourite singer of Koreans in their 40s, according to Gallup’s poll.
I’m rapidly approaching my half century, but it’ll take a few decades before I’m happy listening to trot singer Tae Jin-ah (태진아 – left). That’s is the preferred listening of Korean listeners in their 50s. The videos available of his music on YouTube, many of which also involve his son Eru, are pretty hard going.
The results of the survey appeared in the Chosun Ilbo on 27 December 2008 and in the Korea Times on 17 December, and duly spread round the various celebrity fan blogs – especially those devoted to the Wonder Girls, because of course it was JYP’s girl band which came top of the poll as most popular band and performers of the most popular song – Nobody1.
The survey and its coverage highlights the shortcomings of the Korean blogosphere, namely the lack of a decent bridge blogger – a Korean who’s prepared to read the original sources and translate them for the English speaking audience. None of the reports available had anything to add to the two secondary sources mentioned above, which themselves are derived from the Seoul Shinmun. Putting the two secondary sources together, we get the following results:
- Wonder Girls (above right) (both Nobody and So Hot were voted into the top 5 most popular songs of the year) (22.2%)
- Big Bang (Right. Day by Day made it into the top 5 songs) (21.2%)
- Jang Yoon Jeong (9.9%)
- Girl’s Generation (소녀시대, below; SM Entertainment’s answer to JYP’s Wonder Girls) (7.8%)
- Lee Hyo-ri (U-Go-Girl was one of the top 5 songs) (6.5%)
- Tae Jin-ah (6.5%)
At either 8 or 10 appears Park Hyun-bin, another of the younger generation of trot singers. Maybe SG Wannabe, whose La La La was in the top 5, completed the list. But if you want to know this, or indeed the other missing details, you’ll have to track down the original Korean sources.
- I swear I didn’t know of the song’s popularity when I included it in my list of 2008 K-pop choices