DEAN: MY INSPIRATION TO BE GREATER
Kpop, to me, is the greatest thing ever. I am interested in the topic because I listen to Kpop almost all the time and I am a huge fan of Kpop, but I have many friends who are not, but when Gangnam style came out, everyone loved it. I wondered why did they suddenly like what I listened to, and why did they only like that song? Kpop (케이팝) is a genre of music that originates from South Korea and is characterized by the innumerable variety of audiovisual elements put into making the end product of each song. Although Kpop had amazing visuals, flashy colors, high sense of sensationalism, and meaningful lyrics, I always wondered what was the main reason as to why Kpop was so disliked by many American teens. Many anthropologist say America tries to stay monolingual through certain practices, so I thought maybe it’s the structure of America.
I always felt alone when listening to Kpop because people wondered why would I listen to it since it’s in a different language that I don’t completely understand, but somehow get. I know why I do. I have a heart for languages. Additionally, I always wanted to become a multilingual singer and express myself in the many languages I can speak (whether fluently or minimally). I became discouraged because people would mock or dislike when I sang in a different language other than English because “they couldn’t understand” or “they didn’t really like that music” (although they never gave it a chance). Then, Dean came into my life.
Dean is one of the most influential role models in the musical business for me, and I love him as much as I love BigBang (which is a lot). Dean is a Korean alternative R&B singer-songwriter and record producer. He has changed my thoughts on being able to express my feelings in different languages with his one solo EP, 130 mood : TRBL, and his multiple collaborations with both American and South Korean artists such as Crush, Anderson Paak, and Heize. What makes him so inspirational is that he is a new artist who people want to crown as the prince of R&B in Korea, he has a worldwide fandom, and other than Koreans, Americans like him just as much. That is shocking! Today, I even heard Foot Locker, a sneaker store that mainly appeals to Blacks with the type of music they play, play Dean’s remix to the song Foreign. It’s all so shocking and abnormal that it gave me inspiration to go on doing what I do best which is singing in different languages. Dean also has similar thought processes as to what I did, but he put it to good use and I became afraid until now. For example, he claims that he looked at a picture or object and looked for all the stories that could be applied to the one object, like where it might go or what might happen to that one object. He also said when he made the EP he thought of things backwards so the song he called outro was the intro to his ep, but it was still technically an outro. His explanations to his art is rather thorough for me although he does not say much.
I’m so happy to have found Dean because he truly encourages me to be better and do better in my music without actually knowing me. I hope that one day I can collaborate with him and make great music just like he has done with others.