Rekindle is a new series on the blog featuring the passions, hobbies, and pursuits of bloggers, creators, and entrepreneurs outside of their official content. It’s a safe space where they can gush and discuss their interests apart from what their official blog, platform, or business usually covers. These are the topics that ignite excitement and how they have fun as a form of self-care and relaxation in order to rekindle and recharge their souls.
In the first edition of Rekindle, I wanted to begin by sharing a new-found interest and passion outside of blogging and that is KPop.
I never knew I could be a Kpop fan.
I shouldn’t have been surprised.
But I still was.
I didn’t expect how much I would love KPop; how much I would love a specific KPop group.
If you’d told me years ago that I would be a massive KPop fan, I would ask you how that happened.
I had been a music blogger for over five years, but KPop was a genre that didn’t appeal to me back then.
It was a genre I couldn’t understand until I became a fan myself.
And now I wish I’d gotten into it sooner.
I wish I’d known my fave group sooner.
I was the girl whose music taste evolved from loving Britney Spears with a passion, and then groups like S-Club7 and Backstreet Boys.
As I approached my teen years, I became a huge Linkin Park fan.
I was devastated when 11-year-old me wasn’t allowed to attend their concert in my country.
I remember blasting Hybrid Theory to the max volume my CD player could go, as a form of rebellion to my parents because they didn’t like Chester Bennington’s screams.
Soon after I got into bands like Simple Plan and Good Charlotte.
Later on, my music taste evolved to loving British indie rock and I was jamming to the likes of One Night Only, The Wombats, The Kooks and Oh Wonder.
Later at the influence of one of my then-crushes, I got into Electronic Dance Music (EDM).
I even considered becoming a music journalist for my career.
Though I didn’t become a full-time music journalist (though I did become a full-time blogger so I get to say I write for a living), I joined one of the country’s biggest music media online publications and was covering a show every month or so as a writer and photographer.
Sometimes, I’d get lucky and interview some artists. Twice, I met one of my then-favourite bands, LANY.
When the pandemic struck, I found myself escaping my anxiety and fear through Korean Dramas like Itaewon Class.
I’d been a casual KDrama fan since 2017 watching a couple of KDramas here and there.
Watching KDrama is one of the ways I de-stress and a form of self-care especially when I’m having an off-day.
My first encounter with KPop was listening to OSTs, but I hadn’t immersed myself into the world of KPop…until Astro.
How I Became a KPop Fan
It began with a KDrama, namely, My ID is a Gangnam Beauty.
I often saw it on my Netflix feed as a recommendation based on other dramas I’d watched, but there was always this hesitance to start watching.
But when I did, I couldn’t stop.
When I really like a KDrama, one of the things I do is to read up on the actors and actresses to look for their other shows to add to my watch list.
One of the first things you’ll read up on Cha Eun Woo, the lead guy of the KDrama, is that he is a singer and part of a boy band called Astro.
I then decided to type “Astro” in the YouTube search bar.
The first video that caught my eye was this performance of their song Crazy, Sexy, Cool.
You know that feeling where you listen to a song and just know you’ve fallen in love with it?
That’s what happened when I watched the performance video of Crazy, Sexy, Cool.
I was in awe for a number of reasons.
First, the song was a total bop. It was catchy.
Two, the choreography was eye-catching and told a story.
It looked fun to learn. And it did inspire me to get back into dancing.
The members executed the moves fluidly and so in sync.
It was mesmerizing to watch.
Later on, after watching more Astro videos, specifically their dance practice videos, I’d learn just how in sync they were with their choreography.
Three, they had a strong stage presence.
It was so different from what I was used to.
For years I would watch performances by bands where the most they did in terms of choreography was synchronised guitar flipping or jumping at the same time.
That was how I got into KPop.
And I haven’t looked back since.
I mentioned in my South Korea travel guide, on my bucket list is to watch an Astro concert when it’s safe to travel and attend concerts again.
Naturally, after watching that first video, I decided to listen to their other songs and I was hooked.
I also decided to watch their behind-the-scenes videos such as this chaotic pool photoshoot and variety show appearances like this one called When the Manager Is Asleep where the challenge is to not make any sound above a certain decibel or they get penalized.
I learned that they were such goofballs.
I just love their infectious positive energy which is both present on and off stage.
They’re always laughing or teasing each other.
It’s so heartwarming how they’re so close to one another.
Aside from that, each member is humble, talented and hardworking.
One of my close friends pointed out that one of the things she liked about Astro was that they looked like they were always having fun.
I don’t know how I didn’t notice that before.
And maybe that’s another reason why I also became (and stayed) a fan.
In a time where things are turbulent, negative news swirls around, and so many anxieties are around, they gave me something to look forward to.
At times I laugh out loud watching their videos or social media posts that my mom asks me from the other room why I’m laughing.
They never fail to make me smile and laugh.
Some Astro videos for you to check out:
CRAZY SEXY COOL
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