Madhavi Sutar, Kolhapur, Maharashtra: BTS, a well-known boy-band from South Korea, internationally recognized around the globe for their remarkable performances; whose music echoes throughout the world always replenishing audiences with a sense of optimism, courage and enthusiasm that accentuates the significance of self-love within lives through the medium of their captivating music. The seven-membered much-loved boy-band perpetuates liveliness through their music. The meaning & lyrics of their songs are always energetic and encouraging to listen to. BTS, enthralled the fans globally when they announced the release of their docu-series based movie, Break the Silence, last year in September, 2020. During these reeling times of pandemic and lockdown being imposed in several countries, fans finally got a chance to get a glimpse of BTS and to know more about every member. This movie brings their raw and vulnerable self more closer for fans to connect to.
Riya Rawat, Noida, Uttar Pradesh: Start over is one of the main theme songs from the popular K-drama, Itaewon Class, starring famous south Korean actor Park Seo-joon. Written by Park Sung and performed by Kang Dae-ho, also known as Gaho, the song has won multiple awards and nominations including Best OST in 12th Melon Music Awards and others. One year after its release in 2020, this song still gives me goosebumps because of its relatable lyrics and beautifully conceptualised video. The song acts as a binding force for the viewers throughout the music video, as the storyline of the series unfolds.
Shrishti Kalwar (Mumbai, Maharashtra), Smiti Iyer (New Delhi), and Madhavi Sutar (Kolhapur, Maharashtra): On 13th June 2021, BTS completed 8 years of their journey in the musical industry. In order to celebrate this occasion, the group organised their 6th Muster, an annual fan-meeting event that marks their anniversary; at Jamsil Stadium, also known as the Seoul Olympic Stadium on 13th & 14th June. The word Muster means an assembly of troops, referring to the meeting between the Bulletproof Boys and their A.R.M.Y (fandom of BTS). The event marked the end of their two week long celebration known as Festa. This year, the fan-meeting event was conducted virtually and was streamed on the online platform due to the pandemic and included diverse elements such as ARMY Signal, ARMY in Echo, and ARMY on Air to connect with the fans. Nearly, 1.33 million fans, from 195 regions attended this two-days paid-event all over the world.
Isha Singh, New Delhi: ““We sing what our generation feels”- TXT. Tomorrow X Together pronounced as Tomorrow by Together or TXT is a fourth-generation K-pop group; with members Soobin, Yeonjun, Beomgyu, Taehyun, and Huening Kai; that focuses on uniting together to make a better tomorrow. On October 26, 2020, this Gen-Z group released their third mini-album titled, Minisode 1: Blue Hour, which consists of 5 songs comprising different genres like Indie-Rock, Disco, R&B, etc., and depicts different stories in each song.
Sonal Naudiyal (Dehradun, Uttarakhand), Shruti Mishra (Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh), Suparna Mitra (Kolkata, West Bengal), Jasmine Khan (Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh): The wait for the most-anticipated interview of the year is over! The one which left the fans gushing and giggling in excitement since the day the news was shared with the world. We are talking about the recent BTS interview ft. Sakshma Srivastav’s Indian Interview that took place on 5th June 2021 and was broadcast worldwide. This interview rightly took the credit for being one of the most well-conducted and highly researched interviews with BTS having well-intended and meaningful questions that highlighted and focused on each member’s distinct characteristics and artistry that shape their music and is a major influence all over the world. Moreover, this interaction also left the Indian ARMYs (BTS’ fandom name) to rejoice and swell in pride because it unofficially gave the green signal to them as BTS acknowledged India and their strong presence among the Indian fandom; which everyone had been waiting eagerly for years.
Jubby Kumar (Bilaspur, Chattisgarh), Riya Choudhary (New Delhi), Smriti Lakra (Guna, Madhya Pradesh): Since a long time, the K-pop fans in India have been looking forward to a collaboration between an Indian and a Korean musician that could be remembered as a cultural reset. Much to their delight and anticipation, this expectation was fulfilled when popular Indian singer, record-producer, and performer Armaan Malik, American–Korean singer, song-writer, and television host Nam Beom-jin famously known as Eric Nam and Indian-American producer and DJ, Niles Hollowell-Dhar, also known as KSHMR joined together to bring the first ever K-Pop and Indian Pop collaboration song called Echo, celebrating the AAPI Heritage month.
Kabir Khan, New Delhi: Listening to BTS has always been a pleasure. Over the years, one after the other, they’ve been continuously releasing terrific hits. Released in 2020, ‘Map of the Soul: 7’, we were gifted with some of the best melodies with the most beautiful lyrics. Today I’m going to talk about one song from this album, that is dear to my heart and soul! (pun intended). Let’s get it!
Gauran Sharma, New Delhi: DAY6, a 5 members group, comprising of Sungjin, Jae, Young K, Wonpil, and Dowoon under JYP Entertainment; released the mini-album ‘The Book of Us: The Demon’ on May 11, 2020, which is their latest addition to their ‘Book of Us’ series. Every My Day; their fandom; knows that DAY6 has a discography that can never disappoint, but this time, this album just hits too close to home. Listening to the album for the first time was a phenomenal experience for me because every song was beautiful in its own way. It felt like the calm before a rollercoaster ride starts and the thrill after it speeds up with all its ups and downs. Although the songs vary in genres, the overall theme of the album is “conflict of heart”.
Nehal Tambe, Mumbai, Maharashtra: NCT or Neo Culture Technology, a K-Pop boy group under SM Entertainment are known for their unique concept of having unlimited members in a group who are further divided into different subunits under the brand NCT. Back in 2018, the group started with the Yearbook concept project wherein all the subunits come together as one single group. 2020 marked the group’s 2nd time to do so, where the mega yearbook project was titled NCT2020, this time with 23 members namely Taeil, Doyoung, Jaehyun, Taeyong, Ten, Mark, Yuta, Winwin, Haechan, Renjun, Jeno, Jaemin, Chenle, Jisung, Johnny, Jungwoo, Lucas, Kun, Xiaojun, Hendery, Yangyang, Shotaro, and Sungchan.
Jubby Kumar, Bilaspur, Chattisgarh: No man is born without blame, yet judges the other without a shame! This happened in the case of Lee Ho-seok, better known as, Wonho, the former member of MONSTA X, now a soloist. He was accused and judged, yet he has set an example that right believing and right-thinking can do miracles. From debuting as a member of the K-pop boy band Monsta X to his departure from the group and debuting as a soloist, Wonho has worked hard to achieve his dreams again and again. Even though it’s been a roller-coaster ride into his career journey, but now the seasons have changed and it’s a new beginning From Zero which he has started with an Open Mind.