Thursday, August 04, 2011

50 Most Influential K-Pop Artists: 27. BoA

[Series Index]

27.  BoA [보아]

Years of Activity:  2000-present

Discography:
(Regular albums only. BoA has 47 singles not listed here.)

Regular Albums: Korea

Id; Peace B (2000)
Don't Start Now - Jumping into the World (2001)
No. 1 (2002)
Miracle (2002)
Atlantis Princess (2003)
Shine We are (2003)
My Name (2004)
Girls on Top (2005)
Hurricane Venus (2010)
Copy & Paste (2010)

Regular Albums: Japan
Listen to My Heart (2004)
Valenti (2004)
Love & Honesty (2004)
Outgrow (2006)
Made in 20 (2007)
The Face (2008)
Identity (2010)

Regular Albums: United States
Boa (2009)
Boa Deluxe (2009)

Representative Song:  Atlantis Princess [아틀란티스 소녀] from Atlantis Princess


아틀란티스 소녀
Atlantis Princess

저 먼 바다 끝엔 뭐가 있을까
What is at the end of that faraway ocean
다른 무언가 세상과는 먼 얘기
Something different, a story faraway from the world
구름 위로 올라가면 보일까
Will I see if I get on top of the clouds
천사와 나팔부는 아이들
Angels and children playing trumpets
숲속 어디엔가 귀를 대보면
Put my ears against somewhere in the forest
오직 내게만 작게 들려오는 목소리
A small voice that only I can hear
꿈을 꾸는 듯이 날아가 볼까
Shall I fly like I am dreaming
저기 높은 곳 아무도 없는 세계
That high place, the world with nobody
그렇게도 많던 질문과 풀리지 못한 나의 수많은 얘기가
Those many questions and so many unresolved stories of mine
돌아보고 서면 언제부턴가 나도 몰래 잊고있던 나만의 비밀
Looking back, those secrets of mine that even I forgot some time
(이제 정말) 왜이래 나 이제 커버린 걸까
(Now really) Why is this, am I now grown up
(이제 정말) 뭔가 잃어버린 기억
(Now really) The memories lost somehow
(지금 내맘) 이젠 나의 그 작은 소망과 꿈을 잃지 않기를 저 하늘 속에 속삭일래
(Now my heart) Now I will whisper into the sky that I won't lose my little hope and dream

까만 밤하늘에 밝게 빛나던 별들 가운데
Among the bright lit stars in the black night sky
나 태어난 곳 있을까
Is there a place where I was born
나는 지구인과 다른 곳에서 내려 온 거라 믿고 싶기도 했어
Sometimes I wanted to believe that I came down from somewhere different from Earthlings.
그렇게도 많던 질문과 풀리지 못한 나의 수많은 얘기가
Those many questions and so many unresolved stories of mine
돌아보고 서면 언제부턴가 나도 몰래 잊고있던 나만의 비밀
Looking back, those secrets of mine that even I forgot some time
(이제 정말) 왜이래 나 이제 커버린 걸까
(Now really) Why is this, am I now grown up
(이제 정말) 뭔가 잃어버린 기억
(Now really) The memories lost somehow
(지금 내맘) 이젠 나의 그 작은 소망과 꿈을 잃지 않기를 저 하늘 속에 속삭일래
(Now my heart) Now I will whisper into the sky that I won't lose my little hope and dream

(이제 정말) 왜이래 나 이제 커버린 걸까
(Now really) Why is this, am I now grown up
(이제 정말) 뭔가 잃어버린 기억
(Now really) The memories lost somehow
(지금 내맘) 이젠 나의 그 작은 소망과 꿈을 잃지 않기를 저 하늘 속에 속삭일래
(Now my heart) Now I will whisper into the sky that I won't lose my little hope and dream

너무나도 좋은 향기와 바람이 나에게로 다가와
Such nice scent and wind come to me
어느샌가 나도 모르게 가만히 들려오는 작은 속삭임
The little whisper that can be quietly heard
귀를 기울이고 불러보세요
Listen closely and try calling it
다시 찾게 될거예요 잊혀진 기억
You will find again the lost memories
(생각해봐) 나 이제 더 이상 놓치진 않아
(Think about it) I won't lose it any more
(소중했던) 나의 잃어버린 기억
(Precious) Lost memories of mine

(지금 내맘) 이젠 나의 그 작은 소망과 꿈을 잃지 않기를 저 하늘 속에 속삭일래
(Now my heart) Now I will whisper into the sky that I won't lose my little hope and dream
(이제 정말) 왜이래 나 이제 커버린 걸까
(Now really) Why is this, am I now grown up
(이제 정말) 뭔가 잃어버린 기억
(Now really) The memories lost somehow
(지금 내맘) 이젠 나의 그 작은 소망과 꿈을 잃지 않기를 저 하늘 속에 기도할래
(Now my heart) Now I will pray into the sky that I won't lose my little hope and dream

Translation Note:  어느샌가 나도 모르게 가만히 들려오는 작은 속삭임 was weirdly difficult. Why must all English sentences have a subject? It ruins the poetry, such as it is in a teeny bopper song.

In 15 Words or Less:  First step toward K-pop's global domination.

Maybe she should be ranked higher because...  The first Korean pop artist to top the charts in both Korea and Japan. Doesn't that count for more?

Maybe she should be ranked lower because...  One can search long and hard for something, anything original in her music, and will come up with nothing.

Why is this artist important?
The emergence of BoA may well be the point where the business of K-pop went from the bush leagues that cobbled together some small gains to the huge, global corporate activity that involved careful investment and long-term planning.

Lee Su-Man, head of SM Entertainment, discovered BoA in 1998, when she was not yet 12. From the very beginning, BoA was ordained to be the pan-Asian star -- something that K-pop at that time simply did not have. She was first sent to Japan for two years to learn Japanese, famously staying at a Japanese news anchor's house in order to learn the most professional pronunciation of Japanese. Two years later, she debuted in both Korea and Japan nearly simultaneously.

BoA's debut in Korea actually did not go so well, but she drew a stronger following in Japan. In fact, she became huge in Japan, as she topped the charts with her second regular album in 2004 that sold over a million copies. She then made a jump back to Korea, and became the first artist who topped the charts in Korea and Japan at the same time.

To be sure, there are others before her who underwent a rigorous training at young age, seemingly destined for a stardom. But BoA was the first case in which a corporation deliberated invested a large sum of money specifically for an international career. Given the influence of K-pop in Japan today, BoA's influence cannot be discounted.

Interesting trivia:  Although the name "BoA" screams "stage name," her real name is Kwon Bo-Ah [권보아].

Got a question or a comment for the Korean? Email away at askakorean@gmail.com.

5 comments:

  1. Boa actually has a lot of haters because she's so manufactured as an artist... but to achieve the level of success she's reached through hard work and sacrifice at such a young age is something to be respected.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I first heard "ID: Peace B" on a college radio station and I immediately enjoyed her voice. And you are right: there isn't really anything "original" about her.

    I just remember enjoying her voice and personality.Neither of which are particularly distinctive,or striking but there is something there that I think many people like.

    I always enjoyed K-Pop because at the time I discovered BOA, Britney Spears was still socially relevant. From what I understand Korean Culture is a little more conservative and I enjoyed listening to pop/rock/R&B that didn't have the grating hypersexualized images.

    BTW I'm an English speaker and I've always wondered the same thing about English sentences. I think it's due to "formal" English being modeled after Latin, a language with which it has very little in common.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I know that BoA would be somewhere around here, if DBSK/TVXQ made it on here earlier. Keep up the series, TK. I'm always curious to see which of the musical acts I recognize will be on here.

    ReplyDelete
  4. BoA was the singer that got me into korean music way back when I was 14. I thought her most famous song was "No. 1"

    ReplyDelete
  5. Weird, considering she's the only foreign artist to have 6 consecutive years with Oricon Weekly Albums you'd think she would be ranked higher. Even her sales of 500k for her second Korean album should be noted.

    At a time when the barriers for Korean Entertainment had been lifted in Japan, BoA was one of the pioneers for Kpop in Japan

    ReplyDelete

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