Many times we have heard that one of the best ways to learn a new language is through immersing one’s self into the culture. This includes the music, the movies, the TV and the books of that culture and corresponding language. Well if learning Korean is on your bucket list, the popularity of K-pop could be just what the teacher order for you to use to jump start your learning process. Many times people who move to another country are told to watch the TV to learn the language. Well the same idea applies when using music to help you learn another language, in this case Korean.
Kpop has continually grown in popularity around the world, and with it has come an interest by many to learn Korean. This intersection of music and culture coupled with having a true desire to understand what is being sung, has resulted in many wanting to converse in Korean. With a musical style attractive to so many, fans want to fully understand the lyrics of these popular songs and they decide to use the music as their impetus to learn Korean.
Using your favorite bands and their music and lyrics can be very powerful tools to give you that head start. Since you already relate to the music, it is easier to learn the vocabulary since you have a point of reference. It is true that the more familiarity you have with something, the easier it is to learn those parts with which you are unfamiliar. Building on the familiar (in this case the tune of the song), can give you a comfort level in then expanding to learn the words behind the already familiar (and loved) music.
As you probably know, Kpop stands for Korean popular music. It is a genre of music that is quickly growing in popularity around the world. It first emerged in the 1990’s. The music takes the traditional Korean music and the modern (usually music that is foreign) and combines it into a unique musical mix. In the beginning, the popularity of Kpop remained in country, but over time, it spread to Asia and eventually went global. The catalyst for the worldwide explosion came with the group NRG which hit the airwaves early on in the 2000’s. Today, Kpop groups are making musical waves across the world, enjoying vast popularity, album sales and worldwide tours.
It would be very difficult to jump from non-Korean speaking to full understanding of the language using Kpop alone. As a starting point, prior to jumping to being completely fluent in Korean, you have to start with the basic building blocks. One of the challenges of listening to Kpop is, like all music, they tend to have a language all their own and it’s not always proper or correct grammatical. Kpop music is full of local slang, abbreviations that you might not ever understand and short cuts in the Korean language.
In order to reach the point where you can begin to speak Korean, you must do what we always do with learning; you start with the basics. Start with working on your basic vocabulary and grammar. Once you understand the vocabulary, you have a better shot at understanding all those abbreviations you hear in your favorite songs. There are many ways to learn your basic vocabulary and grammar, including lessons you can participate in with various options like ebooks, on line and others. However you choose to gain further learning for the basics of Korean, the use of Kpop will be a very strong ally in your overall learning experience.
Is to understand common words and common phrases that are contained in many songs. These words and phrases are used often enough that you can start to pick them out when you listen to your favorite Kpop musicians. Phrases like “don’t go”, “I love you “ or “I want you” are used often enough that you can learn these and many other phases simply by listening and picking out the ones that are repetitive. Since most fans tend to play their favorite songs over and over again, it is very likely that they will recognize these phrases pretty quickly.
Another benefit in listening to Kpop and translating repetitive phrases is that you will also learn pronunciation of the words as well as the grammatical correct ways to use these phrases and words in a sentence. The phraseology will also teach how certain tenses are pronounced and when they should be used. Repetition is one of the cornerstone methods of learning no matter what the subject is but is especially powerful when learning a new language. The more you hear, repeat out loud and hear again, the more you will give yourself a true opportunity to learn Korean.
Yyou avail yourself to a wide variety of musicians and bands to listen to so you can hear differences, similarities and consistency in vocabulary. A few of the bands that you might want to include in your listening line-up should include bands such as BTS, NCT, Blackpink and AOA. There are dozens more to choose from as well. Listen to their music, watch their videos and read about them so you can gain a better understanding of the Korean language. Variety will be helpful when listening to music with the purpose of mastering the language. Eventually you will know enough of the language that you hear subtle differences in phraseology, pronunciation and context and you will understand what they are trying to express.
With a strong devotion to listening to the many Kpop musicians that are popular today, there is no doubt that you will learn a considerable piece of the language simply by committing to constructive listening. Although the music is what draws you to these bands, the learning experience that you can gain from listening to the words, phrases and syntax of the songs can be one of the most powerful ways that you can learn Korea. The question will no longer be how to learn Korean with Kpop, but why did you wait so long to use Kpop in the first place.