The Future: Will K-Pop Be Recognized?

Photo Credit to KBIZOOM Article by Emma Saletta

Throughout the years, the music genres that have ruled the charts were mainly pop and hip-hop. These are still the genres that seem to rule the charts. However, three years ago, a K-pop group named BTS changed the industry in the U.S. forever. As the “BTS Army” formed, they became a boy-band that helped people know how cool the K-pop genre can actually be. They became the first K-pop act to perform at the American Music Awards, Billboard Music Awards, and the Grammy Awards, as well as become the first K-pop act to receive nominations and/or awards in all three ceremonies. After the success of BTS, more K-pop acts began to slowly become known to the public eye, including acts such as BLACKPINK, V, and j-hope. However, surprise success sometimes comes with controversy that has been on people’s minds for a number of years. It just took hundreds of online articles and social media posts to make it shine to the general public.

In 2018, The Recording Academy was praised for giving BTS a Grammy nomination for best recording package (artwork). However, they received negative reactions from fans after not giving them any nominations for their 2020 ceremony. Coincidentally, no K-pop act received nominations for the ceremony. Over the last few months, various articles have been published discussing possible contenders for Grammy Award nominations for the 2021 ceremony. However, within the last week and a half, articles left and right have discussed the issue of how none of those articles include any K-pop musicians including, but not limited to, BTS.

Almost all songs included in the prediction articles fall within the pop and hip-hop genres that one can easily think of when dancing to at a party. K-pop on the other hand is a genre that mixes pop and hip-hop together, like something that one would hear at parties and nightclubs. With that in mind, it’s fascinating that songs with a mixture of two popular music genres are not gaining the recognition they deserve from The Recording Academy.

The nominations and winners of Grammy Awards are based on lyrics, uniqueness, and talent that musicians and producers bring to the table. Unfortunately, for a number of years, people have thought that The Recording Academy has nominated music based on their popularity and album sales within the general public. This issue alone is likely the biggest factor contributed to the public outrage of not giving K-pop enough recognition. If the nomination controversy is not true, the issue with K-pop recognition may get worse within the next ten years due to the uniqueness not receiving full honor. However, if the nomination controversy is true, then it’s questionable why K-pop act BTS is left out of the nominations due to breaking various music and album sale records.

Below are two videos that showcase how enjoyable K-pop truly is. Give them a watch and see if you agree that they deserve more recognition in the mainstream award ceremonies.

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