BTS and the Expanding World of K-Pop


Wikipedia Commons via Korea Dispatch

Photo Shoot of the seven BTS members in LA.

Greg Oler, Staff Writer

BTS (Bangtan Boys) is a famous Korean pop band that holds many records, including awards for Most Viewed Music Video Online for 24 Hours with their smash hit ‘IDOL’ music video, released on YouTube on August 8, 2018 and also the First K-Pop Act to Reach No. 1 on the US album charts on June 2, 2018 with their album Love Yourself: Tear.

Recently, Big Hit Entertainment, the company that manages BTS, announced the latest planned tour for BTS, which includes a concert at the Rose Bowl Stadium in Pasadena, on May 4 and 5.

The BTS World Tour for ‘Love Yourself: Speak Yourself’ is also set to be featured in eight other stadiums, including the Soldier Field in Chicago, MetLife Stadium in New Jersey, Wemley Stadium in London, Stade de France in Paris, and both Yanmar Stadium in Soaka and Shizuoka Stadium Ecopa in Shizoka, with both of the latter being scheduled for July.

Southern California holds the largest amount of k-pop fans outside of continental Korea. Los Angeles has the largest version of ‘KCON’ (Korea Convention), with over 94,000 attendees in the latest annual convention that has happened in 2018.

It is no wonder why the k-pop culture is so strong in California. Out of the top ten cities in the United States with the highest Korean-American population, four of them are in California. In fact, it is estimated that in 2008 approximately 350,000 ethnic Koreans lived in Los Angeles County, making it the largest population of Koreans outside of continental Korea. Naturally, that large presence and influence of culture has made BTS widely popular.

Prices of the tickets themselves for both the May 4 and 5 concert ranged from $55 to over $2500. That’s just one example of just how much some fans are willing to pay to meet the cast of BTS: V, sub-vocals; Suga, rapper; Jungkook, main vocals; Jimin, lead vocals; Jin, sub-vocals; RM, rapper; and JHope, rapper.