It’s been a good couple of days for people who like to read my ramblings about Korea (admittedly a rather small sub-section of humanity). First, I was quoted a fair bit in an article in the Scotland Sunday Herald about K-pop. And now the latest New Yorker, as John Seabrook’s feature article about K-pop, “Factory Girls,” references Pop Goes Korea a whole bunch — sadly, though, Seabrook’s story is behind a pay wall. (UPDATE: I nearly forgot, I also was quoted in an Ad Age article about the marketability of Psy and “Gangnam Style”*).
“Factory Girls” was interesting, as I got to experience the famed New Yorker fact-checking regime. Plenty of calls and emails asking about all sorts of K-pop details, sometimes basic facts, but other times more interpretive. They were nice enough to have uncovered a couple of errors from my chapter on Lee Sooman … in part because there is so much more information from the 1980s and 1990s online now than when I wrote the book. Luckily, none of the errors were crucial to my book — mostly they were details (like the number of times one K-pop star was arrested for drug use), the kind of things I hope to clean up should the book ever get another edition.
* (How scary is it that when Anita Chang Beattie filed her story late last week, “Gangnam Style” had 283 million Youtube hits, and already it is at 335 million?)
* * *
In other news, Park Jihyun and Gord Sellar’s short film, “The Music of Jo Hyeja,” just won the Audience Pick Award at the HP Lovecraft Film Festival in Los Angeles. “The Music of Jo Hyeja” is a spooky, atmospheric short film that re-tells Lovecraft’s story “The Music of Erich Zann.” It looks great and features music by Jambinai, so how can you go wrong? Hopefully it will come to a film festival near you before too long.