What surprises me about K-pop these days is the large number of male idols that can actually sing. And that makes sense. A boy’s looks can only get him so far, and you can only use so much makeup to make him beautiful, so naturally, there needs to be substance with when it comes to his musical talent. Granted, a handful of young male idols get by by rolling their chocolate abs and with a few occasional hip thrusts, but for the most part, most male idols are at least somewhat musically sound.
Now the hilarious part is that the same cannot be said for girls. All a girl needs is a pretty face (or an ugly face that can be made pretty with the right plastic surgeon) and a tiny waist and BOOM–CF deals, drama roles, endorsement deals, or in other words, success, the girl is an idol. Practically any girl can be made into an idol, she need not be an amazing singer. More similar to males, when a talented female is present, she is usually not the face of her group or even the most recognized member, even if she carries the majority of talent for her group as a whole.
As a girl myself, I have different kind of respect for female idols that can actually sing. In an industry where aesthetics outweigh talent, seeing girls with honest, hard-earned skills is an amazing thing to me. But all too often, those skills are covered up by the exposure of more attractive members. Today, I’m going to recognize three extraordinary female vocalists, from idol groups today, that I think could’ve put their talent to better use as solo artists.
Ye-eun is one of two girls from the Wonder Girls that I think can actually sing. But for some reason, in line distributions of nearly every Wonder Girls’ song to date, she has but a few verses. In the limelight is usually Korea’s eternal love Sohee whining into the mic and the bombshell Yubin rapping (but she’s pretty good…), while Ye-eun and Sun-ye stand behind them and pick up the slack in the vocals department.
I feel like Ye-eun works way too hard to get shoved into the background like she does. I mean, out of all the girls, even Yubin, who is from California, Ye-eun speaks the best English. Like fluent, understandable, says her R’s as R’s and not L’s English. You all know she was practicing diligently to make that happen. But aside from language, we all know how good of a singer she is. Even in the recent Be My Baby, she sings some of the most noteworthy parts. But even now, Sohee is singing more than Ye-eun, which makes absolutely no sense to me because we all know who pales in that comparison.
I think Ye-eun would have been better off as a solo artist. As a solo act, she could really shine and strut her stuff instead of having to overcompensate for Lim and Sohee all the time. She has not only the voice, but also has a fighter’s determination and great personality. Plus she’s hot! This girl has everything she needs to make it on her own. I don’t know what she’s waiting for.
I’m going to be honest, I don’t know much about Hyorin or her group Sistar. But she has been a long standing contestant on Immortal Song 2, and that’s really where I noticed her first. I probably wouldn’t even know who she was had it not been for the show. But, damn, this girl can sing. She works her vocals so hard, she can’t talk normally without a rasp in her voice.
What I really love about Hyorin is that she is cute in a very natural, bubbly way you just don’t see anymore in K-pop. But more than that, this girl has a bangin’ bod: fit, tall, and curvy. Most people, however, don’t think she is the prettiest. In fact, some don’t think she’s pretty at all. And I can understand that–the music industry has trained us all to accept pretty in a very rigid and formulaic way. But Hyorin is beautiful is this very unconventional way, and her talent really tops that off in a total package.
I think she went on Immortal Song to get Sistar’s name out there, but I’ve really only been able to focus on her because I never expected her to have such a powerful voice. I’ve listened to some of Sistar’s stuff and I can’t say they’re my favorite group. What I did notice though is that Hyorin gets drowned out in all the other mediocre singing from Bora, Soyu and Daesom, and I figure that’s why she usually goes unnoticed.
I appreciate her more for her performances on Immortal Song than I do for her Sistar activities. To me, Hyorin has everything she needs to make it big as a solo artist, and I think she would have a lot more personal success than what she has had with Sistar. On the stage alone, she truly shines.
Okay, this one was really hard. Every member of the Brown Eyed Girls is crazy talented in a unique way, and when they come together, their music is just unforgettable. They are very unlike most idol groups, and most of the things I discussed in the opening of the article don’t apply to the Brown Eyed Girls. I still think Ga-In is exceptionally talented, and she coud have been a great solo act.
Ga-In is a very ballsy female entertainer. She’s not afraid to get dirty and be sexy, and yet she is still a classy lady. What I like about her the most though, is the unique sound of her voice. While all the members of BEG are phenomenal singers, I feel that Ga-In’ singing really stands out in its own way. To me, her solo works like Bad Temper and Irreversible are better than those of the other members, and I think that’s a great indicator of her potential success in a bigger solo career.
She would have absolutely no problem making it as a solo artist. Her music is interesting and her talent is obvious. Even her tomboy attitude is sexy, and it makes her stand out as different from typical female idols–her raw spunkiness just keeps people entertained. But do I think she would be better off should she become a solo act? Probably not. BEG is great at letting each member showcase their talents in their own way. Would she make a great solo artist, regardless of everything else? Absolutely.
I have mad love and respect for these female idols who have proven themselves as real musicians in an industry where looks are far important than talent itself. It’ll be interesting to see how they progress both as individuals and as members of idol groups as time goes on. Ga-In, Hyorin, and Ye Eun are just a few vocalists that I think could’ve succeeded on their own. If you had a say, which female idols would you make solo artists?