What I meant to say last year at this time:
19 April: Record Store Day in the US and UK. And another Saturday for me. R and I had fled the country and gone into Seoul for one of our day trips. As I recall, we spent most of the day in the shopping maelstrom of Myeongdong. We might have seen a movie. At one point we split up so she could see a few cosmetics stores. I went into the Kpop emporium that is Music Korea. Kai in Korea wrote about going there:
I don't know what's weird about seeing all of the Kpop, because that's the kind of store it is. Music Korea caters to Kpoppers. I was glad to be there because Korea doesn't have too many record stores. Most people download the stuff or watch the videos on Youtube. But as I may or may not have mentioned, I like to have the real thing.I didn’t want to take any photos inside the store, I didn’t know if that was allowed, but it was so amazing…walking into a store and seeing Kpop CDs was really weird, but really great. All the MBLAQ things they had I already owned, so I bought Two-X’s debut mini album and TaeTiSo’s Twinkle album for myself and picked up Beast’s new album “Midnight Sun” for Kirtie and Ukiss’ “Neverland” album for Ali! I hope you guys like them!
But despite Music Korea's predilection toward the new and shiny, the shop does sell plenty of other music by Korean artists. (I recall an aisle of classical music as well.) I happened to be looking for Kim Kwang-seok, a famous singer-songwriter because coteacher had recommended him. She's less about the rock and more about warm melodies. That, and evidently Kim's short career made its mark on Korean music. I found Kim's 2-CD Best Of and bought it.
And yep, it's mellow. Good change of pace.
김광석 - 서른즈음에: Here's Kim doing a famous song of his about getting close to age 30.
Record Store Day never entered my mind until I saw an email from ATO Records in the inbox later that weekend.
Lanie in Korea writes about Kpop Mall in Seoul - Another Kpop shop. It's smaller than Music Korea, but perhaps just as good.