Don’t Stick to the Gameplan

I have a feeling I’m going to instigate a good debate…please? I argue with myself enough on this blog. Give me some challenges here, folks! It gets quite lonely =[

So anywho, like a bad fan, I got a sneak peak of the tracks on 2PM’s latest mini album, 2:ooPM Time for Change. After hearing each track thoroughly, one thought was racing through my mind: JYP sent the wrong group to America. *gets shot* Hear me out.

You’ve heard my schpeel about how I disagree with the Wonder Girls being sent straight to America without trying to branch out to the rest of Asia first. You understand that I dislike this. You know I find this irrational. If you’ve been on the Wonder Girls’ Myspace recently, you’ve noticed that their supposed American debut date of May 5, 2009 is no longer even there. It’s gone from a specific date to a vague “some time this year.” While I’m sure the delay is for good reasons, it leaves me feeling quite uneasy. Hearing nothing about their new projects in America leaves me very restless. A hint or two would be great, but we’re not getting that on their myspace, facebook, twitters, nor their blogs on ningin or MTV Iggy.

Gah, sorry for that rant up there. Anyway, back on track, while I do believe that the Wonder Girls and their “Nobody” image will allow them to most definitely stand out (and not necessarily in the good way), I still feel that Nobody isn’t a strong enough track to stand alone and make an impression on the American public. It’s just too different from what we’re used to. Different can be a good thing, but how are we so sure that the Wonder Girls’ version of “different” will be so readily  embraced?

So you can imagine my surprise when I heard 2PM’s new mini album. Actually no, even earlier than that. When they debuted with “10 Points Out of 10” I was on the floor. Bangin’ dance moves were the eye catcher. If JYP were to debut these boys in America, he would have more than just one option. Because unlike the Wonder Girls, 2PM can function as a dance crew (America’s Best Dance Crew, anyone?) or as a singing performance group. It’s better to have more than one marketable option when you’re looking to gain status and profit for the company.

The dance crew option needs no explanation. The boys are great performers in the field of dance. No question about it. However, the routines will need to be improved and they need to start thinking outside the box if ever an opportunity like this occurs.

Now for the boy group option. Both the Wonder Girls and 2PM have pros and cons with their types of music. The Wonder Girls possess very catchy tunes that can appeal to…er, I hate to admit it, but teenyboppers in America. They offer an image that isn’t used very often, so they keep it fresh. However, their image can also force an older teenage/early adult group away with the cuteness. FYI, cute only works if you’re with Disney. And we all know how those stars turn out. For crying out loud, Miley Cyrus single-handedly pissed off the Asian American community with her sheer stupidity, among other things. Likewise with Joe Jonas. Disney sure knows how to raise ’em right.

2PM offers an image that would heavily appeal to the teenage/early adult consumer. While the Wonder Girls and their image can garner more profit, as it *should* appeal to the younger generation (leading to annoying little brats begging their parents to buy them this and that), 2PM still has a more marketable image as it is something Americans are used to. However, their advantage is also their disadvantage. Familiar can sometimes be ignored as it is something we’ve grown accustomed to. Yes, the boys are a lot different from other groups in Korea, but they’re the familiar here in America.

Also, after hearing their new mini album, I was convinced that if JYP were to make the lyrics English and ship the boys off to America at this very moment, BAM (!) they’d be embraced. Their music is something American’s are used to. If you haven’t heard the new album, I encourage you to go buy it! It’s got a very nice R&B tone to it and Americans love their R&B. Their songs are the kind of songs you’d hear on your radio stations.

And if you want to get technical, let’s think about the actual group members. 3 out of the 7 members of 2PM can speak fluent English. None of the Wonder Girls speak fluently. They’re working on it, but it’s still broken. Still, having an accent in America almost immediately garners criticism of any sort. It will not be a good thing for the girls whenever they choose to debut and get interviewed. 2PM will be more approachable for the media as they can at least communicate without hesitation. Their 3 main men have all lived in the states at some point in their lives, so they’re familiar with how we roll here. The Wonder Girls have Yoobin, but she isn’t as better off as the other guys. Need I remind you of their Grammy interview? Because they’re all debuting, they really can’t rely on just YeEun to speak on their behalf. She’s not even the leader. It will mislead the public.

Well, I guess it’s too late to do anything now. The girls are here to stay for the time being and all we can do is wait patiently. And as I wait patiently, I’ll be praying earnestly for a new Korean album when they come back. PLEASE!

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9 responses to “Don’t Stick to the Gameplan

  1. I know where you’re getting at I love WG I really do but let’s be real America this year is not ready for an Asian music artist. And I don’t think WG will be that successful either, 2pm has a better chance but won’t fare better either. There’s few Asian artists that tried and all of them fade. Unless their half-asian singers and have that Americanized look then I don’t see them debuting successfully.

    Music scenes in general not just America, haven’t had a really successful Asian artist. So it will be tough for any Asian artist.

  2. yeah! you’re right michizan i like the wonder girls too don’t get me wrong but i have a feeling that they might not be successful they should have done what boa did every you go in asia they know who boa so they should give wonder girls time to get well known on almost every country in asia so until they get to the point that oh crap we r so popular and well known in all of asia then they can debut in america. and one more thing in my opinion the reason why there are not alot of successful asian artist is because most of americans are not all open-,minded if the lyrics of the music is not in english they’re not going to listen to it i mean nowaday they do but still it’s most likely latin hip-hop/ raggaeton they listen to(other than english) but if the song is in some kind of asian language they don’t listen to it. so when WG debut over there it isn’t kpop anymore because to me kpop has it own unique style just like jpop and any other. if WG debut album in the US are all in english thats not kpop at all to me. WG should be themselves just like being in korea no worry about how fan would react to their music.

  3. haha. i’m going to avoid mentioning my opinion, but didn’t JYP say that he only decided to bring the WG to the US because US companies were expressing interest in them?

    now to remember where i read/heard that…

    D: and you have to take in consideration that it doesnt seem like the 2PM boys have their engrish down.

  4. Even if an asian artist is really good an english they have to look like I don’t know a Nicole from PCD, Vaness Hudges, Cassie, to be remotely successful. Their all half and out of those 3 only one can really sing the other two are their for the looks. I’m not trying to be racist to my own culture but I haven’t seen an asian that looks like boa or the wg that even made a dent in the American music industry.

    I think someday there will be one but right now, no. America isn’t ready yet.

  5. *sigh* michizan, ain’t that the sad truth T___T

    However, I applaud these companies for at least trying. Yes, it will most likely be an epic fail regardless of who they are, but the fact that they are even trying is a noble cause LOL

    Like, even if the reasons behind their American debuts are not very noble (as they are doing this for exposure and money), think of it this way: Artists like Utada, Se7en, BoA, and the Wonder Girls are “buttering up” America for future generations of Asian artists. The whole “Let’s take over America” thing will never stop, so they might as well go for it. Now or never, they always say.

  6. ^
    There’s no harm in trying, even if their not successful their experiencing a culture completely different from their own and can learn and grow as artists.

  7. Is anyone forgetting JYP’s trainees that he has on stall her in America? What the heck happened to them? Lim Jeong Hee was doing perfectly fine in Korea, until bought her here to State to try and debut. JYP is such an ass, he thinks that he knows what he is doing but he doesn’t have a clue!

    He knows that the Wondergirls aren’t ready for America. Their music and looks aren’t all that appealing, and there is nothing new or fresh about it. He seems to think that just because one gossip blog puts them on his blog, Americans love them. He is sadly mistaking. You cannot say that no Asians artists have made it here, because there are quite a number of successful Japanese bands that come here and have quite a fan following, Miyavi came to Texas last week, and last year so did Dir en Gray, and L’ Arc en Ciel, and Puffy Ami Yumi are just so of the Japanese bands that have fan followings here. In terms of Korean music they need to bring something different to the table, and stop trying to rely on gimmicks and popularity. Get out there and make some great quality music, and learn English, stop blaming it on being Asian.

  8. Those japanese artists aren’t successful like the mainstream artists in America. When I say successful Asian artist I mean selling at least 100,00+ album sales in America. I’m talking about being known by most of the American culture. I’m not talking about traveling to the US for a couple of weeks, months, and playing for loyal foreign fans. An Asian artist that longevity that’s what I’m looking for.

    JYP trained them but he didn’t debut any of them, I don’t think just because he saw PH write a section in his blog about WG he’s gonna make them debut. He’s smarter than that he probably had his reason we never know. I never really thought he would debut any of them because they won’t be successful. As with other entertainment companies. Utada, Se7en, Boa are all promoting in the US bit I haven’t even heard them in the radio once.

    America has certain looks that appeal to them and I haven’t seen Asians that looked like Boa, Se7en, Hikaru, WG, LJH, Min, be successful in the music industry.

  9. A word about the following comment:

    “….2PM can function as a dance crew (America’s Best Dance Crew, anyone?) or as a singing performance group.”

    If 2PM were to debut in the U.S., they should ONLY do it as a music act. A “dance crew” backed up by a huge entertainment company like JYPE? That would scream “SELLOUT” to a lot of bboys and bboy crews.

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