South Korean artists have been paving the way for K-pop, or Korean pop, since the late ’80s. But today, the genre has more international appeal than ever before, as evidenced by the enormous successes of Korean acts Psy and BTS. Get to know the voices to be heard during Saturday’s K Pop Summer Nights show.
Hwang Chi-yeul The singer and host of South Korean competition show Immortal Songs 2 has been performing and recording since 2007, but it was his appearance on I Can See Your Voice reality music show in 2015 that catapulted him into stardom. Chi-yeul has won 10 awards and scored hit albums (like 2017’s Be Ordinary) even though his balladry (such as recent single “A Daily Song”) bucks the current pop trends.
Ailee Born in Denver but raised in New Jersey, the Korean-American K-pop singer moved to South Korea in 2010, famous for her televised performances of Beyonce’s “Halo” (which earned her a first-place award on Korean show Singer and Trainee) and Dolly Parton’s “I Will Always Love You.” In April, she collaborated with rapper Mad Clown on the New Jack Swing-style “Thirst.”
EXID Korean girl group EXID (an acronym for Exceed in Dreaming) first gained traction in the K-pop charts with the 2014 single “Up & Down,” and it’s yet to show signs of slowing down. On top of their debut album Street, the R&B-influenced act has released three EPs, all to mounting fanfare, and their latest single, “Lady,” signifies a greater shift toward ’90s hip-hop.
Tak Jae Hoon The past five years have been bumpy for the singer and It’s Dangerous Beyond the Blankets cast member. He was jailed for six months and then banned from Korean TV channels KBS, SBS and MBC for illegal gambling, and in 2015 he divorced his wife of 14 years. Recently, however, KBS removed the ban. Will he revitalize his old band Country Kko Kko’s hits in Las Vegas? There’s only one way to find out.
K-pop Summer Nights June 9, 8:30 p.m., $48-$288, The Chelsea, 702-698-7000.