Extra! Korea

October 27, 2010

Korean in Will.i.am’s video makes sense. You listening, K-pop?

Filed under: languages, music, rapid cultural change — extrakorea @ 11:10 am

“Check It Out,” the latest video from Will.i.am (a member of the Black Eyed Peas), features Korean written in hangeul, the Korean alphabet.

According to some reports, the Korean actually makes sense. Perhaps he got inspiration, or even proofreading, from when he worked with Korean girl group 2NE1.

Here they are meeting Will.i.am for the first time.

Here they are working on a song in his studio.

“Ke$ha and Lady Gaga will be jealous for this song. … Cool, like Korean fashion. Like foreign. … Like Europe, that’s not foreign. Korea is foreign. You can’t even read that writing. That’s how foreign that sh** is. … People will say, ‘You know that song, you know, with Will.i.am and the girls from Korea, you know, 20 … 24-what? 24-Anybody? No, 2NE1, the song …”

Looks like he sees their “foreignness” as an advantage, and that he definitely had help with the hangeul.

So, if he could have hangeul that makes sense, then there’s little excuse for professional Korean artists to produce things like this:

I wanna gossip girl
I wanna gossip, sexy and pretty
listen boy 1,2,3 go!

everyday 도도하게
everybody 바라보게
항상 stylish하게 나나나나
언제나 자신있게
모두들 미소짓게
어디서나 Spotlight

kill hill 예쁜 높은 구두에
hot pleats skirt
cherry color lip gross

짙은 sense mascara에 흩날리는 머릿결
pretty, sweety, sexy

I do wanna say wanna say wanna say wanna say
날 보는 eye stop it

See the complete lyrics here.


  1. I actually enjoyed those videos. Thanks!

    Comment by ZenKimchi — October 28, 2010 @ 1:16 pm

  2. […] like 2NE1, have members who speak English fluently, and sing in very natural-sounding English,[3] [4] other groups throw out phrases that are either nonsensical or that they clearly do not […]

    Pingback by English as Decoration « Streetwise in Seoul: Mini-essays about living in Korea — November 2, 2010 @ 10:27 am

  3. The “rainbow” actually makes sense in a bilingual sense. The most problematic portion of the verse is probably the title line but even that isn’t that far fetched. Not sure what “gossip girl” is supposed to be but it could be a made up verb as in “i wanna ‘vogue’/’jiggy with it’, etc..”

    Comment by melonbar monster — March 23, 2011 @ 5:40 am

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