Long before music streaming platforms were a thing, OG K-pop fans would go through a lot first before they can listen to their faves. We used to list down the tracks we love, burn them on a cd, and play them all night long on a CD player. We would also print song lyrics and compile them in a clear folder—you'll always find this in our bags because break time in school means singing K-pop songs with our friends!
Since we want to support and promote K-pop groups the best way that we can, we also request their songs on local radio stations and vote in the Myx Charts via text message. Of course, there's the highly-anticipated Mnet Asian Music Awards where we witness their *special* performances (like a rock version or a remix of their song) and TBH, mas ni-lolook forward namin 'yun compared to the actual awarding ceremony, LOL.
Gosh, reminiscing all of these make me feel so old! Join me and let's take a trip down memory lane with these OG K-pop songs that will forever be iconic:
1. "Ma Boy" by SISTAR19
A sub-unit of South Korea's Queens of Summer, SISTAR, Hyolyn and Bora team up as SISTAR19 in this number that will make ANYONE do the body wave during the chorus! Somebody said on YouTube: "This song made us all into worms and y'all know it", and she was not wrong, haha!
2. "No Other" by Super Junior
Cue in the kilig! "Sorry Sorry" made Super Junior a household name but it was "No Other" that brought them closer to our hearts. In the MV, the boys each had a romantic moment where you can imagine that you're ~the girl~ and admit it, you squealed louder than you should when you watched it!
3. "Abracadabra" by Brown Eyed Girls
This song's signature move was so iconic that it was featured in another K-pop track! PSY actually paid the copyright fees of the choreographers who created "Abracadabra" so he can add it in his own song, "Gentleman", where Brown Eyed Girls' Ga In made a special appearance!
4. "Bingeul Bingeul (Round And Round)" by UKISS
Ah, "Bingeul Bingeul"—this track's repetitive lyrics made it so catchy and easy to memorize! There was this one time when the song was played on the radio four times a day (yup, I counted, LOL) was all over music charts because it was that addictive. UKISS visited the Philippines in 2010 and performed this on a noontime show and you bet we all screamed (in front of our TVs)!
5. "I Am The Best" by 2NE1
Need a song that will hype you up? "I Am The Best" is literally the *best* mood lifter! The first few notes are enough to make you sway your head and once the beat drops, prepare to wave your hands in the air and channel your inner 2NE1. This track is also a favorite among students when they have to perform during a school event. Relate ka ba? LOL!
6. "Love Ya" by SS501
You may not be that familiar with SS501 but you probably know their songs: From the OSTs in the K-drama Boys Over Flowers to that popular TikTok song, "Making A Lover". As for me, this is the group's number that cemented them as SS501, aka the idols who deserve your attention!
7. "BANG!" by After School
After School is the kind of K-pop group who always try new themes for their comebacks (like pole dancing!). In "BANG", they explored the marching band concept and it was a cultural reset! No one can compare, period.
8. "Heartbeat!" by 2PM
If you know this 2PM track not because of the K-drama,Vincenzo—congrats, you're already old! "Heartbeat" was also featured in the series Zombie Detective which just made it an even more iconic number. Can we also appreciate the orchestra elements present in this song? It's giving me goosebumps!
9. "I Got A Boy" by Girls' Generation
Girls' Generation blessed us with A LOT of remarkable releases but "I Got A Boy" tops my list! That "Ayo! GG!" is living in my head rent-free for more than eight years now and those transitions are crazy intense.
10. "Fiction" by B2ST
IDK about you but "Fiction" by B2ST makes me want to go on a road trip, look outside the car's window, and imagine that I'm the star of a music video. And that's why it's called...fiction, hehe. Kidding aside, the group totally aced this in all areas: The penguin dance step, poetic ong lyrics, and all those high notes. ALSO, I AM TODAY YEARS OLD WHEN I REALIZED THAT THE GIRL IN THE MV IS ACTRESS PARK BO YOUNG!!
11. "Love Song" by BIGBANG
An OG K-pop playlist is not an OG K-pop playlist without BIGBANG, you guys! Although they released soooo many chart-toppers, "Love Song" just hits different. You won't catch me saying "I hate this love song" even if the boys are singing that in the chorus. This song is gold! Other faves that make me emo: "Blue" "Bad Boy", and the LSS-inducing "Fantastic Baby."
12. "Starlight Moonlight" by Secret
Secret was an underrated group back in the day and I still don't understand why. I mean, they consistently deliver bops and can go from cute girls to dance divas! "Starlight Moonlight" is an adorable song with an equally adorable music video and the feeling is just straight out of a fairytale.
13. "Don't Hate Me" by Epik High
A classic from Epik High, "Don't Hate Me" may not be everyone's cup of tea (read the comments section in the MV and you'll see why) but it's a song that will go down in history with its striking message. There are also various pop culture references in the music video and if that's not art, I don't know what is.
14. "Heart To Heart by 4Minute
10 years later and I'm still listening to this gem! 4Minute gave us a long list of ear candy but for some reason, "Heart To Heart" gives uwus on a different level. BRB, wishing it's 2011 again and we can watch MVs with a storyline like this:
15. "Lucifer" by SHINee
The first time I listened to this song, I initially thought it was a bit too overwhelming with all those beats. But the more I listen to it, the more I love it! "Lucifer" belongs to different music genres which makes it a unique track. Can we also talk about the hairstyles here sported by SHINee? Key's shaved head? Taemin's long locks? #LegendsOnly
16. "I'm Your Girl" by S.E.S
Raise your hand if you also discovered this song in EXO's variety show, EXO902014 (or maybe that's just me)! K-pop girl group S.E.S is one of the pioneers in the industry and if you spotted a familiar face in this MV, it's because that's Eugene from The Penthouse!
17. "Mirotic" by TVXQ
Who doesn't know the lyrics "I got youuuuuu under my skin", not to mention "Neon nareul wonhae neon naege ppajeo"?? Many K-pop idols made a dance cover of TVXQ's "Mirotic" on stage and that just screams top-tier! Even if you like new K-pop songs now, you will still come back to this, promise.
18. "U Go Girl" by Lee Hyori
Another track that's a fave song cover is Lee Hyori's "U Go Girl". In case you don't know her, she's the K-pop idol who set the bar high with her songs and music videos. Yes, you go queen! Please don't forget to listen to her other tracks, "10 Minutes", "Bad Girls", and "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang." ;)
19. "I'm A Loner" by CNBLUE
We can't forget a legendary K-pop band like CNBLUE! "I'm A Loner" is such a vibe and it's undoubtedly one of the best debut songs in the industry. Would you believe it's been a decade since its release and the group has recently made a comeback as well? A-M-A-Z-I-N-G.
20. "NU ABO" by f(x)
Let me just share that f(x) were the cool girls you want to become when you grow up because they were such trendsetters! Aside from songs that are certified hits, their style is refreshing and their overall concept is a chef's kiss. Too many "Nananananana" in the K-pop world but "NU ABO" is supreme.
Enjoy all of these songs in this playlist!
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