I am well aware that I’ve fallen down a K-pop rabbit hole these past few months. And I’m quite happy here thank you very much. But I am also aware that there are a lot of other Korean musicians and artists who are producing music that is not K-pop, so I decided to go looking for something different today. More than one music blog I looked at mentioned singer Lim Kim, which was how I landed on “Yellow“.
I’ll be honest, I was completely mystified by this song at first. Simply as a song, I loved it, but I was also very aware that there was a lot going on in the lyrics that I wasn’t fully appreciating. Another Google search revealed that I was right. There is a lot going on in this song. But once again there are a lot of smart people on the Internet to explain it to me. Which is why I now understand that “Yellow” is a scathing indictment of Orientalism and the stereotype that all Asian women are docile and subservient. It also touches on the many ways that Asian art is often either overlooked or objectified in the west. It’s a lot to pack into one song, but Lim Kim does it brilliantly.
During my search I also discovered that Lim Kim was originally a K-pop idol, but left the industry because she felt stifled by the expectations placed on female idols. Her most recent album, Generasian, was released independently, and from what I can hear, she is stifled no more. Her music is personal, emotionally charged, and very opinionated, and I love it. I can’t wait to listen to whatever she does next.
Suggestions for artists I should check out? Please contact me with your ideas. I hope you enjoyed your daily helping of art!