So my lovely new friend @aabxo tagged me in a card she made for the KPop Community where we all sort of introduce ourselves and talk about our experiences with KPop. Well, first off, hello! My name is Dani and I'm from Southern California! I am actually the Fine Arts Community moderator, as I'm a Museum Studies major in college and talking about art (whether it's Spanish Baroque or Fluxus Neo-Dada or even just really cute elementary school art projects or a fun animated cartoon) is something I really love to do! (You can read my intro as an art nerd here: http://www.vingle.net/posts/602616-My-First-Installation-Art-Exhibit-Passage-at-Art-Produce-Gallery-San-Diego ) My interest in KPop actually ties into my love for the visual art world. I found out about Korean pop music when I was in art school. I was studying graphic and advertising design, and I was really heavily into the relationship between art and music. For example, when you think about Daft Punk, you don't just think about the music. There's the lights and the lasers and the robot costuming and the giant platform they play on, and I loved that about French electro. Also, in late 80s/early 90s Hip-Hop, it's all about the gold chains and the Adidas Originals and never enough boomboxes. I love the aesthetic (aka visual) cultures tied to these genres of music, so when one of my friends linked me to F(x)'s "Pinocchio (Danger)", I was seriously sold on KPop culture. I love how colorful and futuristic KPop videos are. Have you ever noticed that almost every music video seems to be shot on some sort of strange alternate dimension? I love the visual risks they take in both their videos and in their fashion. (They're not afraid of kitsch!) Plus, I think the choreography is super fun, and as a total hip-hop head, I love that every KPop group has a rapper. And they rap all the time. Even in the ballads. I mean, come on, KPop. You're crazy. Basically, my love for KPop has taken me to a lot of weird places. I started taking Korean classes, which somehow landed me a job as the only non-Korean working as a section editor and translator for the local Korean newspaper. I had my own KPop music column where I got to attend a bunch of concerts for free and meet a bunch of cool people involved in the 'Hallyu industry'. (The picture in this card was when I was able to meet B1A4 at this year's KCON!) I was a contributing author to a book about Korean culture called "Kimchi For Life". I even helped start my city's annual Korean Film Festival! (You can also read about one of the local Korean culture events I organized here: http://www.vingle.net/posts/542907-Art-Field-Trip-Hangeul-Day-at-Barnard-Asian-Pacific-Language-Academy ! It was so cute!) My favorite KPop group is definitely BIGBANG. I was a pretty casual KPop listener until I saw BIGBANG's "Bad Boy" music video for the first time and then I sold part of my soul to G-Dragon. My favorite girl group is 2NE1 too. Before I knew about KPop, I was obsessed with Diplo and went to so many Boys Noize shows that I lost count, and now Diplo and Boys Noize both work as producers for a number of BIGBANG and 2NE1 songs! I love being able to put on "Knockout" by GD&Top and turn to my EDM obsessed friends going "Guess who made this beat! Seriously! It's Diplo! Mad Decent Diplo!" Anyway, I was also told to give you guys my top five favorite KPop songs. This is going to be a toughie, but IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER, here it goes: 1. "Crayon" by G-Dragon: This is seriously as G-Dragon as G-Dragon gets, and I am obsessed with this music video, especially the scenes with the fake background. (I used to want to be a set designer for children's television shows once upon a time. Don't ask.) 2. "Bad" by Tablo: Tablo's self-titled album was the first KPop album I ever bought! I love how passionate his lyrics are and how Epik High makes really emotionally layered music. 3. "Attendance Check" by Dynamic Duo: Dynamic Duo is by far my favorite KPop unit ever, even if people don't really consider Korean hip-hop KPop. I don't care. This song is my favorite. Go away. 4. "You Look Good" by Verbal Jint featuring Black Skirts: This is the song that got me into the Korean hip-hop corner of KPop. Verbal Jint is so ridiculously talented, and I love when songs in different languages are able to convey a certain emotion to an international audience. (Plus I love the Black Skirts, a one-man Korean indie group. I'd definitely recommend checking him out.) 5. "See Through" by Primary featuring Gaeko of Dynamic Duo & Zion T: At the risk of sounding weird, I love every hand that touched this single. Dynamic Duo, the supppppper soulful Zion T, and the super amazing producer Primary, who I feel is really good at taking the world of hip-hop and neo-soul and re-imagining it for the KPop world. Plus I love the animation in this video. It reminds me of street artist So Me who does a lot of animation work for French electro label Ed Banger Records and Kanye West. Anyway, this was really long. Sorry! I hope you guys enjoy!!