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City Stories : Se-hyung Kim

Written by
Yoo Kyung Kim

Anguk-dong, Kim Se-hyung, musician/guitarist

When did you start busking?

I first started busking around the fall of 2013. I was always interested in music and wanted to become a professional musician, so I taught myself to play the guitar. Of course, since I never studied it in school or anything, the most natural way for me to get an audience was to perform on the street.

Who is your favorite musician?

Someone once told me that Pierre Bensusan is the best living guitarist out there, so I became interested in him and looked up his music. The way his music’s structured was really different from anything I had heard before and both his melodies and rhymes were so unusual and intricate. His music opened up a whole new world for me and it’s inspired me a lot
in my own music too.

Why did you decided to perform in the Anguk area as opposed to anywhere else?

The atmosphere matches my musical style. There are a lot of pedestrians who pass this street on their way to the Jeongdok Public Library. Other than me, it’s a fairly quiet street and I thought it’d be the ideal environment to deliver my music.

Any memorable incidents you’d like to share?

Once this random guy (not even homeless, by the way) kept asking me for money. I told him I didn’t have any money and he peed right next to me as revenge! Another time, there was a radical evangelist who preached very loudly about believing in Jesus. I don’t know what came over him, but he suddenly sat down in front of me, listened to two of my songs and then left after gifting me with 1,000 won. I thought he was going to wait until I was finished to talk about God, but he left… just like that.

By Hayley Kim

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