Late Korean singer, Kim Kwangseok, is a household name here in Korea for his music, as well as his activism. Although it’s been almost 20 years
since his death, his music continues to live on and be given new meaning.
2/2Courtesy of Mnet Super-star K
By Jin Soo Lee|
Very recently, an unfinished piece by the late Kim Kwangseok’s was revealed. It was just notes on music sheets, with no lyrics. To finish the rest of his work, people started a new project called “Releasing the Continued Song.”There were no limits as to who could participate, and all people needed to do was submit their lyrics online for votes to be cast and for the judges (lyricist Sim Hyun-bo, singer Sung Si-kyung and producer Jung Jae-il) to evaluate. The completed song with the lyrics was announced on Oct 30. There was some debate about whether the song should be completed in the first place. Some thought that it would be more meaningful to leave it unfinished, just the way the late Kim left it, as they were worried the project might do his last work more harm than good. Many fans, however, pushed for the project to go on and surprisingly, the younger generation (those in their 20s and 30s) took a great interest in it.
This might be because the songs are about such universal struggles that it doesn’t matter which generation you’re part of, even though some claim reviving old music is a temporary trend. For instance, many in their 30s may relate to the song “Around Thirty,” which is filled with nostalgia for that particular time. Park Hak-gi, one of the singer’s oldest friends, said: “Kim Kwang-seok’s songs were like a comforting salve for our hearts in times when we were living in a whirlwind of chaos.” The heartfelt lyrics of the late singer are becoming a fresh source of inspiration for young adults, who
are so used to digital sounds. Not everyone may know about the late Kim, but his songs are popping up on social networks and his old tunes are being downloaded and played by today’s younger generation.