Playlist Sunday: International Women’s Day
Say what you will about pop music, but people all around the world look to mainstream music and artists for role models. And while we’ll always find negative messages and images, it’s important to highlight the positive ones. That’s why for this week’s playlist, we’re honoring the empowering K-pop tunes to celebrate International Women’s Day (which is today!).
Very few K-pop songs talk about being yourself, so when 4Minute came out with their latest release Crazy about, well, being your crazy self and not giving a damn, it quickly became one of those rare female empowerment songs within the genre. Crazy generalizes the term “crazy” as not normal, and embraces individuality by saying it’s ok to be like that. And what better message is there for women of all ages to just be themselves on International Women’s Day? Also, the song’s overall sound (and choreography, mind you) is very appropriate for everyone to let loose, go crazy, and express themselves.
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Nothing is as empowering to women as one of their own gaining the highest rank in government. In honor of International Women’s Day, I want to highlight Girl’s Day’s response to the election of South Korea’s first female president, Park Geun Hye. Political reasons aside, a woman made huge strides in a very traditional society, and Girl’s Day took their song Female President to celebrate political and sexual empowerment of women.
I’ve been critical of Hello Venus in the past for being less than stellar female role models but they proved me wrong with the release of Wiggle Wiggle. A song inspired by the sexist anthem of Jason Derulo may not seem like much of an empowering song, but Hello Venus have made it so. Wiggle Wiggle is a call for women to dance in the club for their own enjoyment not for the male gaze. The cheap music video backs this up by showing the inauthenticity of everything. The song is brilliantly fresh from the usually generic Brave Brothers. The hip hop bass and bubbling synths make for a surprisingly low-key but infinitely danceable track. The best part being Seoyoung’s battle cry over drums for all the girls of the world to werk.
We must talk about Lee Hyo Ri if we’re talking about women empowerment… The U Go Girl music video highlighted plastic surgery, which can be a touchy subject in many parts of the world, but in Korea, it’s widely accepted and commonly practiced. Many people will have different point of views in regards to this concept, but if changing the way you look will help with your overall self-esteem, go for it. But like the lyrics state, whatever it may be, you need to face it straight on and go in it with full confidence. Why base such things as, how you should do your hair, makeup, what you should wear, off of other people when you’re the one that has to do it? This could’ve been a much more serious subject, but instead of taking it down that road, Lee Hyo Ri turned it into an cheery, bubbly, and fresh song so audiences could digest it better.
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SPICA’s summer 2014 single, I Did It is all about the ladies. The quintet sing about spending an evening with their girl friends to unwind and enjoy themselves after a hard day’s work. Their ladies’ vocals are amazing and the peppy beat and sing-a-along chorus will have any girl pumped up for a night out with their friends. I Did It makes a point of saying that men are not necessary to enjoy one’s self. Instead, do what makes you happy with the people that make you happy.
Every woman ’round the world, hear me
Throw your hands in the air if you feel me
Stand tall, real strong, so let’s go
Show my best tonight
They share a message of empowerment and strength and courage for being yourself and loving yourself; words we can all live by. It also doesn’t hurt that I Did It is completely sung in English as well.
CL from 2NE1 released her first solo track The Baddest Female the moniker that she had clearly made it her own, and quickly became an anthem for female empowerment. At the climax of the song, CL spits out a message to all the women in the world, telling them to be themselves and always be the best they can be.
This is for all my bad girls around the world
Not bad meaning bad but bad meaning good, you know
Let’s light it up and let it burn like we don’t care
Let em know how it feels damn good to be bad
The song talks about being the fiercest you can be without caring for what people and society think. This is the perfect song to feel empowered to and everyone can relate to the message of the song, even if it’s intended for women.
Which one was your favorite song for International Women’s Day? Share your picks in the comment section below and be sure to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr to keep up with all of our posts.