So this is a story, all about how… I ended up at a BTS concert at the ripe old age of thirty-one…by choice.
The story of how I ended up in love with k-pop music is a semi long one but I will give you the Readers Digest version. Someone suggested that I watch Boys Over Flowers, two years later I found it on HULU. I fell in love Lee Min Ho. Found some Korean restaurants in the city, was introduced to Jay Park, specifically the song Mommae.
Please understand that we were at this restaurant for a grand total of 2 hours and had been listening to music in the background the entire time, but it was not until Jay Park came on that I actually started to listen. “Siri! What song is this!” I’m a sucker for a good bass line.
Next thing I know I’ve got all of Jay Parks music on my playlist and have removed Drake. This isn’t my first venture into international music. I also have a deep love for Marc Anthony, Carlinhos Brown, and Bollywood OST; they are all vying for their piece of the 15GB of music that is always on my phone. But it is important to note that I have never seen any of these artists in concert. Up until last year, I had never even been to a concert, that I had to pay for; I’m not including the free concerts that I have been to.
Turns out that one of my assistant managers is also a fan of K-POP and while it is much more likely for 24 year old her to go to a concert she didn’t go because she didn’t like going alone. Which is how I managed to convince her that we should go and see G-Dragon last year. Insert moment of evil laughter turned fan girl giddiness.
Now lets talk about this concert for a minute. To say that I was ecstatic was an understatement. After my initial SWAN DIVE into K-POP had ebbed and I was officially just happily floating, back stroking, through all the music that I had missed over the years and trying to catch up, I discovered BIGBANG and all of their solo en-devours, mainly GDTOP and GD X TAEYANG. While T.O.P. is technically my bias with his cute awkwardness, base vocals, and smaller age gap (11 months 24 days younger), I still appreciate G-Dragon as an artist and idol. He has worked his way up to my Celebrity Best Friend- In My Head List. Tickets were only $90 a piece and while they were not in the best of locations I would at least be able to see my celeb bestie from a far. I couldn’t bring myself to buy any merch before the show because as we all know, I am rather cheap and at this point had not had my near death experience which would loosen my purse grip a little.
When we got to the United Center my ticket wouldn’t scan and they told me that we had to go somewhere else. Of course the new addition to UC had just opened so no one knew exactly where I was going. We eventually found it and they informed us that our tickets had been upgraded! Unfortunately the show did not sell out and so they were reassigning seats. The usher that we went to did not look happy about life and I was so happy for my fast talking abilities. You saw where we purchased seats, this is where we ended up…
I was really happy with the upgrade but I was really sad that ticket sales were so low; and from what I can tell and have seen/heard, He was not feeling his best. But I still had the TIME OF MY LIFE!
Now let’s move forward a year (and a couple of months). I have decided to travel to Korea and in looking to see who might be in concert in Seoul while I was there I find that BTS is planning their third world tour and stopping in Chicago. As a joke, I asked my 3 K-POP listening friends if they wanted to go. The 30 year old laughed and said no. The 25 year old purchased tickets and sent me a bill.
Hopefully the ARMY won’t attack me for this. <WHISPER> I’m not as big of a BTS fan as I am other groups. As far as K-Boy Bands go, my loyalties and fandom levels are: BIGBANG, BLOCK B, EXO, Winner, GOT7, Super Junior, SHINEE, BTS. Reason being that I try not to follow trends and I just kept finding other groups I liked more, but I do like them. So I was not upset in the least about going to see them in concert, but not as excited as I was about seeing G-Dragon or as I am about seeing ZICO next week. I definitely was not $225 excited to see them! I mean that’s a BEYONCE ticket! Wait, I wouldn’t pay to see her either…that’s a JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE ticket! That’s a BRUNO MARS TICKET! THAT’S AN EMINEM TICKET!!!
All that being said I had fun. I have new respect for J-HOPE, I still love Jimin and his chocolate abs, and I was able to prove to my mother how much I love her. I didn’t make her go to a single NSYNC concert when I was that age.
The screaming in these concerts is another level. I mean, for the first 30 minutes we watched the music videos that are available to be seen on YOUTUBE and they screamed like it was the first time that had ever seen them. We watched one video TWICE and they still screamed! During the interludes there would be a special video with one or two members being silly. Screaming! “Hello Si-ka-go!” Screaming! First chord to a song SCREAMING!
What got me excited…I was not the oldest person there! And I am not talking parents. There were definitely women in their 30s decked out in RM and Suga paraphernalia, all by themselves. The row behind us, 5 black women, over the age of 40 singing along to every word and screaming. To these women I would like to say…thank you and I HOPE…we do not have to fight over J-HOPE!