Busking on the Streets of Seoul

Programs for this blog post

Arts + Sciences

Authored By:

Sandy T.

The second I stepped out of the subway station I heard a beautiful voice, a bass, and even a drummer. Aer a tiring day out exploring the city, all I wanted to do was fall into the comforts of my bed. However, the voice and the instruments playing to a familiar tune reeled me in and removed my fatigue. I unknowingly walked towards the music, and arrived to a small crowd surrounding three young men. They were playing “Yellow,” by Coldplay and I could not help but stay longer. Before I knew it, an hour had passed and I was still seated on the steps listening to the band which I later found out was named, Jastello

This is only one of the many amazing experiences I have had with buskers. Seoul is full of people performing along the street hoping to one day rise to the top and possibly become a “K-pop Star”, or just to gain recognition. The performances are not limited to only singers; there are dozens

of youngsters dancing on the street, and playing instruments on the street. Two of the most popular locations to find buskers are Sinchon, and Hongdae. Both are university districts, meaning that there are many young students, and workers present who are interested in listening to good music or watching amazing dance performances.

Not only are there performers hoping to make it big, there are also idols who make busking appearances in order to reach out to their fans. I was fortunate enough to experience Eric Nam, a solo artist, busking in the center of Sinchon. Busking is definitely a large part of Korean pop culture, and I hope many visitors can experience the greatness of it.