Well guys- my fellow ARMY and casual fans alike- we did it. Our Bangtan boys are literally taking over the world. The Korean boy band BTS were already sensations but 2020 was truly their year to shine despite the pandemic. They broke tons of records with their song “Dynamite”- including records for YouTube views, Spotify streams and Billboard chart positions. Now, BTS have been awarded the coveted Entertainer of the Year crown from TIME magazine. I’m so proud right now.
As we speak of broken records, I’m going to do my best impersonation of one as I repeat what I know I have said a lot in this blog. BTS are bringing Korean culture in the western world in a way that hasn’t been seen before. They have made significant dents in the past- such as with their charting songs like “DNA” in 2017, “IDOL” in 2018 and “Boy With Luv” in 2019 and of course the amazing speech that Kim Namjoon a.k.a RM gave for the United Nations in 2018- but this year they have absolutely smashed the glass ceiling that international acts have to deal with in western society. “Dynamite” did amazingly well likely because of its bouncy and cheerful nature- which is definitely a necessity during a global pandemic -but it also their first song entirely in English. However, their recently released album BE was almost entirely in Korean (other than “Dynamite”) and it managed to have seven songs from its discography in the Billboard Charts at the same time including two songs, “Dynamite” and “Life Goes On”- in the top ten. They also managed to sell more than 2 million copies of BE in less than 24 hours. Oh, and let’s not forget that they are the first K-Pop group to be nominated for a Grammy award. As you can see, they’re doing pretty well for themselves.
It is amazing to see a Korean band able to crack the western market so well. BTS are incredibly talented and whilst their music and style isn’t for everyone, you have to at least respect them for their success and their ability to appeal to a global audience with their music and their message of loving and accepting yourself. Check out the full TIME article about BTS winning TIME Entertainers of the Year here and if you’re interested in learning more about the band’s music, you can have a read of my list of the 30 Best BTS songs (I did write it before the release of BE though, which is why the fantastic “Life Goes On”- and other music from the album- isn’t included).