Tuesday, April 9, 2019

KIM Soo-chul fast forward

You'd think that would be the perfect day to simply, gently press 'rewind', and then 'play'..., but no, KIM Soo-chul keeps pushing 'fast forward' all the way, because he always needs to project himself toward his next projects.
For the final concert of his return to Hakchon, and on his 62nd birthday, the legend did remind us who and what he is: a great singer, an amazing guitar player, a wonderful songwriter, a multifaceted composer, a producer, a broadcaster, an actor. a genuine artist, and a true star, the kind of sun that brightens your day, makes you laugh or cry along with him.

KIM Soo-chul 20190407 (photos Stephane MOT)
If his hits have rocked and moved generations of Koreans since 1978, Soo-chul is even prouder of promoting gugak long before that was cool (one of his university friends told me that he was actually surprised to see him start with occidental music), and of helping its unique sounds reach new audiences at the 1988 Seoul Olympics and 2002 World Cup opening ceremonies, or with original soundtracks (like the one he composed for IM Kwon-taek's 'Sopyonje'). And yes, KIM is also very proud of performing live at the UN in NYC, of composing the delicate KBS jingle, or the cult 'Chikichiki chakachaka' (animation series), which he even played live on Sunday in Daehangno.

His show started unconventionally, with a lecture that was both fun and inspiring, even if he could have reduced the number of illustrations by half and still make all his points - but such is the man and the artist: always willing to communicate, and to share. 

Then came the concert. Did he bring the house down? You betcha. 'Little Big Man''s old band mates cheering from the audience, KIM Soo-chul teamed up with younger talents on stage: just one drummer, one bass, and one heck of a guitar hero, who jammed for a while with young gugak players, before returning to his greatest hits. A musical and emotional overload ending up in tears, before a touching finale: four songs merged into one, simply delivered by a soft voice, discreet strings, and pure melodies.

Happy Birthday, KIM Soo-chul, and thank you again for this very special moment.

Seoul Village 2019
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