For whatever reason, I was tagged recently in a tweet regarding the K-pop group Solid. It was weird to me because the group had been done since 1997.
— 솔리드 SOLID (@SolidKR) March 6, 2018
Since I saw nothing about this in the news, I thought it was just a fan doing a throwback or something of that sorts. However, recently people started replying to the tweet with excitement about a comeback. So I went ahead and checked the account, and I think it’s legit? Either that or somebody went through an awful lot of effort to pretend they were Solid.
If it happens, this deserves to be a bigger deal than it currently seems to be. For those that don’t know, while Solid lasted just four years, they basically pioneered R&B in Korea, and Ask A Korean recently ranked them #47 on the most influential K-pop artists ever. Why? I’ll let him explain.
American pop music always had a strong influence over Korean pop music from the very beginning. Most major trends in K-pop — the advent of rock n’roll in Korea, for example — had a precursor trend in the United States that occurred a few years earlier, which was later trickled into Korea and adjusted to fit the local sensibilities. But beginning in mid-1990s, the flow became much, much more accelerated. Solid was riding the beginning of that wave. The three members of Solid were Korean Americans from California, and arguably the ones who started off the steady stream of Korean Americans who hit it big in Korean pop music scene — a major trend in K-pop in its own right. A few K-pop artists tried out R&B prior to Solid’s appearance, but none was as committed to the genre as Solid was. With good voice and considerable (albeit not necessarily overwhelming) talent, Solid managed to popularize R&B as a genre in Korea. Strictly speaking, Solid’s music was OK, but not exactly earth-shattering. But they had enough talent and the “it” factor to popularize a wholly new kind of music in Korea — the kind will go on to forming a major branch (or perhaps sub-branch) of K-pop, paving the way for more talented musicians to pursue the genre and transform it to reflect Korean sensibilities. (For example, Brown Eyes.) While no R&B artist in Korea may properly be called “world-class” at this time, the day when a world-class Korean R&B artist emerges does not seem to be too far off, considering the globally increasing popularity and likewise increasing quality of K-pop. And when that day does come, that artist will have Solid to thank.
So yeah, if this is actually happening, I’m quite excited to see what they might bring to the table over 20 years later.
Honestly though, the thing I most remember Solid for is being the namesake of a K-pop forum I frequented during high school. Yes, you spoiled fucks, when I first got into K-pop we used to have to beg for links to shit and then download the shit to watch and listen to K-pop. Get off my lawn.