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Peggy Gou: Gou Infinity and Beyond!

Music with Korean lyrics from the soundtrack of the famous football game FIFA19 and people singing “Itgaehane” together in Korean in foreign clubs are what Peggy Gou is all about, although, she is relatively less famous in Korea than she is all over the world. Let's talk about her music, relieve our new semester stress, and start this semester in a lively way!

Meet Peggy Gou (www.graziame.com)

[Body 1] Who is Peggy Gou?

Born on July 3rd, 1991, in Incheon, South Korea, Peggy Gou is a DJ and producer who is actively producing music globally, but is mainly based in Berlin. She was influenced by her DJ boyfriend in 2009 and became interested in music. Four years later, she learned Ableton, the music production software from her Facebook friend. She quickly fell in love with the charms of DJing, so she went to Berlin, which is famous for Electronic Dance Music (EDM). There, she worked in a record store during the daytime, worked on her music, learned DJing in clubs, and watched performances of top DJs at night. Finally, she performed in Berghain, one of the best clubs in Germany and even in the world, which is also the club that she said she wanted to perform in as the first Korean DJ.

Among the different EDM genres, house and techno are the main genres of Peggy’s music. She works mainly aboard, but she always tries to be connected to Korea. She also wants to make her own music that is different from European house music and refers to her music as K-house.

2018 UK AIM Music Awards Song of the Year (“Itgehane”)

Pitchfork: The Best Electronic Music of 2018

Billboard 12 Dance Artists Who Dominated in 2018

DJ Mag Top 100 (entered as the first Korean DJ)

Participated in world-famous music festivals such as Coachella and Fuji Rock

[Body 2] Just Gou It!

Peggy Gou's music uses classy beats and can be described as charming. Her vocals are attractive and the Korean lyrics that she uses bring mysterious feelings. Let’s discuss to her songs.

Hungboo
This is the first song Peggy ever recorded. Hungboo is a character in a traditional Korean story, Hungboo and Nolbu, that talks about the good deeds that bring people luck and wealth. Korean actor Yoo Ah-in, a friend of Peggy's, suggested making an artistic music video together as he was impressed by her music after listening to the song. The message she wanted to express becomes more apparent after watching this art film, more than just listening to the music. It is about the futility of Hungboo’s life that is changed by money and the irony of society that is determined by money.

Yoo Ah-in dancing in the Art Film of Hungboo (www.youtube.com)

At the beginning of this tune, you can hear sounds of water, birds, several Korean instruments such as a Korean drum, and the voice of a male pansori singer shouting, “Hey Hungboo!” These various sounds mix naturally with sophisticated beats and bring a real Asian flavor. Pansori and EDM go together though they are perhaps a little awkward on the first listen.

It Makes You Forget (Itgehane)

The Album Jacket of It Makes You Forget (www.seensounds.com)


With her biggest hit song, “Itgaehane”, Peggy was on stage at the 2018 Coachella Festival. It feels like one is on a tropical island when listening to the rhythmical beats in the opening. The lyrics are all in Korean instead of “It” and “flow”. She usually writes lyrics in Korean rather than English because she thinks listeners can feel the exotic and unique atmosphere more from Korean. The lyrics have quite a deep meaning for dance music, for instance, “It makes me forget all the confusing troubles of the world” and “They talk and get old while I'm going to be lofty”. Many people shout “Itgehane!” when they are at one of her concerts even though their first language is not Korean, just as Peggy aimed to make a phrase in the lyrics that the audience can sing. The album jacket is also drawn in oriental painting style.

Starry Night

The Album Jaket of Starry Night (www.genius.com)

With her biggest hit song, “Itgaehane”, Peggy went to the 2018 Coachella Festival. It is exciting to hear various sounds that are stacked up from the first clap sounds and simple beats. Listening to this song makes one image looking at the stars in the night sky on a seashore. When the lyrics start with “Like bluer ocean than bluer ocean”, it is dreamlike. It is also catchy that English words like “Ocean! Starlight! Moment! Now! Us!” are the chorus. The song is about seven minutes long so some listeners may feel bored. The oriental painting of Peggy covering half of her face with hahoetal (traditional Korean masks worn in the Hahoe Pyolshin-gut t'al nori performance) on the album jacket is charismatic and strong. In her music video, there are various Korean factors like taekwondo, palaces, cities, and Korean students in their school uniforms.


Music Video Scenes of Starry Night (shootingboard.tumblr.com)

Watching Peggy's live performances on Youtube is also recommended in order to feel like you are with her and enjoy her music more. Though house and techno are not that famous in Korea yet, the Sungkyun Times (SKT) hopes to listen to her music more often. The SKT is looking forward to her next moves since there is much to expect from Peggy, who is talented not only in music but also in fashion and design.

이소윤  allybypen@skku.edu

<저작권자 © THE SUNGKYUN TIMES, 무단 전재 및 재배포 금지>

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