Beyond K-pop: Discovering South Korea’s forgotten beats

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(CNN) — Though Korean pop music — or K Pop — has been making waves worldwide in recent years, it’s not the only sound worth getting to know in South Korea.

One of the best places to hear the country’s lesser-heard beats is the Hyundai Card Music Library, home to more than 10,000 vinyl records and 3,000 music publications, many of which are priceless rarities that highlight Korea’s rich musical history.

“Korean music from the ’60s and ’70s is heavily influenced by Western rock and soul, but by traditional Korean folk music — and the textures — as well,” says Min Jun Park, the library’s director.

Hyundai Card Music Library korean music

Seoul’s Hyundai Card Music Library.

courtesy Hyundai Card Newsroom

In addition to handpicking many of the library’s collections, Park — AKA DJ Soulscape — is also a celebrated music producer, label owner, music archive director and record shop owner.

“Artists come in to listen to some rare vinyl,” says Park. “I see a lot of art school students come in to get inspired. I try to have people get a glance of a diverse spectrum of music, not only in styles but in years.”

To learn more about South Korea’s music scene — K Pop included — check out the above video, in which Park takes CNN Travel on the ultimate Korean music tour.



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