Nylon recently published an article called “2NE1 to BLACKPINK: How K-Pop Learned to Market the Girl Group” that breaks down some of the history of K-Pop girl groups and explains how the featured groups have helped to bring the genre to a wider global audience.
The article featured music journalists, music critics, and Korean ethnologists, and these experts explained how girl groups are busting the myths that boy groups are more profitable, more versatile, and more likely to become global stars.
Here’s a look at just a few of the achievements of the groups that are featured in the Nylon article!
1. The Kim Sisters
The Kim Sisters were the first Korean-born group to become popular in the United States! They arrived in America in 1959, and they quickly became popular. They performed on The Ed Sullivan Show, the US’s longest running variety show, 22 times. They even reached #7 on the Billboard Singles chart (now known as the Hot 100 chart)!
2. The Wonder Girls
The Wonder Girls were the first K-Pop group to make it to the Billboard Hot 100 chart! They made it onto the chart with “Nobody,” which debuted at #76 on the chart back in October 2008. Their achievement signaled that other modern K-Pop groups could also make it to the Billboard charts.
3. Girls’ Generation
Girls’ Generation had K-Pop’s first viral hit with “Gee” in 2009. At the time, “Gee” was the most viewed music video by a K-Pop group. Girls’ Generation is among the 3 best-selling girl groups in the world. In 2011 and 2015, no other girl group in the world sold as many records as Girls’ Generation.
2NE1 helped to further K-Pop’s global impact, and they became the first Korean girl group to hold a solo arena show in the United States in 2012. Their video for “I Am the Best” became the 8th K-Pop music video to ever surpass 100 million views on YouTube. “I Am the Best” was even featured in commercials for Microsoft and Adidas, and it earned the group MTV‘s “Best New Band” award.
BLACKPINK consistently proves that K-Pop girl groups have as much global staying power as boy groups do. They were the first K-Pop group to have a music video reach the 1 billion views mark on YouTube with “DDU-DU DDU-DU.” BLACKPINK is also the artist with the most YouTube subscribers, and they currently have over 74 million subscribers. The group became the first K-Pop girl group to perform at Coachella in 2019.
TWICE has achieved tons of firsts throughout their career! Not only did they recently become the first K-Pop girl group to perform at a stadium in the United States, but they also were the first K-Pop girl group to sell over 100,000 online concert tickets, the first K-Pop girl group to surpass 5 million sales with a single album (More & More), the first K-Pop girl group to debut at #1 on BOTH Billboard World charts, and the first K-Pop girl group to hit 5 million followers on Twitter.