Girls’ Generation‘s Sooyoung and former TVXQ! member Kim Jaejoong looked back on their trainee days together on the latter’s web series Jaefriends. As seniors from K-Pop’s second generation, they revealed how much the culture among idols has changed at music shows.
During the years Jaejoong was active in TVXQ!, he remembered personally handing CDs to their seniors at music shows.
Even if they weren’t delivering CDs, the rookie groups always went out of their way to greet their seniors. He said, “Or we have to line up in front of the senior’s waiting room and say ‘Hi’ to them.”
That was no longer the case for newer idols. Jaejoong said, “But these days, they don’t even give CDs nor say ‘Hi.’ Or they meet in the corridor to film challenge videos together.”
Sooyoung confirmed that newer idols were “becoming more American style” at music shows. Rather than following old traditions, they were more relaxed about Korea’s seniority hierarchy.
You know, in America. Just like Rihanna and Beyoncé. They don’t consider a hierarchy, but they regard themselves as friends.
Jaejoong even shared the multiple times when younger idols greeted him formally and immediately switched to acting informally. Although Sooyoung and Jaejoong were protective of the old traditions, they acknowledged the new generation’s changes and accepted they “should get used to it.” As K-Pop keeps evolving, the culture among idols is part of those changes.