So, a few years ago, I heard that Christmas was pretty popular in Korea.
I mean South Korea. It’s pretty aggressively discouraged in North Korea, on pain of torture. This is not hyperbole.
But South Korea is about one-third Christian, so Christmas goes over fine. In an unusual practice for Asia, Christmas Day is a national holiday. Everybody gets the day off. It’s not really a month-long shindig, as it is here. And people don’t necessarily stay home on Christmas, but rather go out and celebrate with friends.
S.M. Entertainment is one of the powerhouses of Korean pop music, home to such stars as (the now defunct) H.O.T. and BoA. Since 1999, they’ve put out holiday compilations under the SMTown name. Here are two tracks for your listening pleasure.
(This is odd: “Why Are So Many Christmas K-Pop Songs Are About Romance And Breakups.” Aren’t a lot of Western Christmas pop songs also about romance? And rockin’ around Christmas trees?)