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15 of the Most Powerfully Unique Girl Groups Ever In Music History

22 Dec

girl band

There have been dozens of music groups formed around the world, and there will continue to be music groups out there for centuries to come. Each new act brings in a new wave of interest, and music groups bring us more than one entertainer at a time.  The early heart of the USA began with bands and groups. With the rise of interest in bands, the U.K. made it a phenomenon. Just recently, Japan and Korea have brought that phenomenon to the modern age.

Read my article on Hallyu.

Girl groups tend to be of particular interest, as mostly women dominate the music industry today. Since the 1910’s, the days of vaudeville, females have always managed to grab attention to themselves in catchy musical numbers. Groups were the easiest way to do this, as harmonizing in sync was always a challenge. Those who did it right easily impressed an audience. Of course, in most female groups, a heavy amount of emphasis is usually put on a group’s physical appearance. There’s nothing more attractive than a ton of women with beauty and talent, right?

girl group

And yet, ever so briefly, one female group would rise out of the ashes like a phoenix. A group that just didn’t seem to fit into the box designed for them. Those are the women that are making it on my list as 11 of the Most Powerfully Unique Girl Groups Ever in Music History.

This article is not about fame particularly. Fame is a general description. Fame could mean anything. Many female groups out in the world might be bigger than the ones I’m covering in this article. But “power” to me does not equal record sales alone. “Power” comes in the form of the differences one has made or how one has contributed to the industry. I can tell you right now that many of the most popular girl groups in the world, from the USA to Japan, have all been extremely famous for none other than their good looks. There are three things that usually define girl groups:

1) Enhanced good looks and trendy clothes

2) Melodious, seductive vocals designed to draw in physical attention

3) Relate-easy music that is missing a “personal” touch or any real depth

While all of these traits are not bad, many of them are cheap selling tools and don’t necessarily make a group…Well, unique. Isn’t it better to have high record sales and unique traits?

This is not to say anyone I’m listing is ugly, can’t sing, or doesn’t have music that people relate to. But the groups I’m listing have so much more. I want to give them the shine they deserve. The groups I’m listing are hard to imitate as a result of what they have done for our music industry. With just good looks and melodious voices, it’s easy to make carbon copies in a matter of minutes. In fact, groups have been that classic since the vaudeville days. I’m reviewing those girls that just didn’t fit that standard, capish?

The following list will cover these genres: Rock and Roll, Pop, R&B, Hip-Hop, New Jack Swing, Rap, Dance, Electronic, Heavy Metal, Rock, Punk Rock, Pop Urban, and Country.

This list is in order from the first group to the last group to debut. It’s hard to rank these groups because they are so unique.

1) Goldie and the Gingerbreads

goldie and the gingerbreads

With a name like “Goldie and the Gingerbreads”, you wouldn’t think this group made much of a difference. But they did. Goldie and the Gingerbreads may not be anything special today (or maybe they are), but at the time they arrived on the scene, there were no girls in the Rock and Roll scene. Female bands never attracted a large audience neither were they ever signed to a major label before this group. Yes, the four to five ladies of this band were the first to be signed to a major label. They were the first to break into a genre that was mostly dominated by men. If that doesn’t make them powerfully unique, I don’t know what does.

Even to this day, Rock and Roll is a genre that is notorious for its male artists. But for all of you who don’t know, these women stood out among all the other women who were mostly soloists and sang mostly Pop music, Showtunes, and Soul. They were the first women to be visually seen on live television with instruments in their hands. These women were not dolled-up like the Supremes, but they shined because they took a chance on a genre most women wouldn’t have even dared to try.

They weren’t million-dollar sell-outs. I don’t think the world was truly ready for a female Rock and Roll group at the time. But you rock-band girls can thank these leading ladies for their unique contribution.

The 1960’s was a time when women were really starting to make an impact on the music industry, and the era is considered the Golden Age for female artists.


2) Fanny


Fanny is recognized as pioneering the female band identity and “sound”. It’s a sound that has traveled down even to modern bands like Paramore and The Dirty Youth. They were the first female band to release an album on a major record label. Just like Goldie and the Gingerbreads, these ladies paved the way for future female bands. The difference is that they helped female Rock stars gain the respect they deserved in an era where female Rock bands hardly got any attention or respect. Even David Bowie was a huge fan of their work. These women were the first to be considered full-fledged rockers. Before this group, women hardly played their own instruments, and when they did, they hardly played very well. This group played just as well as all of the other male rock bands.

This band carried controversy wherever they went. Even their name carried controversy, as many people thought of it as a sexual term, though the group insisted it meant to reflect the “female spirit”. This group was also outspoken and hard in vocal sound, which was so unlike the “lady-like” women of the era. Because of their unique traits, these women were said to have conquered even “male chauvinists” charts.

Two of the four members were from the Philippines, so they were probably one of the first major female Asian rock stars in American history. Two members of the four were also some of the only female artists of the time to openly express themselves as lesbian and bi-sexual. They were thus thought of as a “Lesbian” band. This also made them very unique. One heterosexual member stated that even though two members weren’t lesbians, “men didn’t know how to take them” at the time, and many lesbians were attracted to the band.

This group of women were really some of the first ladies to openly express their sexual desires in general. Their song “Butter Boy” was banned from some radio stations because most stations thought the song was “too explicit”. We can definitely say this group had the unique power that no other group showed in the early 1970’s. This group showed that they were more than pretty faces with melodious, sweet voices. They were a power machine ready to chart new territory.


3) The Pointer Sisters

The Pointer Sisters, moved from duo, to trio, to quartet, were the first black group ever to create a Grammy-Award winning Country song. Many Country lovers may know of their song “Fairytale”. Even to this day, many consider this song a Country classic.

Now, they were by no means a Country group. That’s what made this win such a random experience. It was surprising that a R&B and Soul group would break through the industry with one Country song. I think it was the unique way this Country song was sang. They combined the “soul” of the group with the authenticity of Country music, giving Country music the “soul” many artists have adapted today. This Country song ended up being their first Grammy win ever!

The Pointer Sisters were lovers of Country music, and were country girls at heart, even if that was not their main genre.

They made themselves known as a group that was willing to try many diverse genres and styles, which was considered unusual for black group artists at the time. They tried Soul, Funk, and Bebop, but also Rock and Electronic!

This set them apart from other African American groups, and helped pave the way for African Americans to try more diverse styles of music. For all of you African American Country stars, you can thank their contribution to the Country world. The world may have been closed-minded when it came to four African American girls singing Country, but at least they stole a Grammy for that Country song. I couldn’t ignore this group and saw fit to add them as one of the most powerfully unique girl groups ever in music history.


4) The Runaways


If you don’t know The Runaways, you don’t know Rock. The Runaways were said to be the first hard-edged, female Heavy Metal band to ever step into the music scene. Sure, Fanny gave us pure Rock. But The Runaways gave us the edge and the female Rock image. When it came to music charts in the USA, sadly, this group did not do any more than the other two bands, but they became a phenomenon in Japan.

This group is widely known for their unusual Rock song “Cherry Bomb”. It has the catchy hook “ch-ch-ch-ch Cherry Bomb”. This song made them stand out on stages throughout the USA. They did not have the usual image for women. They gave wild performances on stage that were similar to their male counterparts, and they wore the raciest outfits. That was something hardly done in this era in time. They were not standard, that’s for sure. They didn’t portray themselves with the “flawless, feminine” images handed to so many women during the “Disco Era”. Their music lyrics were bold. They didn’t mind being called “Bad Girls”. There is no question about it. They had to make this list of powerfully unique girl groups.


5) Salt-N-Pepa


Salt-N-Pepa is a notorious female Rap group that became popular at a time when men dominated the Rap and Hip-Hop scene. In fact, they were one of the first female Rap groups. Salt-N-Pepa influenced the female image in Hip-Hop culture and Rap culture. Anyone into Rap knows Salt-N-Pepa. Many female rappers and Hip-Hop artists to this day are still heavily influenced by the Ladies of Rap, including the notorious TLC and Lil’ Kim. Even Nicki Minaj and Iggy Azalea get their sexy image from Salt-N-Pepa. Without Salt-N-Pepa, there would be no sexy female Rap songs.

Many feminists disliked Rap and Hip-Hop because many of the lyrics were sexist and many of the music videos objectified women’s bodies. But when Salt-N-Pepa came on the scene, they gave women a new perspective about Rap and Hip-hop. And they gave women and Hip-Hop a new image.

Salt-N-Pepa was no different from the men in Hip-Hop…But that’s why they were so unique. Salt-N-Pepa turned the tables around on men. Salt-N-Pepa were not afraid to wear sexier-looking clothing and were not afraid to talk about sex and men. This took away the “innocent, conservative” image so many modern women were portrayed as having at the time. They were not shy of men, that’s for certain. Thus, Salt-N-Pepa stood out as bold, confrontational women that were worthy of respect in the Hip-Hop community.

They were also one of the few Rap groups that had a female DJ. Even today, most DJs are male. They certainly proved that women could hang with the boys. This makes them perfect for the list of Powerfully Unique Girl Groups Ever in Music History.


6) Dixie Chicks


Very few Country bands get recognized as it is, let alone, female bands. But Dixie Chicks are a name worth mentioning, and they are probably the only female group that gives a respectful nod to the Country music scene. In fact, they are considered the top-selling female band of all time, selling more than 30 million albums around the world! They are also currently the biggest selling Country group in the modern world. They have won 13 Grammy Awards. They are still the only Country band to have two certified RIAA diamond albums one after the other. This is a far leap from the bands before them. You can honestly see that they have made people notice female Country bands.

What made the Dixie Chicks so unique? Well, they came out at a time when the only female bands gaining popularity were either cute, lively girls jumping around in leotards and pigtails or were hardcore women trying to make their name in the Heavy Metal scene.

The Dixie Chicks were originally a Bluegrass genre group. And they used to dress up as cowgirls in their performances. They were certainly a bold, quirky girl group then. Well, someone decided they needed an image change. They were transformed into the Dixie Chicks we know today.

The Dixie Chicks were one of the few successful group acts of the modern age to write and co-write their own music. Many of their song lyrics brought a lot of controversy to their generally conservative fan base. Two such songs, “Sin Wagon” and “Good-bye Earl”, were both controversial.  “Sin Wagon” openly talked about sex. The song popularized the phrase “mattress dancing”. “Good-bye Earl” was a song about the premeditated murder of an abusive husband. Many radio stations removed this band from their playlists as a result. These girls’ bold words didn’t just stop there.

After 9/11/2001, the world was very sensitive when it came to the words “terrorism” and “war”. In 2003, President George W. Bush decided to invade Iraq. One of the Dixie Chicks members boldly announced at a performance in the U.K. how much she disagreed with America going to war with Iraq. She expressed her disappointment with Bush, and even said she was “ashamed he came from Texas”. Many Americans may not have liked what she had to say at the time, but you have to admit, that was pretty gutsy of her to boldly announce an unpopular opinion.

And it’s all of these traits that make them one of the most powerfully unique female groups ever in history.


7) TLC


TLC, to this day, is the best-selling American female group of all time, and the second most successful girl group in the world. They were the first female group to be certified RIAA diamond. They have sold more than 65 million albums worldwide. They have had TEN Top 10 singles, four multi-platinum albums, five Grammys, and many other honors. They have recently had a critically acclaimed direct-to-tv movie based on their success, where two of the members had a hand in the movie direction. You may know this group as the opening vocalists for the Nickelodeon TV Network’s  1990’s sketch-comedy show All That. They’ve even managed to pick up some Nickelodeon blimps along the way.

Now that you know their awards, let’s get down to what made this group so unique.

They were really the first of their kind. Their sound is timeless and define what modern music is today. They were the first females to take a Hip-Hop image and apply that image, normally seen on female rappers, to the New Jack Swing and R&B genre. They spread Hip-Hop to all genres outside of Rap. They exuded all of the sass of Rap, but also the class of R&B.

TLC were tomboyish, unlike the other girls of the era. In fact, they popularized the “tomboy image” most of us know: The cropped tops, the baggy jeans, and the wild hairstyles. They were certainly not afraid to be different.

Best of all, their music. TLC did not pull punches when it came to the messages they spread in their music. They weren’t like Salt-N-Pepa, who talked about how much they loved men and sex. They weren’t like En Vogue or any former pop girl groups, who brought a sweet, seductive imagery to love and break-ups. They talked about real-life situations that most people were afraid to discuss. They didn’t care about using profanity, either. TLC was “playful” lyrically, but “empowering”. The most striking part of this group was the rapper, Left-Eye. She was notorious for her unique raps. That gave their music a personal stamp, and set them apart from other girl groups in the R&B and New Jack Swing genres. Most vocal girl groups did not have a rapper in them until TLC.

TLC never concealed their weaknesses from the public. Many times, they conveyed their weaknesses in their music. But they never made excuses for their weaknesses. TLC encouraged being better and doing better, and unlike most female groups, they talked about social issues that really mattered. “Waterfalls” was one song that comes to mind. The song criticized drug dealing and unsafe sex. It also had a Rap segment that revealed Left-Eye’s own battle with alcoholism. Their music always had a personal touch that made them reach out and touch their fans in ways no group before or after them has.

This group even highlighted the idea that some women DON’T feel pretty in the pop song “Unpretty”, and they were probably the first group to ever make a song like that.

And hey, they knew how to call a “Silly Ho” out when she was acting like one.

These girls also stood out with their colorful music videos and outrageous style, which was not usual among female R&B groups.

TLC was such a big sensation, they were the only female group in the 1990’s that had a member start her own production company! In fact, how many women are even doing that today?

Their success only came to a halt after the untimely death of Left-Eye. If that had not occurred, this group would still be bumping the charts to this day.

TLC set the stage for many Pop, R&B, and Hip-Hop female groups and solo artists who came after them, such as Aaliyah and Destiny’s Child. They even inspired a J-pop group, Speed, and a K-pop group, 2ne1, all the way across the globe! TLC pushed racial boundaries, appealing to all kinds of cultures and backgrounds. You shouldn’t even wonder why these leading ladies made it on the “Most Powerfully Unique Girl Groups Ever in Music History” list.


8) Bikini Kill

bikini kill

Known as the Pioneers of the “Riot Grrrl” Movement in the 1990’s, an underground feminist hardcore punk movement, Bikini Kill was considered the most radical feminist group of them all in the 1990’s. With their fiery performances, hard-core imagery, and in-your-face lyrics, this group stood out in a sea of Rock stars in the 1990’s. This group was not even completely female. 3 of 4 members were female. They had a MALE feminist in their group as well, who was the lead guitarist. And yes, there is such a thing as a male feminist!

Even though they had a male, I still think this group should be considered, considering over half of the members were female. In fact, I think because they had one male, that makes their group even more interesting! One male…In a group with female radicals? No wonder they stood out!

This group didn’t only support feminists, but they were also highly against racism and spoke out against “White Supremacy”, despite the fact that they were an all-white band. This band was against injustices of every kind.

This group pulled no punches. Their music is harsh and hardcore. Even the titles are a little offensive to some, so I apologize if I offend anyone reading this article…They definitely melted away any stereotypes left of women, and they were not afraid of what anyone said about it. They have the sound that flipped right over into the 21st Century into modern-day punk rock groups, especially with songs like “Rebel Girl”.

They weren’t as big as they could’ve been. It was partially by choice. Bikini Kill shunned major labels and the mainstream Rock press. So, you can already tell they were pretty controversial. They are the description of “bad girl”.

This band worked with one of the members of The Runaways! So their sound was inspired by one of the Queens of Rock. It’s no wonder they are just as powerful as the ladies that started it all. Yet, Bikini Kill makes their own impact on the industry, and they continue to stand out in a sea of mainstream carbon copies.


9) Spice Girls


The group that made “Girl Power” happen, taught us to “Spice Up Our Life”, and became the icons of the “Cool Britannia” wave, I introduce to you the Spice Girls, the reigning Queens of the Pop Group industry. Spice Girls is the most successful female group of all time. They are still the best-selling female group of all time. They are the biggest British group since the Beatles. They have sold more than 80 million albums worldwide.

These figures do not include their huge marketing profits. Actually, their global grosses estimate up to $800 million a year in US dollars!

The Spice Girls have broken many records, started many trends (such as the Jack Union dress Geri Halliwell wore), and have pushed international boundaries. Even their Reunion Tour in 2007 was a success!

What made this group unique? Question is, What didn’t make this group unique? This group was unique in all the ways you can describe unique. If you set this group in a pile of group artists, it would not be hard to spot them. Trust me, I did this.

The Spice Girls were originally designed to appeal to young girls. Shocking, right? There were five girls that were marketed as having five distinct personalities so that each consumer could relate to at least one of the girls. The Spice Girls pulled off a sense of individuality and diversity that most groups fail to pull off. Not one member out-shined the other, as a result. This became a strong group in the industry.

Through this diversity, the group introduced the idea that women are diverse creatures. Before the Spice Girls, many women in Pop groups were portrayed as one-dimensional. In this group, we had your girly “Posh” Spice, but we also had your “Sporty” Spice, too. There were enough representations to please every kind of woman, and thus the Spice Girls was also appealing to an older female crowd as well.

These distinct personality traits were specified with matching attire. Melanie C (Sporty Spice) wore sporty outfits, mostly cropped tops, sweat pants, and sneakers. Emma Bunton (Baby Spice) mostly wore baby-doll dresses and her hair in pigtails. These are just examples of the outrageous fashion statements made to create perfectly distinct images.

Their lively, upbeat personalities brought the already infectious music to life. Their music was really unusual when you get down to it. “Wannabe” was the Spice Girls’ break-out song. The song was anything but normal, and it made this group stand out from the very beginning. From the music video down to the lyrics, the Spice Girls conveyed a free-spirited, youthful nature that was often missing in women of the 1990’s and before the 1990’s…Until these women stepped on the scene, of course.

Another part of the group that was unique was their racial diversity. Particularly, they were the only  female group in the 1990’s to include a woman of color in a majority-white group. It showed that two races could play and sing along in harmony. The Spice Girls emphasized friendship and loyalty among women, and including a woman of color made this message stronger. It made the group even more popular around the world.

Unlike most artists, the Spice Girls showed a love for the media-driven industry and they had fun with fame. These girls were all confident and extroverted.

The Spice Girls had multiple talents that made each member stand out. Melanie C could perform a smooth back flip, as you might have seen in the video “Wannabe”. Melanie B was a pretty good rapper who added her Rap stamp whenever she could. Others, like Emma, could sing very well.

The Spice Girls were open-minded women who did not fit the mold of the usual Pop group. But their bold take on Pop culture is something that made the unconventional girl group stand out. Many groups from all around the world tried to imitate them. Many failed to live up to the same height of fame as the Spice Girls. They are just, well, too unique.

You should have known they would make this list. They are definitely five of the most powerfully unique women in the world.




SPEED is the most successful girl group in all of Asia. They have sold more than 20 million copies in just three years. They were the only female artists in Japan to achieve the Dome Tour. They were introduced as the younger sisters of the Queen of “Hip-pop”, Namie-Amuro. Over the last two decades, J-pop music had become a global phenomenon. Due to the rise in interest in Japanese animation, Japanese Pop and Japanese Rock music became of interest, and eventually became a sensation all on their own. Japan is currently the second-biggest music empire in the world. The “group culture” traveled over to Asia in the mid 1990s. As a result, group artists have become the biggest trend in Asia throughout the current 21st Century.

SPEED was one of the groups to come out of the popular J-pop craze. But there was always something different about SPEED in comparison to other girl groups in J-pop. SPEED brought Hip-Hop and R&B to the J-pop group scene. They intertwined hip-hop with pop, popularizing Hip-Hop style in Japan and used more “solemn” expressions on their album covers in comparison to other J-pop female groups, displaying an “attitude” not commonly associated with Japanese girls. Their huge contribution to J-pop is the reason many people call them the “Japanese Spice Girls”.

However, their main inspiration was TLC, so you can probably already guess what kind of image they portrayed. Unlike the girlier Morning Musume and other groups like Morning Musume, SPEED presented a more confident, tomboyish image. In fact, though they performed upbeat songs, they didn’t over-emphasize their cute traits, unlike the other female artists in Japan. These girls expressed themselves in ways that gave Japanese girls, and Asian girls, a fresh empowering image. In some music videos, they even mirrored boy groups from the 1970’s and early ’80s (with the suits and microphones).

They also didn’t fall into the number of female J-Rock groups sprouting in Japan.

At the time, it was uncommon to hear Japanese girls rapping. Today, it’s probably nothing special, but back then, it was very different. They introduced a new style to the Japanese Pop world.

This is also one of the first girl groups to disband and come right back together like glue. In 2008, the members came back together after disbanding in 2000, and vowed to stay together and grow old together. They demonstrated a group loyalty that is uncommon in the “group industry”.

Their fresh, urban image and their undying loyalty is why I added them to this list of Most Powerfully Unique Girl Groups Ever in Music History.


11) t.A.T.u


t.A.T.u is a Russian duo that sang within the Pop and Rock genres. Their music is multilingual, and they have recorded many songs in both Russian and English. t.A.T.u has sold over 15 million records for both their Russian and English albums, and has had one of the “best selling albums by a girl group”. They are considered the most successful Russian act in the world. They are one of the most successful female acts of the early decade. They were the first group ever to be awarded the IFPI Europe platinum award “for the same album in two different languages”.

The group garnered much attention with the song/single  “Ya Soshla S Uma“, which is “All The Things She Said” in English. Music journalists and critics praised the song, and it is considered one of the best songs of the early Y2K era. The video to the song garnered even more attention and controversy. In the video, it showed two girls in school uniforms kissing one another. At the time, it was something unusual, even in the Y2K era, and it was even more scandalous in Russia. The song focuses on a young girl being tormented by society for being in love with another girl. At the time, there were very few songs that focused on outright lesbianism, and there were very few songs like it that garnered the same success. The video received a lot of harsh criticism from the public. Many even considered the video a promoter of “pedophilia”.

This was not their last controversial video. Many videos that followed carried intense messages. In fact, all of t.A.T.u’s videos were bold and daring.

Despite their success, many adults did not deem their “image” appropriate for children.

Their name is an abbreviated form of another Russian word that means “This girl loves that girl.”

t.A.T.u shocked the world in other ways. NBS advised the duo to stay away from “kissing” or commenting on the Iraq War in one of their performances. The girls mocked NBC by wearing songs that said “Khuy Voyne!” across the front, which translates as “F*** the War!” During a break in their performance, they also decided to kiss, blocking their faces with their hands.

Many other controversies followed the group, but one thing was certain: this group definitely was one of the greatest stamps on the pop world. With the controversial image of a Rock star, the group redefined Pop music, and brought a more “rebel girl” energy to the genre. They produced one of the first Pop songs that focused on “lesbian love”. Though the girls have openly stated they are not actual lesbians, their presentation left a unique impact on the music industry.

Yet, even with all of the scandals, their debut album, 200 Po Vstrechnoy, became certified Gold by RIAJ in Japan and still sold over 2.5 million copies worldwide. The album, also named 200 km/h in the Wrong Lane in English, reached the top 10 spots in many Western countries.

Their powerful impact on the Pop world is why they made it on this list.


12) Tsu Shi Ma Mi Re

tsu shi ma me re

As mentioned before, Japanese music has influenced the world. Japanese animation brought attention to many artists in the nation.

Tsu Shi Ma Mi Re is an eclectic J-Rock band. They have garnered attention in the USA through Texas’s SXSW and from performing at Anime Conventions. They are known for their unusual sound. It’s really hard to call them “Rock”, as they are known for their blend of many different genres within one song.

They are sort of punk Rock with some influences of Noise and Pop. Yes, “Noise” is labeled as one of their genres; it’s not meant to be a joke. They combine their sweet vocals with guitar riffs and drums. They have been described as deliberately “ironic”. One example of this irony is “Tea Time Ska”.

Their name even hints at this genre blend. Their name blends the family name of the bassist, the name of guitarist, and the name of the drummer. “Mamire” also means “mixed up” in Japanese, giving a nod to their unusual mix.

This group is also known for their strange lyrics. They have been labeled as “quirky” and “idiosyncratic”. They mostly talk about death, food, and sex, sometimes blending all three within one song! Their biggest irony is their sweet vocals hiding their dark messages. One song that reflects this is the song “No Miso Shortcake” where the listener is invited to eat the brain of the singer. Another song, “Kamaboco (Fish Cakes)”, have all the girls playing the role of food ingredients in a pot, with one ingredient being left out of the pot. “American Hamburger” focuses on a girl who is fat and loves to eat, but is “still beautiful”.

Many of their strongest songs express the inevitability of death.

Their songs about sex carry a unique image, which separates them from the other more “innocent” J-pop/Rock groups that exist in Japan. They are certainly not afraid to talk about a man’s genitals. They even often talk about the consequences of teenage sex and the hard reality of teen pregnancy, such as in the song translated as “Pregnant Fantasy”, which is also the title of one of their albums.

Their strong music style and strange story-telling make them a compelling group that is worthy to be on this list.


13) Hang on the Box

hang on the box

Hang on the Box, shortened to HOTB, is a Rock band that formed in Beijing. This band stood out in Beijing because they were so unlike all of the female artists existing in China. China is known as a conservative country by most foreigners, but these ladies put their own stamp on the nation. They have stepped out of the “feminine” roles usually placed upon women in the nation. Honestly, Rock itself is still an underground genre in China, among males and females.

Hang on the Box is the kind of band that sings about sex and relationship issues in a straight-forward way, also often described as “politically forward”. You probably wouldn’t find too many females recording or performing the songs they do without getting banned. Heck, you probably wouldn’t see too many notable Chinese girls in a Rock band! Because of their bold impression, they were the first Chinese Rock band to appear on the cover of Newsweek’s magazine.

Hang on the Box has been known to talk bluntly about their resentment regarding the Chinese music industry in their songs. They often talk about the “cuddly pop idols”, who are deemed “nice” and “suitable”, and their distaste with such “ordinary” girls. They have stated, “The nice girls don’t play rock, so we don’t need more nice girls.”

The band singer/songwriter has often stated her opinions on the Chinese industry itself. She has insinuated that she deems the Chinese music industry “inferior” to the Japanese industry, mentioning, “The Japanese work hard and keep improving on their music careers, that’s what I admire a lot. In China, people are still conservative.” The band also greatly admires the Western industry, and hopes to tour in Europe. The band has stated, “We feel we don’t suit in Asia”. Despite efforts by the government to snuff the band out, the band continues to make music and tour.

Their music has been described as “cheerful and hilarious, deadly serious, and personally political”. Though they speak fluent Chinese, they prefer to speak English. They are not a band that is afraid to use profanity, which is highly unusual among women in China. They could really be described as one of China’s strongest feminist bands.

This group packs a punch in the Chinese music industry and breaks all stereotypes about China. They are definitely one of the most powerful female music groups in the world.


14) 2ne1


K-pop group 2ne1 is considered a “top-tier” group in Korea, selling 27 million digital downloads in 2012 alone! This group is not just a household name in Korea, but are also well-known and respected among their many global fans in the K-pop community. Their fans call themselves “Black Jacks”. They were YG Entertainment’s break-out group and are considered the second most popular K-pop female group in the world.

What drew people to 2ne1 was their fluency in English. Many of the members have studied in western countries and were able to communicate with western audiences through mainstream western sounds and flawless English, something most westerners were not used to hearing from eastern nations.

Since the Hallyu wave, mentioned above, K-pop has taken over the “group music scene”. “Gangnam Style”, by rapper and entertainer Psy, also made K-pop an even bigger phenomenon.

2ne1 stepped on the scene before Psy became a sensation. In fact, when 2ne1 stepped on the scene, many girls were following the “cute, aegyo” trend started by SM Entertainment’s Girls’ Generation. All of the girl groups were competing with one another to be the next to produce an even better image of “innocence”, something some people felt was missing in the music industry in western countries.

Then 2ne1 burst on the scene. 2ne1 represents the “21st Century” and a “new evolution” of K-pop music. 2ne1 was not “sweet and girlish”. From debut, 2ne1 portrayed themselves as Rap/Hip-Hop idols, which made them more compared to fellow YG boy group Big Bang than to any female group out at the time. These women did not wear the girly school uniforms or the sweet “melon-drop” outfits, neither did they sing with “lighter-than-normal” vocal pitches or with “puckered lips” to emphasize their cuteness. While all of the other girls dressed like twins, 2ne1 was known for their strong individuality. While the other girl groups sang with light, melodious vocals, 2ne1 had powerful vocals. Eventually, 2ne1 grew to express more feminine qualities, but they kept a mature, sleek edge about them. As a result, 2ne1 helped the world take female K-pop groups seriously.

2ne1 showed confidence, edge, and a unique identity. 2ne1 wore bold, bright fashions. They often tapped into even edgier styles by trying Gothic and even Cyberpunk looks. This group brought “swagger” to the modern-day K-pop industry.

This group is also not afraid to use profanity in their music, which is literally unheard of among most female groups in Korea. This group emphasizes “female empowerment” and “standing out, no matter what anyone says”. 2ne1 is one of the groups that have the most creative freedom, and have had more of a “hand” in their music than most other groups. 2ne1’s lyrics have the depth that most K-pop songs are missing. One such song that expresses the depth that other girls are missing is “Come Back Home”. The video reveals a darker side to Korean life that most foreigners may not even be aware of. In the video, the male lead seems to be addicted to a drug. It appears to cause trouble with his girlfriend, played by member Dara. This kind of imagery is hardly seen in most female K-pop videos, trust me. It brings out a burning truth that most people would rather ignore in favor of the innocent bliss found in other videos. The overall video captures people living in a virtual cyber world. It really is a deep video.

In another video, 2ne1 combines a “Gothic” style with R&B, two styles usually not combined.

2ne1 changed any misconceptions foreigners had of Asian girls.

2ne1 gives it hard to K-pop. Is it any surprise that two of their inspirations are two of the most powerful leading ladies, the Spice Girls and TLC?

For those of you who weren’t aware of their huge influence on the Pop world, now you know. 2ne1 was definitely going to make my list of the Most Powerfully Unique Girl Groups Ever in Music History.


15) f(x)


“Powerhouse” label SM entertainment (known as the biggest Korean label in Korea) introduced f(x), the multinational, quirky, unconventional group in 2009. f(x) is an extremely popular K-pop group that debuted just months after 2ne1, and their popularity has seen significant growth in 2014, being labeled as “Hipsters” by American Fuse TV Channel. They are known for having one of the highest number of sales for their physical album copies in Korea, a feat that is challenging in the “digital world”. Music critics usually praise the quirky group for their bold contemporary sounds. Like 2ne1, they were also different from the other “twin-like” groups. Instead of debuting with a cute song, f(x) debuted with the song “Lachata”, a Funk-Pop song, and with a retro-boyish image. Since then, however, f(x) has tried everything…

f(x) is known for their distinct characteristics and strong individuality, similar to the Spice Girls. The only difference is that f(x) doesn’t have to try too hard to be distinct. One member of their group particularly stands out the most: The androgynous member, Amber Liu. f(x) is the most widely known Pop group in the world to have an androgynous member. Sure, there are many groups that try a more “boyish” look as a theme, but this member’s main style is “comfortable” and “boyish”, even in her everyday life! She is often compared to China’s S.H.E. member Ella Chen. Unlike Ella, however, Amber does not often act “girlish”. Tomboyish girls are rare in Korea, let alone, the ones that actually dress more similar to the boys. Amber Liu’s boyish charms stole the hearts of many Korean and global fans, something no one predicted would happen. Some K-pop fans even think she is more handsome than some males in K-pop boy groups! This gave the impression on the K-pop world that f(x) was a group that wouldn’t fit into the “cookie-cutter” K-pop industry, where women were mostly designed to appeal to the eyes of men.

Another similar trait f(x) has to the Spice Girls are their multitude of talents. In fact, f(x) has an even longer list of talents than anyone on this list! Some play guitar, piano, the drums, dance, sing, ice skate, act, and can perform acrobatic flips, to name a few. Victoria is seen performing her famous, flawless flips onstage and in the MV “Chu”. When f(x) debuted, they were advertised as “Asia’s Best Female Dance Group”, emphasizing that this group would have strong choreography. They received a lot of praise for their complicated dances.

The biggest trait that makes f(x) stand out in Korea is the fact that over half of the members are…Well, not Korean! Amber Liu is Taiwanese-American, born and raised in Los Angeles, California, USA. Krystal Jung is Korean-American, born in San Francisco, California, USA, though she has lived in Korea mostly her whole life. Victoria Song was born and raised in China. The two other Korean ladies, Luna and Sulli, are not even from the same city! With this mixture, there were many language and cultural barriers the group had to overcome. f(x) was one of the first well-known female multinational groups in the world.

This strong multinational reputation was made even stronger when Victoria, the Chinese member, was placed as the leader of the group!

At one time, the girls had a hard time communicating with one another. Krystal spoke both English and Korean, so she helped Amber understand the other two Korean girls and helped the Korean girls understand Amber. Amber spoke a little Chinese so she communicated with Victoria. Still, two of the girls struggled to adjust to a completely new country. It was especially overwhelming for the leader, Victoria, who was expected to speak on behalf of her group, but wasn’t as fluent in Korean as other members. Yet, f(x) overcame this obstacle. They managed to convey a “chemistry” that would usually be challenging in a multilingual group. This makes f(x) appealing to many nations outside of Korea, as they have three completely different national influences, and are least likely to be biased or prejudiced when it comes to foreigners.

Even their debut song, “LaChata”, reflects their international influence.  The title of the song is in reference to the Portuguese word “Chata”, which translates as “boring”.

f(x) is known as a group that changes styles all the time. They are known as a group that “never follows the trends”. I would rather say they are a group that steps into new styles comfortably and with ease, even when they are following the trends. They are unique most of the time without even trying.  Mostly, they are not as deliberate as other unique groups. f(x), their name, is a mathematical function. If you insert a number in place of the variable “x”, it can become anything. f(x) is the kind of group fans always expect the unexpected from. f(x) changes their image every comeback. They are known for their eclectic sense of style and their “experimental, boundary-pushing” sound.

Their music is anything but normal. They are, in fact, avant-garde, which makes them stand out not only in Korea, but among groups around the world. And not just with sound, but lyrics. f(x) is known for their strange metaphors, like in the song “Rum Pum Pum Pum”. The song compares first love to a growing wisdom tooth.

What really helps f(x)’s album sales are their creative album covers. The cover of their 2013 album, Pink Tape, drew attention to itself because it was designed to look exactly like a pink VHS tape. From front to back, the boxed cover could easily be mistaken for a 1990’s VHS, and many people bought the album just for decoration.

f(x) is also known for sounding more like the boys than the girls, and have been compared to “brother” group Shinee in sound.

f(x) really made a statement when they underwent another transformation for the song “Red Light”. f(x) was known for their colorful MVs and quirky fashions. The “Red Light” video showed the girls as fierce, dark, and sassy. They were noted as not following the “feminine, sexy” girl group trend that has been emerging in Korea. They had a distinct military-style, and started many fashion trends with their MV and teaser photos, such as the bowler hats, the eye-patches, and the “one-eyed” make-up. The video itself was controversial. It was meant to be a social-conscious song with a deeper meaning “other than love”, as member Luna pointed out. Between burning books, ringing phones, two-colored-eyed cats, and strange mannequins, the video garnered much attention, gaining 2 million views on Youtube within two days! It is possibly one of the most unique pop songs in the world. The strange chorus transition also made it stand out, as it gave f(x) that unique quirk they are known for. To add, the song received controversy when KBS, a broadcasting station in Korea, deemed the song unsuitable for broadcast because the song used the word “Caterpillar”, which was in reference to an American diesel-fueled organization of the same name, also abbreviated to CAT.

f(x) is also a group that is known for having a little more creative freedom than the other girl groups, especially when it comes to style and music. There are just certain things f(x) can pull off and get away with that other female K-pop groups can’t.

f(x) certainly knows how to keep their fans on their toes, and it is this “element of surprise” that helps them make it on this list of 15 of the Most Powerfully Unique Groups Ever in History.


So, that’s all folks. Leave me a comment and let me know what you think of the list. Do you agree with the list? Are there any other powerful groups in the world that you feel should be added to this list? I will be updating as I discover more unique groups. Were there any artists you were introduced to because of this article? Please share your opinions in the comments’ section below.

F(x) Fans concerned: SM Treats F(x) Unfair, and Treats Juniors EXO BETTER?

10 Apr
Help Us! Help Us!

Help Us! Help Us!

f(x) Pink Tape Review 

f(x) the Korean “Spice Girls” + Amber Liu in the Spotlight

f(x) and Venus

f(x) Around the World

Yes, I know. I posted an article last month about f(x) and how we f(x) fans beg SM to give us more f(x). I ranted and raved (well, not really) about how f(x) is being ignored in favor of their juniors.

I also had a peeve about their talents not being conveyed to the fullest potential possible…which I still have a qualm with.

But this time, I’m going to take a new approach to this whole matter. Squash the old article. Squash it like a bug.

I’ve been thinking a lot and doing more research lately. I was once one of those people who just couldn’t fathom why, after 5 years, a group like f(x) never had a concert tour. Was it…

1) The fact that f(x) isn’t very popular?

2) The fact that SM is just ignoring them for newer, fresher, younger groups?

At one time, in my two-month fandom life, these things were brought into question. But after evaluating both questions thoroughly, I realized that my original conclusions were sorely missing the bigger picture. I decided to do what most people can’t trust themselves to do without feeling naive. I decided to put myself in SM Entertainment’s shoes and f(x)’s shoes. Suddenly, I was no longer a fan, but a true idol…in my mind. In fact, I pretended, in my mind, to be each member.

I found that the first concern holds no base.  F(x)’s popularity has been proven. After all, even I, a simple American, know about this group. Many of their music videos on youtube have millions of views. That’s called popularity. Their albums have made millions. That says popular. Imagine if thousands of people were in your house. That would be a lot of people. Millions of people would be even larger! Artists with half of their popularity have had concert tours, such as Puffy Ami Yumi. F(x) IS popular enough to have a tour. So that’s squashed.

Second Concern: While I will admit that SM is always looking for newer, fresher faces, I can see why they consider EXO a good candidate. I can see why because there is ONE MAIN REASON I think SM is supposedly “ignoring” f(x):


Now, before you strike, let’s consider this. I’m not here to let SM get away with anything. I’m not the hugest supporter of companies, neither do I have blind belief in any business. I know that there are some things that SM has to take responsibility for. BUT humans are irrational sometimes too, and that goes for fans of K-pop as well. When I say that f(x) has too many foreigners, I’m not out to make SM into a prejudice company. When I say that f(x) has too many foreigners, I realize how this affects the way things are done and how much progress the group makes. Here are common complaints:

1) F(x) doesn’t have a concert tour, but juniors like EXO do.

2) F(x) doesn’t have a fan name.

3) F(x) only has one comeback a year.

4) F(x) gets less promotion than other SM artists.

Let’s address issue #1.

Issue #1-No Concert Tour, but EXO has one?

Now that everyone has heard the news about EXO’s tour, f(x) fans go into a frenzy. It seems completely obvious that EXO is getting the “royal treatment” and f(x) is being treated like a second-class citizen. EXO has only been out three years and has a concert tour on the way and an official “fan name”.


But there is a solid reason. They have a slight advantage.


EXO has TWO Versions of itself: EXO-K and EXO-M

EXO has an all-Korean boy version: EXO-K. EXO-M doesn’t even have to work that hard. F(x) is splashed with foreigners, including foreigners who struggle with the Korean language, and they don’t have an all-Korean version of themselves. Creating music takes time, contrary to what most people believe. But imagine a foreigner trying to make Korean music. Songs have to be written, translated, understood, and then MEMORIZED by the members so that they can be performed for all of us to enjoy, which holds the other Korean members back. THEN, after memorizing at least ONE song, they can finally match some choreography with it for a video or performance. This only includes one set of dance moves and one video, by the way…

Now imagine having to memorize new Korean songs AND remember all the old Korean songs for a long, city-to-city TOUR. That would not only take a long time for someone who is clumsy with the language like *cough* Amber *cough*, but also it would slow down promotion.

We have the all-Korean EXO group, whose members were all born in Seoul, who help promote EXO-M. EXO-K speaks the language, they understand the culture, they are hot boys… And we have the quirky, multi-cultural f(x), whose members barely know how to eat with chopsticks *cough* Amber *cough* and aren’t the “hottie” types. Who would you promote in Korea if you were SM?

American companies do it all the time. We have popular foreign artists in America, but the ones that speak excellent English obviously get more attention. Why? Simple. Because Americans understand the language, and companies don’t have to work as hard to assimilate them. EXO-K takes half the amount of time to get an album off the ground in comparison to f(x). They don’t have to translate each song and try to understand it. Memorizing is easy for them because Korean is their first language. So, what do we get? Album after album, music video after video, and a major concert tour. Lucky natives. EXO-M can easily just promote themselves in China…or feed off of EXO-K’s success.

While I would think this would be obvious, most fans don’t see it this way. They often forget that Korea is across the globe and not in their backyards, considering how convenient it is to access K-pop. Some remember how far Korea is but they’re not aware of the foreigners in the f(x) group. Well, I’m here to inform you. At the end of the day, Koreans are Koreans, and they will support their own kind before they support a foreigner. Let’s not live in a bubble. I have to even admit that what drew me to f(x) was the fact that my ears perked up when I heard Amber’s English and realized that I could understand it…It’s going to be the same for Koreans.

If anyone remembers that Korean Festival that was mentioned in Invincible Youth, you remember that they mentioned that the festival was to weed out western influences…To “save their culture”…

AND GUESS WHAT? BoA Kwon, the Princess of K-pop, didn’t HAVE HER FIRST KOREAN TOUR until LAST FREAKIN’ YEAR, and she’s been under SM Entertainment since her debut in 2000!

Next issue…

Issue #2-F(x) Doesn’t Have a Fan Name

Why this is important to anyone is beyond me. Britney Spears doesn’t have a fan name, and she is the Princess of Pop music. I get that most Korean groups have nicknames for fans, but f(x), to me, isn’t just a Korean group. They are an international group that doesn’t need to belch out a cheesy nickname like they’re some baseball team. This is the very thing that makes f(x) unique. Nothing HAS to be official with them, we can call ourselves anything we want to. Now isn’t that more fun?

Issue #3-F(x) Only Has One Comeback a Year

This goes back to what I was saying about the concert. F(x) has to write, translate, and memorize the Korean songs. While three of the members may catch on quickly, two of the members will need more understanding. To sink this in people’s brains, I’m going to post a recent interview with Amber on April 1, 2014. She put it simply: It’s a tedious task. Go on, watch and listen for yourself.

Let’s think about the song “Good-bye Summer”. That song was originally written by Amber. But notice the English title is “I Just Wanna”. More than likely, this song was originally written and sung in English. It had to be translated, re-written, sung, and fit with the Korean language and music sound.

Now, if f(x) members had to go on tour, they would have to memorize a song like this one, along with many others. So now Amber and Victoria would have to learn the pronunciation of this ONE song, and then, once they pronounce everything right, they would have to memorize it, and then see if they can perform it with the choreography… If they had a tour, they would have to go back into the archives and remember old songs, songs that they had a tough time memorizing to begin with! Do we see why they only have one comeback a year? I hope I’m making this clear.

It’s also clear why Amber didn’t sing in “Good-bye Summer”, though she wrote the song herself…

Issue #4-F(x) Gets Less Promotion Than Other SM Artists

This one makes me laugh until I crap all over myself.

We have Amber as the MC on We Got Married Global Edition. We have Sulli, Victoria,  and Krystal filming for dramas and posing for ads. Luna has been on Immortal Song 2 how many times? Everything that f(x) gets involved with has millions of views because they have so much personality.

They just finished a photo shoot recently!

We definitely can’t say they get less promotion individually, but maybe not enough promotion as a group.

But again, promotion as a group requires there to be a song that is written, composed, translated, and memorized in order to be performed over and over again at select venues. How can this happen often at a rapid pace when some of f(x)’s members can barely read Korean, let alone write it? Personally, they might have better success in China! Then again, that’s where Sulli and Luna would struggle. Krystal has been around, and she seems to catch on to languages quickly.

That’s like when the non-English girls came to America. People were so angry that none of the girls interacted with fans except for Amber and Luna. But Amber was born and raised in America. Luna was Amber’s roommate, so I’m sure she’s learned more English than the others. Krystal speaks English well, but she’s been living in Korea since she was six! She was raised there! Her culture is still different. But fans couldn’t wrap their minds around the fact that sometimes the idols weren’t being rude, they just have different ways of displaying manners. In this case, they also can’t wrap their minds around the fact that f(x) has foreign members that won’t adapt easily to a new culture.

Look at how BoA was treated when she came to the USA. BoA had a thick accent and barely understood the culture or language. She came out with a USA movie, but how many years has she been working on her American impact? FIVE YEARS. The same amount of time that f(x) has been working on their music. In fact, most of the foreign artists have a harder time coming out with music at a rapid pace and having tours as frequently. Look at Super Junior-M and Electro Boyz. Look at Ailee. Let’s keep it 100% real. EXO-M may eventually suffer the same fate. I don’t honestly think they would be able to stand without EXO-K.

I’ve been watching anime RAW for 12 years now. I’ve learned a lot of phrases, but have I mastered the language? NO. My friends have been taking a foreign language for years, and I have a family member that has lived in Japan for 2 years. Has that family member mastered the language? No. One of my friends is just starting to get the hang of writing the language in it’s actual form rather than with Latin lettering!

So please, before we burst with conspiracy theorizing and flying off in a tangent, let’s step back, and look at the bigger picture.


While f(x) may not come out with tons of singles, albums, and concerts every year, we get the satisfaction of knowing that they will take their time to come out with QUALITY work. What matters most? The quantity of how many albums, singles, or tours every year? Or quality work, where they have months to find inspiration for great albums like Pink Tape?

I would rather take the latter. I also have full faith that when f(x) finally does come out with a concert, they will all be fully confident in their abilities, ready to take on the challenge of traveling from city to city, and it will be BIG news considering how long f(x) fans have been waiting. It will also be a concert that is amazing to see because there will be so many songs to hear and so much time and effort will be put into making it an entertaining time. Just look at the bigger picture, then the present doesn’t seem as bad.

So f(x) fans, this is just some words from Generation Next for you to think about. Okay, maybe EXO does get better treatment. But EXO has a Korean group. F(x) is a bit foreign and strange. But isn’t that what we like about them?

F(x)’s Potential

The one thing SM IS guilty of is not allowing the girls’ talents to shine. The girls all have amazing talents that aren’t being conveyed. I posted some articles meant to put some shine on f(x)’s talents.

Just how Talented is f(x) Sulli?

Just how Talented is f(x) Victoria?

Just how talented is f(x) Amber?

Just how talented is f(x) Krystal?

Just how talented is f(x) Luna?

Even though some of the girls struggle with the Korean language, hopefully, the girls’ talents will speak for them. After all, music is a universal language.

Leave me a comment and let me know what your opinions are!

And don’t forget to help me trend #bfx2us on twitter, instagram, facebook, tumblr, reddit, pinterest, wordpress, or any other website you can think of…heck, I’ll even go with Myspace if that’s still around.

Still going crazy over Exo-M member Kris and his decisions? Read a good article on it:


Still going crazy over Baekhyun dating? Read an article about that:

Baekhyun’s Dating affects Ticket Sales

f(x) TV #1: Watch f(x) as They Experience the USA!

30 Mar


VOTE FOR F(x): VOTE Click!


f(x) month is coming to a close. *cries* So, for the last two days of f(x) month, I’m going to be showing you some entertaining videos of some of f(x)’s adventures! So grab some popcorn, stuffed animals, and cozy under the blankets or on the couch.

Today, I’m going to be showing you f(x)’s adventures in the USA. Some really entertaining stuff here. I hope you enjoy! f(x) fighting!

And don’t forget to #bfx2us to twitter, facebook, instagram, and youtube. Thanks for supporting! 🙂

Look out for f(x) around the world!

Don’t forget to read:

F(x), the Korean “Spice Girls” + Amber Liu in the Spotlight

f(x) Pink Tape Review 

f(x) and Venus


f(x) has a NEW MEMBER: Actress Anna Kendrick! Watch f(x) on Funny or Die!

f(x), 1st K-pop group to Perform @ SXSW!

f(x) Performs @ SM TOWN New York and LA!

f(x) Performs @ M! Countdown What’s Up LA? 2013

I hope you enjoy! Thanks for watching! #bfx2us

f(x) the Korean “Spice Girls” + Amber Liu in the Spotlight

f(x) Red light Review

f(x) Pink Tape Review

f(x) Summer on GN!

Which f(x) member are you? quiz

f(x)’s charm and Venus

f(x)’s Ideal Types by Sun and Mars

f(x) Around the World

f(x) in the USA

f(x) on Olleh: Korea’s most Unique Girl Group

Just how Talented is f(x) Sulli?

Just how Talented is f(x) Victoria?

Just how talented is f(x) Amber?

Just how talented is f(x) Krystal?

Just how talented is f(x) Luna?

GN’s Top 10 F(x) songs (so far)

Girls’ Generation vs F(x): Chocolate Love

Why does GN love f(x) so much?

Who is your f(x) bias?

Funny Reaction videos to f(x) “Red Light”

GN’s LEAST FAVORITE f(x) album?


USA’s Nylon writes about Girls’ Generation’s Jessica and F(x)’s Krystal, Jungsis!

F(x) Amber and Got7 on We Got Married Global! Which man wins Amber’s heart (Natal chart reading)?

F(x) Gets treated unfair by SM? And EXO is treated better?

Make Your Move, SM’s first American movie has songs from F(x) and Girls’ Generation in it!

F(x) Amber, a part of androgynous inspiration!

The Korean Wave

Venus signs and Love Stories, F(x) Amber Liu is mentioned

Music Core, f(x) mentioned

Jackie Liu, Amber Liu’s Sister, Gets Hurt by Fan

f(x)’s Amber in a parody Korean drama for A Song for you!

SM TOWN WORLD TOUR 2014! f(x) will perform!

F(x), The Korean “Spice Girls” + Amber Liu in the Spotlight

21 Feb



f(x) pinocchio group picture (1)

Yes, I did. I called them the Korean “Spice Girls”. That may irritate some of you, and I apologize if I have offended anyone. They are their own group. But I have no problem comparing them to the Spice Girls as a HUGE fan of the Spice Girls. I love F(x) for the very same reasons I love the Spice Girls. There are some things that they share, and it contributes to their success. Spice Girls was a successful all-girl group from the UK that became international. F(x) has the same appeal to me, and I think they have the same ability to make it internationally.

I also sometimes call them the female SHINee, but that’s a story for another day…

With f(x), I have officially been swept into the “Korean Wave”.

F(x) is a multi-cultural, multi-national, all-girl group formed by the “powerhouse” Korean label, SM Entertainment. The girls come from various backgrounds, and it contributes to their wide-range appeal. Victoria, the physically flexible leader of the group, and born Song Qian in English spelling, is from China. She is fluent in Chinese, and recently, Korean. Amber, the charming tomboy, is from California, USA, and she is of Taiwanese descent. She is also fluent in Chinese, as well as English, and recently Korean. Krystal, the sassy sister of Jessica from Girls’ Generation (SNSD), is also from California, USA, and is of Korean descent. She speaks fluent English, Chinese, and Korean. She has lived in Korea since she was six, so she’s more fluent in Korean than Amber. Sulli, the baby-faced, cutie-pie, born Choi Jinri, and Luna, born Park Sun-Young, the beautiful dancer and powerful vocalist, are both South Korean natives. They have all learned to speak Korean and Chinese. Some are still working on their English. All of the girls are also working on their Japanese.

With all of these languages fluctuating in this group, I wonder how they can even communicate! But the best part about having so many girls from different backgrounds is that they have a lot to share with each other and a lot to learn from one another. This improves their social skills, as it allows them to be aware of the various cultures they have to contend with if they expect to be international superstars. This also helps them to keep an open mind, which thus, helps them to adapt to new styles (both image and genre) and learn new skills quickly.

Aside from their multi-cultural backgrounds, the girls are also known for their distinct individual image styles, as well as their array of talents. Many of them not only have vocal abilities, but dancing, acting, and even rapping experience! Many play instruments as well. Amber and Sulli play guitar. Amber also plays the drums. Krystal plays piano. Amber and Luna are also known for having song-writing abilities, particularly with the song “Good-bye Summer” and “Medicine”. Victoria is known for her physical flexibility. In this way, they are also like the Spice Girls. The Spice Girls had a multitude of talents, including the rapping skills and flexibility (Mel B as the rapper and Mel C with the back flips)!

Their images are very distinct. From androgyny, to cute, to flirty, to trendy, they convey many different ways of being a girl. In this way, they are very much like the Spice Girls. F(x) even has their sporty spice (Amber) and a Baby Spice (Sulli)! In both groups, the oldest members are the leaders (F(x)’s Victoria and Spice Girls’ Geri). And they both have that one member that seems stuck-up or “Posh” to most people (Krystal and Posh Spice Victoria). Heck, they even both have members named Victoria! These distinct images allow each member to stand out, and it gives each member value in the group. Individual images allows the people viewing the music video and performances to distinguish the people they are watching and select the one that relates to them. This allows people to see each member as individuals. When all the girls look alike, the prettiest will stand out, and the individual beauty of each member is lost. Thank goodness F(x) doesn’t have to worry about that!

Also, just like the Spice Girls, they lost a member due to scandals and malicious news, as well as fans making one member feel less significant. Sulli left the group, but I still consider her a member. She didn’t leave on bad terms and she still says she’s friends with f(x). She even cheered for f(x)’s recent comeback. It was the same way with Geri. I have a feeling Sulli will return one day, just as Geri did.

The name of their group, F(x), is a play on their diversity. F(x) is a numerical symbol, which is why they are also often called The Function Girls. The “x” in parenthesis can represent any number, so the girls feel this fits their group because it conveys that they are a group that tries many styles and music options. In this basic f(x) case, the “x” also represents their female X chromosomes.

Just how Talented is f(x) Sulli?

Just how Talented is f(x) Victoria?

Just how Talented is f(x) Amber?

Just how talented is f(x) Luna? 

Just how talented is f(x) Krystal?

Their upbeat and friendly music also adds to their appeal. Their music relates to people of all ages, cultures, sub-cultures, and genders. It’s very lively, and it conveys the lively and friendly spirits of the girls themselves. Even though I am an English speaker, and an African American, I can easily relate to their songs. It helps that they have native English speakers singing and rapping in their songs. Those are the parts I understand best. This contributes to why I can relate to their music so well. I’m sure other people feel the same way. Their catchy and wholesome songs make their music likable to children, but sexy, expressive, and neutral enough to be liked by older people. Even men enjoy the songs, though I’m sure they enjoy the pretty girls, too.

F(x) is known for having music that is quirky, unconventional, and experimental. No one ever knows what to expect from them. This is why they are so much fun. Anticipation is high for them because people know whatever they do, it will be different from anything heard.

F(x) can pull off any sound and image. They can be cute, but still maintain a little edge. They can be edgy, but not explicit. They can be sexy, without being slutty. But if they were slutty, they would still display talent rather than letting themselves be completely objectified.

All of the above brings me back to the reason why I find them to be just like the Spice Girls, and why I can see them having an international appeal. However, I feel that F(x) has challenges that even the Spice Girls have yet to deal with, and it’s what makes F(x)’s experience very different than that of the ’90’s pop group.


Unlike F(x), the Spice Girls, as diverse as they were, all spoke the same language and came from the same place. F(x), though they are all Asian, have to deal with language and cultural barriers. Chinese manners are different from Korean manners, and they are both extremely different from American mannerisms. The members have to bridge cultural gaps often in order to understand one another. Sometimes, this can be a very lonely and isolated experience. I’m sure misunderstandings have occurred more often than not. It is also hard to promote themselves in foreign lands because of these cultural and language boundaries.

Because some of them aren’t Korean natives, it takes longer for them to write, compose, and memorize the music. This is probably why they have to wait so long to come out with singles and albums, and also why promotion is slower. This is also probably one of the reasons they only recently had a concert tour in 2016 (7 years after debut).

F(x) in Kenya, Africa!

F(x) in Kenya, Africa! Amber is killing me with the dress! XD She looks so…so…pretty!

But this is a good thing! This challenges the girls to learn the same languages, and encourages them to accept new ways of living, as was mentioned before. They are also not likely to fall into bias or stereotyping others, and can see people for who they really are.

Another challenge they have is their personality differences. This is what every group has to deal with. Having different backgrounds and cultures are hard enough to deal with, but there are two American girls with the same culture, and they have totally different personalities! Since most of the girls dorm together, I’m sure this is very challenging. And yet, the girls seem to enjoy each other’s company and seem to be relatively comfortable with one another, despite all of these differences. I think it’s because of Amber. She’s a social butterfly! She can put anyone at ease because she’s just so…herself

Which brings me to my next point. The K-pop scene is very different from the UK scene the Spice Girls are used to. This is somewhat due to culture differences. In Korea, in this day and age, most artists are in groups. Not only are most artists in groups, but most of them have “standard” music sounds and images. Most of the pop artists of Korea have similar-sounding music where dance is highlighted more than vocal abilities. Most of the promoted music is lively and upbeat, rather than meaningful and contemplative. This may not be the case at all if you buy the album, but you won’t see a music video that is too boring, that’s for sure.

What’s really obvious in the industry is the “standard” concepts. Almost all of the boys have cute haircuts, skinny jeans, and can dance. Most of all of the girls wear cute and trendy fashions that highlight the legs and thighs, though most don’t show cleavage. Cute and innocent concepts dominated the K-pop scene at one time, but many groups are also adopting more “sexy” images.

Another thing (which is obvious) is the fact that most of the female groups are…well, Korean. They will be easier to promote than f(x) and may have more music videos, albums every four months, and tours…which means more Korean fans for them. F(x) has to  move at a much slower rate because most of them are foreign. Yet, they still are a very popular group.

Why do I like f(x) so much? Click me to find out why…

F(x), however, is a powerful group. When placed against other K-pop groups, they tend to come out on top. Their complicated choreography and amazing vocal abilities make them shine. It’s very hard for them to be imitated, that’s for sure.

Let’s also add that F(x) is the only female K-pop group that has an androgynous member in it. This makes their group quite distinct as well. Now I’m about to put Amber on BLAST.

Amber Liu IN the SPOTLIGHT



All About Amber

Amber is the charming tomboy of the F(x) group, as was mentioned before. She enjoys playing basketball (she was on a basketball team when she was in high school), she enjoys running track, and she also enjoys skateboarding. She also has a black belt in Taekwondo.

Amber also enjoys sketching. Once she gets a pen and paper, she becomes absorbed.

Amber is super intelligent, and the best of all the girls at math. She is also into the Rubik’s Cube game.

Amber is obsessed with hats, too! She can’t cook, but she likes to read cooking books. Ironic.

Amber also loves Pokemon. She freaked out when she thought her mom gave away her cards. I would too. It’s hard to gather Pokemon cards! I should know…puffftttt…


Amber is charming, charismatic, witty, funny, and friendly. She has a wide network of connections and people who want to collaborate with her. She is confident, cool, and easy-going. People just naturally gravitate towards her. It’s not just the bold looks, but the personality when it comes to Amber. This contributes to her popularity, especially to international artists and fans, who relate to her.

Amber is different from the other girls. She’s not extremely polite, she loves to prank people, and she’s mischievous. Amber is very confident. She is usually not as shy as the others when it comes to speaking to the fans. She is also brave. Her laugh is infectious, and she usually claps her hands, or hooks a hand over her mouth, as she laughs hard and easily. The other girls, I’ve noticed, have adapted this habit, too.

However, Amber has a shy side, as Krystal points out.

Amber is also very protective of those that she loves.

Amber is from Los Angeles, California. She is used to sunny weather and casual people (hence, why it’s called the Sunshine State). Amber is very family-oriented. She has her mom, dad, and older sister, Jackie. Surprisingly, no brothers. She went on a six-month hiatus due to a leg injury (which btw, drove fans crazy). Due to the length of time she spent away, most people assumed she was homesick. Amber hopes one day to make it bigger in America so she can be closer to home.

Before Amber became a pop star, she was interested in K-pop groups TVXQ and Super Junior. Her mother states in an interview that Amber had their posters all on her walls. Amber was first spotted by SM in an audition in LA. She originally auditioned with her friend, but she ended up being chosen alone, along with another boy.

Amber is a Christian and her mother plays a lead role in their church.

Amber’s sister, Jackie, also told us some interesting things about Amber:

Amber often refers to herself as “Llama”. This is coming from a fan who said she looked like one, according to Amazing F(x).

Despite Amber’s natural charm, and love of her hometown and family, Amber wasn’t very popular in school. As Jessie J would say, “Who’s Laughing Now?”


Fav Color : Red
Fav Song : SHINee’s “Nuna is very Pretty” / Taking back Sunday “What’s it Feel Like To Be A Ghost”
Fav Bands : Linkin Park, Taking Back Sunday
Likes : Cookies, Chips, Chocolate, Sweets, Oh Yes (A Korean cake snack), Hats
Famous Close Friends : Nicole from Kara, Ailee, Min from Miss A (Now many others)
Wants to meet : Fly to the Sky
Usual Apparel : Hip Hop style, t-shirt and baggy pants
Roommate : Luna
Acts Feminine : When she eats
Favorite Pet : Rabbit and her dog Jack Jack
If she had a superpower: Telekinesis
Desktop Wallpaper : Childhood Photos
Stress Reliever : Screaming

Random Facts-
*Used to be a vegetarian
*Thinks the right side of her face looks boyish and her left side looks cute
*Has the smallest face in F(x)
*Knows how to sew
*is one of the oldest members in F(x)
*In her childhood, Amber was in church band.
*likes cat more than dog.
*works out when she gets stressed out
*has insomnia.
*The costume that Amber wore on ‘Sorry Sorry’ performance was given by DongHae
*likes wearing inappropriate clothing
“that brooklyn shit”

Amber, a K-POP STAR

Amber, at home in LA, is just another girl, but as a Korean popstar, she’s a completely different person.

Amber is charming, true enough, but Amber has also been tagged as “Sexy Amber”. Amber is one of the very few tomboys blessed with this title. Let’s review why, shall we?






amber 1










Fx Amber




images (1) Amber 2



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Do you get the picture? If you don’t, here. Have some more…

Yea, that’s right. I just Amberfied you. You should know how sexy she is to fans by now.

It’s hard for many to imagine that such a “sexy tomboy” could perform such girly dance moves  in music videos and onstage. But guess what? She does. And it works! Amber takes her cuteness to a whole different level, and at the same time, she makes the signature moves look sexy in her own unique way. This is also due to the fact that she is an excellent dancer. So she can master even the girliest of moves and make it look like a combination of her masculine edge and her feminine touch. I think getting involved with F(x) helps her express the feminine side she may not have been able to express to her fullest at home in her town of LA, what, with so many tomboys running around, influencing each other…

But in Korea, she stands out and makes a statement. She makes F(x) a unique-looking group. This also contributes to Amber’s popularity. Amber redefines beauty in the Korean Pop Industry, and paves the way for other tomboys to make their mark. She encourages individuality and freedom of self-expression. She also shows all girls that anyone can be beautiful, sexy, cute, and a pop star, even if they don’t look like a perfect girly model. As a model in many magazines, she gives girls more options than the frilly and trendy, and encourages girls to explore their options and open their minds. She gives this sort of message, “You can be a tomboy and still be hot”.

And trust me, Amber knows she looks good.

Another thing that stands out about her appearance is the provocative shirts she tends to wear…


I don’t think many Korean girls are as provocative as she is, aside from showing a little leg action.

She is certainly a rare beauty. At first, she didn’t feel she would fit in and was worried that her image wouldn’t be accepted. Boy, was she wrong.

Amber and Girls

Amber has a huge fanbase full of girls! Probably as many girls love her as they do SHINee and Super Junior. And it isn’t just because she’s talented…

Amber’s “boyish” charm works on even the most heterosexual women. In all of the comments’ sections on Youtube dedicated to F(x), all you hear is “She’s Sexy”, “I love Amber”, “Why she make me feel lesbian?” She has many girls questioning their sexuality. In fact, a fan girl once confessed her love to Amber! Before her debut in Korea, a girl in America asked her out before she even became a K-pop star!

youtube comments

youtube comment

Amber is a very handsome girl. Every girl’s dream, right? Charm and good looks. She almost seems like the perfect guy… only she’s a girl.

fx amber sexy

Everybody wants to date Amber. Everybody wants to be her best friend. She’s just easy to like, you know? Even I can’t help but follow her life closely, as if she’s my hero or something. Well, she kind of is…

Girls like her because she’s a good role model. She inspires girls. They admire her as well as love her.

All of the F(x) girls are well-liked and popular. I think, initially, SM expected Krystal to be the most popular, considering her sister is in Girls’ Generation. And hey, she really is popular! Krystal is very sexy, cool, and has amazing vocal abilities. So the expectation was rewarded. But by crowd response, it’s easy to see who the favorite is…

And Amber isn’t just a favorite among female fans, but she has earned the love and respect of other female idols, including the other members of F(x), who have voted her the most charming member in the group.



Below are two playlists of her time spent with famous female idols!

Amber seems very appreciative of her female fans and their support, as she has mentioned in her biography. It’s because of the girls that Amber can feel like a queen.

Amber and Boys

While you might think Amber only has a female fanbase, the boys will tell you otherwise.

The other girls in K-pop groups are arguably “pretty” on screen, with their short skirts and long hair, as feminine is somehow considered “prettier”. Those girls are especially prettier to men who don’t know them well beyond what they can see. You might hear some male fans call them “hot” in the comments’ sections of youtube.

But what you don’t see is many boys hanging out with them or spending time with the other girls. As pretty as they are, there is a sense of reserve about them, and it doesn’t make men feel comfortable. The men that are used to seeing those girls will no longer be interested. F(x) is a very charming group. There is something more beyond their physical beauty.

Amber is a breath of fresh air. Amber invites men to take a peak at her inner beauty, which inside, is a hidden gem. Every man who meets Amber personally (and not behind a computer screen) falls in love with her. Amber is always invited to join the boys onstage or collaborate with them, and I can’t begin to tell you how many men have said they have enjoyed having her around.

While some people may think she’s only looked at as “one of the guys”, I don’t think this tweet between Donghae and Henry sounds the same as two men fighting over a “homeboy”…


Amber is so liked by the boys that the great majority of couple “shipping” happens with the men! Ironically…

Henry is especially a favorite among fans. She seems to spend an awful lot of time with him. They even backed Amber’s sister Jackie into rooting for “Henber”.


Amber in an apartment with 4 guys…Man, some girls would die to be her in this case…

Even Henry’s family is aware of the shipping…Henry’s uncle Tweeted this below:


And who can forget the time Amber and Henry went to go see a “romantic Korean drama” My Love By My Side the day after Henry’s birthday? Huh?

But Henry isn’t the only one fond of Amber. All of EXO knows, respects, and loves Amber. Xuimin seems particularly fond of Amber, and tends to get jealous when she seems too close to someone else! None of the boys seem to be paying much attention to the other F(x) members…

Amber has always been fond of Super Junior, even before she became a K-pop star. But Donghae is also very fond of her. He constructed this little sign for her…

fx amber sexy (1)

And a certain SHINee member was pretty darn close with Amber when they were sight-seeing…

Key from SHINee is very fond of Amber. In fact, all of the SHINee members seem to like Amber one way or another!


When they see Amber in the room, all the boys rush to greet her! She’s everyone’s best friend!

Amber gets all the hugs…

F.T. Island is also quite close and playful with Amber. They both want Amber’s attention. Jaejin’s favorite part of F(x)’s song “Hot Summer” is Amber’s part.

DMTN’s Daniel considers Amber his best friend.

And Amber is probably the only member who got more than a dozen roses for her birthday! She is just literally loved by all!

Soryong from Tasty likes Amber, too! In fact, he thinks they should be married…

Jackson from Got7 really wanted to win Amber’s heart. He chose her as the girl he liked best! Even though Amber likes Bam Bam best…

Jackber: Got7's Jackson and f(x)'s Amber

Jackber: Got7’s Jackson and f(x)’s Amber

Amber WAS SOOO loving Bam Bam! And went as far as to say to the other guys, “I hate you.” He seems to like her, too.

Bamber: Got7's BamBam and f(x)'s Amber

Bamber: Got7’s BamBam and f(x)’s Amber

And OMG! Is that Amber kissing BtoB’s Yook Sungjae! Even though, yes, it’s in a very funny parody of a Korean drama…

Eric Nam is one of Amber’s best friends, which was pretty evident on an episode of One Fine Day. She also sang a romantic duet with him called “I Just Wanna”. Eric even jokingly says Amber keeps asking him out.


Amber is also especially close to Nu’est’s Aron. She thinks he’s “cute”.

Amber is even considered beautiful to some radio announcers. Some may have gotten the impression that she literally looks like an ugly boy. But they soon discover that Amber is really beautiful, just the way she is!

While I will admit the other girls get the cheers and stares from male fans, Amber gets the proposals! Men literally want to marry this woman!

And okay, there are male fans who also CHEER for Amber, too…I can’t fool you.


From looking at all of the above, I can say Amber has a very neutral charm that catches people’s attention wherever she goes!


Amber is quite an asset to F(x). She has so many talents! Her talents are very unique, aside from her image.

She is one of the few female K-pop stars with great rapping abilities. There are very few females in the Korean Music world who are respected for their rapping, and they certainly don’t get to rap in K-pop groups. This is also what makes F(x)’s music so distinct. There is usually a rap segment from Amber, unlike other bubblegum songs you might hear.

But Amber isn’t all MC rapping. She has an amazing voice! That “deeper-than-the-average-Asian-girl” voice of hers sounds like an angel when she sings. I think the reason she gets so little moments to sing in the F(x) songs is because most Koreans can’t believe her voice matches with her image. Or maybe it’s because her Korean isn’t as good as the other members.

Honestly, she sings better than some other K-pop singers in the industry, so I hope to hear her sing more.

She also has amazing song-writing abilities. She wrote the song “Good-bye Summer”, “Beautiful Stranger”, and worked on a collaboration with Luna for Immortal Song 2. Her album Beautiful showcased her talents as a composer, vocalist, and songwriter.

Amber is also an impressive dancer.

Amber also acts as an interpreter for F(x) in westernized countries. She has mad social skills and confidence. This helps her to better communicate with people on the international level.

Because Amber’s appearance isn’t openly emphasized, or objectified, her talents are most highlighted in the group. This is also why she is able to maneuver about in the K-pop music industry and make so many connections. In fact, all the f(x) girls agreed that Amber has the most connections of them all. When the only thing people can see is how you look, people have a hard time seeing who you really are, and the inner star will have a hard time shining. This doesn’t happen in Amber’s case. This is why so many people, especially westerners, like that she remains true to herself.

The one advice her mother gave her was to be herself, and I think it was very good advice.

Amber has a lot of personality. Her demeanor is quite boyish, but lively. She is entertaining to watch. She has so many videos posted online. She is just fascinating. She even has her own Youtube channel!

Amber also has a knack for bringing people together and making others feel relaxed. This is why she has made so many friends. Amber is never without someone to hang with. This girl stays busy with all kinds of people.

Amber is definitely a valuable member. Without her, F(x) would be lost.

Amber’s Personal Challenges

Obviously Amber’s biggest challenge is standing strong in her boyish image in a world that isn’t quite used to it, a world that doesn’t appreciate it, and an industry that doesn’t cater to her image. Amber doesn’t look like the average girl, and even if she did, her boyishness can’t be ignored. In a radio interview, she was told that boyish women in Korea were rare. This is due to the fact that the gender worlds are so very divided in that country. I think this is another reason why so many men like her. She’s different. Most don’t often get too close with women unless they are interested in dating or marriage. But Amber makes them feel comfortable.

Yet, despite all of the support Amber gets, despite the smile she plasters on her face, it has been hard for her to deal with the harshness of Korean conservatism.

Many television hosts are always hinting that she looks like a man and she is often confused for a boy. She doesn’t seem shocked by their reactions. However, she also didn’t seem to realize how much her image would stand out. In America, it’s normal to see tomboys. We’ve had many in the music industry. We don’t always confuse them for boys. Also, Amber’s voice is deeper than most girls in Korea. In America, many women have deeper or raspier voices. Look at P!nk. These are just some of the qualities that Amber has that don’t quite fit well with K-pop standards for femininity. Amber writes the following:

“I was born on September 18, 1992. My hometown is Los Angeles in the United States and I have an older sister. SM Entertainment’s 2007 global audition was where I was cast for the agency. I had originally auditioned with a Korean friend but she didn’t make it. M.C. Max’s “Oh Heart, Please Stop Now” and K.Will’s “Left Heart” are the songs I sang at the audition. I read and wrote a little bit of Korean before but I studied the lyrics more from some fan sites where they had translations so I could understand the songs better.

I had liked Linkin Park since young so I copied Mike Shinoda a lot and I had a lot of friends who liked to rap so I grew up practicing free-styling. When I first heard Korean music I used to listen to a lot of R&B like Wheesung’s. These days I listen to Yoon Mirae, Tiger JK and Epik High. I’ve never talked to Yoon Mirae before but I’m a big fan.

When I first came to Korea from the U.S. I felt like a complete stranger because the environment was completely different. I used to space out thinking ‘Why am I here?’ But Krystal helped me out a lot since her English is good and I gradually learned more Korean. Luna taught me how to sing and dance and Sulli, I got really really close with her, as if she’s my younger brother. Haha. (Sulli: Amber Oppa!) But my boyish image was something I wasn’t aware of. In the States I was… just normal. I was shocked when while I was a trainee, I went shopping with Krystal and her fans said they thought I was her boyfriend. But I have a lot of female fans and I am so thankful to them for liking me so much. I didn’t know they would be okay with someone with an image like mine.

Looking similar to Super Junior member Dong-hae is something I’ve heard frequently ever since I got here. These days people also say I look a lot like SHINee’s Jonghyun. Haha. So the three of us sometimes take photos together and call ourselves the “dinosaur family”.

Basketball in particular is something I really enjoy. I’d been on a basketball team since elementary school in the U.S. and I played basketball a lot with my girl friends too. I’m actually not that good at it (Sulli: No, you’re really good!) but in Korea, I’ve been playing with the male trainees at our agency. I like taekwondo too so I practice my moves when I get bored.

Creating a stage where there are no restrictions is my dream. And it doesn’t even have to be on a real stage, a street is fine. Just as long as it’s a place where everyone can join in and have fun!”

All I can say is that I applaud her courage. Amber could’ve easily given in to the pressure to be like everyone else. But Amber prefers to stay true to herself. I believe she was chosen for a reason. I believe SM was tired of the usual, and was looking for a new, fresh face to bring into the Korean industry. Her courage and confidence is what also makes her an inspiration to others.

My heart reaches out to Amber and her fight to be accepted by the Korean industry. I think slowly, but surely, Korea will begin to get used to this new female energy and others may begin to imitate. Until then, Amber can continue making an impact.

Amber’s second biggest challenge was convincing her father that being a Kpop star was a good career. Her father was of the “protective” sort. Korea is a faraway country and foreign to Amber. I guess he knew Amber wouldn’t fit in easily, due to her American customs and boyish demeanor. Her parents knew it would be a challenge for her. He also wanted her to focus on school. But her father has become more supportive, even encouraging people to buy her solo album.


Amber’s world isn’t without controversy. Giving herself to Korea, exploiting her image and her talents for others, and having the courage to strike out with boldness and confidence is what makes Amber a gem in the Korean industry.

But the world of the androgynous woman is never without controversy, even from the most liberal of countries.

Amber, a Lesbian?

I hear this question over and over again, usually following up behind the comments from gleeful fan girls. The sad truth is that a girl can’t dress or act like a boy without people questioning her sexuality. True, she has more fan girls than the other girls do. More women think she’s hotter than any female Korean pop star. This is due to her boyishness. But it’s sad that people don’t realize that lesbian women can be just as feminine as other women sometimes. A girl who dresses like a boy or acts like one is not EXACTLY indicating that she is gay. After all, there are men who dress “boyish” and are gay…

I guess since most people think only girlish girls can attract men, they just assume Amber will give up and be attracted to girls. Or they might think she has an identity issue, and that she wants to be a boy, and so she might like the same things that boys like. Or maybe they just assume that girls who dress like that are trying to attract girls. I have read Youtube comments of people stating, “She looks like a boy, she has to be a lesbian”. But this isn’t always the case. More often than not, Amber is pitched in the “gay” category before anyone has even done research or talked to Amber herself.


Amber has stated that she dresses like a boy, not because she hates being a girl, but because “male” clothing is “comfortable”, makes her unique, and she’s used to it because she plays a lot of sports.

We don’t know anything about her sexuality. But we do know she has stated to the public (and on her personal twitter and instagram) her ideal type AND we know that she has said she likes boys, according to an interview with Radio Star.

Amber recently revealed her crush on a fellow Real Man cast member. Amber joined a cast of women as a military recruit for the female version of Real Men. But one of the drill sergeants was very close to her ideal type. Amber “couldn’t get her eyes off of him”. Oh, yes, and the drill sergeant was a male. Later, we all learned that Amber “quietly” followed him on instagram…until she found out he was married and younger than her.

Amber reveals she may have a crush on fellow Real Men cast member


In several interviews, she has mentioned her preferences in a male, the ideal guy she is looking for. She also always adds at the end that she is “waiting”. Amber has even mentioned the man she felt would be a good marriage partner: Sehun!

Ailee has confirmed FOR Amber that she and Amber talk about boys together. Ailee also mentioned, along with Amber, that Amber has had a boyfriend before.

And she seemed entirely too interested in boy bands before she became a Kpop star. I didn’t hear any mention of GIRL BANDS hanging in her room in Go F(x).

Amber has only mentioned that she wants to be married in 20 years and have two children.

To add, when a girl asked Amber out, Amber turned her down. Not that this is any indication, but it’s something to think about. Amber mentioned on another interview that she had many lesbians who would ask her out, and she would say, “We’re cool, but I’m not interested”.

Twitter posts:

amber the boys

Or this…

amber fan girl

Or this????…

amber love

Or this?!?!?! (Eric Nam?)


Amber has also mentioned her ideal male type is Jang Hyuk before. Amber just could’ve said “I don’t have an ideal type”, like many other K-pop artists have said. But she didn’t.

Amber seemed pretty adamant about being Bam Bam’s bride in the NEXT We Got Married Global…She couldn’t stop hugging this dude…

And would a lesbian even WANT to be a K-pop artist in a sexually prejudiced society? Maybe, maybe not. It’s hard enough for Amber to be an American tomboy in Korea…

Any other ideas are assumptions, not facts. You can say all of this is saving face. It could be. Korea is a conservative society. It is hard for people with a gay background to be accepted as a public figure. But it’s the only thing she has mentioned regarding her interests.

It’s funny. If this had been any other K-pop idol, like Got7’s Jackson on Roommates, no one would even think to question whether his ideal type was “saving face”. But for some reason, no one seems to relate to anything Amber says regarding her ideal types…It’s fascinating. The issue of K-pop idols “saving face” ONLY comes up when Amber is involved. But I never hear this when other K-pop idols are expressing themselves…When it comes to feminine K-pop idols, no one brings up the idea of “open sexuality”, but people conveniently bring up the idea when the “tomboy” is involved.

People often think that there is a standard way for a lesbian to look and act, and that there is a standard way for a straight girl to look and act. From experience, there really is no standard way. Amber might be more straight than all of the K-pop idols walking! Or maybe not…But the point is that these things can’t be decided by appearance or behavior.

I mean, no one could predict that Raven Symone was gay (Because she’s always been super feminine). But she is.

Everyone thought Ella Chen was gay…before she got married to a male. And she is from a conservative country, so many thought she was saving face (some still think she is). But China’s conservatism didn’t stop Denise Ho from coming out as a lesbian…And she is still a major pop singer in China and also in Taiwan. She just won the 49th Golden Horse Award. Her latest album did really well in sales. And China is more conservative than Korea!

I will share my experience really quick. I have always been an extreme tomboy. I’ve always dressed boyish. But I absolutely can NEVER date a woman (trust issues). One of my friends is EXTREMELY feminine, but she is gay. People always assume I’m the one is who is gay. XD And because people assume this, they tell all of my crushes their assumptions, and those guys end up avoiding me. Then my friend, who dresses feminine, will get all of the guys asking her out!

So, the moral of the story is, you can’t assume someone’s sexuality based on the clothes someone wears or the way someone appears to act. The media is a filter. Amber gets a lot of attention for being “boyish” and often gives “fan service” to keep her fans around. But the reality may be quite different from what we all expect.

People are so superficial, that if Amber said she was straight A MILLION times on variety shows, people would still never believe her. But if she said she was gay EVEN ONCE on variety shows, people would believe it from jump…Even though either one could be a lie! I mean, variety shows are STILL shows, right?

On MVs where Amber is involved, you never hear in the comments’ section, “Is she straight?” People never assume she is straight, but people are quick to assume a “tomboy” is a lesbian…It’s a funny world. No one assumes any other idol’s sexuality.

Assuming someone’s sexuality based on what someone wears and the way they act is like assuming a woman is pregnant just because her belly is big. It could be rude if it is NOT TRUE and that person could lose confidence in themselves.

So, I believe people should be careful when making assumptions based on appearance and personality.

Amber Needs to be More Feminine?

Though most fans are genuinely supportive of Amber and her image, there are some who wish Amber would “dress more girly”. Many fans argue that her tomboy looks have been pushed too far by SM and they have a hard time believing Amber is happy looking so boyish, especially due to the narrow-minded views on women and sexuality. Many believe she had more of a feminine side before she came to SM, though this isn’t backed by evidence.

I think the girls who think Amber is unhappy with her image are more unhappy inside with it than she is. Most of the girls who push her to be feminine are really girly themselves, therefore, they feel uncomfortable with a girl like her on the scene, a girl who doesn’t seem to represent them. They struggle to relate to her appearance because their world is one of high heels and make-up: a world without natural beauty and little appreciation of one’s inner beauty. Actually, I think Amber likes being confused for a boy. It allows her to have two alter egos, to be creative. It gives her special attention…it’s mysterious. I think she likes to play around with it sometimes. Being confused for a boy isn’t bad. It can be fun.

Another reason why girls or boys may push her to wear more feminine attire is because they are personally attracted to her, and they are uncomfortable with that attraction. Women are uncomfortable with being attracted to a girl, and men are uncomfortable with being attracted to a girl that looks like a guy. It’s not Amber’s fault she’s attractive. She is neutrally attractive to people, but sometimes, this can be threatening. Men also feel threatened by her because she seems to attract all of their girlfriends to her. Women are also a little jealous of the amount of attention she receives from some of their favorite male Korean pop idols.

Amber on discrimination

Of course, there are also those who just have a natural curiosity with her feminine side.

Well, this is why I think Amber can never truly be extremely feminine:

1) It’s not about the hair and clothes. The whole demeanor is brassy and boyish. When Amber did wear a dress, it was very awkward. She walked like a boy and acted like one. She was pretty, but she is just a tomboy. So I don’t think dressing like a girl would make her any more girly. It’s different with Ella Chen from S.H.E. She always acted like a girl…

2) Most people say when she starts dating, she will change. But Amber has already dated a guy before and it didn’t seem to change her one bit. No, I believe the right one will accept who she is.

3) Amber actually has explored her feminine side in more ways than one, just not the way others want her to. In fact, being in F(x) is probably a very feminine experience. The dance moves are girly and the music is very feminine at times. Amber has also worn heels before and, in Africa, a dress! But she’s still not sure how to express that side, so it still comes across boyish, though her dress in Africa looked lovely on her..






Amber can look very hot and feminine to me…and yet…it really isn’t about the appearance, is it? Even still, that boyish appeal is strikingly evident.

Let’s all come to grips that this is who Amber is and that she’s beautiful the way she is. She doesn’t need a skirt or to grow her hair out really long. If we learn to accept this new form of beauty, we will truly have open minds. When we open our minds, we give ourselves more options in the world. Therefore, we have more to explore. This is what we want to teach the next generation.

LA Weekly, interviewed Amber about her tomboy look, and why she chose this image:

“I hear that I dress like a boy and that I should be more girly, which I can understand, but I just focus on what I want to do and enjoy my time with fans who love me for who I am,” Liu writes, diplomatically, in an email.

But Liu has not just integrated herself, she’s prospered, becoming a huge star in one of the most popular girl groups in K-pop and a global celebrity in her own right.

Liu, who recently turned 21, was raised in West Hills and is fluent in English and Mandarin. “I grew up playing a lot of sports, [and] thus tying up your hair and wearing comfortable clothing was a must,” she says, adding that she was particularly passionate about skateboarding. “I finally chopped off my ponytail at the end of middle school, and it was the best decision I made.”

Still, in high school bullies teased her and told her she looked like a man, sometimes making her cry.

Well, now she has millions of fans who love her! She is a true underdog story, just itching to relate to other outcasts.

Well, that’s my spin on F(x) and the lovely Amber Liu!


Check out my reviews of some of their albums!

f(x) Red Light Review

Their album Pink Tape is also out and it is AWESOME!

Check out my REVIEW for that!

f(x) Pink Tape Review



Generation Next: Do you remember the late 90s, Y2K?

5 Jul

Anyone who grew up in Generation Next probably remembers the following between 1995-2003:

Pop culture……We are generation “Scorpio” which also defines our generation. All we care about is sex, violence, and power. Our generation is marked by everything dark and mysterious…we hate superficiality and anything “cheerful”…anything mystical, psychic, and occult. We transformed ideas of tranformation, lost the adult “rites of passage” other generations before us had, and are the only generation who can’t find jobs in the recession, still living with parents well into our twenties, and take a while to get married, if at all. But we still find ways to rebel against society, use the internet as our way of gaining social power, and stick to ourselves in our secretive and mistrustful minds. We are also quite an emotional generation….dangerously emotional.


Anyone who is anybody can’t forget the grand children Networks of Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network, and Disney Channel. Rugrats and ALL That defined Nick, until the Rugrats grew up and Kenan and Kel left All That and so did Nick Cannon, and Cartoon Cartoon Fridays, Toonami, Ed Edd and Eddy, and Powerpuff Girls defined Cartoon Network. But MTV was infested with a bunch of teeny boppers who began filling the channel with their pop videos. At least we still had Michael Jackson… VH1 was filled with oldies. And BET actually had funny comedians on Comic View and showed black movies and shows. Let’s not forget Nick Jr. owned Blues Clues, Face, and Little Bill, while Playhouse Disney had Little Mermaid and Madeline…they even used to show Timon and Pumba, Arabian Nights, and other “Disney-like shows”. Back then, cable was just becoming the “It” thing. I still remember My Brother and Me and Clarissa Explains It All, Sabrina the Teenage witch. Fox and ABC were big back then, UPN too…Sister, Sister, Smart Guy, which also came on Disney Channel along with Boy Meets World, Growing Pains, and Brotherly Love…with those Lawrence Brothers that everyone loved. Disney even had shows like the Famous Jett Jackson, So Weird, and The Jersey. Courage the Cowardly Dog was like So Weird…except weirder…Scooby-Doo was still big. We liked a lot of mysteries like Shelby Woo and the occult like So Weird and Goosbumps….we also loved Power Rangers and Anime as kids. Barney was even in our slot time, though I always preferred Kid Songs….and Zoom, the new version. Aurthur was our show too! And even Sesame Street, especially Elmo’s World. And we weren’t too far from old classic cartoons from Tex Avery, Toonheads like Bugs Bunny, and even some Animaniacs….best time for television. In later years, we supported shows like Lizzie Maguire, the first tween show to make over a million viewers, and That’s So Raven which was the first longest running show on Disney Channel. We loved Lindsey Lohan…until she got cracked up.

Remember tha babies who could talk?

What a creative show! Back when Klasky was running things: Rugrats!

The Simpsons, South Park, 90210, Living Single, Baywatch, X-Files, Law and Order, and other nighttime television. Not to mention, watching the Bulls game was far more entertaining than it is now.


Computer was just becoming a part of the home, and laptops was spreading jobs across the nation. And everyone used to chat on AOL…it used to talk back and say “You’ve got Mail” which used to be so cool. Of course, I was always on yahoo…..Then MP3s came out, though you could only play one song at the time. CDs were still pretty big. Downloading became big like two years after 2000. But people still bought CDs, and everyone had a CD player with big headphones….The DVD player was it, but then everyone found out Playstation 2 could play DVDs and it was done. Playstation 2 was like the biggest thing, though Dreamcast and Gamecube also marked the generation. Of course, realistic graphics were the biggest thing back then. LOL Remember Street Fighter, Tekken, Final Fantasy? And NBA Live was regular too.

Playstation, remember? LOL


It varied, actually towards the end, kids stopped reading and started again. Babysitters’ Club, Sweet Valley, and American Girl marked the generation. For boys it was between How to Eat Fried Worms, There’s a Boy in the Girl’s Bathroom, Help! I’m trapped in Obedient School Again, Anamorphs, and Goooooosssbumpsss!!!! Who doesn’t remember Goosbumps? That was like the biggest thing. Then Harry Potter came out like in 1999 or before, and that took over. A Series of Unfortunate Events was big too. And Pirates of the Caribbean marked the later generation.



It sucked balls. Pop idols like Backstreet Boys and Spice Girls took over the industry. Who can forget the Hansen brothers? Pure lamety. Then here came Britney, the first teen solo act, and she influenced the whole world to come out with pop imitations. Christina Aguilera, Jessica Simpson, Mandy Moore who dyed her hair for the “occasion”, and all of these pop groups like Dream and Play, and just too many pop artists to count. And then the boy Britney Spears came out, Aaron Carter. Even black people changed genres like After Dark and Blaque…TLC was the biggest group…until, well you know. It was back when Jesse McCartney was part of the group Dreamstreet. Hoku and Myra marked Disney and Nick movies for their contributions, and Baha Men music swept the world by storm. Then in 2001, it seemed Dark Child took over everything, and so did 50 cent…later Avril Lavigne stole Britney’s shine in the early Y2K years. Then all these poprock artists came out of the closet, of course singers like Michelle Branch, Lindsay Pagano, Vanessa…can’t remember the rest of her name, and even Pink came out of the closet with her “real self”. Evanescence also dominated the industry. Metallic and Coldplay were even at their peek. All the most hard-core music marked our generation….along with the most giddy… If only Panic! At the Disco had been around….

Britney Spears when she was a little innocent...only a little...

The wildest group around! Spice Girls!

Original famous style! Avril Lavigne!

50 Cent back in 2003...


I remember overalls….which no one wears anymore. Jordans were popular too…Capri pants were the “it” thing…and for some reason…ponchos….baggy pants, bandannas and scarves, and surfer boy hair cuts. Jean jackets and Timbaland boots were in too. That’s what Spongbob used to remind me of back in 2002, his debut…a surfer, valley dude, which those bleached-blond idiots were the “it” thing. Now, Spongebob is just a geeky idiot…Ponytails, and scrunchies were popular. Lip gloss had just become a big thing. Belly tops were “oh-so revealing” but not compared to now…especially if you consider Gaga’s “no pants rule”. Skorts were popular, and no one wear those either. Numbered tees, like with “57” or “23” and words all over the pants. And because of 9/11, everyone was wearing red, white, and blue. Feathery and hot looking jackets marked later generations. Like this:

Jackets of early Y2K...


And these checkered and worded jeans:

checkered pants?

Backstreet Boys look...LOL

Words and Sayings

The words and sayings that came back were “Cool” and “Awesome”, but we also added “Totally hot” and “bogus” and “wack” and “corny” and “lame” and who can forget “psyche”. “Wicked Cool” and other sayings that are too funny to repeat. “For shizzle my nizzle” was popular too, and you could add of “izzles” if you liked. And” then “it’s off the heezy for sheezy. “Da Bomb” was it too. And “Bad” or “Sharp” was in too. “Totally Rad” was in too. LOL This is funny.

This is really a walk down memory lane…

I feel sorry for this generation. Sorry later generation, you missed out on the best age to be a kid. Your Television Network producers have gotten so stupid they can’t even read their own network titles. Instead they show everything but music on MTV and live actions on Cartoon Network. Not to mention, the face of Disney is no longer Mickey, but Selena Gomez and Miley Cyrus….

No one uses their voices in music anymore, it’s now been replaced by cheap equipments that electronically “disguises” real voices.

Glad I grew up in Generation Next.


Movies ranged between Sixth Sense, Scissors hands, well really anything with Winona Ryder and Johnny Depp. Matrix marked the 21st Century. We also had “Ritchie Rich”, remember the little blond boy from Home Alone? And let’s not forget the Disney movies. The best movies in the 90s were the Disney movies, hands down, like Lion King, Huntchback of Notre Dame, and Beauty and the Beast. Of course, there were some pretty good thrillers here and there, and other children’s movies like Little Rascals which had Mary-Kate and Ashley, America’s Twins. Also, Dennis the Menace. Remember Free Willy? LOL That movie still makes me laugh. Childrens’ movies had reach their peak in the 90s. The first child actor won an acting award, Haley Joel Osment, and you used to see him everywhere before his sister went all “Hannah Montana”…though he still acts as Sora on Kingdom Hearts, which is all I care about.

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