2NE1, SNSD, and Wonder Girls at Forefront of U.S. K-Pop Invasion


K-Pop girl group’s representing the top three entertainment agencies in Korea (JYP, SM, and YG Entertainment) plan to release their albums one after another in the United States beginning this January.

Wonder Girls will start things off with their American single, “The DJ is Mine,” which will be released later this week on January 11. SNSD plans to release a special edition album of “The Boys” in the U.S. as well as Europe. The album will be avalible for purchase offline as well as through digital downloads with the group directly challenging the Billboard charts. 2NE1 has been working with famous American producer Will.i.am as their recording sessions have come to a close, while the countdown for their expansion into the US market has begun. At this time, however, the exact date for their U.S. debut is still unknown.

On February 2, the Wonder Girl’s TV movie “Wonder Girls at the Apollo” will air on the U.S. cable station Teen Nick. In conjunction with the debut of their TV movie, a full-length studio album will also be released.

This past December, 2NE1 was crowned the “MTV Iggy’s Best New Band in the World” for 2011 and even headlined a concert in New York City at the MTV Studios to celebrate their win. Just recently Will.i.am posted about 2NE1 through his Twitter account saying, “2NE1 is coming out crazy.” The post has grabbed the attention of the public. Also back in December, the U.S. public broadcast radio station, NPR brought up the topic of the Hallyu Wave, more specifically focusing on K-Pop’s advances in America, mentioning the genre’s front runners SNSD, 2NE1, and the Wonder Girls in their report. Since then, SNSD had already begun selling reserve copies online of their special version of “The Boys.”

Together these three girl groups will be taking on the US market soon. The drive to breakthrough into the world’s largest music market has always been there, but up until recently the attempts haven’t yielded the desired results. As the popularity of K-Pop has grown throughout the world, the chances of K-Pop doing well in the western world have increased. Some argue that now just might be the right time for K-Pop to take off abroad.

Which group do you think has the most potential in the U.S.?