14 Great Drama OSTs
A good OST can make or break a drama. Great OSTs can make the emotion onscreen even more intense, and they also serve as a way to keep experiencing a drama even when you’re not watching it. These are some of my favorite drama OSTs. Please share your favorites in the comments!
“City Hunter” was an exciting, action-packed drama, but Kim Bo Kyung’s haunting “Suddenly” perfectly expresses the melancholy, lonely heart of its hero, Lee Yoon Sung (Lee Min Ho).
“Me Too, Flower” had really great OSTs across the board, but Foley’s “Gotta Watcha” stands out for its spunky fun, which encapsulates the character of Cha Bong Sun (Lee Ji Ah), the drama’s policewoman heroine.
“Flower Boy Next Door” had a dark, damaged heroine (played by Park Shin Hye). But its hero, Enrique Geum (Yoon Shi Yoon) was as bright and fun as a person can get, and Romantic Punch‘s “Ready-Merry-Go!” matches his enthusiasm and energy perfectly. It’s a delightful song for a delightful drama.
The central relationship in “Faith,” between a Goryeo general (Lee Min Ho) and a time-traveling doctor (Kim Hee Sun), is one of the great romances in dramas. ALi‘s “Carry On” is the perfect song to express their love—it’s beautiful, epic, and sweeping.
Whenever I think of “I Can Hear Your Voice,” Every Single Day‘s “Echo” immediately starts playing in my head. Its reflective, sweet melody is as central to my memories of that drama as anything that happened in the plot, which to me is the mark of a great OST.
“Pray” was never actually played in “My Lovely Girl,” and I can understand why. “My Lovely Girl” was a low-key, understated drama for the most part, and “Pray” is a dance number. But it’s a great dance number—fun and infectious, anchored in Jooyi’s gorgeous, flexible voice.
The characters in “Baker King Kim Tak Goo” had a lot to be sad about—birth secrets, baking competitions, and complicated love triangles, to name a few. And whenever they were, Kyuhyun‘s “Hope is a Dream That Doesn’t Sleep” would inevitably start to play. But somehow, I never once got sick of this song—it’s irresistible.
Lee Hongki‘s “I’m Saying” perfectly captures the California vibe of the first episodes of “Heirs.” It may not be the most memorable OST from that drama (say it with me: love is the moment!), but it’s definitely the most fun—and my favorite.
Instrumental tracks are just as important as songs in conveying a drama’s moods, and I can think of few instrumental tracks that were as integral to storytelling as “My Man, Kim Boong Do” from “Queen In Hyun’s Man.” It’s a simple enough melody, gentle and sweet and tender, but what really sets it apart is its incorporation of traditional Korean instruments. Not only do they sound beautiful, but they are a perfect reminder of the Joseon roots of time-traveler Kim Boong Do (Ji Hyun Woo).
“The Three Musketeers” had good OSTs overall (its instrumental soundtrack was especially wonderful), but Youme‘s “Like Flowers Blooming” holds a special place in my heart. This beautiful song is the perfect love theme for Crown Prince So Hyun (Lee Jin Wook) and his wife Yoon Seo (Seo Hyun Jin). Just like their love, it starts out unsure and faltering, but builds to a strong, passionate conclusion.
Kim Tae Hyun‘s absolutely beautiful “Sometime” is the perfect OST for “My Spring Day”—though it’s slow and gentle, it contains a deep well of emotion.
“Pinocchio” had very strong OSTs, and Roy Kim’s sweet love song, perfect for expressing the beginning of a romance, was no exception.
“Bridal Mask” is one of the darker dramas out there—set during the Japanese Occupation of Korea, its story is incredibly violent and brutal. What’s so great about Ulala Session‘s “Goodbye Day” is that it’s a beautiful song, but it perfectly expresses the pain that the main characters feel as they find themselves living in impossible situations.
T-Max‘s “Almost Paradise” is one of those songs that has become synonymous with the drama it was written for. Whenever I hear “Almost Paradise,” I immediately relive “Boys Over Flowers,” and vice-versa. I also genuinely enjoy this song. Yes, it’s a little silly, but it’s undeniably fun—just like “Boys Over Flowers”!
What are your favorite drama OSTs? Let us know in the comments below!