Edited by Seo Hayne
Translated by Kim Hoyeun
Among many girl groups, Oh My Girl, which added the exclamation “Oh!” with the aspirations of becoming “My Girl” for listeners, debuted with “Cupid” in 2015. The team consisted of six vocals and one rapper and released seven mini-albums since their debut, showcasing various concepts. They gained public recognition in late 2018 when they appeared in Queendom. As a proof of it, Oh My Girl was awarded the Brand of the Year (girl group) in 2019, Melon Music Award Top 10 in 2020, and Golden Disc Awards Digital Bonsang in 2021.
In 2020, Oh My Girl also became the leading character of the online culture, where fans from all over the world checked attendance with “da da da da” in the comment section on YouTube, with “Dolphin,” the non-title track of their 7th mini-album NONSTOP. What charms do they have that listeners keep finding themselves drawn to the group? Let’s check out three reasons why we can’t hold back our exclaim “Oh!” when we watch Oh My Girl.
Fantasy Trilogy: A clearer flow of trilogy when you ‘watch’ it rather than ‘hear’ it.
“CLOSER,” “Secret Garden” and “The Fifth Season” are the most vivid pieces from the “Fantasy Trilogy” of OH MY GIRL’s musical chronology. If you listen to the music first, you will know that it features a dreamy sound and lyrics that show someone who just fell in love. In order to emphasize the “fantasy” concept, Oh My Girl takes a circular formation in music videos and on stages. This is slightly different from the universal method taken by a multi-member idol team where members come to the center or front of the stage.
For the introduction part of “CLOSER” and “The Fifth Season,” the rest of the members sit in a circle around YooA and Binnie so that they can get the spotlight. The two songs, which were released five years apart, overlap from the beginning formation and make you feel the “continuity.” Furthermore, in the chorus of “CLOSER”, a large circle is made first with a small circle formed inside, while in “Secret Garden,” Arin is placed at the center when moving on to the second verse, and everyone draws a circle with their hands. In the end, after watching Oh My Girl’s performance, “nonangulated circle” is left in your head.
Concept: The pros that the members themselves recognize, and the reinterpretation of the concept
Oh My Girl is the team that benefited the most from Mnet’s survival program Queendom. But the more correct thing to say would be that they spent a fierce time to showcase a differentiated concept, and that effort finally blossomed through Queendom.
The climax of the group’s history is when they reinterpreted Lovelyz’s “Destiny.” They added Mimi’s rap to the solid vocals and received favorable reviews for styling and stage production that incorporated Korean traditional dance. While preparing for the performance, Jiho says, “We have pretty body lines (when we dance), so we are the only team that can express sadness,” and her words demonstrate the understanding they have of their own capabilities. Continuing the spirit, Oh My Girl reconstructed their own song “Twilight” with a vampire concept, completely reversing the original song’s mood. The popularity isn’t created out of thin air. You can check that from Oh My Girls’ performances in Queendom.
Energy: Energy that inspire others and sparks a new craze
Before Queendom, Oh My Girl won the nickname “fairy idol” with their debut song “Cupid” and drew attention by using a rather intuitive stage prop of pinwheel hairband for the song “Windy Day.” In short, they were in the process of creating their own color that was not clear yet by trying out various concepts. Here is an interesting behind-the-scenes story. It is said that IU thought about Oh My Girl while writing the lyrics for her 2017 song “Dlwlrma.” As the group became the model for the “lyrics that capture the jolly and bouncy image,” Oh My Girl chooses high-spirited energy as one of the team’s distinct colors. The best example will be “Dolphin” from the same album as “Nonstop.” The repeated sounds like “Oh na na na na” in “Nonstop” and “da da da da” in “Dolphin” are used, and the elements that clearly stand out in the performance are added. These are the points that spread Oh My Girl’s unique energy little by little into the world.
Editor Seo Hayne: I like actors as they faithfully lead through their long running-time. I also like idols who accomplish everything on stage within 3 minutes.