10 Noteworthy Collabs Between K-Pop Idols And International Artists
Regardless of what music genre you vibe with the most, true enthusiasts know the power music has to bring people together regardless of origin or background. When your favorite artists from different musical backgrounds join forces, it’s like your different worlds are colliding to make your fangirl or fanboy dreams come true.
As proof, here are 10 collabs between K-pop idols and international artists to add to your playlists.
MAMAMOO’s Hwasa and Dua Lipa
Hwasa is known for being one of the power vocalists in K-Pop girl group MAMAMOO. She’s also looked up to by fans for her self-confidence and self-expression in the K-Pop scene, paying no mind to antis who criticize her for wearing what she wants.
It’s no surprise that fellow pop star Dua Lipa got the South Korean performer to feature on a remix of the track “Physical” from her 2020 studio album Future Nostalgia. The two had initially met after performing together onstage at the 2019 Mnet Asian Music Awards (MAMA) in South Korea where Dua Lipa won the International Favourite Artist award.
GOT7’s Jackson and 88Rising
Outside of his K-Pop group GOT7, Hong Kong-born Jackson Wang is a budding creative in the music scene. He started his own label, Team Wang, where he writes his own lyrics and conceptualizes for everything else concerning his solo music.
Whether he’s with GOT7 or not, Jackson is quite the social butterfly. He has collaborated with one of our faves, Joji, on “Walking” produced under the label 88Rising.
Aside from working with the “Sanctuary” singer, a remix of 88Rising artist Stephanie Poetri’s “I Love You 3000” also featured the GOT7 rapper.
Red Velvet’s Wendy and John Legend
Red Velvet’s Wendy isn’t her group’s main vocalist for no reason. She’s got sweet but powerful vocals which fans can easily distinguish from anywhere. In 2018, Wendy got to work with John Legend for the single “Written in the Stars.” The song is part of SM Station which is a project of SM Entertainment, the agency that handles Red Velvet.
NCT Dream and HRVY
NCT Dream is the sub-unit of K-pop boy group NCT designated for the younger members, which made their collab with HRVY truly a dream. The 21-year-old singer from the UK got onboard to work on “Don’t Need Your Love” with the K-pop boy group for another SM Station project.
Wonder Girls X Akon
Before the likes of TWICE and Blackpink have been formed, the girl group Wonder Girls was one of the most popular groups in K-pop. They even opened for the US leg of the Jonas Brothers’ tour back 2009 and you’ve probably heard of their popular hits like “Nobody” and “So Hot.”
In 2012, the group collaborated on the catchy electro-pop song “Like Money” with singer Akon, who’s famous for tracks like “Don’t Matter” and “Smack That.”
BTS’ RM and HONNE
Global artists BTS are no strangers to Western collabs. As a group, they’ve teamed up with big names like Sia, Nicki Minaj, Zara Larsson, and Lauv for different tracks. Individually, though, many of the members—especially the group’s rappers-slash-producers—have also embarked on solo projects with international artists.
The group’s leader, RM, tapped producing duo HONNE to help co-write and produce the song “seoul” for his second mixtape mono. It’s a relaxed and melancholic track whose lyrics tackle the word’s—both the name and the place itself—similarities to “soul.”
In 2019, a remix of HONNE’s popular track “Crying Over You” featuring BEKA was also released. The new version included a verse from the BTS rapper.
BTS’ SUGA and Halsey
Aside from spitting fire during his rap verses in BTS songs, SUGA is also a revered producer in South Korea. He’s worked with top Korean female soloists like HEIZE, Lee Sora, IU, and SURAN, the latter of which he’s won an award with at the 2017 Melon Music Awards.
Fresh from their 2019 collab “Boy With Luv” which was the title track for BTS’ 2019 album Map of the Soul: Persona, Halsey invited the group’s rapper-producer to feature on a song, eventually called “SUGA’s Interlude,” in her 2020 album Manic. On choosing SUGA to work with her on the track, Halsey said in an interview with Beats 1 Radio that she found the rapper’s lyrics on his solo projects to be “introspective,” not shying away from opening up about his struggles with mental health, which fits right in with the concept of Manic.
BTS’ j-hope and Becky G
While he makes up one-third of his group’s passionate rap line, j-hope is a dancer at heart and even acts as his group’s dance captain. One of the songs that heavily influenced him as a child pursuing dance is Webstar and Young B’s “Chicken Noodle Soup,” which he later remade into a trilingual track featuring Latina singer Becky G and American dance group The Lab. The remix inspired the #CNSDanceChallenge on various social media platforms and received praise from the OG artists.
AB6IX and Lizzo
K-pop rookie group AB6IX—pronounced A-B-Six—only got to debut in 2019, but the group is steadily putting their names out for the world to know, starting with a remix of Lizzo’s popular “Truth Hurts.” The five-member boy group sings in both English and Korean in the remix, which is just as much of a bop as its OG version.
G-Dragon and Missy Elliott
Perhaps one of the most iconic east-meets-west collabs to date would be that of Missy Elliott and G-Dragon. The leader of BIGBANG, the group dubbed as the “Kings of K-pop,” reached out to the Grammy Award-winning rapper and songwriter to work on the song “Niliria.” They even got to perform the song together onstage during the 2013 KCON in LA, a yearly music festival bringing different K-pop acts to perform across the world. Truly, the stuff of legend.
Curious about these collabs? Listen to the songs here:
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"Today, I Won"
I always caught feelings for someone, and hoped so much that one day there could a thing between the two of us. I'm usually the one that makes the effort to buy and/or make cute gifts, chats them every other day, and stays up all night with him.
When I was 16, my childhood crush suddenly came back into my life. We'd constantly send updates to each other, recommend favorite songs and talk even the most random things. He'd even text me as early as 6 to just greet me good morning almost everyday. I hoped so much that when I confessed, he suddenly stopped talking to me.
For short, he ghosted me. Those 6 months I spent talking to him, allotting my time for him, and staying up until 3 am for him - all gone in a simple confession. Although I had a few crushes before him, he's the only one that got me in real pain. It was the kind of pain that I never thought I'd experience. It was the kind of pain that I couldn't believe.
After 7 years (it happened back in 2017), I thought he came back into my life to stay, but I guess he's just one of the guys who distanced. I felt a complete loser that time. But during this quarantine, everything was different. I caught feelings for someone else, but he treated me with the best kindness yet.
It happened at 2 am, May 30, 2020, when I impulsively confessed my feelings through messaging him. After saying my feelings, he responded with genuine and kind words. We both even complimented each other. Although the feelings didn't reciprocate, I still found a connection that can't be replaced with any guy.
To my 16 year old self, here I am, 18 and happy. You may have felt that time was the biggest regret and loss, but I'm here to tell you, we won. Today, I won.
Why our high school barkada is the best?
Remembering our high school years entails quite a lot reminiscing of the things we all been through when we were younger. You’ve experience a lot of new things during those 4 wonderful years and did most of them with the few people you consider your barkada. And through a series of all the lunch breaks you had together, the walks you took on the way home, and taking the same classes, you never thought you’d survive, you have made your life’s greatest friends.
Here are some of the reasons why your high school barkada is the best:
1. You figured out early teenage life together. The transition one have undergone from being a kid to a teenager wasn’t easy. For a moment you are not sure whether you should have played with your friends during recess or you should have just sat down and ate your food because you were too old for games. But whatever it is you chose to do, having friends who were as clueless as you make everything feel easier because you know, deep down, you’d figure things out eventually. You just need good company.
2. They were with you during your “jeje“ days. I bet you have pictures taken with Camera360 and Retrica. You also have pictures edited using Pizap with embarrassing captions and you somehow kept some of them so you could have something to post online during their birthdays.
3. They know all your exes. They will never EVER forget the name of an ex-boyfriend, an ex-fling, an ex-crush, and an almost you had. They will remind you of your every questionable love decision but you’ll just laugh anyway while saying “Past is past”.
4. They never judge you. They have welcomed you to their lives when you thought jelly shoes and checkered polos were the bomb! They were quick to have told your teachers that you were not feeling well so you could go home when you really just needed to poop. You tell them every embarrassing story you have and were fine with it.
5. You can always count on them. From the moment you first fell in love and the moment you first had your heart broken, they were with you. They were with you the moment you lost a parent and at moments when you thought you had nothing. Through every break-up and breakthrough, they were there to be your support system.
6. They are your family. Your high school friend’s family is your own family’s extension. Their parents are like your own. Don’t you feel a little kilig whenever your friend’s parents call you “anak”? And then eventually calling them mama and papa became so natural? I felt that, all the time.
7. They will always be your home. They are your place of refuge and security, the place who offers you their hands when you feel lost and the place you run to when you need saving. No matter how much time and distance separate you, they will be the one’s that you always long for and they are the one’s that you will always return to.
You're gonna bend and break and then at some point in your life, you feel like you don't want to fall in love again.
Not because you're no longer capable of loving but because you're so afraid to get hurt again that you don't want to take a risk anymore. And you're gonna wake up one day and realize that you're not the same person as you were yesterday. The heart aches, heartbreaks, frustration, you'll see, those will transform your whole being into something better.
Honey, move forward. Let go off all the things that are not meant for you. Let go of all the people who hurt you and take you for granted. Don't be stuck feeling miserable.
And don't turn that love into hate when you resent someone for hurting you or for breaking your heart. Just wish them well and let them go. Welcome the possibility of a beautiful love that will come your way. You're worthy of love that you keep on giving to other people. Keep that in mind.
I wish you well and all the happiness. You deserve it.
Here we are — with rough hands entwined, damned hearts at peace, broken souls resting with ease —savoring each passing moment before we part ways...hoping things will turn out to be okay. Here we are — standing still, keeping our earnest desire and ardent passion for each other at bay — hoping the Universe will finally grant us of the day that we no longer have to pretend... that things will no longer have to end.
Here we are — with crooked smiles, lingering touch that will last for a while -- gathering all the remaining courage to set each other free. Wishing for the day that our hearts will no longer have to worry. Here we are letting each other go. Even though we both know that the future is uncertain. Even though we're unsure if our paths will cross once again.