Besides groups, there are of course plenty of solo artists that newbies can explore. Solo artists, I feel tend to be a little bit underappreciated, not underrated (we all know they're talented as hell), but under appreciated. In case you haven't noticed by now, I am a bit more multi fandom so I hope I do a good job recommending songs from the several artists I listen to. For this edition of "Kpop for newbies" I'll be going over 5 really amazing solo artists whether they are a part of a group and have solo work on the side or they were never a part of a group. This is also where I bring in the whole idea that "kpop" as one big genre is a little bit untrue, and this shows a lot with solo artists because it seems like many of them tend to go for a different sound than what groups tend to come out with (k- hip hop, k-r&b etc.) So, here we go. Enjoy! (and obviously pics and gifs are not mine so credit goes to the rightful owners!)

So the artist that I instantly thought of when I started this was, Jay Park. Jay Park is from Washington (U.S), and he is 30 years old. He is also a former member of the group 2pm. After his run with 2pm, he had a hand in starting a label which he now leads with someone else, and that label is AOMG. So now, the reason I think he's a good artist for newbies is because he has a very HEAVY influence from western culture (for obvious reasons lol). Specifically, he seems to have a lot of hip-hop and r&b influences, therefore most of the song recommendations I'm going to give here are of those genres. Quick side note, one of the songs I'm recommending is "Mommae" and I know sometimes people can be sensitive to that kind of video so I decided to link a lyric video instead! And an overall disclaimer/warning, when it comes to Jay Park sometimes his lyrics can be pretty explicit and they're pretty obvious so stear clear of some of these songs if you're not into that!

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♥ All I Wanna Do
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kqckfuUnC1U

♥ Mommae (warning on the lyricial content here)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uf8SZBFWQX0

♥ Yacht
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a-T8aVasQdY

♥ Me Like Yuh
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t9INMcajjWY

♥ 2nd Thots (here's another one with a lyrical content warning)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h8JEkMGDsXs

So the next artist I'm thinking about is none other than Agust D. Agust D is one of three rappers from BTS aka Suga aka Min Yoongi (민 윤기) and he is also 24 years old. The name Agust D comes from Suga spelled backwards and the D and T (I believe, correct me if I'm wrong) come from the initials of his hometown, Daegu. (overall, the T and D come from Daegu Town, but it could come from something else as well). One of the really amazing things about Agust D is the delivery of his lyrics. Whether you know Korean or not, just based on the delivery of his lyrics you can tell if he's angry, upset, sad, frustrated etc. Here's an example of another artist that speaks about topics that might come off as a little more taboo (mental illness) so props to him for that. Here are 5 songs from his mixtape that I think newbies might like!

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♥ Agust D
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Y_Eiyg4bfk

♥ Give It To Me
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Zgc12yL5ss

♥ So Far Away
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3SdXAJpr4WQ

♥ The Last
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DB_AP7DLQ0w

♥ Tony Montana
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=azXAJb1d7VQ

We need some girl representation on this list don't you think? So, the artist I'm now thinking of is Yezi. Yezi is 23 years old and is one of two female rappers from the group Fiestar which debuted in 2012. One of my favorite things about Yezi is the attitude she gives in her songs and on camera. On top of that she has this thing where she lowers the tone of her voice, so you have all this fire and attitude coming at you but it pulls you in more than you anticipate it to. She's really an amazing addition to have in the hip-hop community and I wish she got more recognition than she does now. So here are 5 songs by Yezi that I think newbies would really like!

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♥ Cider
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-YJFr4pwwl0

♥ Sse Sse Sse
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LUtg60hzy7M

♥ Crazy Dog
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KbR6PfFSH4Q

♥ Anck Su Namum
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oemL0Q_PP10

♥ Lunar World
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4fVzWWmhe-Y

So the next artist I want to bring up comes from the group Ikon, and that is Bobby. Bobby is one of two rappers from Ikon, he is 22 years old, he grew up in Virginia (US) but was born in South Korea, he also won a season of show me the money, AND he just recently released his first solo album (which is also, fun fact, one of my favorite albums of 2017). One of the things I highly appreciate among rap artists is being able to keep a smooth voice while rapping, but the thing about Bobby is that he has this thing about his voice that I find to be bit unique. He has this nice balance of smooth and sweet but then he's also able to get it to sound very rough and tough when he needs it to be, like when he's angry or upset, I guess it's kind of similar to Agust D. Something else that I really admire about Bobby is that like, Agust D, he's very honest with his lyrics, especially with songs like Runaway. So, here are 5 songs that I think are great intros to Bobby for newbies!

bobby, Ikon, and gif image

♥ Up
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kb25IjguUb0

♥ Tendae
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1P3bBpLDpWs

♥ Secret
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AL3rg0gRl1w

♥Holup
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Tap_zZdkYA

♥ Runaway
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_MKJY4vAc5o

The last artist i'm going to talk about for this edition of Kpop for newbies is Zico. Zico is 25 years old. He is one of two rappers of Block B, he is also the leader of Block B, and he was a judge at some point on Show Me the Money as well. Oh boy what do I say abut Zico? Well, first things first I don't agree with everything he's said and done in the past but regardless he is still an incredible artist and in my opinion one of THE best coming from South Korea. Zico just has it all. He knows how to write, he has charisma that hooks people in, he works well with cute aesthetics and badass aesthetics, he has an insanely memorable voice that when you hear it just once you're never forgetting the sound of it. I feel like Zico just reaches mass audiences. He has an appeal to him and I feel like he tends to be a hit among newbies and kpop vets. So, here are 5 songs by Zico that I think most newbies would really like! (In case you couldn't tell he's one of my all time favorite artists lol)

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♥ Bermuda Triangle
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZHoLaLlL5lA

♥ She's a Baby
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ohSpvSGXfhY

♥ Anti
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nByyfquk0pQ

♥ Eureka
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xp35Dwy4hHM

♥ Fanxy Child
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GYX5QOVkHxc