[Hallyupedia] Millboard (밀보드)

연합뉴스 / 기사승인 : 2021-03-27 06:43:22
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by Yun Ji Hyun / Cha Min Kyung


[ENG] Millboard


▲ This captured image from Korea Now shows girl group Brave Girls "Rollin" as a consolation performance. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap) 

"Millboard" comes from combining the words "military" and "billboard", a term that refers to a popular music chart among soldiers.

One of the songs released by girl group, Brave Girls in the past became popular among the soldiers ultimately bringing a belated success to the singers as their song topped a lot of the famous music charts.

In a similar context, another word that is widely used within the military is 군통령·[gun-tong-ryeong], which translates to "military president", means a popular celebrity among the soldiers.

▲ Korean soldiers and girl groups
Under the constitution, Korean men over the age of 18 are obliged to serve in the military. Men who meet the conditions to enter the army are included in the list of active duty and are to serve as soldiers in the Republic of Korea Army for one and a half years.


▲ This photo shows reserve forces conducting live fire drills during their training period. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap) 

However, since most of the soldiers are serving the country during their youths, the military invites celebrities to the military units in order to hold a consolation performance to relieve their stress.

During the 1990s and 2000s, there weren't a large number of idols and girl groups as there are now so many top class female singers were invited to perform for the army.


In the 1990s, popular girl groups such as S.E.S. and Fin.K.L as well as songstresses including Uhm Jung-hwa and Chae-yeon, who were regarded as the sexiest divas at the time. In the early 2000s, Girls' Generation, Wonder Girls, T-ara, and KARA also performed for the soldiers.


▲ This picture shows K-pop girl group T-Ara posing for a photo during a showcase in Seoul in 2015 (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

However, as the number of girl groups that were formed increased, the nature of military consolation performances and the concept of Millboards started to change from 2010.

Since consolation performances are actually a type of charity, megastar celebrities from large agencies did not participate as frequently as before. Instead, the so-called "B-class" girl groups from small to medium-sized agencies mainly engaged in the performances.

This led to creating a perception that "only unknown groups appear for the consolation performances".
However, the unknown girl groups who focused on performing at the military became very popular not only among solider but became widely known to the public as well.



▲ This photo shows girl group EXID members (from left) Hani, Solji, LE, Jeong-hwa, and Hye-lin. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap) 

One of the most well-known cases of this phenomenon is K-pop girl group, EXID. The group dropped their now iconic song, "Up and Down" in 2013, but did not receive any response at the time of its release. However, when a video clip of EXID performing "Up and Down" at the military was posted online, it went viral leading the girl group to success.

While Millboards lists songs by famous idol singers, they also include promising girl gropus that are undervalued compared to their skills and looks.

As the influence of Millboards started to grow, some entertainment agencies are beginning to form girl groups who can use their charms towards the soldiers in the military.

▲ Recent issues: Brave Girls and Millboard
The song "Rollin", which was released in 2017 by Brave Girls has become viral by climbing back to the top of many music charts this year.


▲ This image provided by Brave Entertainment, shows girl group Brave Girls. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap) 


Brave Girls were not widely known to the public, but among the military soldiers, it is said that the girl group have already established a reputation of military presidents since 2017.

Within the army, "Rollin" has become so loved that soldiers joke about how the predecessors should teach their successors about the song as a tradition.

The four piece act are also known to have devoted much of their time to consolation performances for the military soldiers.

The reason why "Rollin" becoming popular is regarded as unusual is because usually the songs listed on the music charts influence the ranking of songs on the Milboard. However, in the case of the Brave Girls, the reverse is happening.

When the Brave Girls won the top prize in "SBS Inkigayo" with "Rollin", the group thanked not only the soldiers in general but the reserve forces as well as civil defense soldiers as well.



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