I Am A Singer 2: September Group A

Following last week’s auditions, on September 9th I Am A Singer 2 continued with its regular episodes, though surprisingly enough not featuring any of the two artists that qualified instead adding another new singer to the mix. In addition to myself Dahee of Dahee’s Plastic Castle and Fabien of Kimchi Popcorn have contributed their opinions to this post. All performances can be streamed from the official site.




Movies, Drama and Musicals OST Mission

Fabien: And NOW is the time for me to shine! Movies sountracks, yaaaay ! They’re really pleasing me with the return of the “missions”.

Dahee: Yeah, I’m glad they’re doing missions again, and OSTs, to boot. I love OSTs. Sadly, they didn’t choose many interesting OST songs to cover this time around…

Fabien: But it brings high hopes for the next week. I can’t wait to see what Guckkasten will choose.

Anna: Very happy about the missions too. Makes things more fun and challenging at the same time.


Making of Kim Yeon Woo’s Arrangement

Anna: Going for a musical piece this time? I guess Kai had some influence after all. I was more amused than I should’ve been by Kim Yeon Woo holding Don Spike‘s head and rocking it while singing dramatically.

Dahee: Don’t worry, you aren’t alone. My mom and I were howling with laughter over this moment.

Fabien: In retrospect, I would have prefered this version :P


Making of Younha’s Arrangement

Dahee: More laughter over Noh Hong Chul’s face when he tries to imitate Younha’s high notes. Why yes, I am very mature, thanks.

Fabien: Younha could have chosed a song from Friend, but instead went for the title song from Blue Swallow, which was not really a good movie for me. Ok, I don’t care, Younha, I still have trust in you to make a wonderful interpretation of this ballad song.


Making of Lee Young Hyun’s Arrangement

Anna: Seems like Lee Young Hyun’s gonna go all out on this one.

Dahee: My mom and I giggled when she sang about how high the notes are, and then asked her manager for some water while still singing, haha. She provides so many fun moments for the camera.

Fabien: I laughed too ^^


Making of Jung Yup’s Arrangement

Anna: Oh! Ever since I heard Kim Gun Mo cover “I Just Called To Say I Love” with an accordion many, many years ago I’ve had a weak spot for this song. Although Jung Yup will have to work hard to make a better arrangement

Dahee: I feel like choosing an English song is a tad risky with this audience, but the genre is certainly one that he can pull off well. I can’t say I’m particularly looking forward to it, though.

Fabien: I like the risk he’s taking with an English song, and I like this song. So, high hopes for this one.


New Singer: Sinawe

Anna: This was completely unexpected! I did see Shin Dae Chul in the intro clips, but even so I didn’t stop to think that Sinawe would be the new singer. And I didn’t expect I’d be this happy to see Shin Dae Chul. Is it because he’s smiling more than usual? Certainly didn’t expect to see Nam Goong Yon playing the drums. Nice that Kim Bada is back as vocalist.

Dahee: I had heard that Sinawe would be joining I Am A Singer 2, but I had no idea that they’d be joining so soon! As soon as they showed up in this episode my mom and I grabbed each other and shrieked! Shin Dae Chul’s going to have his hands full with both this and Top Band 2 duties. I’m really, really happy about this. And what a pleasant surprise to have Kim Bada joining them, and to have Nam Goong Yeon on drums!

Fabien: So last week I was pissed off by I Am A Singer, but now they’re totally making it up!!! Sinawe! Now they are starting again to bring the legends of Korean music! Shin Dae Chul seems so humble here compared to his acting in Top Band. I like so much the reaction of Younha when she is told she’ll to compete against Sinawe. There’ll be blood !

Specially Invited Audience

Anna: Policemen this week. I’m actually a bit disappointed not to see Lee Young Ae in some ridiculous outfit matching the audience this time.

Dahee: BO-RING. If they insist on doing this, why not choose a group of people who are more interesting? It was a struggle not to fastforward through this part.

Fabien: I share your disappointment, Anna. Not even a police cap on Lee Young Ae !! Give me back my money !!


Start Order Draw

Anna: Jung Yup got some skills opening those capsules. And he got a golden ball himself. What does that mean? Kim Yeon Woo too.

Dahee: It means you get one chance to redraw to get a better number. Thus why Kim Yeon Woo ends up going fifth instead of first.


Seo Moon Tak – “Maria” (Kim Ah Joong cover)

Anna: I think this was a very good song pick for her, and as she should with this song it’s all on from the start. Being so used to the soundtrack version I sort of wish that her voice would’ve been smoother in the refrains, but then of course that wouldn’t have been Seo Moon Tak. The audience looks like it’s eating this right up.

Dahee: I really enjoy this song, but this is a boring arrangement overall. She did nothing overly creative with this, which is a disappointment. I mean, sure, there were a couple of slightly interesting moments, but they never lasted long, and just weren’t special enough to hook me. Her voice sure is powerful, though, and I’m glad she’s finally back to doing rock, but there’s something missing to this performance. Still, it was fun overall.

Fabien: I like the song far more than the movie in which it was featured, 200 Pounds Beauty. And moreover, at that time I was a fan of Loveholic. That’s why I also enjoyed the song. Seo Moon Tak’s vocals are quite impressive, she has that interesting color that makes the song a little better than Jisun’s version. Now, if I have to be more honest, this is true that there is no attempt for a different arrangement or personalization of the song.


Sinawe – 그건 너 (Lee Jang Hee cover)

Anna: Not just Sinawe, but Shaun from The Koxx too! This show just gets better and better. And though I’ve grown wary of Shaun’s involvement in various arrangements previously I trust Shin Dae Chul to be able to get only the very best out of him. I really like this song in original, but this is a very good arrangement. And that’s a very nice guitar solo for Shin Dae Chul! This is so good I’m barely even listening to Kim Bada. At the end of it I have no idea whether he sung well or not, but after this Sinawe better not get the same treatment as Baekdoosan.

Dahee: Hmm…I’m a tad disappointed. I mean, yeah, they play their instruments exceedingly well (of course), and Shin Dae Chul was on FIRE. But I got the sense that Kim Bada’s vocals took a decided backseat to the instruments. Which is fine, but this kind of approach won’t get them a high placement on the show. Overall, this felt a bit dated. I almost thought that I was watching Top Band instead of I Am A Singer

Fabien: This one comes from the 1994’s movie called Out Of The World. Didn’t watch it yet, so neither do I know this song.  I’m too happy to listen to this kind of wild and rough sound again in I Am A Singer. Shin Dae Chul is of course amazing, but so are the drummer and the bassist. I’m not sure if these vocals are fit for this audience, but I’m totally buying it.


Lee Young Hyun – 사랑아 (The One cover)

Anna: That was a great and dramatic violin intro from Seo Ji Woo. I’m not really feeling Lee Young Hyun’s parts though. I mean it’s beautiful and all, but it’s the violin and not Lee Young Hyun that makes it interesting. Not really digging the chorus either. Still my overall impression of the performance is good. Why are you sad, Lee Young Hyun?

Dahee: Great arrangement! She definitely got the OST aspect of it spot on – it sounds like it belongs on a historical drama soundtrack. It also made me think of Park Wan Kyu, for some reason. And Lee Young Hyun was so emotional, thinking back on her last boyfriend and how he put this song on his cyworld immediately after they broke up. She’s so much fun to watch.

Fabien: I’m just sick of this wind effect in her hair ! The arrangement was a perfect fit for the OST mission, with a lot of dramatic tension and layers of violins and the choir… Sometimes, I felt it was on the edge of getting cheesy.


Younha – 서쪽 하늘 (Lee Seung Chul cover)

Anna: Very pretty intro, both with the strings and Younha’s sweet voice to the piano. This already feels like the toughest round in a long time! She sings well throughout. A very nice performance.

Dahee: Great emotion. At first I thought it was very pretty, but just another I Am A Singer 2 performance…but then when she started getting choked up, I suddenly became invested, and by the end I had goosebumps all over my arms. She sings well, yes, but like Noh Hong Chul I’m more impressed over the fact that she can show such emotion at such a young age. Very, very nice.

Fabien: A mastered voice that becomes stronger and stronger throughout the performance. Ans she seems to do all of this with great ease. Well done again, Younha. She always makes me more interested in ballad songs that I should be.


Kim Yeon Woo – 지금 이 순간 (Cho Seung Woo cover)

Anna: Seems like Kim Yeon Woo will try to show some acting skills on this one, keeping the Jekyll & Hyde musical connection. But if you want to bring a musical number to I Am A Singer, shouldn’t the point be to shape it so that it fits the show rather than making a straightforward adaptation? Very well sung, but overly dramatic.

Dahee: What’s with the arrangement, Don Spike? This song is already oversung and overrated in the musical world, but to bring that directly to the I Am A Singer 2 stage without trying to reshape it…That’s just boring. Now that Kai’s gone, it’s like Kim Yeon Woo’s trying to take on his role. But I really can’t imagine why. He sings well, yes, but it’s cheesy.

Fabien: So out of place. The vocals are great, but I just can’t get into it, as it’s just a piece of a musical. It’s as if I had to get into a movie after one hour of runtime. I got bored fast, but at least he surprised me.


Jung Yup – I Just Called To Say I Love You (Stevie Wonder cover)

Anna: Two grand pianos? I hope they’ll be used for something interesting. Aw Jung Yup! His voice sounds almost like Kim Gun Mo’s when singing this! Going for a semi-jazzy arrangement, I see. And that’s where the two pianos come in! I’m not loving this, but having warmed up to jazz considerably only a month ago I’m liking it a whole lot more than I had expected after realizing where he was heading.

Dahee: I love the suits, and I love the pianos. The song fits Jung Yup like a glove. This is his best performance yet! It never goes overly dramatic, but it’s still so entertaining. I’m eating this up with a goddamn spoon. What an awesome, awesome arrangement. It’s simple, yet effective. I want to give the person in charge of the arrangement a trophy. Go Jung Yup!!

Fabien: I agree with Dahee, it’s probably his best performance so far. I wouldn’t complain if he goes on like this, I Am A Singer seems to make him get better. Great arrangement, especially as one could have been so prompt to make it like a full musical show, with strings, trumpets and everything.


Personal Picks

Anna: 1) Sinawe, 2) Younha, 3) Lee Young Hyun, 4) Jung Yup, 5) Seo Moon Tak, 6) Kim Yeon Woo.

Sinawe was clearly first for me this week. I actually enjoyed Lee Young Hyun’s performance more than Younha’s, but that was mostly because of the violin so Younha gets second anyway. Jung Yup did something new and should be commended for that. Seo Moon Tak and Kim Yeon Woo were equally good to me, but Kim Yeon Woo took it in the wrong direction so he’ll have to taste the bottom this week.


Dahee: 1) Jung Yup 2) Lee Young Hyun 3) Younha 4) Sinawe 5) Seo Moon Tak 6) Kim Yeon Woo

This was a good week. I was very impressed by Jung Yup’s arrangement, and the song was a perfect choice for his voice, so he’s definitely first for me. Younha sang and handled the emotions really well, but I had the same feelings about Lee Young Hyun, and I was more impressed by the latter’s arrangement, so Lee gets second. I struggled between Sinawe and Seo Moon Tak for a while, but in the end I decided that Sinawe’s arrangement was more interesting. The only performance I was really annoyed by was Kim Yeon Woo’s, so he’s clearly last. He’ll have to try harder than this to impress me.


Fabien: 1) Sinawe 2) Jung Yup 3) Younha 4) Lee Young Hyun 5) Seo Moon Tak 6) Kim Yeon Woo

I cannot be different from what I am, so Sinawe clearly takes the first. But I’ll try to work very hard these next weeks to lower my bias for them so that my personal picks will look fairer. Jung Yup made a very good impression with his classy performance. Not only did he go further into the jazzy sound he tried last time, but it was very well executed and I have nothing to complain about him. Younha made a performance that was not so different from the last one, I’m a bit afraid that she just end up repeating herself, but I also can’t blame her when she conveys the emotions so well. I was thinking of putting Lee Young Hyun fourth, changed many times, and in the end, as I am trying to be a fair gentleman, I keep her there. The thing is, I enjoyed Seo Moon Tak’s “Maria” more, but it was only for the nostalgia. As for Kim Yeon Woo…. well… I think Anna and Dahee already said everything that had to be said.


The Results

Top 3: Younha, Kim Yeon Woo, Lee Young Hyun

Anna: How could Kim Yeon Woo get top 3 with a musical number when Kai got eliminated after starting out that way? I also really wanted to see Sinawe in the top 3, but since I wasn’t really paying to Kim Bada they may have done way worse than it seemed to me.

Dahee: I am also flabbergasted over Kim Yeon Woo getting in the top three. Just…WHY? Poor Jung Yup. And poor Sinawe. I’m certainly fine with the two ladies being here, though.

Fabien: Where. Is. Sinawe… Damn! Now I’ll get angry again at this show. Please, dear audience, don’t give them the same treatment as Baekdoosan ! I would have understood if Younha wasn’t in the top, but Sinawe… And Jung Yup too ! This was a charming performance, the best he had done yet, and he performed last !! Usually the audience is always biased for the last singer. But now he may never try again to be original thanks to these results…

No. 1: Lee Young Hyun

Anna: She’s so cute when she gets the result! She can have this win. I don’t mind the least bit.

Dahee: A very expected result. Indeed, she’s very cute. I want to be her friend.

Fabien: That’s okay for this time, but it’s all thanks to these violins.

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