Ever wanted to experience what it’s like to absolutely slay a K-pop song, like you are Taeyeon or IU? Well, in a Korean noraebang, you can finally have that experience and become a hot K-pop idol yourself, like BTS, BLACKPINK, or EXO!
* The excitement of K-pop starts right from the noraebang.
Noraebang is a combination of the word norae (song) and bang (room), so it literally means a “song room”. It’s quite similar to what we call a karaoke. When you step into a noraebang, you will see a number of rooms, each equipped with a big monitor, some microphones, and a singing machine. You can walk into a room with a group of friends and have a blast or just by yourself and still have the time of your life, singing your heart out and dancing around with a mic in one hand and a tambourine in another. Seriously, if you want to sing your life away with your friends and relieve all your stress, a noraebang is the place to be.
For Koreans, singing is one of the key ways to get rid of your stress after a long day, so the noraebang culture in Korea is not only popular, it’s considered to be always exciting, easily accessible, and quite natural, really. Even if you are a terrible singer, nobody is going to care, and you and your friends will all have a great time. At least while you have a mic in your hand, you can be a K-pop star.
Thanks to Koreans’ love of noraebangs, there is a wide variety of noraebangs in Korea. Some noraebangs let you rent a room at an hourly rate so you can sing as many songs as you want within the time limit, while some noraebangs charge you about 500 won (about half a dollar) for each song you sing. Such noraebangs are known as “coin noraebangs”, since people insert a 500 won coin to sing.
* Unique types of noraebangs you can find only in Korea
There is a general perception that all noraebangs are about the same, but there are very special types of noraebangs in Korea that you don’t normally get to see elsewhere.
- Noraebangs with mic stands
If you ever became a solo artist and held a concert, wouldn’t you want to have a mic stand in front of you, and sing your lungs out with your hands dancing to the rhythms of your soul? In Korea, there are noraebangs where they have mic stands. So you can have both of your hands free to express every little detail of your emotions. This isn’t like a bar where you sing in front of an audience! You get to have your own private solo concert in the privacy of a room with a mic stand in front of you.
- Noraebangs with wall-size windows
When thinking of a noraebang, some might picture an image of a cramped, windowless room that could almost make you claustrophobic. In this particular type of noraebang, the rooms are designed with wall-size windows, so you can sing while looking at the pedestrians outside passing by. Try to imagine those pedestrians as the audience for your concert and sing like there is no tomorrow. You’ll feel like you’ve actually made it as a legit K-pop star.
- Themed noraebangs
Korea also has many noraebangs with various themes that you should definitely check out. Some are designed with more “cute” themes, while some are luxuriously decorated. Some noraebangs also provide the customers with props they can wear.
- Coin noraebangs
Let’s say you are walking down the street and you feel the sudden urge to sing one particular song. But all you want to do is sing this one song and nothing else, so it feels like a waste of money to go to a regular noraebang and rent a room just to sing that song. The quickest fix for this situation is going to a coin noraebang. You can get in and sing one song or a dozen songs. It’s totally up to you. A coin noraebang is typically a tiny room with a singing machine and enough space for only a couple of people, which feels nice and cozy and makes it a perfect place for you to hold a mini solo concert in your own privacy.
* K-POP stars love noraebangs too!
Much like (G)I-DLE’s Minnie and Yuqi in the video, anyone can go to a noraebang, rent a room, and have one hell of a time, singing their favorite songs. In Korean noraebangs, you can sing not only Korean songs, but Japanese songs, Chinese songs, Vietnamese songs, oldies from the US, and a whole lot of other songs from various parts of the world.
Or you might want to go to a noraebang by yourself like Taeyeon does, and become Taeyeon yourself. In Korea, going to a noraebang by yourself is considered absolutely normal.
Or how about building friendship with your new friends? Noraebang is a perfect place to do it! You’ll be surprised to see how singing songs together can be a great catalyst for bonding with people.
Also, in case of K-pop, there are countless songs with English lyrics, so it’s great to sing along with your friends, even if they are not from Korea. Plus, noraebangs in Korea update their equipment with the most recent hits every month. So if you want to sing as many K-pop songs as you want, you just have to check out a Korean noraebang.