Updated: May 10, 2022
The Korean Wave has taken over the world. Korea is the international entertainment centre, threatening to overtake Hollywood with its sleek and creative storylines and production of K-dramas like “Squid Game” to “Kingdom”. Another key factor that makes k-dramas so successful is the music, which is integral in supporting the narrative, in establishing a visual mood, and adding depth to a character. In this article, we share 7 K-drama OSTs you should consider adding to your music playlist.
7. Princess Hours
Princess Hours or Goong, is probably one of the most popular K-Dramas. It was released in 2006 and has been shown and recreated in multiple countries. The series has won over many fans and its OST, especially the main track “Perhaps Love” has won over the hearts of many fans. The song has even been translated into the Filipino language in the Philippines.
Goblin is another widely popular k-drama starring Hallyu actor Gong Yoo. The series is also supported by a strong line-up of original soundtracks. Ailee sang the track “I’ll Go to You Like the First Snow” with such power and emotion that it became an instant hit upon its release. Her rendition of the song received numerous praises by fans and critics.
5. Itaewon Class
Itaewon Class is a bold underdog revenge story uplifting in its telling and its OST reflects this. The central theme “You Make Me Back” by Woosong is a catchy rock tune, highlighted by stunning visuals in the show’s opening credits. BTS also made a special contribution with their song “Sweet Night”, an indie-pop ballad that serves as a soothing balm for the last few episodes of the series.
4. It’s Okay Not to be Okay
The k-drama “It’s Okay Not to be Okay” is a series about a selfless psych ward caretaker and an antisocial children’s book writer who falls for each other. The soundtrack is whimsical and spellbinding and perfectly suited for the story about the long-suffering Moon Gang-tae, haughty Ko Moon-young, and earnest Moon Sang-tae. “Breath” is one of the notable love anthems for Gang-tae and Moon-young. “Sketch Book” is light, airy, and whimsical and provides a beautiful opening song to the series.
3. Sky Castle
Sky Castle is the most-watched K-drama of 2019 and addictive as most of the characters have something to hide from others in order to maintain their social class and dignity. The iconic opening song “We All Lie” by Hajin is a perfect fit for this satirical drama, where rich parents getting their children to top schools using any means necessary while keeping their husbands at the top of their medical careers is an Olympic sport for the ruthless wives. The show milks the song for all its worth, repeatedly playing it throughout its 20-episode run. There are other great tunes on the soundtrack including “Princess Maker” by Cheon Dan-bi and “The Top of One’s Desire” by Lim Mi-hyun.
Healer is an action-packed drama, yet the soundtrack is packed with mostly emotive instrumentals and easy listening ballads. It is rather fitting as the main characters are brought together by a shared past. The opening theme “Healer” is one so memorable K-drama fans recognise upon listening that it belongs to the series’ OST. The song is used liberally in the episodes and notably in flashbacks to support scenes of camaraderie and swoon-worthy moments.
1. Record of Youth
Record of Youth is about three youngsters who all dream of making it big in the entertainment industry. They are all go-getters and brimming with optimism. It is no surprise that the soundtrack is made up of all mostly upbeat music with slower ones in between for the more somber moments. Baekhyun of EXO lends his voice to the tender “Every Second” while OST queen Whee In brings out the emotion with the romantic song “Shine On You”. While it isn’t a part of the official soundtrack, David Guetta’s “Blast Off” plays a prominent role, coming on in full blast during Hye-jun’s runway walk.