Married to a Korean Indie Musician: The Good, The Bad & The Ugly
From basically having a soundtrack playing to my life every day to fan girls not understanding boundaries, here are the good, the bad and the ugly points about being married to a Korean indie musician.
This post cannot possibly cover everything awesome, more awesome or otherwise when it comes to being married to an indie musician, but it’s a good start…
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Music, Music & More Music!
If you don’t like music playing at all hours of the day and night, I wouldn’t suggest marrying a musician. If my husband isn’t playing something on his guitar, practicing or composing, editing some songs on his computer or just listening to music for fun or inspiration, then something is probably wrong. The cool thing is that means I basically have a real life soundtrack playing to my life and daily routine. You can imagine how much fun that can be.
Who doesn’t love getting into concerts, festivals and events for free not to mention getting backstage at the aforementioned? Not this girl.
While getting backstage can be good and a lovely perk of being married to a musician, it also comes with some strings attached. While I would love to snap photos of the other bands and ask for photos with them backstage, I have to
maintain some composure and give them some privacy. If prompted, I never say no to snapping a photo, but I’m not usually one to ask. I have found that some fans can go above and beyond invading privacy so, I very purposefully do NOT post pictures of the guys or their friends when they are just hanging out unless I’ve asked them first. My husband has a 20 year career as an indie artist in Korea, most of that with his band Every Single Day, and because of that knows a ton of other artists, musicians, producers and so on and I would never want to be the wife that posts about where they meet for drinks or what they do on their free weekends as much as I know that those posts would probably be a big draw for a certain group of people.
Granted the freebies aren’t for me, but sometimes I can get in on ’em. Free t-shirts, bags, shoes, stickers, oh my! My husband gets free music equipment and guitars, too. While being an indie musician means that you may have to give up as far as luxuries go, (how many indie musicians do you know making bank?) people, companies and concert organizers are pretty cool people to work with and they like helping the guys out, especially if they’ll wear said t-shirt or use said guitar on stage at their next concert, or just take a pic and post it on their Facebook Page.
Goodbye Summer Vacations
Growing up, one of the main reasons to look forward to summer, not just that there was no school, was because that meant summer trips, vacations with swimming in pools and at beaches. When you’re married to an indie musician you can say goodbye to summer vacations. Summer is of course the big festival and concert season. Everyone wants to get out and enjoy the summer which means that we have to give up on some of those summer vacation dreams. Doesn’t stop me from visiting the coasts of Korea at least once, but still… Bali? Sydney? Thailand? Probably out of the question unless I want to go alone.
Your “Meeting” Starts When?
I can’t say if this is a universal thing, but it is pretty standard for Korea; “meetings” often happen in the evenings leading into the nights and may not end until early morning. I say “meeting” because to me, it’s not a meeting if you’re getting drunk while you may possibly talk work. Indie musicians have to hustle and if a director, producer, fellow band member wants to talk business, that means whatever they want. Whatever they want usually means lots of alcohol and a drunk husband stumbling home at odd hours. How often these meetings happen is really up to the husband and his personality though. Mine, fortunately, doesn’t really like these events and tries to opt out as much as possible. If you’re in Korea and have to attend a work meeting, be prepared!
She Did What?
There’s just something about musicians, isn’t there? I may not exactly understand everything being said around the table or after concerts with fans, but I think a girl putting her hand on your man’s thigh is pretty universal. My husband said he didn’t even notice though he probably just said that to calm me down. My reaction: stand up, let’s go, see ya fans. I’m not going to make a scene, but I will remove myself and my husband from any situation where there’s a female fan that doesn’t understand boundaries. What my subsequent plan of action was though was to befriend the “leaders” and “mainstays” of his band’s fan club. These girls show up to every concert and every festival and I know if I have them on my side, even if I’m not there, they’ll keep an eye out. I don’t care how drunk you are, how pretty you think you are, how nice my husband is or anything else, you don’t check yourself, we’re going to have problems.
These are only a few of the good, the bad and the ugly things that are involved with being married to a Korean indie musician. In general, I would say for me personally, most things are good, if not great.
Additionally, just so there is no misunderstanding: I absolutely did NOT marry my husband because he is a Korean indie musician. It is amazing and so beautiful to see him up on stage completely enjoying and immersed in what he does for a living though because you just don’t see people often at work and loving it as much as he does.