Kim Jung Mi

If I were to tell you that one of the greatest records ever made came out South Korean psychedelic pop scene in 1973, you’d probably doubt my sanity. And you’d be utterly, utterly wrong.

I don’t know much about Kim Jung Mi. I know she’s backed on this track by fuzz-guitar maestro Shin Jung Hyun and his band The Men, but that’s about it. It’s from an album called Now, and that the track is called The Sun.

All that matters is that it’s like Sweet Jane crossed with Hey Jude crossed with Francois Hardy, and that every second is 24 carat, take-your-breath-away magnificent.

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  1. wait – there was a south korean psychedelic pop scene?

  2. That IS very Francoise Hardy. Nice.

    I’d just arrived in South Korea in 1996 in a small city called Iksan and was walking through the main market when I heard the most outrageous wailing, yelping, psychedelic, sitaar fuelled, driving rock ‘n’ roll song coming out of a tape cassette player. It was just playing in a small wool shop and the sounds spread down the market alleyway. I went back to the shop to try and find out what the track was, but having only been in Korea a couple of weeks I lacked the requisite lingual skills.

    I’ll never hear it again – unless it just so happens to be one of your Kim Choo Ja tracks – but it left a very lasting impression and was deffo not of this time. So, in answer to Rich, I’d say yeah, there was a Korean psychedelic scene consisting of at at least two very good tracks.

  3. What a nice guitar bit

  4. Frazer, cool stuff! You’re music picks are alwais super cool,



  5. I’m confused Fras, didn’t you post this recently or did I:

    a) dream it (word for word).
    b) read it VERY recently while drunk but don’t recall where or when (possibly as I was intoxicated).

    Despite the above, I’m feeling… well… confused.

    Yours in wonder,


  6. Korean voices sound French, after all. Well I never.
    Mazzy Red Star.

  7. I see what you mean about the Sweet Jane feeling. Dang, now I’ve got to go and listen to the first Cowboy Junkies album again.

    What a lovely track.

  8. Your data never stops buffering, man.
    But I enjoy the silence.

  9. It sounds like something from the last few frames of a of ‘chop socky’ version of El Topo – marvellous. Where can I get the album?

  10. I adore that! The whole “24-carat-blah-blah-magnificent” was right on target.

    Do you have any idea what she’s singing about? Not that it matters. I just wondered.

  11. When does it stop buffering and start playing?

  12. Ahem, ok it started playing now. Very nice tune. Wish understood the language :)

  13. Nope – mine still buffering (and has been for a week now . . .)

  14. I live in South Korea and really want to buy this singer’s CDs. I searched online in Korean and came up empty. Can anyone tell me how to buy this CD and others? It wouldn’t be available in the ‘States would it?

  15. That’s great. Thanks Graham. I’d love a box-set that compiles all this stuff.

  16. I just recently discovered Kim Jung Mi. I can’t believe I haven never heard of her before fatefully purchasing her album at Other Music (nyc).

    anyway,just in case anyone is still curious, she is singing about the sun.

    here’s a rough/simplified translation:

    “I can feel warm sun,
    We are going to the land of the sun,
    To the high mountain top.
    We are living together with the warm sun.
    The birds are all singing for me,
    In the land of the sun.
    How great it is to live with the sun.
    I am going to meet the sun,
    Lets all go to meet the sun.
    We all look at the sun, and ask…”

    There is more but that’s about all I can make out right now. I hope that helps!

  17. I have been fixing song names on my audio player because it reads their name in different symbols. Anyway, there was this song that I could’nt turn off and instead I listened to it for the whole day. I just got into South America and was walking around Bogota with The Sun playing over and over again. That was my first time hearing the song and I couldnt change it.

  18. I lived in Korea 1975-1976 and this track really brings back memories of a special time.

  19. hi,

    The “Now” LP by Kim Jung Mi is one of the most beautiful albums I have ever heard and my 2nd favourite Korean LP. I have started a blog about Korean Rock, folk and psyche music if you are interested. Some great music was made there in the early 70’s.

  20. i actually have the album “Now”, but on my copy this same track is listed as “Toward The Sunlight”

    anyways wicked stuff !!!

  21. I LOVE IT!!!

  22. Hello,
    There used to be a song by Kim Jung Mi on this site. I cannot find it anymore now that the site has been revamped. Can you please tell me which track it was or have it available again? Thanks a million.
    I have been haunted by it for months now. I cannot find it elsewhere.

    All the best,

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