Asian Rapper Set to Roar Across L.A.
Now, there’s no denying his talent. As MC Tiger JK (he declines to confirm his given name or age, though most fan sites refer to him as Seo Jung-Kwon), he’s perhaps the most popular Korean rapper in America, Asia and the world. By reinterpreting the brash appeal of L.A. gangsta rap for Korean audiences, he and his Drunken Tiger crew have alternately scandalized and intrigued their audience for nearly two decades.
Drunken Tiger’s Friday show at the Wiltern, “The Jungle Concert in L.A.” (featuring an extended bill of Korean hip-hop peers including his wife, Korean American R&B artist Yoon Mi Rae, rap acts Lee Ssang, Bizzy and vocalist Jung In), might codify a scene that thrives at a difficult flashpoint between many different cultures. They want to represent Korea and their genre without pandering to stereotypes about Asian pop, and they want to be taken seriously as rappers in America without relying on their outsider status.
Sandra Oh on North Korean Refugee Adoption Act
The North Korean Refugee Adoption Act, if passed, would allow Americans to adopt refugee orphans who have fled the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) to neighboring countries such as Mongolia, Thailand and other Southeast Asian countries. These children are struggling in harsh circumstances, and run the risk of being sent back to DPRK. According to the World Food Program, DPRK faces regular food shortages, and one in three North Korean children under five are chronically malnourished.
David Chang, the Rock Star of Ramen, Goes Global
And now, only seven years after opening that first noodle bar in a former chicken wing joint the size of a one-car garage, Chang is going global.
He opened Momofuku Seiobo, his first eatery outside New York, late last month — going all the way to Sydney, Australia to do it. Next year, a Toronto outpost opens — it will be his sixth, not counting the four Momofuku Milk Bar bakeries run by his protege, Christina Tosi. The second edition of his admired food quarterly, Lucky Peach (that’s English for the Japanese “momofuku”), has just come out. He’s still tinkering with the iPad app.
S. Korea HIV patients battle AIDS, and bias
On Monday, UNAIDS appointed Hong Myung-bo, one of South Korea’s most famous soccer players, as an International Goodwill Ambassador to raise awareness on HIV/AIDS in Korea and the rest of Asia.
His appointment is promising news because people living with the disease in Korea are fighting an uphill battle against intangible forces that cannot be conquered with medicine and money alone.
As of December 2010, about 7,200 people in Korea were known to be living with the human immunodeficiency virus that causes AIDS, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In a country with a population of almost 49 million that means just 0.015% of South Koreans are living with HIV.
However, experts estimate that the actual number of people who live with the virus may be five to ten times greater than the official count.
Widespread misconceptions, stigma, and discrimination surrounding the illness have pushed HIV patients to the fringes of Korean society, say experts and activists. The fear of being exposed and ostracized is strong.
300 Homeless Men in Cleveland Enjoy Korean American Association Hospitality and Goodwill Gesture
Cleveland Plain Dealer
It’s the second year the Korean American Association has served dinner and provided clothing to Northeast Ohio’s homeless men. The idea was a brainstorm of association president Sam Kim.
“We did this last year and provided blankets for these men,” Kim said. “It was a joy for us to see how happy these men were then, and we knew we had to do this again. But we couldn’t do this alone . . . we had 10 Korean churches who helped support this event.”
Margaret Cho On Writing Comedic Music and Her New Cho Dependent DVD
Margaret Cho might be known best from the laughs she’s provided over the years, but her talents extend beyond being funny. She has the passion to inspire and leaves you knowing that you have the right to do and laugh at what you want. From Dancing with the Stars to Drop Dead Diva and her new DVD Cho Dependent, Cho has blossomed into the total package.
From rags to riches, South Korea hosts forum on international aid
Los Angeles Times
For South Korea, the fact that the southern port city of Busan played host Tuesday to the start of a three-day forum on global aid strategies is no less than a “rags to riches” story.
In 1963, still reeling from a war that a decade earlier had ravaged the Korean peninsula, South Korea, with a per capita income of just $89, was a major recipient of global aid, making it one of the world’s least-developed countries.
That was then; this is now.
Today, Busan is the world’s fifth-largest commercial port and the nation’s economy is the world’s 13th largest.
Interview with Hollywood actress Sandra Oh
Sandra spoke of her love for Korea as a Korean-Canadian and her hopes to one day star in a Korean movie. She also talked about the inside stories behind “Grey’s Anatomy” and how she was cast into the show.
“If I am to be cast in a Korean movie, I will be happy to take any role. I will study Korean, and if I don’t have any lines, I can act with just my facial expressions. I’ve always wanted to attend the Busan Film Festival, but I was always caught up with work. I want to attend the festival with a piece I star in.”
Somali pirates holding S. Korean hostages demand release of captured pirates
Somali pirates holding four South Koreans in a hijacked chemical tanker are demanding that Seoul pay ransom for the hostages and release five pirates captured during a January raid of a seized Korean freighter, an official said Friday.
The four South Koreans are among 25 crew members of the Singapore-registered 21,000-ton MT Gemini that was hijacked on April 30 in waters off Kenya. The seizure came about three months after South Korean naval commandos raided a Korean-owned freighter on Jan. 21 and rescued all 21 crew members.
N.Korean Defectors Flock to U.K.
Some 581 North Korean defectors have been given asylum in the United Kingdom, making them the largest group of all defectors in countries other than South Korea.
Korean young guns impress at British Open
AFP via Google
South Korean young guns Noh Seung-Yul and Hwang Jung-Gon led the Asian charge at the British Open on Thursday, signaling their talent with sub-par rounds at Royal St George’s.
Where in The World is Daniel Henney?
Daniel Henney recently wrapped shooting on the buddy flick with Bill Paxton tentatively titled “Americatown” and apologized to fans for not being online lately.
I know it’s been FOREVER since I’ve chimed in. My apologies. We’ve been in China for 1.5 months now shooting this film, and it’s been incredibly difficult to get online. Anyway, I’m back now, and will update you with some pics very soon…Pics from my last 1.5 months spent in China.
SUNY Gets OK for Campus in Songdo
The Wall Street Journal
Soon South Korean students seeking a U.S. diploma might be able to do so without even getting a stamp in their passports.
The Ministry of Education announced Wednesday that it has given final approval to Stony Brook University — or the State University of New York at Stony Brook — to open a campus in Songdo, the newly established international business district near Incheon International Airport.
Koreans turn to dog soup to beat the heat
Reuters via ABC News (Australia)
Thursday was not a good day to be a dog in South Korea. That’s because it was one of the three hottest days according to the Korean lunar calendar – and dog soup is one way to beat the heat.
On “Chobok,” people seeking to protect the body from overheating eat traditional healthy foods such as ginseng chicken soup, broiled eel and “bo-shin-tang,” literally “body preservation stew”.
Dogs are bred to be eaten in South Korea, and advocates say bo-shin-tang, which consists of dog meat boiled in a mix of hot and strong spices and vegetables, is good for the health. It is considered a delicacy by some.
Korean BBQ Trivia + Forage’s Soy and Coca-Cola Flank Steak Recipe
If you’ve ever wondered if Korean households have dining tables with built in bbq holes, like the ones at Korean bbq restaurants, the answer is “no”. The historical antecedent for modern restaurant tables are traditional Korean kitchens with round stoves (agungi) that were fueled by wood or large cylindrical charcoal briquets. If you clicked on the link, you probably figured out why Korean bbq pans are dome shaped, rather than square or rectangular.
FC Barcelona signs Korean teen for five years
A Korean teenager has signed a five-year contract with FC Barcelona’s youth team, his father revealed Wednesday.
Play Canceled on Account of Suicide Threat
The Korea Times
A nude play has been forced to cancel its performance on July 14 by a male member of the public.
The man threatened to commit suicide if “The Professor and the Female Student 2” goes on stage on that date. He claimed that star actress Um Da-hae, 30, who plays the female student, is “his woman.”
Korean gangsters invade Manila
The Manila Times
THE Philippine National Police (PNP) was warned Monday against the entry into the country of Korean criminal syndicates that wanted to establish their illegal network in the country.
Did you know that every 15 seconds a woman is beaten in the U.S.? That every two minutes someone in the U.S. is raped or sexually assaulted? And that 40 to 60 percent of Americans of Asian Pacific Islander descent fall into these statistics? It’s quite alarming, isn’t it? Continue Reading »
Here’s one video from last weekend’s Unforgettable event, taken by our red carpet host, Janice Jann. Watch Three Rivers’ Daniel Henney and Grey’s Anatomy’s Sandra Oh introduce our entertainment award recipient Ken Jeong. What a hot trio!