When Loopy steps on stage, he is so captivating that time seems to freeze, and all the verses he raps are a deep flow of emotions. Without a doubt, Loopy, born Lee Jin-yong, knows how to deliver a message through his music.

Being based in both Seoul and Los Angeles opened his mind and allowed him to pursue a career in the music industry. His name, Loopy,  derives from the English word “looping” and refers to the artist’s high-powered rap flow.

After listening to his full repertoire, we had the chance to see him perform live in Milan and London. The experience, as already described by another View of the Arts’ journalist, is incredibly engaging – you’ll find yourself rewatching videos from the night and creating a playlist as a means to relive the show.

“My name is Loopy, a Hip-hop musician based in Seoul and Los Angeles. Some of you may know me from the TV show Show Me the Money or some have started following my journey ever since the emergence of Mkit Rain. Either way, it’s nice to connect with you all”, Loopy says with a smile on his face. 

Image © Marta Wozniak

While reminiscing on his past shows, it brought back all his memories and emotions. Talking about Milan, he claims that: “It was a privilege and an honour to perform in front of my fans in Milan. It was my first time visiting Europe, and I was not expecting the warm reception I received from Milan. You guys were very passionate and engaging, so I definitely had a lot of fun”.

“Being on the stage in Europe was definitely different from the shows in Korea”, the rapper admits, then continues: “As I said before, it was my first time in Europe, so I did not know what to expect from my fans. The reaction is certainly different. The overall feeling I got was that people in Europe really have an appreciation for international musicians like myself, which I am deeply grateful for”. Loopy pauses for a second, then carries on: “I even saw people reciting the lyrics of my songs, and that was quite amazing”.

“It is when I made eye contact with my fans and saw that they were really into the show – it was at that moment when I realised the genuine support and love from my international fans. It’s something [that] I’ll never take for granted”, Loopy admits candidly. 

Image © Marta Wozniak

The artist’s lyrics are on a different level. When he raps, he is like a storyteller – his tone is quite unique, which makes him even more recognisable, causing his words to remain in one’s mind. When asked about his primary source of inspiration, he says that: “It’s my day-to-day experience and dealings that inspire me to make music. I can say I am sensitive to my surrounding environment, so each time I visit a new country, I get new feelings and new ideas for my upcoming music. For example, my first mixtape, King Loopy, was created in Los Angeles. After facing the cold winter in Seoul, my next EP, Ice, came out. The mood of my albums has similarities with my location at the time. This tour in Europe has definitely been a game-changer, and I hope to reflect these thoughts and feelings in my work”.

Image © Marta Wozniak

When it comes to his music, Loopy is an expert, and masterfully combines American and South Korean Hip-hop influences. Talking about the current spotlight on Korean Hip-hop, he says that: “Obviously [the genre] is benefitting from the impact of K-pop, however, I do think Korean Hip-hop has a charm of its own. It’s very honest, and many try to incorporate a new sound and new cadence, so I think that’s one of the reasons why it’s appealing to the global audience. For me, I take “rhythm” very seriously, so I think that’s the reason why international fans can enjoy the music even if they do not fully understand the lyrics”.

“New tour, new music, new album, and new me. I can’t go into the details, but I have very exciting news coming up, so stay alert”, Loopy says, concluding the interview with some warm words: “I have been quiet for some time, but I am back with more arsenal, more motivation, and more love. Let’s enjoy this ride all together”. 

Written and interviewed by Marianna Baroli

View of the Arts is a British online publication that chiefly deals with films, music, and art, with an emphasis on the Asian entertainment industry. We are hoping our audience will grow with us as we begin to explore new platforms such as K-pop / K-music, and Asian music in general, and continue to dive into the talented and ever-growing scene of film, music, and arts, worldwide.

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General, In Conversation with, Korean Hip-Hop, Music

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