Sunday, September 30, 2012


   K-pop bands are usually a group of girls or guys that all dance well, look cute, and can sing. Most singers in America are solo, and I believe it's harder for them to break through because of so many people competing against each other. K-pop bands have less compared to single artists. I want to introduce you to a female k-pop band, Girls' Generation, that started in 2007. They became international around 2010 when they became popular. 

This is K-Pop band Girls' Generation's Oh!

   Neat that I found one with subtitles. Don't stress out too much on trying to read it there, I will post the lyrics. The first line is the Hangul, second is Romanization, which is the pronunciation of the Hangul, and the English translation of the lyrics.

Here is the Hangul lyrics. Make your own Romanization so you can practice it yourself and improve your Korean reading. (P.s. there are double consonants. They just have more stress on the sound. 오빠 is said "oh ppah" with extra effort on the "puh" sound. GOOD LUCK)

전에 알던 내가 아냐
Brand New Sound
새로워진 나와 함께
One More Round
Dance Dance Dance You’ll be wrong This Time
오빠 오빠 I’ll be I’ll be Down Down Down Down
오빠 나좀 봐 나를 좀 바라봐
처음 이야 이런 내 말투 Ha!
머리도 하고 화장도 했는데
왜 너만 나를 모르니
두근 두근 가슴이 떨려와요
자꾸 자꾸 상상만 하는 걸요
어떻게 하나 콧대 높던 내가
말하고 싶어
Oh Oh Oh Oh 오빠를 사랑해
ah ah ah ah 많이 많이해
수줍으니 제발 웃지 마요
진심 이니 놀리지도 말아요
또 바보같은 말 뿐야
전에 알던 내가 아냐
Brand New Sound
새로워진 나와 함께
One More Round
Dance Dance Dance To Me Promise Town
오빠 오빠 I’ll be I’ll be Down Down Down Down
오빠 잠깐만 잠깐만 들어봐
자꾸한 얘기는 말고
동생으로만 생각하지는 말아
일년뒤면 후회 할걸
몰라 몰라 내 맘은 전혀 몰라
눈치없게 장난만 치는걸요
어떻게 하나 이 철없는 사람아
들어봐 정말
Oh Oh Oh Oh 오빠를 사랑해
ah ah ah ah 많이 많이해
수줍으니 제발 웃지 마요
진심 이니 놀리지도 말아요
또 그러면 난 울지도 몰라

전에 알던 내가 아냐
Brand New Sound
뭔가 다른 오늘만은 뜨거운 난
Down Down Mirage The Find Now
오빠 오빠 이대로는 NoNoNoNo
Tell me boy boy love it it it it it ah!
Oh Oh Oh Oh 오빠를 사랑해
ah ah ah ah 많이 많이해
Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh 오빠를 사랑해
ah ah ah ah ah ah ah ah 많이 많이해
또 바보 같은 말뿐야
Oh Oh Oh Oh
ah ah ah ah
Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh 오빠를 사랑해
ah ah ah ah ah ah ah ah 많이 많이해
Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh 오빠를 사랑해
ah ah ah ah ah ah ah ah 많이 많이 Oh



    This past week, I got to attend my Hangul club, but sadly, I didn't get the email that it started earlier and the location changed in time. I made it for the last 30 minutes where they went over the basic sayings of hello, goodbye, thank you's and sorry's. Luckily, they used the same website I provided in the last post. If you missed it, here it is again.

   As for greeting another person, I've come to the understanding that you should not over-smile, and bow respectfully. The lower you bow, the more respect you show to the other person. Don't bow all the way down to 90 degrees. Unless you're really apologetic. Eye contact is a big deal in South Korea. Here are more things to look at about their culture.

    The teacher was very informative on how to pronounce the alphabet correctly, and she is fully Korean, so that helps. It's easier and right to learn a language that is from someone whose first language is that particular language. When I learned American Sign Language at a community college, my teacher could not hear at all. It was faster to pick up on the signing than it is to have a speaking teacher "waving" her arms around. Granted reading this blog may not help you pronounce it correctly, but this does give you an option to learn it from here, or go out and bask in the sun with another Korean fellow. 

    My teacher used real-life examples, such as, if someone bought you a birthday present, and you know the person really well, what would you say? The student would respond, "고마워" (koh mah woh). If it was someone you didn't know, "감사합니다" (kahm sah hahm nee da). If you did something wrong and you feel really bad, you would say "죄송합니다" (chee sohng hahm nee da). A more informal way would be "미안합니다" (mee ahn hahm nee dah).

   The Hangul Club gave me homework where I combine all the consonants with all the vowels, minus the double consonants and compound vowels. Here is a sample chart:

    I got this from a similar blog, King Korean, which the writer is an attendee of St. John's University. I read through the blog, and it doesn't really go slow enough that you can understand from reading the blog only. It did say it was based on an e-book, so maybe it was for a class. Every detail matters, so it was good she/he put on the fact it was based on the E-book written by their professor.

   I'll be posting another one shortly, and you will get a FUN TIME BLOG! I hope you like K-pop!

Hello, Good bye!

    Here is a good visual of the letters that you should remember from the Alphabet and Vowels posts. The vowel combinations, we haven't gone over, but it's easy enough to understand. You just combine one vowel with another to get the sound you're looking for. Like the a in "Caitlyn" and as stated below, "sale", you make the ㅏㅣ combination.

   If you weren't really able to figure out your name in Korean, this is a great way to easily make it now!

Let's move onto greetings. I used a website I found called, which is associated with Professor Oh videos. Here is the page of the greetings.

There are two ways to say hello

One is 안녕하세요 (ahn nyeong hah seh yo) 
which is the formal way to say it. Mostly used.

Another is 안녕 (ahn nyeong)
This one is very informal. You can use it with good friends or as a casual hello.
Don't use this with meeting new people, it's a sign of disrespect. 

There is a third one, but it's very formal, and I'm not able to find the correct writing for it. 

Next, to say goodbye, you say 안녕히 가세요 (ahn nyeong hee kah seh yo). It's slightly different, but it makes the difference in saying hello and bye.

예 is yes, 아니오 is no, those two are vital if you ask someone a question.

Next post we will talk more about how to properly present yourself.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Vowels time!

Now it's time to move to the second part of the video, the vowels!
(starting at 6:30~)

          Notice how all the vowels start with ㅇ. As stated before, it is a silent character at the beginning.
Here are the vowels without the ㅇ that Professor Oh said.

 ㅏ   ㅑ   ㅓ   ㅕ  ㅗ   ㅛ   ㅜ   ㅠ   ㅡ  ㅣ

         These vowels are the most common vowels you will be using. There are more consonants and vowels, but for now we'll start with those.

        Now to understand how to put together those characters to form a group of characters, there are horizontal and vertical vowels. I managed to snag a book, Integrated Korean: Beginning 1, from a good friend from his Korean class. It explains in text very simply:

"One block of character has at least one consonant, and only one vowel, should there be two separate vowels, it would create a new block"

To explain it in a video form, fast forward to 2:57 in the following video:

     It shows you the word for "child" which is 아이. You are more than welcome to watch the whole video too! A good start would be to write your name in Korean!

      Make sure you write it according to what it sounds like, because all the "ahh" sounds are not "aay".

        Caitlyn, the a in this name would be ㅐ(ahh + eee). It's a compound vowel, putting ㅏand ㅣ together. See how the sound makes the difference?

    Comment on what your name is! Harmonity would be 하몬이티.

 ~  안녕히 가세요 ~!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Learning the alphabet!

It's time for the Alphabet song!

No not that one. This one:

  ㄱ        ㄴ       ㄷ      ㄹ     ㅁ         ㅂ       ㅅ         ㅇ    
kiyok    niun    tikut   riul   mium   piup    siot      iung    
(g, k)      (n)     (d, t)    (r, l)   (m)    (b, p)    (s, sh)    (ng)    

  ㅈ       ㅊ     ㅋ       ㅌ     ㅍ       ㅎ
 jiut   ch'iut   k'iuk   t'iut   pp'iup   hiut
(j, ch)   (ch)      (k)     (t)      (p)    (h, ng)

The above letters are consonants of the Korean alphabet. The first row, as you can see, is a Korean letter. The second row is the name of the letter. The third row is the sound it makes either at the beginning or end of the word. For example, 곡 is pronounced "gok" (We will get to the vowels later). Notice how the character is is starting with ㄱ and ending with ㄱ with a vowel in between. That's what the parentheses mean.

For more understanding on how to pronounce correctly, here is Professor Oh!

When you read Hangul, you will see three characters put together in a block. It never starts with a vowel. It can hold two or three letters, but never one. In fact, in the word "receipt", the p is silent. So, when you hear "annong haysaeyo" you'll think, wait, it starts with a vowel. That's where ㅇ comes in. If you didn't watch the video I linked, you should go to 6:30 to see her pronouncing it. Didn't hear it? That's why... It's silent at the beginning. When ㅇ is at the end, it's not silent. Professor Oh has started the vowels, so that should give you a head start on the vowels, which will be posted next!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Grammar what?

       Did you know in Hangul, the verb is actually at the end of the sentence? My current language book by Tuttle Publishing, Essential Korean, says there are special markers you use to define the subject. If the subject ends with a vowel, you add (-ga) at the end of the word, for a consonant it's (-i). For the object, if it ends in a vowel, you use (-reul); for a consonant (-eul). Let's try a sentence in english:

                            A cat chased the mouse.

       We understand, a cat (subject) chased (verb) the mouse (object). What if we switched it around?

                             A mouse chased the cat.

       Now that's just silly, but in the Hangul form, you add the ending to the subject and object. For this, we'll use what the book is saying. The book gives the following example:

                    The cat-ga a mouse-reul chased.

     One thing the book did not mention. The Korean word for cat is 고양이. It ends in a vowel but in the English language, a consonant. I got confused when I read it because I thought it would be cat-i. However mouse is 마우스, which also ends in a vowel. The book failed to mention that it would be using the Korean word for the examples. Glad to clear that up! Now if we switch the nouns around, it still would make sense in the Hangul language because the subject has been clearly marked.

                    The mouse-reul cat-ga chased.

     The mouse is still the object and the cat is the subject. If anyone has taken American Sign Language, it's the same basic set up in sentence and describing what happened. Oh, did you know, in Hangul, you don't need the subject if you talk about it enough. That's what I assume.

        Next post, we'll learn about the alphabet!! I'm excited because this will help us get started on the language and writing of the Hangul language.

Until next time!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

The beginning of a beginning.

Are you ready,
Are ready for this,
Are you hanging on the edge of your seat?!

Great re-mix of Queen's "Another One bites the dust".

Anyway, back to this page.

        Have you ever been to Seoul? It's located in South Korea just below North Korea. I've never been to Seoul, but I am visiting at the end of the year. I'm really excited. But I have some flaws. I am not familiar with the language nor etiquette of South Koreans. So I decided to start a project on learning the Korean language, or others may call it, Hangul. So many links to follow. You don't need to look at the page for Hangul, as I will explain it all in my following posts... Should you choose to the "read" pill..... Anyone seen The Matrix?

        Enough with the references! My name's Harmonity. I'm an online personality, and that's all you need to know!

         Recently, I ate at a Korean restaurant, and I talked with the locals about learning the language. They have said, "Hangul is probably one of the hardest languages to learn because we have so many formality and respective responses." Kudos, for those who believe Spanish is the hardest, Korean just ousted it. Now, what "formality" are we talking about? I'll explain. Looking from a female's view, you have to call your elders by a particular name (mind you I'm learning also), your older sister would be called "un-ni" but from a male's view on the same older sister, would be "noo-na". Now let's do an older brother: Females would say "op-pa" but males would say "hy-ung" (pronounced hun-ung, not hi-ung).

         Must be why Korean books are so difficult to understand because they're teaching to the general public. Don't worry! I will be separating it for males and females so we both can learn easily. After all, you are reading this.

        I have plans to learn this language as painless as possible. I found a local Hangul Language Club, and they meet once every two weeks, and the teachers are volunteers. Oh did I mention it was free? NIFTY! Then I'm going to a local Korean church because I was told by the locals from the restaurant that the Pastor's wife teaches Korean. I am looking forward to that, but for now, I leave you with the globally famous song by PSY...