Track: I’m A Butterfly | Artist: YB | Album: Why Be?

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Let’s kick start things with some rock-n-roll. If I’m A Butterfly doesn’t get you psyched to tackled the rest of the week, you’ve got issues that music can’t solve (and those are grave issues indeed).

YB, formerly as the Yoon Do Hyun band, debuted in 1997 under their eponymous lead vocalist. Like so many of their songs, I’m A Butterfly needs to be heard live to be fully appreciated:

The band currently consists of Yoon Do Hyun, Park Tae Hee on bass, Kim Jin Won on drums, and Huh Joon and Scott Hellowell on guitar.

YB would hit their big break in 2002 when they released Oh! Victory Korea, which would eventually become the de facto fight song of the 2002 Korea-Japan World Cup:

To say that the 2002 World Cup was a big deal for Koreans would be a massive understatement. For South Korea, the World Cup was a coming-out ceremony on par with the 1988 Seoul Olympics: a chance to demonstrate, once and for all, that Korea could stand toe-to-toe with any nation in the world and put on a helluva show.

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The South Korean national team’s unprecedented 2002 performance didn’t hurt, either; under the leadership of Guus Hiddink (now practically enshrined as a national hero), the underdogs managed to make it into the semifinals, an unheard-of feat for Korea.

And YB was right at the forefront of this cultural upheaval, with their song being played on every station and mass sing-alongs breaking out at every watch party and live audience. Oh! Victory Korea would go on to become a symbol of Korean soccer, sports, and the country in general well into the 21st century, as this video from 2014 readily attests.