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K-Pop Double-Take: Pianist Shin Ji Ho Tells A Story Without Words On The Theme From 'Secret Love Affair' [VIDEO]

By Rehnuma Majid | October 22, 2014 05:28 PM EDT

K-Pop Double-Take is a periodic column highlighting recent releases that have yet to receive the attention we feel they deserve.

If there's one thing Shin Ji Ho does perfectly, it is to create an auditory journey that takes his listeners from the start to the end of a turbulent storyline. And all of this is done without words.

The 27-year-old South Korean pianist first rose to prominence as a contestant on the popular South Korean TV talent show "Star King."

Though Shin did not win, his skills were enough to land him his very first high-profile professional gig with the Korean drama, "Love Rain," where he composed several of the songs and had a small role onscreen.

Two years later, he was cast in the role of the rival pianist in the Korean TV drama "Secret Love Affair," also composing and performing the title song of the same name.

"Secret Love Affair," is featured on Shin's album "eyMotions," released on July 25. The instrumental track is an excellent display of the young musician's wordless storytelling.

The song features only two instruments, piano and cello, but were perfect for the composition.

Since the two have very different sounds, Ji Ho used that to create sort of two different characters in the song. Like in the drama, the story surrounds the meeting, passion, and eventual troubles that came between an older woman and a much younger man. The song also creates that same sort of tension between the instruments.

The melody begins very quick paced, and with a lot of energy.

This creates a sort of soundscape that might seem familiar upon the first meeting of two individuals. That initial calm curiosity and a desire for discovery. Here, it's mostly the piano being the most forward and carrying the pace of the song. The cello has yet to join in with the same kind of energy, as if the initial interest is mostly one-sided.

The cello is now apparent and has a similar fervor to that of the piano. And just maybe, at this point in the song, the two people have expressed their mutual attraction to one another.

Once we reach this point, the melody seems to plateau.

Neither the piano, nor the cello careens off into individual pitches. This point seems like honeymoon, things may not be going perfectly for the characters in the story, but they're not going that terribly either.

This, however, doesn't seem to last for very long.

Both cello and piano become so low, you can barely hear them. And at one point it's only the cello you can truly make out. It's not a joyous sound, what you are able to hear.

The piano breaks the silence with a sort of final push. It's a jarring last moment, that stirs the listener awake from this fully realized auditory journey.

Check out Shin Ji Ho in a live solo performance of "Secret Love Affair" RIGHT HERE

Rehnuma Majid is a writer, artist, radio DJ, events promoter, and avid rock climber. Culture, advocacy, and pie are her passions. 

Tagged :  Secret Love Affair, Shin Ji Ho


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