BTS, Baek Yerin, and More: Here are the Winners of the 18th Korean Music Awards

On Sunday, Feb. 28, the 18th Korean Music Awards was held and live-streamed through the Naver NOW platform. Here are all the winners.

As we leave Feb. behind and enter into Mar., the 18th Korean Music Awards announced their winners on the last day of the month. This annual awards ceremony awards both independent and mainstream artists and groups across various genres.

Unlike most award ceremonies, which utilize fan votes, the Korean Music Awards select their winners through a panel of music industry professionals, journalists, music critics, and more.

Notable Wins at the 18th Korean Music Awards

The 18th Korean Music Awards was originally scheduled to be held on Feb. 27 but was postponed a day due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. During the event, LEENALCHI won big by scoring three trophies; Artist of the Year, Best Modern Rock Song, and Best Crossover Album. LEENALCHI is highly praised in South Korea for making use of pansori, a traditional form of musical storytelling.

  BTS also won big at the annual awards ceremony, taking home two awards for Song of the Year and Best Pop Song. In a video message, member Jungkook spoke about the impact "Dynamite" has had, saying, "I think that many people were touched by the sincerity through 'Dynamite.' We will continue to work hard to repay the gift of such honorable awards with even better music."

Here are the Winners of the 18th Korean Music Awards, in Alphabetical Order:

Album of the Year: Jeongmilla – "CheongPa Sonata"

Best Crossover Album: LEENALCHI – "SUGUNGGA"

Best Dance and Electronic Album: Mogwaa – "Open Mind"

Best Dance and Electronic Song: Aseul – "Bye Bye Summer"

Best Folk Album: Jeongmilla – "CheongPa Sonata"

Best Folk Song: Jeongmilla – "Departing from Seoul Station"

Best Jazz Album: MALO – "Song Changsik Song Book"

Best Jazz and Crossover Performance: Soojin Suh – "Colorist"

Best Metal and Hardcore Albums: Remnants Of The Fallen – "All The Wounded And Broken"

Best Modern Rock Album: Jo Dongik – "Blue Pillow"

Best Modern Rock Song: LEENALCHI – "Tiger is Coming"

Best Pop Album: Baek Yerin – "Every letter I sent you."


Best Pop Song: BTS – "Dynamite"

Best R&B and Soul Album: Sunwoo JungA – "Serenade"

Best R&B and Soul Song: Chudahye Chagis – "Ritual Dance"

Best Rap and Hip Hop Album: Khundi Panda – "GAROSAWK"

Best Rap and Hip Hop Song: Swervy – "Mama Lisa"

Best Rock Album: ABTB – "Daydream"

Best Rock Song: ABTB – "Daydream (feat. YoonChul Shin)"

Musician of the Year: LEENALCHI

Rookie of the Year: Meaningful Stone

Song of the Year: BTS – "Dynamite"

Special Achievement Award: Deulgukhwa

Did your favorite artist take home a trophy?

What is the Korean Music Awards?

The Korean Music Awards, often shortened to KMAs, is an annual awards ceremony that honors both mainstream and underground independent musical artists from a variety of genres. While most Korean music awards utilize fan voting and album sales to determine a winner, the Korean Music Award instead awards artists based on the recommendation of a panel consisting of music critics, radio show producers, scholars, journalists, music industry professionals, and more. The Korean Music Awards has been held annually since 2004.

BTS is the artist with the most Grand Prizes, meaning they have scored the most musician of the year, the album of the year, or song of the year awards. They are also the artist with the most Competitive Awards, meaning they have snagged the most general field and genre awards, which does not include popularity or special awards. They are tied for the latter with Kiha & The Faces.

BTS is the second-most awarded act overall, with Kiha & The Faces being the most awarded.

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Written by Alexa Lewis

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