Sam Kim’s ‘Smile’ was used by the record label Unbound Entertainment Group and Records to create a music video in a metaverse environment. The race towards the metaverse never ends and there are already several platforms that want to position themselves as the leader of the music industry through immersive musical experiences.
A metaverse is a virtual world for which Facebook or Google, Nvidia, and Microsoft are deciding to bet to such an extent that Facebook has changed the name of their company to Meta. It is not any kind of new concept. We have already seen it in the cinematographic world, with movies like ‘Ready Player One‘, tv shows like ‘Black Mirror’.
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Who is Sam Kim?
Kim Gun-ji (Sam Kim) is a Korean-American singer. He participated in the SBS audition program K-Pop Star Season 3 (2013) and finished runner-up. In that show, he was known for his very young age (15 at the time), his soulful guitar genius, and was characterized by his groovy guitar playing skills.
In November 2018, after another two-year break, Sam Kim released his full-length studio album Sun and Moon. In the album, Sam showed his versatility in various genres such as R&B, jazz, hip-hop, acoustic, and pop ballad.
In June 2021, he came back with ‘The Juice’. It is a retro funk pop/hip-hop song with autobiographical content that expresses the energy, the various burdens that Sam Kim feels. It is an impressive song with kitsch lyrics that stand out.
Since the release of his first project, Sam Kim has been actively engaging in various music programs, collaborations, and expanding his musical capabilities by participating in composing, writing lyrics, and featuring various musicians including IU.
Sam Kim’s Metaverse Video
On, January 28, 2022, Sam Kim’s ‘Smile’ music video was released. It portrays a metaverse reality.
Sam Kim – Smile (Message about Addiction)
‘Smile’ is low-key questioning digital health and mental stability. Sam sings: ‘you won’t be here till tomorrow, till then, don’t be sad’. A virtual world that makes us feel that we are living a parallel reality is by definition highly addictive. This addiction is probably greater than that produced by video games. An ideal reality, which makes the brain believe that it is experiencing real and satisfactory situations, makes the brain secrete hormones such as dopamine. Therefore, our brain will always want more.
Sam Kim – Smile (Message about Social Relationships)
The visuals are colorful, joyous but the lyrics are quite important, philosophical. What is real and what is fantasy? The characters in the video are dancing. However, the words suggest isolation. A virtual universe may make us feel more isolated than ever, lose empathy and deteriorate, in general, socio-emotional skills. Last line of the song: ‘I love the way you f***ing smile’. For some, there is no problem with this line. Nevertheless, in this context, the use of the expletive is telling. Without real people to hug, touch, look into the eyes of, behaviors may change dramatically.
Looking for something closer and more human, the metaverse will allow us to interact with people who are physically far away in a more realistic way, to look at our body and our gestures reproduced by the sensors of the virtual reality helmet. We will be able to talk to each other, we will be able to walk through virtual worlds, and it will not matter where we connect from. We will even be able to express ourselves as we would like to be, and not how we physically are.
The metaverse will change our lives, for sure. Maybe the key to its success, the panacea to all of its potential problems is to just smile.
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