Shin Joong Hyun: A rock'n'roll revolutionary
Friday 13 January 2012
An obscure outpost of psychedelia is about to get some exposure. Light in the Attic's latest discovery is South Korean visionary Shin Joong Hyun.
As a pioneering musician, writer and producer, this figure could have shaped the direction of his country's native pop and rock scene for decades, but his career was derailed by the idealism of US psych-rock. What made the biggest impact though, was hearing Jimi Hendrix and Jefferson Airplane.
He inserted the latter's "Somebody to Love" into his sets to great acclaim. The army even commissioned a performance with distorted film projected behind. "People were yelling "Psychedelic!" and I thought that was psychedelic music," he says.
South Korea was ruled by a military junta that through the Sixties had been happy to allow an innocent youth culture to thrive, but in 1972 they flexed their muscles and asked Shin to write a song for their leader Park Chung-hee.
He turned down two requests and instead devised the 10-minute title track "Beautiful Rivers and Mountains" on his new album, a celebration of his country with no mention of dictators. Paid work dried up and in 1975 Shin was arrested for marijuana possession, leading to torture and confinement in a mental institution. He survived – his music lasts with him.
'Beautiful Rivers and Mountains' by Shin Joong Hyun is out now on Light in the Attic
Robin Thicke admits he didn't write 'Blurred Lines'music
Review: Cilla, ITV TV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Mario Balotelli: Staff at arson-hit Manchester Dogs' Home convinced Liverpool striker is behind five-figure donation
- 2 Friends 20th anniversary: Alison Jackson photographs reunited cast
- 3 There is literally not a single woman in this iPhone 6 queue
- 4 Hitler’s former food taster reveals the horrors of the Wolf’s Lair
- 5 Scottish independence: Tory revolt against 'devo max' grows as Rail Minister Claire Perry joins
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Russia freezes Ukraine into submission: Kiev admits country doesn't have enough fuel for winter
Scottish independence: The Queen breaks silence on referendum debate – as think tank warns of £14bn black hole if Scotland votes Yes
Archbishop of Canterbury admits doubts about existence of God