“Strawberry Moon” by IU
There’s always a grain of salt, in a manner of speaking, that should be taken when digesting our analyses of songs that are actually rendered in another language and then translated into English. This is particularly advisable in cases like “Strawberry Moon”, where even in its original language the lyrics are very symbolic and metaphorical.
Some analysts have likened the instrumental of this track to something that reminds them of a fairytale. And so it is, we would argue, with the wording itself, which features the vocalist “flying” and what have you.
But that said, despite the symbolic nature of the lyrics it is still pretty easy to conceptualize what’s going down. By all means a K-pop act as popular as IU knows that her singles especially are going to be translated. So perhaps by this point in time, the composers behind such tunes make the concepts they’re based on more translatable.
Either way, this fantasy of the vocalist “floating” and all types of stuff is obviously, in more realistic terms, an ideology based on a heightened sense of freedom and/or happiness. But more to the point is that she is sharing this experience with the addressee.
Indeed, if there’s one thing we know about K-poppers it’s that they never dream of conquering the world, if you want to put it that way, alone. There always has to be someone else along for the ride, whether it be fans or homeys or, as presumably in this case, a romantic interest. But as is also standard in K-pop, if the addressee is an amorous friend of the vocalist, the lyrics aren’t going to actually take it there in a definitive sort of way.
Perhaps the most-grounded method of describing this fantasy IU is having is by stating that it is centered on her and the addressee surviving on their own, reveling in their youth and free from the cares of the world, so to speak.
And the vocalist is caught up in such a vision this particular evening due to the fullness of the moon or what have you. Either way, as far as a thesis sentiment goes, all things considered it can be said that the lyrics are not primarily focused on the “strawberry moon” or anything fantastical per se but rather her feelings for the addressee.
Or as stated earlier, this dream itself isn’t complete unless, in the singer’s mind, her loved one is there to partake of it also.
IU is a South Korean singer who is 28 years old as of the writing of this post, just a few days after EDAM Entertainment dropped “Strawberry Moon” on 19 October 2021. And this track came out as a standalone single and the fourth song she has come out with as the lead vocalist for this year.
Thus far the songstress, who has been professionally active since the late-aughts, has six studio albums and a bunch of EPs under her belt. She has proven extremely popular in her homeland of Korea and during the last few years has also been making noise on Billboard’s World charts.
Additionally her four most-recent studio albums have appeared on Billboard’s Top Heatseekers listing, with 2017’s Palette even topping said list.
EDAM Entertainment, which just came into existence in 2019, is a subsidiary of Kakao M, a South Korean company that has been around since 1978. EDAM was established for the specific purpose of managing IU. However, since then they have also signed actress Shin Se Kyung to their roster. And it is EDAM that first teased the forthcoming of Strawberry Moon earlier in October of 2021.
According to a K-pop fan site, IU wore at least six different outfits on the music video to “Strawberry Moon”, which was directed by an entity known as Flipevil. And the clip co-stars a professional actor by the name of Lee Jong-won.
“Strawberry Moon” was a top-10 hit on the K-pop Hot 100, which is a list that is compiled by the internationally-recognized Billboard organization. However, on more local listings, it achieved what in South Korea is known as an all-kill, i.e. reaching number one on all of the prominent domestic music charts.
IU is credited with writing this song under her legal name, Lee Ji-eun. And she also co-produced the track alongside Chae-gyu Lee and Jonghoon Lee.