Hundreds Line Up for Another Band You've Never Heard Of
by Joseph Geha
Hundreds of people, mostly young Asian women, are lining the sidewalks of Market Street, forming small clusters that weave along the uneven bricks starting in front of the Warfield, and ending at infinity.
They are sitting on unfolded newspapers and chatting with friends, some sipping coffee and tea, others munching on food from boxes on the ground with plastic forks. Others are half asleep, especially those toward the front of the line -- and justifiably so, as they have been there since 7:30 this morning.
Why, you ask?
The emergent K-pop talent from South Korea is in the middle of their four-city tour in the states, including L.A., S.F., D.C. and N.Y.
Tonight's show at the Warfield has been sold out since early April, when all 10,000 tickets to all of the performances sold out in roughly an hour.
The six-piece hip-hop boy band broadcasts a hardened and tough image, contrasted with their at times highly effeminate attire and polished looks. They can be seen rapping in the middle of what looks like a foil-constructed space dome, with one member wielding a baseball bat, in the video for their single "No Mercy."
Some paid more than $100 per ticket, showing their commitment even further by showing up several hours before the show to wait in line during two commute shifts along bustling Market Street.
Aurelia Caracciolo, 17, and her dad, David, took it a step further and drove all the way from Denver in order to see the band live for the first time. Aurelia says she loves the band's unique style, and how the genre of K-pop allows for slight, interesting variants from group to group.
"Lets just say I know a lot of [B.A.P.'s] music," says David, because Aurelia "plays it in the car a lot."
While some of those in line say they have been fans of K-pop for years; others say they have been intrigued only recently.
Violet Yung, a 20-year-old Korean local, says she has been listening to this style of music since she was much younger, and appreciates B.A.P.'s rough-and-tumble approach.
Her friend Karoline Gurdal, also from the City, says she can't quite put her finger on what attracted her to B.A.P., and K-pop, other than "it's just really catchy."
Doors are at 6:30 p.m. But if you already knew that, you'd already be there.