It feels like a long time since I’ve posted something here simply because I liked it. So, let me put what I had planned aside for a moment and remedy that, starting by passing on this video of “internet DJ” Lee Jeong-hyeon (이정현), covering the 2000 hit Give it to me (줄래) by the singer of the same name. The next time I’m harping on about the evils of aegyo and female infantilization in Korea popular culture, please remind me of how much I love this video despite myself, and that being cute definitely does have its time and place:
Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to find much information about her when I first saw the video on Mongdori back in 2008, and I can’t find anything at all now. But I did find the music video of the song itself to compare (update: see here for a higher quality version):
And as it turns out, it was covered that same year by the Wondergirls (원더걸스), then by KARA (카라) the year after that:
Given that popularity; an English title that reminded me of double entendres like the “get into my core” from Girls’ Generation’s (소녀시대) Visual Dreams (비주얼드림); a doll in the music video that surely symbolized something; and the fact that Lee Jeong-hyeon was selected by Lady Gaga to open her Seoul concert in 2009, then — you guessed it — I just had to translate it!
(Lee Jeong-hyeon opening for Lady Gaga, 2009. Source)
뒤돌아 날 본다…넌 내가 셋을 셀동안
홧김에 끝내잔 얘길 넌 던진 것 뿐야
이대로 날 두고 갈 생각 전혀 없어 넌
거봐 너! 지금 너! 또 오잖아
Look back and you see me…while I count to three
You said that you only broke up with me because you were angry
You don’t want to leave me like this
See, look at you now. You’re coming back.
불안해 왜 불안해 내 말을 왜 못믿어
그렇게 겪어봐도 나를 몰라 왜 몰라줘
니몸에 날 묶을까? 내 옷에 써 붙힐까?
난 바로 니 여자라고…
Nervous? Why are you nervous? Why can’t you believe what I say?
Don’t you know me by now, after going through life so much together?
Shall I tie myself to you? Shall I write your name on my clothes?
I’m the woman for you
섹시한 눈웃음도 감았다 살짝 뜬 우아한 내 윙크도
너 만을 위한거야
딴데선 난 안그래 왜 맘 좁게 날 의심해
At first, you said you liked my sexy eyes and my elegant, subtle wink
It was all for you
I don’t do that to other guys
Why are you so shallow and suspicious?
톡 쏘는 콜라처럼 난 니 마음 속에 들어갈꺼야
또 풀릴걸 내가 안기면
Like a cola fizzing, I’ll rise to be in your heart
Now, you’re only pretending to be angry really
I know that will go away if I hold you
모든걸 가질래 아무도 안줄래
나 니 마음을 다 사로잡을래
나 오늘은 순결한 백합처럼
나 때로는 붉은 장미처럼
모든걸 다줄래 너에게 다줄래
나의 관심은 언제나 너뿐야
언제나 나만 사랑해줘 날 안아줘 너는 내꺼야
I’m going to have it all, I’m not going to give anything [of you] to anyone
I’m going to grab all your heart again
Today, like a pure lily, and sometimes like a red rose
I’m going to give everything to you
It’s always been just you
Please love and hold me always, you are mine
우리가 그동안 함께한 날이 얼만데
난 알아 널 알아 널 알아
너무나 잘 알고있지
하나에 하나반 둘에 또 둘에 반에 셋!
거봐 너! 지금 너!
A long time has passed since we were together
I know you, I know you, I know you
I know you so well
One, one and a half, two, two and a half, three!
See, look at you now, you’re coming back to me again
오늘은 뭐했는지 누구를 만났는지
핸드폰 왜 껐는지 물어볼래
간섭할래 사랑은 구속인걸 난 너무 잘 알지만
때로는…난 숨이 막혀…
I’m going to ask you what you did today, who you met, why your phone was off
I am going to interfere like that, because I know well that love is a prison
Sometimes it means I can’t breathe
할수만 있다면 넌 날 작게 만들어서
주머니 속에 날 넣고 다니겠다고
그게 소원이라고 그렇게 말하는 널
나 어떻게 미워하니
You said that if you could, you would make me smaller
So that you can put me in your pocket
That was your wish
How can I not love you when you’re like that?
아무리 차가운 척해도 소용없어
넌 가득찬 내 작은 손을 넌 못벗어나
이대로 널 두고 갈생각 전혀없어 난
하나 또 둘에 반 셋…거봐 너 또 오잖아…
날줄래, 날줄래, 날줄래, 날줄래
There is no reason for you to pretend to be cold
You’re stuck with me
I won’t break up with you like this
One, one and a half, two, two and a half, three!
Look at you, you’re coming back again
I want to give myself to you (x4)
What do you think? Naturally, the feminist in me rebels against a woman loving that her boyfriend literally wants her to be his doll, but on the other hand the lyrics indicate that she’s by no means the submissive partner in the relationship. Even if she does uses a lot of aegyo to achieve that, which is the impression I get from Lee Jeong-hyeon seemingly going through her entire repertoire in the music video!
Meanwhile, apologies for the quick translation (I’m sure there’s many mistakes), and I’m more than happy to be corrected and/or explain any of it. But I do think I have the gist of it!
(See here for Lee Jeong-hyeon’s website [there’s an English section], and here for her Twitter feed)
2 thoughts on “Give it to me (줄래) by Lee Jeong-hyeon (이정현): Lyrics and Translation”
Lee Jung Hyun’s website doesn’t have an English section. It just has an “ENG” button that doesn’t do anything. :)
Oh well. And just off the top of my head, albeit technically not so bad, currently very popular girl-group Miss A’s website doesn’t work in anything but Internet Explorer. I doubt things like that will get mentioned in articles a few years from now about the decline of the 2nd Hallyu though!