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Seoul subway background music changed in 14 years

Posted February. 13, 2023 07:47,   

Updated February. 13, 2023 07:47


The background music for transfer announcements in Seoul's subway has been changed from “Eolssiguya” to “Good Harvest.” The latter is a 1 minute 9 second song based on the Gyeonggi folk song “Good harvest has come.” The switch occurred sequentially on subway lines 1 through 8, from Jan. 16 to Feb. 1.

“By modernizing the original song by changing the Gutgeori rhythm to four-four time, I reinterpreted the song with piano, drums, bass, and other instruments,” said Park Gyeong-hoon, the composer of “Good Harvest.”

For 14 years since March 2009, the song “Eolssiguya” was used as the background music for transfer announcements in Seoul's subway stations. Seoul Metro announced that the reason for changing the background music, which is the first time in 14 years, was to “give a sense of vitality to citizens as they prepare for a new daily life, now that the end of the pandemic is in sight.”

In the early days, the background music used in the Seoul subway was more of a notification sound than a melody. The decision to introduce background music for transfer announcements was prompted after numerous complaints from citizens who had missed their transfer stations while dozing off. Seoul Metro used cuckoo sounds for lines 1 to 4 from 1998 to 1999 but switched to bird sounds in 2000. Meanwhile, in 2000, the Seoul Metropolitan Rapid Transit Corporation began using Vivaldi's Concerto “The Inspiration of Harmony” No. 6, first movement, for lines 5 to 8.