TOP 15 Most Popular K-Drama And Movie OSTs Of 2021, According To Genius Korea

TOP 15 Most Popular K-Drama And Movie OSTs Of 2021, According To Genius Korea

2021 was a great year for K-Dramas and films. Still, a lot goes into making a drama great. It has to have a good story, lovable characters and cast, visually-stunning cinematography, and a soundtrack to match.

Shin Min Ah (left) and Kim Seon Ho (right) in the “Hometown Cha-Cha-Cha” poster. | tvN

So, Genius Korea has selected the top 15 OSTs from popular Korean movies and dramas. The list is ranked by the community, reflecting fans’ favorites of the year.

In a year where top shows and movies in the world were Korean, we must talk about the music in those projects. Korean music artists shared their artistry through various OSTs in popular Korean dramas and movies. As the year comes to a close, Genius Korea Community looks back at some of the best OSTs of 2021.
— Genius Korea

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Here are Genius Korea’s top 15 most popular OSTs of 2021…

15. “Another Level” — CLC’s Seunghee, Yeeun, and Seungyeon

Naver’s web series Be My Boyfriend gave opportunity to rookie actors while also giving viewers a unique OST unlike any other, thanks to CLC’s Seunghee, Yeeun, and Seungyeon.

Fitting in quite literally the song describes how the two leads are polar opposites and on completely different levels. The trio from CLC not only infused the song with their bold attitude but also sparked rumors of a potential sub-unit with the three members, especially since ‘Another Level’ doesn’t quite sound like an OST.
— Genius Korea

14. “So Not Worth It” — GOT7’s Youngjae

Netflix‘s So Not Worth It was highly anticipated as there’s no K-Drama quite like it. It’s a sitcom and features a diverse cast, portraying college students from multicultural backgrounds. Ahgases (fans of GOT7) especially were excited to see Youngjae act as Korean Australian Sam. Not only that, but he did the So Not Worth It theme song, titled after the show.

With witty lyrics ‘So Not Worth It’ conveys the comedic themes of the drama which stars an ensemble cast Park Se Wan, Shin Hyun Seung, Minnie of (G)I-DLE, Han Hyun Min, and Youngjae himself. Youngjae’s colorful delivery of the lyrics makes the song incredibly relatable and fun to listen to.
— Genius Korea

13. “Spark” — A.C.E

Light On Me is a coming-of-age web series with a BL (boy love) storyline focused on a loner and the president and VP of the student council who find themselves in a love triangle. A.C.E perfectly captured the uplifting energy and message of the story with OST “Spark.”

‘Spark’ and A.C.E’s youthful spirit makes them the perfect match for the themes portrayed in Light On Me as the characters navigate high school with confusing yet exciting emotions about love and friendship.
— Genius Korea

12. “Here Always” — Stray Kids’ Seungmin

Healing K-Drama Hometown Cha-Cha-Cha was one of the most beloved dramas of 2021. With a charming cast, touching story, and a beautiful OST, what’s not to love? Stray Kids’ Seungmin wowed us all with his vocals in the acoustic ballad “Here Always.”

‘Here Always’ is an acoustic ballad with a focus on Seungmin’s soft vocals and the lyrics that depict the budding relationship between the lead characters in the show. Seungmin beautifully portrays the innocence of the relationship but also the wariness the characters had about stepping into a relationship.
— Genius Korea

11. “X” — Safira.K

Safira.K’s “X” serves as the theme song for K-Drama Law School, and it is an excellent choice as it captures the intense vibes of the show. It automatically gives you goosebumps when listening!

Safira.K’s bold vocals quickly made ‘X’ one of the most searched OSTs of 2021. Three different versions of the song were released each with different arrangements and instrumentations.
— Genius Korea

10. “Is it me?” — EXO’s Baekhyun

You can always count on EXO for classic sound and angelic vocals. Baekhyun was the perfect choice of vocalist for the historical romance Lovers Of The Red Sky.

With his golden vocals and the lyrics, Baekhyun is able to convey the pain and aching felt by the two characters as they long for each other.
— Genius Korea

9. “Love Me Like That” — Sam Kim

Netflix’s K-Drama Nevertheless, starring some of our favorite actors Song Kang and Han So Hee, was quite the talk of the internet due to its provocative content. Sam Kim’s “Love Me Like That” is to Nevertheless what Ellie Goulding‘s “Love Me Like You Do” was to Fifty Shades of Grey.

A highly anticipated release due to the popularity of the drama and Kim’s vocals, the song was released one month after the song was first in the drama. The song tells the story of both characters in the drama, who have troubles with love and the eventual softening up of the characters to each other.
— Genius Korea

8. “A White Night” — Red Velvet’s Irene

Red Velvet’s Irene made her big-screen debut with Double Patty. She also sang the OST “A White Night,” capturing the film’s heart.

The lyrics to the song compliment the movie’s story which revolves around two characters who have experienced more than their fair share of loss in life. Irene’s soft vocals in ‘흰 밤 (A White Night)’ convey the message of the song that when we are feeling hopeless taking small steps forward and simply appreciating the little things in life might be the solution we really need.
— Genius Korea

7. “Starlight” — SF9’s Chani

Webtoon adaptation True Beauty may have premiered in 2020, but the K-Drama concluded in February 2021. It ended up being one of the most popular dramas of the year, and it produced one of the most beloved soundtracks of all time. “Starlight” by SF9’s Chani especially became a huge hit, even topping Spotify‘s Global Viral 50 chart in its debut (as it should)!

Part of the romantic-comedy drama, True Beauty, ‘Starlight’ is written and performed from the perspective of everyone’s favorite second male lead of the year, Han See Jun, who has accepted that his relationship with the female lead, Lim Ju Gyung, is simply that of between friends and nothing more. The lyrics talk about the pain he feels but also reminisce of the happy memories he shared with his friend and wishes her the best.
— Genius Korea

6. “Tempest” — Huckleberry Finn

While GOT7’s Jinyoung starred in K-Drama The Devil Judge, the OST highlighted the indie rock trio, Huckleberry Finn. Their song “Tempest” helped introduce idol group fans to another genre.

Effectively depicting the dystopian world of The Devil Judge, ‘Tempest’ is about the twisted mentality of the society’s elite seen in the drama. Co-written by the members of the band, the song accurately compares The Devil Judge with the Shakespearean play Tempest which is all about betrayal, revenge, and family.
— Genius Korea

5. “Break Your Box” — EXO’s Chanyeol

EXO’s Chanyeol scored his first leading role in Jukebox’s road movie The Box about the musical journey of an aspiring singer and a once-popular producer. The movie received rave reviews as Chanyeol combined his acting and music skills. He truly showcased his talents in this project as he not only acted but co-wrote and performed the theme song for the film.

Leaving his rap skills and idol image behind, Chanyeol portrayed a shy busking artist with a talent for music but immense performance anxiety. Through his lyrics, Chanyeol’s character aims to break out of the mental box he feels trapped in and wants to live his dreams out. As the theme song of the movie, the track has multiple versions and is able to represent other characters as well.
— Genius Korea

4. “Timeless” — BIBI

We have come to know BIBI as a fun R&B artist, but she showed a different side to herself with her OST “Timeless” for critically acclaimed K-Drama Beyond Evil. She further proves she should not be underestimated as she absolutely embodies the drama’s concept in this song.

Filled with thrilling murder mysteries that span a decade, in a world where nobody can be trusted, Beyond Evil features one of the best screenplays in recent times. The lyrics to ‘Timeless’ and BIBI’s haunting vocals also tell the story of how the two leads of the show were frozen in time.
— Genius Korea

3. “Yours” — BTS’s Jin

BTS’s Jin is known for his phenomenal vocal abilities, and whenever he releases a solo, we feel completely moved. As a trained actor, he treats each of his songs as his own monologue, sincerely communicating the lyrics with his voice. While his OST “Yours” for K-Drama Jirisan was recently released, it has instantly become a favorite for 2021.

The mystery thriller follows the story of a dedicated team of rangers working at the Jiri Mountain National Park, the biggest and the oldest National Park in South Korea. …While the drama features shocking rescue missions and other thrilling sequences, the backdrop of the drama is set in death in the mountains as many visitors come to kill or to end their own lives. The lyrics and Jin’s melancholic tender delivery of ‘Yours’ hints towards this hidden and sensitive backdrop of the drama.
— Genius Korea

2. “Breaking Down” — Ailee

Seo In Guk and Park Bo Young‘s Doom At Your Service is an emotional drama, so it’s only fitting that the queen of ballads, Ailee, be the one to deliver the OST. We couldn’t think of anyone better to sing “Breaking Down.”

‘Breaking Down’ does a fabulous job of setting the tone for the first arc of the drama which finds the female lead having given up on life after being diagnosed with a terminal illness and the male lead fueled by anger. A real tearjerker, Ailee’s voice is the perfect choice to convey the complex themes presented in Doom At Your Service which heavily tackled depression and anxiety.
— Genius Korea

1. “Adrenaline” — MAMAMOO’s Solar

Last but not least, we have a viewer-favorite drama of 2021, the one and only Vincenzo. Naturally, the success of this mafia tale about Song Joong Ki‘s Vincenzo Cassano made the soundtrack a hit as well, especially as it contains gifted vocalists, such as MAMAMOO’s Solar. She lends her voice for the English version “Adrenaline” as the original is performed in Italian by Aalia, and both are chilling interpretations.

With her powerful vocal delivery, Solar not only expresses the thrilling life of the suave lead but also effectively conveys the hurt experienced by him. Solar’s haunting vocals paired with the rock instrumentation of the song make ‘Adrenaline’ the standout soundtrack of 2021.
— Genius Korea

What’s your favorite OST of 2021?

Source: Koreaboo