LOS ANGELES, Calif. (FOX 11) - My daughter has been singing the songs of BTS for a couple of years now. She is one of the army members, the BTS Army, the amazing fanbase known around the world. In a few short years, the K-pop sensations have found themselves from appearing at KCON in Los Angeles, to selling out shows at the Staples Center, to now filling the biggest outdoor concert venues in the country as they begin a new world tour.
Let me preface this by saying that I was supposed to be at The Rolling Stones next weekend at the Rose Bowl. But they've postponed due to health issues. So instead of seeing Mick and Keith, I found myself at the Rose Bowl for BTS seeing Jungkook, Jimin, RM, and all the members who make up BTS. No question, I am of a different era. This would be a show for my kids, or would it?
The first thing you notice at this BTS concert is the fact that 65,000 amazing fans are in their seats before the show even starts, singing to every single song before the group even took to the stage. The Rose Bowl is loud. This was thunderous. THUNDEROUS.
BTS took the stage, and the BTS Army went crazy. My kids went crazy. CRAZY. Light tubes synced to the music as everyone waved their lights in the air. These guys dominated the stage. There was no opening act, just them. Fireworks. Fun. I decided to live tweet the show as much as I could on my Twitter feed @wilgoren. WiFi wasn't great since a million of my newest and closest BTS friends must have had the same idea.
I'd post short video clips.
And more short video clips.
I watched the joy on everyone's faces. Even with stadium speakers at the Rose Bowl, it was hard to hear the group at times over the crowd who was singing every word to every song. It was a shared concert experience for sure.
If there are a few words I would use to describe BTS to people who don't know them, I would say "showmen". They put on an amazing show moving around the stage, bouncing up and down from different parts of the stage, at one point even flying over the crowd at the Rose Bowl. That was very cool.
But "showmen" seems too simplistic.
These guys who are just entering the height of their careers seem to be more. This was a positive concert vibe that gave everyone a good feeling inside. Even if you didn't understand all the words to the songs (and there were many I didn't understand), this was about how the music and the group made you feel. And the crowd, myself included, was feeling really good.
In between the songs, music videos played, they put up the tour name "Love Yourself: Speak Yourself". And it felt like that really WAS the message. The group from South Korea has been traveling the world, and building their fanbase army, on a mission of positivity.
My tweets, pictures, and videos would be shared more than a MILLION times and viewed many more. People from South Korea, Taiwan, many other countries and across the United States as well. At the end of the night, I thanked everyone for watching my live tweets. I got many, many, many thanks in return including this one, "Thank you for the time taking those beautiful moments of the concert tonight and sharing them to the world."
And that's what this really was. It was a WORLDwide event from the Rose Bowl. It was a group just hitting the peak of their success. It was an affirmation for the many BTS Army members that this group is pretty amazing for a lot of reasons, and an introduction for newbies like me, that yes, this group is pretty amazing for a lot of reasons.
BTS addressed the Rose Bowl crowd for quite a long time at the end of the concert. They called this one of the most important nights of their lives. No doubt it was. I had the feeling that I just witnessed something big. Really big.
Pete Wilgoren, Managing Editor, FOX 11 News