Eugene Cho

asian-americans are taking over the music industry

Ok, it’s a sensationalistic title. Asian-Americans are clearly not taking over the music industry because it’s clearly dominated by Justin Bieber but I do have other exciting news to share.

The rumors are true. I am guest-judging for an event called Kollaboration and specifically, for their installment in the beautiful and talented city of Seattle.

While I’d rather be recognized for my undergrounds skillz as an emcee (My underground emcee name is Minister Sinister], I get to do the 2nd best thing by doing my best Simon Cowell impersonation at this event which will be held on Saturday October 23, 2010 at the Auburn Performing Arts Center. Kollaboration, now in its 10th year, is the premier Asian-American Talent/Entertainment showcase. This year’s show will feature 8 acts competing for the $1,000 grand prize as well as special guest performers and judges. [tickets]

What is Kollaboration?

Kollaboration is an annual event and movement produced by young Asian and Pacific Islander (API) professionals and students to promote a strong API presence in entertainment and media. Our high-energy shows across the nation provide a unique chance for young API artists to showcase their talents.

Kollaboration’s current mission is “Empowerment through Entertainment.” We hope to empower API youth by providing a creative outlet and leadership opportunity for them. For API families, our movement offers a platform for communication that bridges generational and cultural differences. Finally, for the API community, we aim to raise awareness for critical community issues and NGOs.

Why do I believe in the vision?

There’s two reasons.


As in…not very visible. As in…APIs are in-visible in the music industry. As in…it’s really difficult to break in. I can only assume the difficulties of trying to “make it” in the entertainment industry for anyone but consider how much more difficult it must be for APIs in an industry where you rarely see any Asian-Americans.

And when the  road is that much difficult, I’ve been very encouraged how Asian-Americans – rather than playing the role of victim – have created their own opportunities. Case in point: The NY Times wrote an article a few months ago of how Asian-Americans are utilizing You Tube to get their music and art out there.

What’s the lesson? Don’t be discouraged. Work hard. Be creative. Create your own market. Utilize the mediums that are “helping” to quasi even the playing field. Or at least, make it a little more accessible.


I resonate with Kollaboration because I don’t want entertainment’s purpose to simply be about entertainment. I don’t want to see Asian-Americans simply excel in the entertainment industry so that we can grow full of themselves. I want us to be part of larger landscape of hope, beauty, and courage. It’s another reason why I’m really excited and humbled that not only have they asked me to be a judge but they’ve asked One Day’s Wages to partner with them as one of the organizations they’ll be featuring through the event.

Anyway, if you’re in the larger Seattle area, I invite you to support the event. Check out their promo video:

And speaking of some emerging Asian-American artists, here’s a couple:

Clara Chung is mad talented. Congrats on her first album:

And even if they’re not returning my emails, you have to give it up to Blue Scholars. Geo is one of the most talented lyricists out there. For the life of me, I don’t quite know how they haven’t blown up bigger. One of my fav Blue Scholars songs:

Legaci’s cover of 6, 8, 12:

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9 Responses

  1. Bo says:

    This looks sweet. Glad that you’re involved. At the church I previously pastored the youth kids called me P Bo. Maybe we can do a Minister Sinister and P Bo duo?

  2. Kevin Park says:

    We are honored to have Eugene and One Day’s Wages be part of our program. See you all on the 23rd!

    Make history with us!

  3. Eugene Cho says:

    One of my readers contacted me to let me know that they’re seeing google ads on the bottom of my post and they’re somewhat inappropriate [Asian women looking for American love. Ugh].

    Anyone else seeing this?

    And just FYI, this is NOT my doing. Will try to resolve it with wordpress but wanting to see if others are seeing it as well.

  4. Josh Rogers says:

    I especially love the Blue Scholars – I’ll check out the other artists too!

  5. g says:

    The wifey and I will be having our first post-baby date night to go Seattle Kollaboration!

    Good music picks BTW, but I have a sad Clara C story. I pre-ordered her album and when it came in the mail… *whatdaheck* there was a CD jacket without the CD. Which means:

    1. The post office jacked me.
    2. In the rush to deliver the pre-orders, somebody stuffed my package with the CD jacket but forgot the CD.

    I e-mailed Clara C’s website, but no response… sigh.

  6. seconda says:

    I’m a big fan of Clara Chung. She is the best!

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One Day’s Wages

My Instagram

As I soaked in this breathtaking sunrise this morning above the clouds, I felt compelled to pray for so my places in America and around the world that are experiencing such pain, heartache, injustice, and violence. At times, it feels so overwhelming but in prayer, I was reminded of these words from John 16:33. As we keep striving, working, hoping, preaching, loving, truthtelling, reconciling, repenting, forgiving, dismantling, peacemaking, Kingdom building...may we fix our eyes on Christ: “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” - John 16:33 Grateful for a very full weekend of ministry and preaching in Toronto, Canada (GTA). Such a privilege to partner with @worldvisioncan @wvcollective to advocate for the most vulnerable around the world. God is so gracious. A true honor to meet and encourage local pastors, lecture at Tyndale University & Seminary (photo), and preach at Richmond Hills Community Church, Compass Point Bible Church, and New City Church. Thank you, Lord, that you use broken and imperfect people like me to speak of Your love. Today, Minhee and I dropped off our eldest child at her college. We have been thinking and praying about this day for many years. On some days, we hoped it would never come. On other days, we couldn't wait for it to come. On some days, we prayed for time to stop and other days, we prayed with anticipation. 
After an entire summer of laughing it off, it hit us...hard...this week. Seeing all of her stuff laid out on the basement floor was the catalyst to a load of emotions.

After unloading the car and taking her stuff to her new home for this year and mindful that she might never live with us again; helping sort out her stuff, saying hello to her roommates...I wasn't sure what to do or say.

A flood of thoughts rushed my mind.

Is she ready?
Have we done enough?
Have we taught her enough? 
What if this? What if that?

And so we shared what we have shared with her the moment she began to understand words: "Remember who you are. Remember WHO you belong to. Remember what you're about. God loves you so much. Please hold God's Word and His promises close and dear to your heart. We love you so much and we are so proud of you." And with that, we said goodbye. Even if she may not be thousands of miles away, this is a new chapter for her and even for us. I kept it composed. Her roommate was staring at me. I didn't want to be that father. I have street cred to uphold. Another final hug. 
And I came home.
And I wept.
Forget my street cred.
I miss her. I love her.
She will always be my little baby.

I'm no parenting guru. I just laughed as I wrote that line. No, I'm stumbling and bumbling along but I'd love to share an ephiphany I learned not that long ago. Coming to this realization was incredibly painful but simultaneously, liberating. To be honest, it was the ultimate game-changer in my understanding as a parent seeking after the heart of God.

While there are many methods, tools, philosophies, and biblical principles to parenting, there is – in my opinion – only one purpose or destination.

Our purpose as parents is to eventually…release them. Send forth. For His glory. Met a friend and fellow pastor who I haven't seen in over 20 years. In him, I saw a glimpse of my future. While only 10 years older, his kids are married and he's now a grandfather of 3. His love for his wife and family were so evident and his passion for the Gospel has not wavered. It was so good to see someone a bit older still passionately serving the Lord with such joy and faithfulness. Lord, help me to keep running the race for your Glory. Happy wife.
Happy life. - Eugenius 3:16

I still remember that time, many years ago, when Minhee was pregnant with our first child. She had left her family and friends in Korea just two years before. Her morning sickness was horrible and when she finally had an appetite, she craved her favorite Korean food from certain restaurants in her neighborhood in Seoul, Korea. I had no way of getting that food from those restaurants so I actually said, "How about a Whopper? Big Mac?" Sorry honey. Eat away. You deserve it. I don't care if it sounds mushy but sunsets are one of my love languages. Seoul, Korea was amazing but WOW...what a breathtaking welcome back sunset by Seattle. Not ready to let go of summer.

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