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Father's Day Playlist: 15 Songs Dedicated to Dad

Written by YumCha! Editorial Team Tell a Friend

Father's Day is just around the corner. Have you planned on how to express your love and gratitude to your dad on that special day? Too shy to say it out loud? We've got you covered – here is a playlist of 15 K-pop, J-pop and C-pop songs honoring and celebrating fathers that you can share with him!

1. Beyond – Repay for Life

Even the most casual of Cantopop fans would know Beyond's classic song "Truly Love You" dedicated to mothers. But the legendary band also dedicated a song to fathers as well. Released in 1992 on the album Control, "Repay for Life" is about a father's limitless love and sacrifices that can't be paid back in a lifetime. The stirring rock ballad is composed by Steve Wong and written by Gene Lau, the lyricist of many Beyond hits. This was the ending theme of the family comedy Daddy, Father and Papa co-starring Paul Wong, and Paul also serves as the lead vocalist of the song.

2. BTOBFather

In Korea, Parents' Day falls on May 8, and May is also considered the "Family Month." In May 2012, less than two months after their debut, BTOB shared their gratitude towards all fathers around the world with the digital single "Father." Produced by Lim Sang Hyuk and Jeon Da Woon, "Father" sings about noticing dad's hardships and sacrifices belatedly and expressing love to him. The BTOB members' powerful voices add to the wistful, apologetic sentiments of the simple ballad. If you're too shy to say those "three words, eight letters" in person, you may want to share this song with your beloved father.

3. Chris Hung & Jay ChouAbba

Abba is a mountain, my dearest father... Besides being an icon of Hokkien pop, Hung Yi Feng was also the father of singer Chris Hung, music producer Eric Hung and producer/director Hung Jung Liang. The sons commemorated their legendary father with the 2010 tribute album Lian Hua and the film Abba. In a rare teaming of the kings of Taiwanese pop and Mandopop, Chris Hung and Jay Chou sang the film's titular theme song, a Taiwanese and Mandarin pop duet composed by Jay and penned by Vincent Fang.

4. Dreams Come TrueHaretara Iine

"Let's go to the mountains next Sunday," proposes Yoshida Miwa in the opening line of this refreshing 1992 single off Dreams Come True's fifth album The Swinging Star. The nostalgic lyrics recall precious details of childhood outings and memories – crossing streams, picking fruit, secretly painting her nails red on the last day of kindergarten, and the father who scolded her. While songs for parents are often looks into the past, Haretara Iine cheerily calls for another trip with dad: "This time I will drive / Let's talk together." Just like the song title says, we hope Father's Day will be sunny!

5. Epik HighPieces of You

Epik High's Tablo and Mithra wrote a poem dedicated to fathers in "Pieces of You," released in the hip-hop trio's fifth album Pieces, Part One. Accompanied by Epik High's usual soul-stirring beats, the ode recounts "every little piece" of their fathers and their appreciation for them. Featuring the rappers' intense rhymes and the tender velvety vocals of Loveholics' Ji Sun, "Pieces of You" effortlessly makes listeners tear up with the sincere lyrics and a three-minute instrumental that guides you into thinking about your father. "Pieces of You" wittily ends with an audio of Tablo's daughter, Haru, adorably saying "Dad, I love you."

6. f(x)Sorry (Dear. Daddy)

Have you ever shouted at your parents and regretted right afterwards? No matter the age, we may always be immature in front of our parents. f(x)'s Luna and Krystal sing every children's mind in the resonant ballad Sorry (Dear. Daddy). Though f(x) debuted with funky beats and synthpop, this side track on their first EP NU ABO showed a sentimental vibe that also fit the group's teen concept. Sorry (Dear. Daddy) is an apology to dad after impulsively saying thoughtless words to him: "If I hurt your heart today, please forgive me / Stupid me spoke mindlessly today / It's okay if you don't understand my mind right now / No excuse needed, it's all my fault."

7. Funky Monkey BabysHero

Not all heroes wear capes. Funky Monkey Babys celebrate the everyday hero who's "gotta run for today" in their 2009 ode to dads. This song's Hero is that ordinary, stressed salaryman who sprints to work every morning, navigates crowded trains and resists the temptation of neon-lit streets – all for the sake of his family waiting at home. The band's signature feel-good fusion of rock, rap and pop is catchy and uplifting, and the refreshingly down-to-earth lyrics paint a vividly familiar and moving image of the busy father who's doing his best.

8. GlayColors

Glay waxes about the bond between parents and children in Colors from the legendary band's 25th anniversary single G4・V -Democracy 2019-. Written and composed by Teru, the rousing rock number expresses gratitude and yearning for family, and reminds us to communicate and laugh with loved ones while we can. Colors was the theme song of the film Brave Father Online: Our Story of Final Fantasy about a father and son's process of reconnecting and understanding each other.

9. GReeeeNFubo Uta

GReeeeN, the masters of making happy-sounding songs that make you tear up, included the song Fubo Uta for parents in their 2009 album Shio, Kosho. As indicated by the title, this "Parents' Song" sends gratitude to both dad and mom. The folksy pop rock number intersperses sweet memories of childhood and growing up in the verses, and then directly voices the most important words from the heart in the catchy chorus: "Dad, mom, just thank you."

10. Jung Eun JiHopefully Sky

When it comes to songs about parents, we tend to think of sorrowful ballads that make us weep and reflect. But why not play a song that can cheer up your loved ones? Apink's power vocalist Eun Ji made her solo debut with the album Dream and its title song "Hopefully Sky" in 2016. As the singer's first credited work, the upbeat and joyful song heals hearts and encourages her dad with heartwarming notes: "Daddy, where should I go to live with a heart like yours?... I comfort you and love you through the song written for you." Eun Ji's warm vocals, the inspiring lyrics and the sweet melody with Hareem's harmonica all come together to create a hopeful spring vibe true to the song title. So Hyang's slow-tempo ballad remake of Hopefully Sky was recently featured on the original soundtrack of Hi Bye, Mama!

11. Li RonghaoMama & Papa

When we were small, we took everything for granted without noticing how much our parents sacrificed. Looking back, they've done so much for us that we can never repay. Li Ronghao uses the most simple and straightforward lyrics to stir up emotions in "Mama & Papa." Produced by the singer-songwriter, the song recalls the most ordinary childhood memories and finally acknowledges our parents' love after becoming a grown-up. In line with the lyrics, the music video of "Mama & Papa" poignantly portrays a man's reminiscences about his relationship with his parents in his youthful days.

12. One OK RockHard to Love

Children are often Hard to Love when they fight back, make mistakes and go their own way, but parents are there through it all. Taka wrote two songs dedicated to his father (enka legend Mori Shinichi) in the 2017 album AmbitionsAlways Coming Back and Hard to Love. The latter is an emotional, stripped-down guitar number that tells a story of rebellion, growth and eventual understanding between father and son. It's hard to not get a bit choked up when Taka sings the feelings of many a son and daughter: "We've been down, we've been up / I hope I've made you proud enough."

13. Panther ChanThe Song I Listen to When I'm Lost

There is no place like home, and nothing feels better than going to your family when you're tired. In 2018, Panther Chan penned "The Song I Listen to When I'm Lost," which was originally titled "The Daddy Song." Produced by Mr.'s MJ Tam and Tom, the alternative rock ballad encourages us to go home whenever we feel lost, because family will always have our backs. Panther Chan's silky tone gives this affecting song a sense of comfort that inspires rather than saddens. Many listeners have said that they cried while listening to this song on their way home. If you do also, then don't hesitate to call home and tell your parents you miss them.

14. PSYFather

"I got it from my daddy!" – This is probably one of the most well-known catchphrases from Psy's songs but instead of Daddy (which satirizes patriarchy), we're recommending the rapper-producer's "Father." Featured in his 2005 album Remake & Mix No. 18, "Father" expresses a father's devotion from the perspectives of a dad, a son and a husband. The lighthearted, rockish melody is composed by Yoo Gun Hyung (who later co-produced Gangnam Style). After taking the world by storm in the early 2010s, Psy released the rearranged ballad version of "Father" with piano accompaniment by Lang Lang and touching Korean and Chinese lyrics: "Don't worry kids, daddy is your superman / Father, I finally realize how difficult your life was / From now on, let's conquer the future together."

15. Zion.T – Yanghwa BRDG

After taking part in Infinite Challenge's Song Festival in 2015, hip-hop artist Zion.T rose to fame for his unique vocal tone and personality. Bolstered by his popularity, his signature R&B song Yanghwa BRDG (dedicated to his father) also climbed to the top of charts in Korea. Zion.T soulfully and delicately tells his family story in the calming song: "I always stayed home alone / My dad is a taxi driver / Whenever I asked him where he was, he always said Yanghwa Bridge." Even without a climax or overwhelming emotions in the composition and lyrics, Yanghwa BRDG still brings the most genuine and resonant family story that everyone can relate to.

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Published June 16, 2020

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  • Region & Language: Hong Kong United States - English
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