BTS – Go Go (English translation and Ramblings)

Go Go (고민보다 Go) is track 08 on Love Yourself 承 ‘Her’ album. 

The literal translation of the title means “Rather than worrying, Go”

 

Korean Lyrics are from Naver Music.

 

Reading the lyrics, I don’t think this is a song saying BTS feels like spending money like this.  Looking at their old Spine Breaker song, most likely there are at least some members who actually don’t spend a lot of money.

What it does look like, is like representation of what a lot of kids in BTS generation feels.  Especially if asked why that “young generation” never plans for future, and lives seemingly irresponsible lives and spends all their earnings.  There are a lot of young people like that in Korea, and partially it’s because the future is too depressing.  Why bother saving up for a house or to have a family…if you know that no matter how hard you work, you’ll never  have enough money to actually do these things?   Especially considering how expensive it is to raise kids in Korea.   Might as well blow it on pleasures of today.

BTS probably reads a lot of stories from fans and hears a lot of these issues from their friends who are now just at the age of entering work force.  They have repeatedly said that in addition to their stories, they want to tell the stories they’ve heard from others of their generation.  The song is advocating the issues of the times, where people give up on hopes of future.

In BTS’s common style, it’s mildly self-deprecating and sarcastic.  The fact that the song sounds happy, and the narrative superficially sounds happy when it’s actually a fairly depressing song also gives it interesting contrast.

 

EDIT: Sept 30, 2017

The “run run” and “YOLOYOLO” sounded kinda sad and resigned when listening to the music by itself.  I can’t believe they made the performance so deceivingly cheerful and cute.  I read a Korean netizen comment that said something like, “I was happily enjoying watching the performance until I read the lyrics and it made my stress induced acid reflux flare up.”

Written by:  Pdogg, Bang PD and Supreme Boi.

some adaptations were done

 


 

 

 

DOLLAR DOLLAR
Blow it all in one morning
Run run, I earn and I waste it on frivolities
Run run run run
Run run
Kind of interesting that “dallyuh” meaning “run” sounds kind of like “dollar.”
It sounds like they’re saying “dollar” repeatedly.
Also, “오늘 달려/run today”, means “get trashed/drunk today” among the working people.  Overworked employees would say, “Let’s forget that we have to work tomorrow and ‘run (trashed)’ today.”

 

I want it.  Cruisin’ on the bay
Possibly referring to eBay as well as a regular bay you can cruise on
Want it.  Cruisin’ like NEMO
Nemo is probably reference to Twenty Thousand Leagues under the Sea.  The captain in this story named Nemo travels freely, having left chains of society behind.  However, it’s later seen that he carries a very deep wound inflicted by society under the carefree surface.
Nemo from “Finding Nemo” is probably also named after this captain.
Don’t have money but I want to go far away
I don’t have money but I want to rest my fatigue away
Don’t have money but I want to eat Ono Jiro food.
Ono Jiro sushi is considered the most expensive sushi in the world.



After working hard, I earned my pay
All into my own tummy
Gather specks into specks
opposite to phrase “Gather specks into a mountain” which were the words that the previous generation lived by – where they saved money diligently.
Pay it all into blow-it-fun 
탕진잼 –> “Blow-it-fun” has no sexual connotation. This was the closest I could translate it.
탕진 – means to blow all the money until you’re broke.
잼- is jam, as in “Jimin, you’ve got no jams”, where “jams” is short for “재미/jaemi” which means “fun”.
This phrase is an internet slang that became common in 2016-2017 in which the young generation does “blow-it-fun” as hobby, because they’re too tired from working to develop a real hobby.  They feel like their life is empty and shopping for things fills this void briefly.
Leave me be.  Even if I overspend
Even if, tomorrow morning, I cash out my savings like I’m crazy.

 

Woo  There’s no tomorrow
My future is already being held as collateral.
Woo, spend more of my money
Friends, wussup
Do you want some?

 

DOLLAR DOLLAR
Blow it all in one morning
Run run, man I spend it like some party

DOLLAR DOLLAR
Until the day you get light in the little hole you live in
literally, in the “mouse hole”
Until the sun rises

 

YOLO YOLO YOLO YO
YOLO = you only live once
YOLO YOLO YO
Blow-it-fun Blow-it-fun Blow-it-fun 
YOLO YOLO YOLO YO
Where my money yah
Blow-it-fun Blow-it-fun Blow-it-fun
YOLO YOLO YOLO YO
YOLO YOLO YO
Blow-it-fun Blow-it-fun Blow-it-fun
YOLO YOLO YOLO YO
Where the party yah

Blow-it-fun Blow-it-fun Blow-it-fun

 

Where my money yah?
Where the party yah?
My week is Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri Fri Fri Fri
The regular salaried employees often get called to work on weekends with no overtime pay.  These employees  call these days on weekends they work “Fridays” in sarcastic/self deprecating humor – ending up with weeks of:  Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri Fri Fri.
It’s funny that they put 4 Fri’s.  This almost implies 8 working days a week.
My bank account yah
Is like a barrel with a hole in the bottom
Every day I’m pouring water in it. 

Referring the the barrel with hole in the bottom that a girl was told to fill with water by her evil step mother (in a folklore similar to Cinderella) – essentially saying, “what’s the point?”
This is common issue for a lot of people.  Your salary goes into your account, but before you even get to the money, all the fees/bills get paid out as if the account is “leaking.”

Why not just break the barrel instead?
We’re too young to be doing nothing but worrying all the time.
Just today, instead of worrying, do “Go”
If you save it in fear, it’ll become shit.  
Just hit it.
This part has a bunch of gambling terms, based  on Korean card game called “Go-Stop”.

There is a group of cards that have Paulowinia trees on them, called “Odong trees”.  Because Odong kind of sounds like ddong, which means shit, they call these cards ddong/shit cards.  These are actually quite shitty cards compared to other cards if you don’t get certain hand combinations.  If you hold onto them for too long but fail to get the combo you want.. well… you get essentially shit hand.

In this game, if you say you’re doing “Go”, you get to go for another round of cards. However, if you say you’re going to “Go” but fail to increase your points with this extra round, there is a penalty.   “Instead of worrying, do Go” is actually a risky gamble (opposite of ‘quitting while you’re ahead’).

This section is essentially, saying instead of being worried about what you’re going to lose, just gamble for the day and go ahead and do what you want, before your today becomes shit.

DOLLAR DOLLAR
Blow it all in one morning
Run run, man I spend it like some party
DOLLAR DOLLAR
Until the day you get light in the little hole you live in
Until the sun rises

 

YOLO YOLO YOLO YO
YOLO YOLO YO
Blow-it-fun Blow-it-fun Blow-it-fun 
YOLO YOLO YOLO YO
Where my money yah
Blow-it-fun Blow-it-fun Blow-it-fun 
YOLO YOLO YOLO YO
YOLO YOLO YO
Blow-it-fun Blow-it-fun Blow-it-fun 
YOLO YOLO YOLO YO
Where the party yah
Blow-it-fun Blow-it-fun Blow-it-fun 

 

Rather than worrying, Go
Rather than worrying, Go
Rather than worrying, Go (Everybody!)
Rather than worrying, Go
Rather than worrying, Go
Rather than worrying, Go (Everybody!)
Rather than worrying, Go
Rather than worrying, Go
Rather than worrying, Go (Everybody!)
Rather than worrying, Go
Rather than worrying, Go
Rather than worrying, Go (Everybody!)

 

Rather than worrying, Go
Rather than worrying, Go
Rather than worrying, Go (Everybody!)
Rather than worrying, Go
Rather than worrying, Go
Rather than worrying, Go (Everybody!)

 

21 thoughts on “BTS – Go Go (English translation and Ramblings)

  1. Another thing to note (very late comment, I just discovered this site!) — “Fri” in Korean is “Geum” which also means “gold”. Friday is usually associated with payday (this is true in America at least, I don’t know if it’s the same in Korea); so you also have the meaning of “It’s the end of the work week, I just got paid, I’m going to go blow it off all weekend!”.

    1. Probably a little bit different in Korea. Fridays used to be a good thing, and it does use the same word as gold. However, for a lot of people in recent years, Friday is just another working day before a weekend that never comes. “Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri Fri Fri” followed by “Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri Fri Fri” is a common phrase used by salaried employees, who are expected to work overtime and on weekends with no over time pay. Because job market is so competitive, if they don’t want to over work like this, there is a line of other competent people who would love to take your job….so people just go along with this.

      Generally, salaries are paid monthly in Korea – it’s even called “월급” where 월 = month and 급 = pay. Unless you’re casual part-timer, in which you’d be paid over shorter period. In a world of “Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri Fri Fri” , I guess even if you get paid, you can’t really blow it off all weekend anyway..because you have to work that weekend. Very sad….

  2. I actually thought they were using the Arabic word for “go” instead of YOLO: “yallah” sounds way more like what they are saying than YOLO. Makes sense either way and I like this ambiguity so I’m going to go with the Arabic “go”: “yallah”!

  3. Wow just wow. The song does really seem rather happy on the surface, but after reading your post I really appreciate the song more. Like Hi, this really looks bleak, but screw the world I’m still gonna be happy. Thank you for your posting. ~Em

  4. Wow, this song is hella depressing in such a great way. Very relatable! Thank you so much for taking the time to spell out the context, it made me appreciate it so much more!

    1. This is a late reply but if you look at the album credits, Jungkook and Namjoon did the chorus part. Supreme Boi and PDogg, as well as BangPD, did the writing for the song with PDogg doing most of the work (as on the album credits), so yes BTS also works in mixing, rap arrangements, and as recording engineers ^^

  5. I could have sworn they were saying “yallah yallah yallah ya” as in come on/hurry up/go in Arabic, not yolo! They even say it with an sort of Arabic accent, but I guess if this is the translation from naver I must be wrong! Kinda disappointed they’re only saying yolo, but I guess it makes sense!

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