Best of the Best

Welcome back to the “The Best of the Best”, a monthly look into the very best of anything to do with Girls’ Generation. In November of last year, your votes decided that this edition of “The Best of the Best” would look into Girls’ Generation’s greatest non-title track performances, which I realized was a terrible category for me to place in the poll as I began to decide on this month’s top five. Girls’ Generation has had very very many non-title track performances, ranging from song covers to OSTs to more than a dozen songs from Japanese albums performed during Arena Tour concerts in Japan, making it nearly impossible for me to choose. Thus, to narrow the possibilities, I limited my choices to only performances of songs from Girls’ Generation’s Korean albums. Now that I’ve explained why your favorite performance may not be on this list (though it probably still isn’t, even if it is from a Korean album), here we go with this month’s top five!

5. Dear Mom – SBS Inkigayo

One of Girls’ Generation’s most touching ballads, “Dear Mom” pulls at the heartstrings in more ways than one. With its beautiful lyrics and a heartbreaking reminder of lost loved ones, “Dear Mom” is a moving and emotional song that was made all the more so on SBS’s “Inkigayo” in 2009. During the performance, photos of Girls’ Generation’s members and their mothers were hung from the ceiling of the stage, and as the members sang, handwritten messages to their mothers were shown on the screen. Read the translated messages here as you see them appear during the performance. Then get some tissues ready. Someone keeps cutting onions in the air.

4. Dancing Queen – Yoo Heeyeol’s Sketchbook

Girls’ Generation always sounds fantastic when singing live, but the group’s rare performances with a live instrumental backing never fail to amaze. Recorded in 2008, “Dancing Queen” was originally meant to be a title track, but was shelved as Girls’ Generation instead promoted “Gee”. The song was finally released earlier this year on the “I Got A Boy” album, and Girls’ Generation performed the song live on “Yoo Heeyeol’s Sketchbook” in January.  With a live band and tennis shoes instead of high heels, the members looked energetic and excited, and the song sounded even better than the studio version. “Dancing Queen” sadly wasn’t chosen to be a Girls’ Generation title track, but fortunately was given one of Girls’ Generation’s best non-title track performances ever.

3. Etude – Show! Music Core

For one of the group’s most unique stage settings yet, Girls’ Generation traveled to a water park to perform “Etude” from the “Genie” mini-album for “Show! Music Core”. This adorable performance featured the members looking unbelievably beautiful while barefoot and wearing colorful summer dresses, with infectious bright smiles that show how much they’re enjoying this unusual but very fun show. As the song concludes, the members can be seen, for some reason, kicking water at each other, causing Taeyeon to let out a scream just as the video ends and proving that no matter where the location, Girls’ Generation is still as silly and has as much fun as ever. This very cute and lovely performance of “Etude” wins the next spot on my countdown.

힘내! (Way To Go) – Kim Jungeun’s Chocolate

The second track from the “Gee” mini-album on my list, “힘내! (Way To Go)” was practically made to be performed with live instruments. Upbeat and cheerful, the song matched perfectly with a band on an episode of “Kim Jungeun’s Chocolate” and sounded better than ever. Though this show took place nearly four years ago, it is still Girls’ Generation’s very best with a band and one of my favorite non-title track performances.

1. Complete – Into The New World Tour

Girls’ Generation’s most famous ballad, “Complete” also received the group’s most memorable performance ever during the “Into The New World” tour. This beautiful song has stolen the breaths of tens of thousands with its stunning climax, which has become one of many symbolic moments for Girls’ Generation’s fans. During these powerful few seconds, the lights dimmed and the nine members joined hands and formed a circle in the middle of the entire concert stadium, facing each other while surrounded by an ocean of pink. Since I can’t link the official video from the “Into The New World” tour DVD (which you can purchase on YesAsia), here instead are some of my favorite fancams of “Complete” from several of the stops on Girls’ Generation’s first tour through Asia. These beautiful stages win the top spot on my list of the best non-title track performances by Girls’ Generation.





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