First Love (첫사랑) and Love like A Spring Rain, Farewell like A Winter Rain (사랑은 봄비처럼 이별은 겨울비처럼) are songs performed by Lim Hyun Jung (임현정, 1974-) in 1999 and 2003, respectively. Lim was a standout among the female singers in that she wrote the music and lyrics as well as the musical arrangements for all her songs. She had a good deal of chart success with her pleasant and melodic songs.
사랑은 봄비처럼, 이별은 겨울비처럼
Love like A Spring Rain, Farewell like A Winter Rain
Majoring in music in college, she came on the music scene with a fresh style, bright and happy sounding melodious tunes that seem to take the listener on a trip over the rainbow. The catchy melodies and buoyant rhythm caught on, and got used in a commercial that gave First Love a huge boost. Maybe the Korean people needed these lovely and happy songs at such a difficult time following the collapse of the country’s finance and the ensuing intervention of IMF.
Lim’s forte was in crafting lovely melodies and the pleasant and fitting lyrics that nicely complemented them. She was not particularly flashy with her vocal style or stage manners, just as she once said in an interview that she had a rather limited vocal range, which makes her success all the more impressive. She made up for her weakness with her talent in songwriting and arranging, which might be a first among female singers as far as I know.
Both songs are a lighthearted remembrance of a past love that couldn’t bloom, quite a change of pace from other serious and sad songs of the same theme.
The mood is warm, bright, happy and rollicking, like enjoying a pleasant sunny afternoon without a trace of worry on your mind, just remembering the good old times with a smile on your face, grateful for the beautiful memories of what went down in your younger days. It makes you wonder about the mystery of the human mind that the same experience of failed love can take on such different outlooks. Maybe it is true that all the vicissitudes of life are first and foremost the makings of the mind.
Lim has released five albums in all. Her legacy seems to be in demonstrating that a female artist can be as good as her male counterpart as far as creating hit songs while doing all the creative parts such as the original music, lyrics and the arrangement herself. It is a feat not too many have achieved even among male artists.