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[From the scene] Jazz music livens up Seoul's streets

Ma considered quitting her work as a vocalist during the COVID-19 pandemic when strict social distancing measures meant there were no opportunities to perform. Yet, music was her only hope, she said.

"During the pandemic, I worked on songs with cheerful lyrics, which gave me a lot of emotional support. Likewise, for those who may have been hit with hard times, I hope that my songs will encourage them," said Ma.

In a sweet yet husky voice, Ma continued with two more covers of K-pop songs and her own song, "Cheer Up." Ma recorded "Cheer Up" as a member of C-Clef. Although the band failed to gain attention, "Cheer Up" did score some success in 2019 when it was used in a TV commercial for Bacchus, an energy drink. The lyrics of "Cheer Up" were dedicated to working women who juggle raising children with working, Ma explained.

The performance was part of the 2023 Seoul Street Performance: Guseok Guseok Live, organized by the Seoul Metropolitan Government. With a budget of 1.35 billion won ($1 million), the city provides artists with opportunities to perform while presenting cultural experiences to the public.

In the Donuimun Museum Village, near the Gwanghwamun Square, a traditional Korean instrument player took to the stage. "Haeguem" player Eunhan performed Kim Dae-myung's “In Front of the Post Office in Autumn” and the Carpenters' “Top of the World” at the request of her fans.

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