Learn Korean Words with K-Pop – 내가 제일 잘 나가 (I Am The Best) by 2NE1


Happy weekend, everyone!

Are you planning to study Korean over the weekend? We hope you can spare some time to study a couple more Korean phrases with us. We are always going to be here to help you develop your Korean language skills, 하나부터 열까지(in every possible way)!

Sometimes, taking a shower before you sit down to study helps you feel refreshed, which can help you focus more. Showers really give you that fresh feeling 머리끝부터 발끝까지 (from head to toe)! Unfortunately, during this time of year, it’s unbelievably hot and humid in Korea, so the refreshing effect of taking a shower only lasts a couple of minutes. Crazy, right? We really hope you’re experiencing much better weather wherever you live!

I’m sure you’re really anxious to get right into our 3rd “Learn Korean with K-Pop” song, so let’s not waste any more time!

The 3rd K-pop band that we’ve chosen is a group of 4 super cool, attractive, and popular girls…
Yes! That’s right! It’s 2NE1~

Let’s take a look at a couple of phrases found in their song “내가 제일 잘나가” (I Am The Best).

1. 감당 못 해

감당하다 [gam-dang-ha-da] = to handle, to manage
못 하다 [mot ha-da] = cannot do

In the context of the lyrics, this phrase means “you cannot handle me” or “I am beyond your ability to handle.” CL is so incredibly confident in herself that she can go around saying, “I’m not a girl that you can easily deal with.” What an attitude, huh?! 😀

You may have noticed that there is no specific subject in this phrase, which is something that many Western listeners might find a bit confusing. Unlike English or other similar languages, it is not always necessary to start a sentence with a subject in Korean if the subject is understood between the speaker and the listener. It’s quite often dropped or hidden within the context of everyday conversations in Korean. Listening to this song, it’s pretty obvious that “감당 못 해” [“gam-dang mot hae”] is the speaker saying “YOU can’t handle it”, not “I can’t handle it.” If we were to write it out in a complete sentence, it would go something like “너는 나를 감당 못 해” [“neo-neun na-reul gam-dang mot hae”]. That’s a pretty long phrase when you can just shorten it up and it’ll mean the same thing! Korean is all about convenience!

▽ Play to listen to 감당 못 해 in 내가 제일 잘나가

Sample Sentences
1) 식비를 감당 못 해서 적자에요.
[sik-bi-reul kam-dang mot-hae-seo jeok-ja-e-yo]
= I can’t handle my food expenses, so I’m in the red.

2) 걔는 감당이 안 돼요.
[gye-neun kam-dang-i an-de-yo]
= I can’t handle her/him. (감당이 안 되다 has the same meaning as 감당 못 하다)

2. 끝내 주잖아

This expression is a combination of 2 verbs: 끝내다 [kkeut-nae-da], which means “to finish”, and 주다 [ju-da], which means “to give.” Therefore, the literal meaning of this phrase would be “to provide an ending” or “terminate.” In this context, however, it is used as slang to mean “awesome”, “cool”, or “fantastic.”

▽ Play to listen to 끝내 주잖아 in 내가 제일 잘나가

This is a really common use for the expression, and you will hear it and see it used a lot like this, especially in K-dramas. It’s neither insulting nor swearing, so you can use it in a variety of situations. Let’s look at some examples:

Sample Sentences
1) 국물이 끝내 줘요!
[kuk-mul-i kkeu-nae jwo-yo]
= The soup is amazing! (This is a famous line from a TV commercial for instant noodles!)

2) 야경이 정말 끝내 주네!
[ya-kkyeong-i jeong-mal kkeut-nae ju-ne]
= The night view is incredible!

We hope this lesson is satisfactory for those who have requested that we cover a 2NE1 song. As there are many hit songs by 2NE1, we thought this song is one of the best songs to showcase the group, especially since it is one of the most viewed videos on YouTube.

Thank you for all your comments and requests! We are truly surprised to see how much our listeners are into Korean music, not just K-pop. As this series goes on, we will do our best to introduce more Korean singers and bands of various genres, including some you may or may not have heard of.

Here are today’s questions for you: Have you recently done anything 끝내 주잖아? Have you been to any끝내 주는 restaurants? Have you purchased any끝내 주는 goods? Have you listened to any 끝내 주는 music? Tell us your story in the comment section below, and thanks for stopping by!


This is a guest post by Youngbin Lee.
Youngbin (영빈) on Twitter: http://twitter.com/0bin

My name is Youngbin Lee. I’m a geeky engineer based in Incheon who love learning languages. Learning languages is pure pleasure to me and I’d like to help others feel the same way as I do. My ultimate goal is to become capable of communicating with you in your language. Are you with me? 😀



Learn Korean Words with K-Pop – 내가 제일 잘 나가 (I Am The Best) by 2NE1
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  • Melody

    Yes!!! A 2NE1 song!!!!! 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀
    *now waits patiently for a f(x) song and a SHINee song*

    • Angelica Castillo

      Omg! ^THIS!!!! Those are the same exact bands I am waiting for too 🙂

  • OH thank you never heard this song ever but I like it hehe thanks

  • maxwebber

    I want an MBLAQ song…please…

    • If it’s MBLAQ I’d want 전쟁이야!!! 😀

  • 로리

    wow! thanks….like this very much…..
    can’t wait for more….. 😉


  • Bogaert Dieter

    What does the ‘Prah’ mean at around 2:53? I’m assuming it’s some sort of slang? Something similar to ‘Fighting’ perhaps?
    It’s not mentioned in any lyrics…

    PS: These learning with K-pop lessons are awesome!

    • To my knowledge, it doesn’t mean anything. :-/

  • Jathryn

    I love these new lessons, since I listen to a lot of kpop. 😀
    Pleaseeeee do Sherlock!

  • 야니나

    감사합니다! ^^ can you do an EXO song?

  • Shad

    I want the songs of girls generation and 2pm please

  • Lydia

    I love this series. Since learning these phrases here, I’ve recognized them in other songs. It’s really exciting. So far I love all the songs you’ve used too. I’m looking forward to the next one. Thank you! ^^

  • Rigo

    Happy weekend , By reading lyrics of the songs i Like Has helped me learn new words and phrases
    However i have found many grammar structures that i dont understand and
    끝내주잖아 is a good example , i would have never found out the meaning
    These kind of phrases are exactly what we need to speak korean as is spoken in real life , so this is a 끝내줘 lesson

    • I’m glad that you found it informative! 😀

    • Oh, by the way before a noun, you should use an adjective form. 끝내 주는 레슨. 🙂

  • Jake

    Do Davichi & T-ARA – We Were In Love or BoA – Only One please.

  • amélie

    what does the 나가 means in the title of the song : 내가 제일 잘 나가 … ?

    • 나가다 alone means to go out, but adding 잘 before it makes it 180degree different. 🙂

      “잘 나가다” means to be successful, to do/go really well or to be popular. You would figure out why this song’s English title is “I am the best.”

      You might hear something like this from a clothing shop while you’re shopping.
      “이 옷이 요즘 제일 잘 나가요.” (This cloth is the most popular these days.)

  • Charlotte

    According to Google translate 끝내 means end but why by adding 주잖아 means awesome props? And 끝내 주는 means to finish is correct?

    • Google translator doesn’t always give you a right answer. 끝내주다 just has a totally different meaning from just 끝내다 in this context. 끝내 주는 is a adjective form of 끝내주다 verb.

      So you can use like.. 어제 끝내주는 영화를 봤어! (I watched an awesome movie yesterday!)

  • ngan

    oh I didn’t know that 끝내 주잖아 means awesome. nice!!!

  • Devon Furbush

    can you guys do a hip hop song sometime? not everyone likes K-Pop

    • It does say they’ll cover a lot more different genres as the series goes on. My guess is they’ll cover a few of the more popular groups first though, which makes sense to me.

      I’d really love to see some Tablo or Epik High; those guys write amazing lyrics! 😀

      Also, 감사합니다 선생님!! 이 레쓴 정말 재미있네요~^^ 저 많이 배웠습니다!

    • Neha씨 말이 맞아요~ ^-^* We will cover lots of different singers and bands later on!

  • 엘리

    감사합니다 선생님들!
    네, 끝내 주는 음악을 듣는 거 자주 해요!

    • 끝내 주는 음악을 자주 들어요! would be more natural 🙂

  • Nabila

    Have you purchased any끝내 주는 goods?

    Yes!! Just now I bought an Infinite DVD, Infinitize Showcase: The Mission! This lesson is really 끝내 줘요!! 너무 감사합니다!! 😀 *patienly waiting for an Infinite song*

  • Soonhee

    안녕하세요 ^^

    저는 이 레슨을 너무 좋아요!!
    레슨들 이렇게 자주 올리세요 ^^

  • Shad AZAD

    What is Korea tvs frequency please?

  • Courtney

    What does 끝내 주잖아 mean as opposed to 끝내주다? When I look it up in Naver, it just gives me 끝내주다. What does the 잖아 do?


  • KJK

    I have a question about Leessang’s song 광대

    이력서 쓰며 인생을 시험보고

    Is 보고 just a noun which means report or something else

    Wish your reply Thanks

    • It’s a noun form of ‘보다’ verb. 시험을 보다 means take an exam.

    • KJK

      보고 a noun form of ‘보다’ verb
      so verb + 고 = noun?
      But I failed to find this grammar in google
      or 고 is linking verbs here?

      Wish your reply Thanks

    • 보고 is not a noun form. Yeah, when the verb 보다 is conjugated with linking verb -고, it will be 보고.

      Regarding the linking verb, I hope you to check this lesson. http://www.talktomeinkorean.com/lessons/level-3-lesson-2/

      Thanks for your comment.

    • Oops! Sorry, I must have been thinking something else while I was typing the reply.

      보고 is 보(다) + 고, which is a linking letter as you also mentioned. Please fine this link.

      Sorry for confusing you! ^-^;

    • Why can’t I delete my first comment??? This is such a shame. T.T

    • KJK

      It’s OK.Actually I am so glad that you can answer my question.
      Which makes me really confused is that all the lyrics website I found
      show ‘시험보고’ rather than ‘시험 보고’,
      so the right form should be 이력서 쓰며 인생을 시험 보고 instead of 이력서 쓰며 인생을 시험보고?

      Wish your reply Thanks

  • kamila kim


    ive just found ur website, such a 끝는 주는 website!!

    Ive been studying in.korea for 5 months or so and still have a long way to go..
    Although my parents are korean ive never spoken in their native language..
    As strange as it may seem we comunicate in portuguese.. As we live im brazil..

    Im starting to love learning korean…


  • 이 섹션 진짜 끝내 줘요! =)

  • This is my favourite section XD Thanks for the lesson!

  • Rachel

    OMG!! Thank you sooo much! Can you do Super Junior, SHINee, and TVXQ? 제발?

  • kendra carter

    do an INFINITE song!!!!~

  • mehran

    u-kiss!!! u-kiss please


    저는 지난 주에 한-인도 녹색성장 협력 포럼을 참석했는데 거기에서 먹었던 한식을 참 끝내 줬어요.
    선생님들의 이런 도움이 없으면 한국어를 감당 못 해.

    선생님들 감사합니다.

  • aderonke ajibade

    same as me 2 coz am a nigerian buh am interested in korean language

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