Current music genre research tends to focus heavily on classical and popular music from Western cultures. Few studies discuss the particular challenges and issues related to non-Western music. The objective of this study is to improve our understanding of how genres are used and perceived in different cultures. In particular, this study attempts to fill gaps in our understanding by examining K-pop music genres used in Korea and comparing them with genres used in North America. We provide background information on K-pop genres by analyzing 602 genre-related labels collected from eight major music distribution websites in Korea. In addition, we report upon a user study in which American and Korean users annotated genre information for 1894 K-pop songs in order to understand how their perceptions might differ or agree. The results show higher consistency among Korean users than American users demonstrated by the difference in Fleiss’ Kappa values and proportion of agreed genre labels. Asymmetric disagreements between Americans and Koreans on specific genres reveal some interesting differences in the perception of genres. Our findings provide some insights into challenges developers may face in creating global music services.