Since their debut showcase, the members of EXO have been surging in popularity and have already made quite a few remarkable memories. The boys of EXO-K took time out of their busy schedules to sit with SBS News to touch base on what they’ve been doing over the past month, as well as share more insight into each of the members.
When asked about their busy schedule, Baekhyun replied, “We don’t consider it hard. It’s something that we’ve all been dreaming about since we were little so it’s fun. It’s what we were truly desperate to do, and we’ve always enjoyed it even before our debut. We’re all so close as well so being together helps make it easier to have fun.”
Outside of their busy schedule, what do they do in their free time? Kai answered, “We’ve been dorming together for over a year now. It truly feels like home so we don’t call it a ‘dorm’ but ‘our house’. I spend a lot of time with the other members.”
Chanyeol added, “We went to see the movies after our debut. Actually, we have a lot of fun in our house, too. Since we live together, it’s easier to have conversations and play games. You seriously have no idea how fun that can be. We also play traditional games at home, and sometimes play soccer outside. Everyone’s eyes change when the game begins (laughter). They all love sports but Kai is a fanatic so it’s easy to win when you’re on his team. I think Kai’s just lucky.”
It’s well known to everyone that debuting, let alone being chosen as a trainee, under SM Entertainment is a difficult process. It takes up to seven years of preparation just for your debut, and it’s only after you’ve endured the strenuous training process and harsh competition that you can make it out.
As such, there’s a reason why every new rookie the company debuts is put under such spotlight, which goes the same for their latest, EXO. MK News sat down with the six members of EXO-K to hear firsthand what it was like to survive the competition admist their fellow trainees and finally get a taste of the spotlight.
Leader Suho was able to make his debut after training seven years as a trainee. He’s even had to see his juniors debut before him. He expressed, “I wanted to give up often, but I still worked hard. I think more than anything, keeping my mindset positive helped the most. For seven years, I believed that I could achieve what I worked for, which has led me to where I’m standing today. I was also aided by seniors who’ve debuted before me.”
Chanyeol was cast in his freshman year of high school and trained for four years before his debut. While training, he focused his efforts on making his talents shine. “I knew that I would debut under a team so I tried to show what I was best at. Because I played the drums when I was younger, I felt that I was more rhythmic than my peers. Rapping is also one of my talents, and I was highly confident in my abilities, which I showed. As long as I was better at something than someone, I knew that I could grab that part.”
4 years after SHINee made a big wave into the music industry, SM Entertainment brought out another talented boy group, EXO-K, whose members began their road to stardom from an early age.
The members of EXO-K recently sat down with Mydaily for an interview where they bared their past history and upcoming goals in an effort to get closer to fans.
For those not yet familiar with the group, EXO-K is comprised of members Suho (21), Baekhyun (20), Chanyeol (20), D.O. (19), Kai (18), and Sehun (18).
Leader Suho kicked off the interview by introducing the meaning behind EXO, “EXO is derived from EXO Planet, and I feel that it’s a name that matches us well. We want to show the entire world what EXO’s all about. It’s only been about three weeks since we came to Earth, but I think we’ve been adjusting very well (laughter).”
Prior to their debut, EXO released promotional teaser videos for about 100 days before marking their debut with a showcase at the end of May. After seeing what the boys were finally all about on stage, the reaction from new fans was ecstatic. The members revealed that they still hold those feelings to heart.
I will only act in romance drama after I know more about love.For now, I’m still lacking in experience.
TOP made a comeback with a shocking mint green hairstyle. What’s your thought for the ‘ALIVE’ album?
“When I wrote the rap lyrics, I was trying my best to do it with honesty and choosing beautiful words. For the Japanese version, I also use gentle words to make sure all listeners regardless of their ages can understand well. For me, this album is the most high quality compared to the other albums. This mint color hair style was decided upon an instinct while producing the album. I confident this hairstyle will match the album concept very well. Changing to this hairstyle, I felt that my characteristic has become more gentle. ”
F.CUZ recently met with reporters after completing their first comeback stage and talked about how they’re feeling having finally returned after a year and five month long hiatus.
F.CUZ’s Kan confesses that he once contemplated suicide believing himself to be the cause of Lee U’s departure
Last year, F.CUZ‘s former member Lee U announced his departure from the group to launch a solo career.
Fellow member Kan finally spoke up on his feelings about the departure in a recent interview with Star News and shared his thoughts on the changes.
The group debuted back in 2010 as a four member group and headlined often because Lee U was the son of legendary singer Sul Woon Do. Lee U left about a year later, however, due to the differences in musical styles, and the group spent a year as a trio before adding Raehyun and Daegun to the group.
Unfortunately in January of last year, Kan suffered a major car accident during his way home from the filming of SBS‘s ‘Athena‘ where he injured his shoulder, nose, and forehead. F.CUZ had to hastily conclude their follow-up promotions.
When BtoB first emerged at their debut showcase on March 21st, it wasn’t just their impressive dance skills or vocal talent that floored the reporters gathered at the scene, but the honesty in which they talked about their dreams.
Leader and main vocalist Eunkwang stated, “I never thought that I’d be dancing. I started music because I loved singing, and I thought for sure that I’d be singing for the rest of my life. To come to where I’m standing today, I had to dance. I hated it at first since it was so hard, but now that I’ve debuted as an idol dance singer, I’m able to enjoy it more. I’m happy with the end result.”
Unlike idols who give the same recycled answer saying that they’ve wanted to become a singer since they were young, the boys were honest and straightforward. In fact, the members of BtoB weren’t chosen to become idols at first. Eunkwang, Hyunsik, and Changsub first joined as trainees for a band project under Cube Entertainment.
An official stated, “We chose the members of BtoB according to their vocal talent, not their visuals.”
Excerpt from rookie group NU’EST’s interview with WStar News:
Q: Excluding your sunbaes of the same agency, who is your favorite singer?
JR: The members all like TVXQ and Big Bang. As for individually, I like Eminem. At first, no one appreciated him, but he put in a lot of effort and later, he achieved recognition from white people, black people, everyone and became the best singer. I also want to try to become the best musician recognized by everyone.
Ren: I like Michael Jackson and Beyonce. I long to take after their perfection.
“We can’t believe it’s already been a year… We didn’t even have a chance to go see our families after our debut.” – B1A4
Rookie idol group B1A4 (Jinyoung, Baro, Sandeul, Shinwoo, Gongchan) didn’t realize how fast the time was passing them by. They’ve been extremely busy the past year, but despite the hectic schedule they’re all happy. They fulfilled their dream of becoming an artist last April, and since then have released two mini-albums in ‘Let’s Fly‘ as well as ‘It B1A4‘. The boys were even awarded the ‘Best Rookie Award‘ at the year-end music awards.
In an industry where new rookie idols are emerging each day, the B1A4 members have impressed the public by remaining remarkably active. They’ve appealed to their fans with a ‘boy next door’ image and garnered much popularity with their trendy music, enjoying a very fulfilling year.
Their goal for this year is to receive the ‘Bonsang‘ award at the year-end award ceremony, which seems attainable for the group who have recently made a comeback with a new more grown-up look. Their first full-length album ‘IGNITION‘ is a way for them to show their fans that they have developed as musicians.
Starting from “love at first sight” then becoming lovers…
Q: The album includes songs in various types/genres. Please describe them.
V.I: FANTASTIC BABY is the most energetic song in the album. You won’t only see it in our outfits. We filmed the music video with a fantastic feeling too.
BIGBANG 『Pressured!? Opening up about their mindset and thoughts on their new album!』
A turning point album for BIGBANG
Q: Before this interview, you were on the Telephone Shocking corner of ‘Waratte Iitomo’ (Fuji TV). Weren’t you nervous?
V.I: We’ve been on the show ‘Waratte Iitomo!’ before, so we were not that nervous.
Q: Unfortunately, you guys didn’t get the phone strap.
V.I: Yeah. Since we are gyudon (beef bowl) maniacs, we expected the audience to love gyudon too. A little bit disappointing.
While rock band CNBLUE is back and running with their third EP Ear Fun, the band recently shared their newly found passion for music and the difficulties they faced while making their latest project come into fruition.
“We went back to our old motto of just having fun,” says leader Jung Yonghwa on their comeback stage, “I think that was one of the many reasons as to why we were able to comfortably stand on stage”
“We decided to stop our obsession with chart positions and such,” continued Yonghwa, “Right now, being out there and playing music is our focus.”
“To be honest, we each had our own personal struggles to deal with while we were making this album,” says drummer Kang Minhyuk, “But our music helped us forget all of that and got us where we are now”
MBC‘s ‘The Moon that Embraces the Sun‘ and KBS 2TV‘s ‘Dream High‘ actor Kim Soo Hyun commented on actresses Han Ga In and miss A‘s Suzy, who are now playing one role in the movie ‘Introduction to Architecture‘.
When asked to reveal how he felt after seeing the film, Kim Soo Hyun replied, “This is a movie about the memories and pains of a first love, but I thought it was a movie that could ‘recharge emotion’. Just like this, I feel like I have recharged my emotion, thanks to (Han) Ga In noona and Suzy.”
Kim Soo Hyun was then asked how he felt about Han Ga In and Suzy in ‘Introduction to Architecture’.
“Switching from a historical role to a modern role, I felt like Ga In noona looked luxurious. She looks classy. In the historical drama, she only wore shabby clothes. She must’ve been pained (laughter). The tone of her acting was different and I enjoyed watching her very much. Because of her, I was able to immerse myself into the movie.”
Fresh Cube Entertainment idol group BtoB (Born To Beat) expressed how they felt after their debut performance of “Insane” on ‘M!Countdown‘.
SM Entertainment’s fresh faces, EXO-K, recently graced the cover of ‘High Cut’, a fashion publication that has some of K-Pop’s most iconic stars under its belt. Amidst the magazine’s glossy pages featuring the six up-and coming-idols, the EXO-K boys sat down for a brief interview, spilling their pre-debut stories, dorm room antics and future goals. While the boys seemed timid and shy by the unfamiliar atmosphere of an interview, High Cut’s first encounter with these young idols proved to be a down-to-earth and a heartwarming one.
– Because EXO is SM Entertainment’s newest project since 2009, there is obviously a lot of expectations for the group. Any last words before the big debut? –
Suho: All 12 of us have been working diligently to deliver the best music and performances, not just in Asia, but for the whole world. We will try our best to continue our strong work ethics for EXO-K and EXO-M to become an established group.
– What are some of your most memorable moments as a trainee? –
After wrapping up their successful debut promotions, B.A.P. sat down for a brief interview thanking their fans and sharing their thoughts on their two months of promotions.
They began, “After our debut, we promoted for about a month and a half, so we’re a bit disappointed that we couldn’t promote for longer. We all just want to hurry and comeback with a new album soon. Next time, we’ll greet you all with an image different from our current one.”
When asked about their popularity, Himchan replied, “I think the public really enjoyed B.A.P.’s concept. Since our performance is on the stronger end, they thought we worked just as hard as well, which we’re really grateful for.”
Leader Bang Yong Guk concluded, “No matter what the results were, since this album was our debut, everything was worthy and meaningful. Please look forward to B.A.P.’s stronger return.”
It’s the idol generation. There are so many idols currently on the scene and many more planning to dive in. Amongst them, there are five boys who stand out. They are the New Established Style Tempo or NU’EST.
A representative from TVDaily met the five members of NU’EST whose smiles made the chilly day immediately warmer. The leader, JR, Minhyun, Baekho, Len, and Aaron‘s eyes were bright and filled with passion.
NU’EST is getting noticed for their talented musical skills and stunning visuals even before their official debut. Their first song, “Face” relays a message of being the spokesperson for the teens.
“In “Face” we incorporated dubstep which is very popular in Europe these days. It’s a combination of our message and trendy music. Although it’s our debut song, we’ve put in a lot of our own opinions into this single. It’s especially meaningful because Aaron and JR wrote the lyrics to the album’s intro song. It will be different from other songs.”
Some idol groups are having problems because of extreme and crazy fans but Teen Top states that they don’t have such problems. In an interview with Sports Dong A, Teen Top stated, “We believe that we don’t have extreme fans. We don’t have fans that chase us when we are in cabs. I think our fans know that it makes us uncomfortable and they protect our privacy.”
Senior representative from Brand New Stardom interviewed about Block B’s controversy + VIDEO [Block B Apologies]
By now, anyone who’s a fan of K-pop is aware of 7-member idol group Block B. One of the boys’ interviews which took place in Thailand January 30th has stirred major controversy, and the boys have been receiving slanderous remarks from the public and the media alike.
The most sarcastic of remarks said, “They sure did their noise marketing properly,” deeply upsetting the members and their agency. When Star In caught up with Block B backstage at Mnet‘s ‘M! Countdown‘, all the members wore long faces. When approached for an interview, their manager denied the request. Instead, Star In met with a high ranking representative from their agency to ask a few questions.
– Did you neglect to act upon the situation, knowing what happened?
▲ Not at all. I didn’t know at first because I didn’t travel with them to Thailand for the interview, but I was shocked upon seeing the fans’ criticisms. We were going to release an official apology on the 20th, but the controversy had already caught fire by the 19th. The attacks coming at us were so uncontrollable we didn’t know how to control the situation at hand. We got one step behind, and after that, everything got really difficult.
– Are you saying that this is unfair?
▲ No. We deserve to be criticized, 100%. I am responsible as well. The apology statement was typed online after the members personally wrote it by hand. The Block B members were heavily disciplined and they learned a hard lesson. But to see the netizens’ comments be turned into news articles without proof or confirmation was really hurtful.
“At some point in time, the word of KPOP increased dramatically in our office branches around the world. We confirmed KPOP’s potential for growth, and during that time, we took note of Big Bang‘s talents. Big Bang has the greatest talents in order to be fit to be a global artist.”
Global entertainment and concert production company Live Nation‘s Mats Brandt, President of Live Nation Far East, expressed big anticipation for their upcoming world tour with Big Bang. Recently visiting Korea for business, he discussed Big Bang as he met with OSEN at Seoul Shindorim Sheraton Hotel, emphasizing that they will apply the same process in planning Big Bang’s world tour as they did with that of Lady Gaga.
Starting in March, Live Nation will carry out Big Bang’s 16 country world tour “BIGBANG ALIVE TOUR 2012” in cooperation with YG. It is the first time that the global entertainment company will directly manage a world tour.
Q: How did you end up gaining interest in KPOP?
At the headquarters, we first heard of it from 4 years ago when we visited Korea for market research. From that, we saw the potential of Korean artists. For the next 3 years, we were concerned about it, but starting last year it progressed very quickly. At Live Nation, information is shared through our [global] branches, and news of KPOP increased dramatically. I began visiting Korea a year ago, and after that I’ve been visiting once a month.
Interviewer: What is BIGBANG to you?
Taeyang: I got the same question before. My answer will always be the same. Big Bang is a tree and I’m just a branch. When we are together as five, we make a big tree which has many leaves and fruits.
Interviewer: You guys had a hard time last year.
Taeyang: Last year was a new beginning to us. I heard that many groups have their hard times after 5 years, last year was ours. For us, it was not because of an argument but something from the outside. On the other hand, I’m thankful. It gave us a chance of making us live longer and stronger.
Interviewer: What makes Big Bang one?
Taeyang: Music. Our characters are so different. It gives the team a fatal blow because each has a very strong personality. However, we all like music, performing on the stage, dancing and singing together. We don’t argue whatever comes to us. We are always doing music happily and that makes us one.
Interviewer: You guys are the focus of attention but attention can be changed to indifference.
Taeyang: It is true that people’s interest and love make us work harder but even if the circumstances change, we want to do music together. I really love being on the stage. I want to tell you to just watch us grow up, especially this year. Love our music once again. I don’t mean that buy our albums but rather watch our development, our growth.
T.O.P, “If the image of a ‘star’ becomes a hindrance to my acting, then I will throw that image away any time”
Big Bang T.O.P, “If the image of a ‘star’ becomes a hindrance to my acting, then I will throw that image away any time.”
Big Bang’s TOP recently showed an interest and attachment to the subject of “acting”.
Being able to freely manage the life of a musician and actor, TOP decked out the front cover of a special edition March issue of Cosmo Men Magazine. As TOP showed off the image of a very playful gentleman in his New York style suits, he also gave off the vibe of a very masculine charisma that not many other idol members can pull off.
During an interview(with Cosmo Men), TOP said that he would throw away the image of a “star” any day if it was to get in the way of him becoming an actor, hence stating that he would never want to take on the roles of a popular singer, a bad boy, or a wealthy family’s son since those are the only characters that tend to garner the most popularity. He stated that he wants to take on a role that suits him well, not just a role where he can gain popularity from it.
When the interviewer confessed that he would do well in any role, he stated, “I had times when I thought that being a celebrity didn’t fit me at all,” but confessed that, “Even though I was not born to be a celebrity, I have studied about it a lot and have many things learned. I am still continuing to learn to become the best.”
The “Seungri Talk Interview” was released on February 20.