By: LazerKim From the time Kim Hyun Joong debuted as a solo singer as he released his album BreakDown, his name has always been on the top rank of the music chart. He was able to release four albums from June 2011 both from Korea and Japan. Hyun Joong kept racing to the top and usually it the Kpop idol groups he raced with. The latest was his Japanese album HEAT which was placed at no.1 at the Oricon. And the upcoming Unlimited Japanese full album to be released on December 12. In sales of music CD units there’s always a competition, in fact in any sales there’s always competition, which one is the best, which one is the most salable. That’s what business is all about.
Just the same in dramas there’s the TV ratings that shows what drama has the most number of viewers. All of these are competition and these artists has their rivals too, but only in the public eyes. The truth is most of these artists are also friends, well except for quite a few. But normally these artists also have the chance to perform in a joint stage just like what we watch on TV music count down that artist performs in a competition having the TV viewers as their judges. As Hyun Joong rising to his star status, it’s so natural he also has rivals within the music industry or even in the dramas. But how does Hyun Joong deals with the showbiz competition and how does he deals with his rivals?
I found a news write up published last year about Kim Hyun Joong and Park Yoo Chun as close friends and rival as both have close career similarities emphasizing on their history background. Both are singers and actors having portrayed in dramas that both of which were smash hit but in different period. Hyun Joong debut as an actor as he did BOF in 2009 when he was still with his group SS501. Yoo Chun debut as an actor as he did Sungkyukwan in 2010 when he was still with his group TVXQ. As actors both were awarded from their debut dramas.
Both had the same fate as they split up from their previous groups but on different situation. Hyun Joong decided to perform solo after his contract with DSP expired while Yoo Chun together with other two members of TVXQ formed another group which is JYJ. Actually Hyun Joong has a close friendship with the members of TVXQ, and Jae Joong is Hyun Joong’s best friend, who is also an actor. Actually even Hyun Joong was with his group, he was able to maintain his friendship with them and with other idol groups.
In the eyes of media and other fans, they may consider the different Kpop idol groups and solos as rivals, but in reality they are friends. They may compete with one another since they are at the same music industry but everyone is in friendly competition. Although I have read from some post that there may be misunderstanding among the girl groups which I’m not interested in their girl fights!! Artists who drag the media to such controversy just needed attention and air time!! Just my opinion!!
I just noticed, in most polls and music charts Hyun Joong as a Kpop soloist has always been racing with the idol groups specifically at Oricon! Although I take pride about it since idol groups do have big fan bases. Now it cannot be ignored anymore that Hyun Joong has been boosting his popularity. At this point Hyun Joong actually doesn’t have any competitor at his same category as Kpop soloist who can race with him at the music chart. So as it happens he has no choice but to race with the Kpop idol groups since they are always at the top rank of the chart and Hyun Joong proved he is competitive over them by being at the top rank too!!
DEEP SET FRIENDSHIP
I admire Hyun Joong on how he deals with his friends rivals, I would not say he’s not aware that he’s actually racing at the chart with the giant idol groups even unintentionally, but he maintained his friendship with them and remain as modest as he always is. Apparently Hyun Joong competes with himself by working hard to improve and this is his basic priority other than competing with his friends or other artists. He’s simply proving himself and his ability as a solo singer to be up there on top which everyone would aim for. In his documentary Hyun Joong was saying Jae Jong his best friend and him do help each other by exchanging opinions and suggestions in their perspective projects. And another thing, some idols even have the same music composer Steven Lee as Hyun Joong has and had taken Steven Lee’s composed music to the chart.
At present his competitor with same category are his members from SS501, but of course Hyun Joong will never take his brothers as competitors, he always give way to them or they have a clear give and take. Even Hyun Joong is trying to avoid having to release his album at the same time as his members does. That’s a fact, last year Hyun Joong was expected to release his first album in May but one of his members was scheduled to release. He gave way and so he postponed the release of Breakdown in June last year.
The same thing happened this December, Hyun Joong announced he will release his album in Japan on Christmas, after a few weeks there was an announcement that one of his members shall be releasing album I think last week of December. Now Hyun Joong moved his schedule on December 12, much earlier to give way to his member. It’s good to see the leader and the members being active in their individual endeavor, contributing good music in their own individual style to the industry.
CERTAINLY THE BEST
Among the old news clipping I have in my file, my attention was caught by one statement Hyun Joong said last year in front of the media, he was honest admitting as he stated, “I want to be judged as the best out of the 5 members as solo singer.” And with no doubt Hyun Joong as a leader proved himself to be the best among his members, I think the obvious is just right in front of our eyes. Records are enough proof of Hyun Joong’s ability as a solo singer, that he kept breaking records, marking history even in the Asia Global market particularly in Japan which is the leading market in the music industry of Asia.
As he also stated, “Working with a group I have to follow what I am told to do.” He’s right, even he’s the leader of the group, there’s a musical director who makes the call and decide for the group pertaining the group’s repertoire. Unlike the group JYJ, the three members were given the liberty to contribute to the group since the three of them has the ability to compose songs suitable for them, so they have more chances to develop individual ability. With Hyun Joong he’s on his own, he has a musical director just to guide him but with the choice of repertoire Hyun Joong makes the decision what he wants to work on, then his musical director guides him.
So far from the time Hyun Joong released his first album Breakdown, he’s been doing excellently. I would just like to say again, Hyun Joong’s surprising us with his upcoming image as rocker I think is the best decision he made to turn the tide 180 degrees change, because this is a total transition not only in his image but the music genre. And yes, lately I have been watching his member’s new releases and they’re doing good, except the music style is almost the same, and so with the production set up having back up dancers.
This time Hyun Joong made the difference, that instead of dancers to back him up he chose to have a live band to back him up. Indeed Hyun Joong is on high advantage, because he has so many talents that he’s quite flexible no matter how you bend him he can do just about anything in terms of music, and a different production set up. He always think of making the difference, oh I can’t wait for December, he’ll be rocking Japan again, and this time it’s ROCK for real!!
I also have read from one of my news clippings last year in one of Hyun Joong’s media interviews, this question being asked to Hyun Joong, “Why the rush?” Hyun Joong responded as:
“There’s a limit as to how far you can go as a dance singer. When I’m older, I’m sure I’ll be pursuing different genres, so when I have some time to myself, I want to sit down and try music that I’ve always wanted to pursue since I was younger.”
“I actually love band music and play the bass myself. Still, I want to learn more instruments and create something all my own. At the beginning of SS501′s debut, I liked the thought of being a celebrity, but I think that’s inevitable as a young teen. Either way, I think it’s important to not be content with where you are now and to always work towards improving yourself.”
On the topic of dating, he said, “All of the girls I meet are strictly for business purposes so I don’t have anyone I’m dating. If I do have one, I guess pictures would be taken of us.”
Hyun Joong had already set his lay out plan for his future career, he’s just being truthful to himself and it is true there’s an expiration date on being a dancer!! Hyun Joong will not waste his time as he value every minute the clock moves. He’s fully aware of his obligation as he reach his 30 years old, all of us may think Hyun Joong is still young he can do so much but for him it’s just a matter of time of pursuing everything he wants to accomplish as an artist. He wants to stay focus on his career because he has a dream and he look up to those dreams that’s been nagging him since the start of his career.
As Hyun Joong said, “do not be contented to where you are now, work towards improving yourself.” Learning is a continues process, as we get a year older, we start thinking what we have accomplished within the year of adding to our age. Learning and experiencing from what we learn is vital. It goes hand in hand, as Hyun Joong learns he has to experience in actual what he had learned, and from there he gets the chance to improve. And had showed an excellent results.
There has to be chances or opportunities, as Hyun Joong waste no time, whenever he gets the opportunity to be on stage, he grabs it as he perform for his fans. As he was saying “I’m more than happy than tired.” This is what he always say after every show he performs. Hyun Joong is blessed with those opportunities, because this is his only chance to get to improve himself. The more he does concerts and release albums the better chance of developing and innovating his craft that he can contribute to the global music industry. Hyun Joong also competes with time, it’s gold, no time has to be wasted with all the plans Hyun Joong set for himself. That is why he never stop ever since he was given the freedom to do music, Hyun Joong simply let go off the stock knowledge he had been keeping all these years.
Indirectly it’s his fans who give him opportunities from a chain reaction that would lead to Hyun Joong. The businessmen, the producers, they are the ones who provided the needs of the general public, to whom they earned from, of course that’s business. The producers give opportunity to artist depending on public demand. Just like what I have mentioned in my other articles the producers and businessmen are the middlemen, the bridge that connects Hyun Joong and his fans. The greater his fans grow the more chances of seeing him in action.
The greater demands he receives, the more challenging it is for him to work on more music. The more it is likely to re-invent his concerts further, Hyun Joong knows what the competition is out there and he knows how his rivals work on their projects. At this point of his career Hyun Joong tends to either innovate or go against the style of Kpop for a change and set something new every time he gets that chance to put him on stage.
Hyun Joong mentioned about dating and made it clear that the girls he meets are strictly for business purposes only. The guy has a dream, all of what I have mentioned may be in his shoulders and he’s quite happy to accomplish although there are still things he has to work on and these are all for his career advancement and foundation. For him everything has its own time.
It feels good to write how Hyun Joong works, it’s so inspiring just by the thought of it and I’m very proud of him being my one and only idol. I wrote an article Artist by Heart, there’s that saying a true artist sets monetary matters aside, applause from the audience is more than enough to pay off the artist’s effort from the studios. Hyun Joong is an artist by heart, seeing his fans big smiles, hearing them chanting his name during his concerts, seeing the sea of green can easily push his adrenaline instantly! In his interview in Singapore he was asked how his fans are for him and he said,
“I’m always very thankful to my fans, that without them I won’t be standing here, they have been inspiring me from the beginning and they are my inspiration for the future.”
Monetary matters does not really matter that much for him, if you remember in February at Yokohama Arena, he gave his profit share to the orphanage. Experience is priceless, and Hyun Joong gets to innovate through his experience. Like the old folks say, practice makes anything perfect, and this is still applicable to anyone who has definite aspirations. Hyun Joong is blessed with good people around him to work with, he is blessed with good opportunities to bring out the best in him. And most of all Hyun Joong is blessed with a lot people who loves him and that is his fans.
His Star Rivals are just around him and it doesn’t bother him at all. For Kim Hyun Joong the love for music is the most important to him and singing is to his loving fans.
LazerKim here writing
Photo credits as tagged, Ms.D thanks! Email (firstname.lastname@example.org)