Credits: KKBOX.com + (English translation) SS5014ever @ quainte501.com
Its been really tiring on fans for SS501's visit to Taiwan! From buying tickets to the fan meeting to queuing overnight for the charity photo-taking, it has attracted the attention of many media. But there were 5 lucky fans who, within 5 hours of SS501 stepping off the plane, got to take photos alone with the artistes first, and also the chance to give them a present (seems as if someone managed to shake their hands as well!) Here, we must specially thank the record company for their support, letting KKBOX members to enjoy this rare and exclusive present. Holding on to the conscience of a music platform (?), even though we were faced with an idol group, 99% of the questions in the interview were serious (solemn?), but luckily SS501 is indeed the strongest variety-program characters (note: it means something along the line of them being very funny, sorry for the failed translation XD), many interesting footage remain, here we also thank them for giving us such wonderful interview content.
Having debut 4 years ago, already a top boys group in Korea, originally having a group of dedicated fans in Taiwan, due to Korea's version of "Boys over Flower" airing in Taiwan, leader Kim Hyun Joong who acted as the role of Yoon Ji Hoo (Hanazawa Rui), brought them fame overseas, finally letting SS501's works to be sold in Taiwan. Along with this wave of SS501's strong attack on Taiwan, KKBOX snatched a rare chance to interview them, understanding the success stories of the 5 boys.
"Genius is 1% inspiration, 99% perspiration" - Edison
Using Edison's famous quote on SS501, it should be "Success is 1% inspiration, 99% perspiration!" The 5 members are all handsome boys over 180cm tall, they were promoted as a pretty boy group back when they debut in Korea, but if you think SS501 are just pretty boys, then you're absolutely wrong. In the stiff competition in Korea's entertainment industry, not only does SS501 have to posses top dancing and singing abilities, satisfying the requirements of being a singer, they've also separately took part in hosting radio, TV programs, movie dubbing, musical and drama appearances, continually maintaining an obvious presence in the media. Recently they've also often took part in the creation and production of music, gearing for a more all-rounded development. Apart from their success in Korea, after working hard in Japan for 2 years, SS501 who've accumulated a high popularity, has already announced their August concert schedule in Japan and Korea, and plan to start their Asia Tour, which includes Taiwan, from October, it can be foreseen that from 2009 on, SS501 will become a megastar that will engulf Asia. But, if there wasn't the 4 years of continuous dedication of time and effort that is beyond one's imagination that developed such sturdy abilities, they wouldn't have been able to enjoy the fame that "Boys over Flower" brought along.
"Only through hard work can you reach the top" - Kobe Bryant
Unlike the entertainment industry in Taiwan, Korean artistes generally need to go through hellish training as a trainee, and be picked among tens of thousands for debut. When asked about their experiences as trainees, Jung Min simply said, it was hard work as a trainee, having many music and dance trainings, but the most important is to train them to become popular artistes. When talking about the hardships, what everyone thought of was the fun experience of skipping lessons instead, leader Hyun Joong first admitted, back then he would be thrifty and take the bus, once he had saved up enough he would want to go for a sumptuous meal, so everyone would skip classes together and take a break. Jung Min continued saying, Yong Saeng and Kyu Jong came from other towns, when they came to Seoul and were looking for a place to stay, it was something that the 2 of them could do, and yet they pulled everyone in, skipping class together. SS501's casual answers, causes one to have no choice but be in awe of Koreans' ability to endure hardships.
"When there was doubt, I ate it up and spit it out. I faced it all and I stood tall, and did it my way" - Frank Sinatra "My Way"
Before SS501's debut, a TV program recorded their life, in these few years from waking up to sleeping, every aspect of their lives has been aired on TV, when asked about how they feel being followed by a camera for the whole day, Kyu Jong honestly answered, before they debut their management company had mentally prepared them for it, as an artiste there are gains and losses, currently they've also gotten many concern and attention from the fans, so its worth it. Jung Min added on, if he had to choose again, he'll still choose to reveal his personal life. Hearing such a determined answer, was a great shock to this reporter who listened to Western music while growing up, and continued asking what if they couldn't handle the pressure? The first to shout run away was Hyung Joon, the other older brothers (Hyung Joon is the youngest among the members) all laughingly replied in perfect unison, "Only Hyung Joon will run away, we will work even harder to overcome it." This form of interaction, putting each other down jokingly, among the members, is probably the answer to how SS501 relieves stress.
With great power, comes great responsibility - "Spiderman" movie
When asked about their happiest and hardest moments in their 4 years, the members all agreed that the happiest moment is every "first time". First time visiting Taiwan, first time winning an award, first time being recognized on the streets, interacting with the different fans as they step onto different countries for the first time. And the hardest moment is actually the stress and responsibility that comes after becoming successful, producing even better music, performing even more magnificent dance steps, displaying a SS501 that's even better. An answer like this, I think would let all of SS501's fans feel proud, with thoughts like that, its more worth looking forward to SS501 in the future.
Additional short segment 1: SS501 recommending their favorite Western songs
Kim Hyun Joong
Brian McKnight "Back at One"
"We are the World"
Heo Young Saeng
Nick Lachey "On and One"
Ciara "Love Sex Magic"
Park Jung Min
PINK "U+Ur Hand", "I'm not Dead"
Kim Hyung Joon
Chris Brown "Take You Down"
Usher "U Remind Me"
Kim Kyu Jong
Corinne Bailey Rae "Like A Star"
Kelly Clarkson "Gone"
Additional short segment 2: Direct report! SS501's Taiwan visit press conference
On the whole, if Korea's entertainment industry was described in baseball terms that Taiwanese are familiar with, it's a little similar to America's Major League Baseball, first achieving good results in Minor League Baseball, once you're called up, not only do you have to grab hold of the chance to display your skills, you'll also need to make full use of your skills continually, only then can you retain a spot in Major League Baseball. Contestants who've gone through such a cruel stage, regardless of what country they go to, will be able to shine. In this wave of Hallyu brought by SS501, apart from the media's multiple reports on the popularity of "star-chasing", having deeply experienced the story behind the force that brought about this strength, I can't help but admit, there are definitely many points worth learning from for Taiwan.