Beast‘s Junhyung is Showing off a charismatic vibe, he puts his charm to use and have fans falling for him even more than they already have. Below is his interview with Arena Homme.
Arena Homme (H): Do you remember your debut days?
Junhyung: I started trainee days at 17 and debut at 21… at first it was just the hope of being able to write with my story while listening to music.Rather than exaggerating that is writing music, it was just scribbling lyrics. I spread the wings of imagination. I exchanged with my friends, to read, the lyrics I have written. Looking at it now, it’s quite embarrassing to consider it rap lyrics… Lyrics and melody that don’t make sense coupled together… we played along like that. It all started like that, and somehow I got where I have gotten today. (Laughs)
H: In your own way, a long-aged/surviving idol.
JH: Having debut in 2009, we are in our sixth year. I don’t know what others think, but within ourselves, we think that at least we are still surviving, at least for now.
H: It’s a good timing now. We have gotten recognition as Beast, I have showcased a solo album, although this is not everything yet.
JH: The members say this all the time. From now on, it’s the start of Second Act. We do not think that we have taken the smooth/comfortable path the way here/up until now. So when the Second Act starts, shouldn’t it be slightly more beautiful; we look forward to that.
H: Isn’t there pressure from directing and producing the album as a producer?
JH: There is. The burden is huge.
H: When it comes to Beast activities, you are performer and producer. There are positive points from the perspective of a producer, and when you stand on stage and when you sing, there will be positive points too. To adjust to a suitable point of balance between these two should not be easy.
JH: That is for sure. The perspectives from each position is different. To be able to catch both rabbits** is really tough. To make music that is good for listening, and to think of the performance and stage for that music, and also consider the melody and sound, arrangement, depths etc. of the music from the point of view of production. It’s a tough job.
H: Have you found that point for yourself?
JH: I am working hard to do that, but when I really don’t know I grab everyone I see and let them listen to the music, and tell them to let me know their honest views. But if they tell me truthfully, I get hurt… (laughs) Personally, I like the simple style, and it will be good if my sense does not get impeded by other elements. When I start writing a song, I hope the thought or emotion subsists from start to the end.
H: Having produced both Beast’s album as well as your solo album, what was the difference in Yong Junhyung when producing both albums?
JH: Conceptually, Beast’s image is in full abundance. No matter what, you have to think of the stage and dance. But when I did the production for my own album, It was the production of the very minimum.
H: Simple and light?
JH: Personally, I really like the texture/substance of simplicity. When I write a song, I hope that the thoughts and emotions I had initially will last through till the end.
H: As a producer, rather than inflating the ego, is there no desire to experiment with music?
JH: Actually, I do have the intention to try new things. Interesting and fresh stuff. “Wow~ what exactly is this?” I want to make music like that. I have written stuff like that, but I only have it for myself. And I go, “Oh I can write something like that too.”. Actually, the songs that I write, in the sphere of music, no matter how much praise I get for the quality of sound, structure, arrangement etc, in the end, what matters most is that the fans and various people listening to the music and giving it lots of love. Music for the public needs to receive love from the public. Rather than the music that satisfies me, it is good if others will listen to it.
H: As you accomplish/amass your career, you developing flexibility.
JH: This is what changed a lot while doing music. It is not that I’ve made hip hop beats and thus have to work my rap in the direction of hiphop, but I sing when my vocals are suited to the track, and rap when it is suited for rapping. It is not to fulfil my desire as a musician, but in order to bring across the entire song, I need to find that particular something that I am able to do for the song. So, those songs that I was unable to do in the past, I can do them now.
H: While you do music and activities, what was your best moment?
JH: “The song is really great” – I feel really good when I hear that. It feels like the stress and remains of the emotions that I have had received during the production period just disappears all at once.
H: So you continue to work due to that taste (of satisfaction)?
JH: Yes. It really is because of that.
H: Compared to people of the same age, you weren’t able to experience living freely. It will be good to be able to feel, see and breakthrough many things, but having to promote, produce and write songs, it will be work to bring up the subject matter of music.
JH: That’s why while going on schedules, I keep writing in here. (He shows his iPhone memo list that was packed with notes from he feels daily). There are times when I even write down the name of signboards that I see when I’m riding in the car.
H: You live a life that is hacked/abrupt. Haha.
JH: I have to do that. The other members are doing something each on their own too. There are the friends who have plunged into acting, some in variety too. Not just our team, but colleagues who are singers or the seniors and juniors, they are all doing that. I, too, am sharpening my weapon to the best of my abilities in my own way. Because of the tomorrow that is better than today. For my declining/aged years. (laughs)
H: Oh, that’s scary. What to do that you’re already like that now.
JH: I am very realistic. Actually, if the Gymnastic Stadium is packed with fans, I feel great. But when it ends, I have this thought, “Are we able to do this again? There’s the possibility that we will not be able to right?” I always have such thoughts. Not knowing what will happen and when it will, I always think ahead of the worst case scenario. In a way when you look at it, it is to lessen the pain (when it happens) next time. Something like self-defense…
H: In that way, there is a possibility of not being able to enjoy and missing the brilliance of that moment.
JH: Oh… I think it’s true that I’m unable to enjoy. That’s why, when I go “Should I take a break today?”, I end up with “No! Got to head to the production room!”.
H: You’re a man who sacrifices much of today for tomorrow.
JH: Doing that, I go down to the basement production room. Although it sounds regrettable/pitiful, but the time when I think that “this is solely my place, my world” is when I am in the production room.
H: You could be driving yourself too harshly into a corner.
JH: However, you never know and it could be only this moment that I am able to drive myself into that corner. I can do this now, and since it is possible that’s why I do it. Sometimes, I drink. I like drinking alcohol.
H: Do you become a little freer?
JH: But… Even after I drink… (he points to his iPhone) I write too. When I meet my friends while drinking, the discussions that we have are things that I could not have imagined/thought about so I write in there. And when I drink alone, I write in there. I hasn’t been long since I’ve known the taste of drinking alone. (laughs) Actually, I’m a emotionally dark. It’s like above my head, there are always dark clouds. When I am with the members, of course we fool around and laugh. But when I am alone, that feeling/emotion comes back again. At first, I worked hard to try and push that feeling away. I purposely frequently met up with friends and laughed and had fun. After all, we are together and I don’t feel lonely, gaining strength and consolation. But having tried doing that, it became something I was reliant on. So (I decided) this is not okay, let’s just try to internalise/receive this all. Just try to take in all that loneliness, pain, sadness. Now, I just take myself as it is, and also I can enjoy my time alone.
H: Beast’s Yong Junhyung – until which point is he at now?
JH: I want to try many things, and there are many things I haven’t been able to show. I want to adventure and try out bold things. There is still a long way.