TVXQ; Changmin and Yunho, presented themselves in the press conference at Saujana Hotel Kuala Lumpur as part of their ‘TVXQ! Live World Tour Catch Me’ at the late afternoon on 18 May.
The K-pop stars arrived on the soil of Malaysia at night on 17 May. In the next morning, the boys headed for the rehearsal prior before attending the press conference at Saujana Hotel in the afternoon. Dressed in black and white dashing suits, the duo made their way to the stage and greeted the media warmly in Korean, as well as in Malay, “Apa khabar? (which means how are you?) We are TVXQ”. Whenever the boys spoke in Malay which is the national language of Malaysia, they received encouraging applause. With that, the boys sat down and began the Q & A session.
How do you feel returning to Malaysia after 6 years?
Yunho: It’s been a long time since we have been to Malaysia. As always and as usual, everyone is welcoming us very heartily. Thank you everyone who welcomed us heartily and sorry to keep you all waiting for a long time.
When you came to Malaysia last time, there must be some good memories. This time round, what do you plan to do in Malaysia?
Changmin: Actually we came here last night and after the show we will straight go back to Korea. We have no time to tour around and I am sad for that. I hope to look around and hope to have more memories here next time.
Yunho: Usually during the tour concerts, we stay at hotel but this time we stay at a resort. This is a really good place, and I hope to come back here for the next visit.
Do you like the sun and the hot weather?
Yunho: It is very hot. I like the sun.
About the concert tonight, what can the fans expect?
Yunho: This world tour in Malaysia, the concert venue, the stage and the distance are very near, I hope to get more eye contact with the fans and it will be fun thing during the show.
Changmin: It has been 6 years that we never visited Malaysia and it is a long time, everyone is waiting for us and we are waiting for that too.
It is a world tour and every countries you have visited have different cultures. Do you have something special for the Malaysian fans?
Changmin: We will be doing the same as usual and we will showcase our personal talents, and it will be fun.
Do you want to know how to say I love you in Malay? It is aku cinta pada mu.
Yunho: Aku Cinta Pada mu~~
A lot of people want to know your personal life, what do you do when you have free time?
Yunho: I don’t have a lot of free time but if I have the time, I would play football. Especially with the summer coming, I would like to try scuba diving.
Your fashion style always attract attention and you follow the latest fashion trend. What would you prefer to wear on a normal day?
Yunho: I don’t think I am leading the airport fashion but thanks to everyone for looking at me. I am most interested in sandals. If I have a chance, I hope to show everyone my sandals.
After the final question, the press conference ended lasting about 20 minutes, which was followed by a brief photo taking session for the media. Next, they headed to the venue for the grand concert with eager fans already streaming in. On that day, everyone knows well that it will be the biggest stage ever TVXQ will present to their Malaysia Cassiopeia who have already been waiting for years. It was a dream come true.
Special thanks to JPM Music for the media invite
Event covered by Seckvoon@ hellokpop.com
Kuala Lumpur shall soon welcome the return of K-Pop royalty, TVXQ. With the performance round the corner, Malaysia Cassiopeia are brimming with excitement.
TVXQ’s production crew has already flown in from Korea and joined the concert organiser, JPM Music, for the process of building the stage, which will be unlike any other stage used in TVXQ’s Asian tour.
More than RM1.5 million has been invested in the development of this stage, which is specially designed for Malaysian fans to enjoy an intimate concert experience. The layout of the stage and audience seating will allow fans to experience an up close and personal meeting with Changmin and Yunho as they will rock the stadium with their electrifying dance moves and soulful sounds.
This performance will mark TVXQ’s third appearance in Malaysia since the band was formed in 2003, and it is also their first time performing in Malaysia after an absence of six years. Their break from the limelight has not left the group’s following to diminish but in fact, their fan base in Malaysia has continued to grow over the years.
Fans attending the concert which will be held at Stadium Malawati, Shah Alam on 18th May 2013, are advised to take note that the concert time has been changed to 6pm. For those who are still keen but have yet to make arrangements, limited tickets are still available, which can be purchased through ticketcharge.com.my and all official outlets of Rock corner.
Read our recent interview with the event director of TVXQ! Live World Tour ‘Catch Me’ in Kuala Lumpur here:
News + Photos: Direct Correspondence
TVXQ is ready to heat up the summer in Japan with their upcoming single OCEAN.
The cover jackets for the single has been released through Tohoshinki Japanese official website. It will be released in three versions; CD version, CD + DVD version, and Big East Version.
Despite of the single not been released yet, it has already been chosen as the theme song for four different TV shows in Japan. They are PON!, Music Dragon, Go! Game Panther, and Futtonda.
Ocean will be released on June 12 and the pre-order is now open on mu-mo.net and currently reaching number three on mumo’s pre order ranking.
You can also hear the song previews of OCEAN and Wedding Dress through its official website.
Check out for more cover jackets below:
K-pop is an extremely competitive genre, a small country with a population of merely 50 million people produces new artists literally almost every day. The industry is like a ruthless stepmother: once you make a serious mistake, it might cost you your career and more. Career ups and downs are normal in an artist’s life but in K-pop, once you reached the lowest part, it is very difficult to climb up the mountain again. Ultimate K-pop Survival Guide will be a short series on artists who have managed to turn their failing career from point zero back again or who had gone through a lot of hardships and still managed to remain successful. Not only rookie artists but we, the audience, can also learn a lot from them.
Avoid them as if they were lepers
The first installment of the series is dedicated to perhaps the biggest survivors of the dark side of K-pop: JYJ. Everyone knows what they have been through, but it doesn’t hurt to summarize and focus on how they actually managed to cope with the situation.
For the uninitiated: once there had been an idol band we can possibly call one of the greatest successes of K-pop ever: Dong Bang Shin Ki, or by their English abbreviation, TVXQ. The five-member boyband, consisting of Jaejoong, Yunho, Yoochun, Junsu and Changmin, was among the first successful wave of K-pop to set foot in Japan, and with blood and tears, they worked their way up the ladder, from performing to a mere handful of fans to filling the 50,000 seat Tokyo Dome in rows. Their fandom, Cassiopeia, was certified by the Guinness Book of Records for being the largest official fan club in the world. They reached unimaginable heights in Asia, thus their break-up was probably one of the biggest shocking events ever to shake the world of K-pop. Not because boybands are supposed to last forever, but because they were at the height of their careers and were known to be close to each other. When the news broke out that Jaejoong, Yoochun and Junsu started a lawsuit against their agency, S.M. Entertainment, to nullify their 13-year contract. At first, everyone hoped there could be a settlement, but in October 2009 the Seoul court ruled in favor of JYJ, and as a result, the Fair Trade Commission started advocating the use of ‘model contracts’ to prevent agencies from having artists sign excessive deals.
Though the social impact of their lawsuit was huge, industry players were forced to rethink the ways they were treating their artists, and JYJ emerged as a moral winner, the real hardships were to begin just then. S.M. Entertainment appealed against the court decision and a three year desperate battle took off. Not long after JYJ announced the establishment of their new band, their initial supporter in Japan, Avex, suddenly had a change of heart, claiming sole rights to manage the band in Japan, dismissing claims that JYJ’s new management company, C-JeS Entertainment, had any rights to organize events for the band on Japanese grounds. They too, ended up in a long lawsuit, during which JYJ was denied any kind of rights to perform in Japan. At the same time, all doors in Korea closed as well. The industry suddenly started treating the three young men as if they had leprosy. In silent agreement, major broadcasting stations denied them appearances as musicians. Some were claiming that they did not wish to get entangled in court related issues.
At the time, we had no one to speak for us, and we could do nothing but silently stand our ground - Kim Jaejoong
C-JeS Entertainment thus had to build a different strategy to promote JYJ. With no possibilities to appear on televised music shows and variety programs, the usual promotion cycle was out of question. The possibility of failure also lingered in the air, with the artists preparing themselves for the worst; that they might not be able to stand on stage again.
The rules of survival for JYJ were as follows:
1. Keep silent. Despite the constant rumors, the extensive media coverage, part of the torn fandom accusing them of betrayal, former label mates openly criticising them for their decision, JYJ kept silent. As they expressed in their 1000 day anniversary magazine, they decided to work silently and not be shaken by accusations and rumors.
2. If you cannot enter through the door, climb through the window. As they were denied the chance to promote through television, JYJ had to look for other ways of reaching their audience. They started separate activities, Yoochun and Jaejoong became involved in television dramas and movies, gaining wide followings as actors. Junsu began to appear in musicals and in a mere three years’ time, he went from being looked at as a ‘box office bringing tool’ to a highly praised and critically acclaimed musical actor on his own right. When the nation’s main broadcasters were not willing to talk to them as musicians, ironically, they became the sweethearts of the government, appointed as goodwill ambassadors and promoters of national and international scale events like the 2014 Asian Games, and were among the few selected artists invited to perform at President Park Geun-hye’s inauguration. The latter marked their first televised performance in three years in their home country. When local record labels were unwilling to assist, they went to the US and started working with American producers, despite their lack of English skills.
3. No regrets, no complaints. In their 1000 day anniversary magazine, the band members expressed that despite all the hardships, they did not regret their decision, not once. Having faith in your decisions is important for obtaining and maintaining the strength necessary to survive. They have also never complained of unfair treatment or the lack of opportunities because of the silent ban in Korea and Japan. They just did what they had to do: work hard and smile. I believe that having a positive attitude and being able to smile at their fans was an important factor in their success. Instead of giving in to striking waves of depression and self-pity, they rose above hard times by sticking together and supporting each other.
4. Don’t lose your trust. When unfortunate events happen, one can easily feel they are no longer able to trust other people. JYJ, too, had gone through this period. When Baek Chang-ju offered his help in 2009, they did not trust him, it took them months to open up and accept his helping hand. C-JeS Entertainment was established exclusively to steer JYJ’s boat through troubled waters and it went from a one person venture to a serious agency that employs over 40 people with sales amounting to 33 billion won (roughly 30 million USD) in only two years’ time.
JYJ’s legal fights have just recently ended, but their battle is far from being over yet. Broadcasting stations are still treading carefully. Despite all the unfortunate events that had befallen them (appearances denied, concerts cancelled last minute, accusations, rumors, some of their own fans turning their backs on the band), JYJ never once gave up.
Their album, In Heaven, sold over 350,000 copies, Junsu’s Tarantallegra was one of the most successful solo albums of 2012 despite lacking in promotion, both JYJ’s and Junsu’s solo world tours were completely sold out. Their Tokyo Dome comeback concert in April 2013 had successfully wrapped up and attracted 210,000 people altogether.
Besides part of the Cassiopeia fandom still supporting them as much as they also support the duo TVXQ, JYJ gained a firm and enthusiastic new fan base as well, through their numerous group and individual activities. Jaejoong’s limited edition mini album became a huge success, Yoochun is virtually the most successful idol actor on the market and Junsu cemented his name as one of the best singers ever born in Korea. They are wealthier than most artists under their former agency, including their former band members Yunho and Changmin.
Were they lucky? I would not think so. Many of us would have given up such a grueling and frankly, seemingly hopeless battle against giant obstacles. What we can learn from JYJ is that you need to keep your faith, grind your teeth, work hard and believe in your own abilities. Only then will you be able to turn all unfortunate events into glistening success.
Note: The views and opinions expressed in this article are solely of the writer and not of hellokpop as a whole.
Banner created by Sovany Nguon
Photo source: AfterJae
Exclusive: Event director of JPM Music, Alicia Lo, talks about the coming TVXQ concert in Malaysia, the company and its future plans, fans’ interview and reactions, and coverage of the road show held in anticipation to the concert.
Event organizer JPM Music and joint presenter Magnum turn on the Cassiopeia’s heat to an all-high when they held the first road show at Tropical City Mall on 28 April for the coming TVXQ concert later this month. TVXQ! Live World Tour ‘Catch Me’ Concert in Kuala Lumpur is confirmed to be held on 18 May, 6pm at Stadium Malawati, Shah Alam.
On 28 April, hundreds of Cassiopedia turned up in red and attended the road show at Tropicana City Mall in Selangor. The passionate fans participated at various game sessions and competition that included singing and dancing.
Three individuals and groups of contestants took part in the competition and put up their utmost effort with their personal unique vocal and energetic dance moves to the tune of the songs of TVXQ. The fans competed against each other with the hope of walking away with privilege passes to the press conference of the concert. Lucky for two young and talented siblings who performed to TVXQ’s Catch me, they successfully won the praises of the judges and were rewarded with a pair of passes to meet Yunho and Changmin up close. The show moved on with an Q & A session of a series of questions regarding to the group and the concert.
Into the next segment of the show, 13 participants were eliminated down to three, with each required to sing a snippet to any of TVXQ’s song. A lucky female participant who sang Hug, emerged as the winner and won for herself a copy of TVXQ’s album.
JPM Music wrapped up the road show with a lucky draw session. Fans who were presented, were definitely in luck to have won the prized concert tickets for themselves as the organizer generously conducted a special tickets’ giveaway draw in return of the fan support for the concert.
Coming to less than 2 weeks before the TVXQ concert, fans who have yet to purchase the tickets can still do so through here - Ticketcharge.
Hellokpop has the pleasure to sit down with the event director of JPM Music, Ms Alicio Lo, after the road show for a short interview about the company, future plans and TVXQ’s concert.
L: Seckvoon (hellokpop), R: Ms Alicia Lo (JPM Music)
JPM is relatively new to Malaysian fans. Would you mind telling us more about your company?
Alicia: JPM Music is part of the JPM Group and is an event management company driven by a dynamic team of professionals who have a passion for great music and bringing together memorable events. JPM Music specializes in bringing K-Pop talent to Malaysian fans for spectacular live performances. Whilst new to the scene, we are making a bold statement by inviting K-Pop legend TVXQ to Malaysia to ‘wow’ their devoted fans.
Many have thought that TVXQ may have gradually lost their market in Malaysia. Why is JPM still willing to invite them for a concert?
Alicia: It’s easy to assume that the artists and music people enjoyed when they were young will no longer interest them many years on. However in actual fact, that’s not the case. Ask anyone who was a fan of a boy-band or girl-band as teenager if they would be excited to see their favourite group return for a live performance and the answer would undoubtedly be YES. Acts like TVXQ are classics that remain loved through generations. Their fans remain fans for life and in the process of rejuvenating their career they also gain new fans. TVXQ have made a comeback and are now bigger and better than ever.
What do you think of JPM’s advantage or strong point as compared to other organisers?
Alicia: Our experience in handling grand-scale events definitely gives us a ‘leg up’ on other organisers. In bringing together big events such as the Super GT which also involve a musical performance element in event organisation, it’s essential that you have a strong and supportive team to be successful.
Is this the JPM’s first time working with Korean companies? Can you share your thoughts about working with SM Entertainment?
Alicia: This is our first time working with Korean companies to bring Korean talent to Malaysia. It has certainly been a positive experience and it’s inspiring to see how professional they are and committed to their projects.
Other than K-Pop, will JPM bring other foreign artists to Malaysia? Why?
Alicia: Not for the moment but we shall see what the future holds. If anything, we would most likely bring in European artists as part of our JPM Group events.
Can JPM reveal to us what your upcoming plans are?
Alicia: In the next few months, we will once again be bringing back the Super GT and we also hope to present Malaysian fans with a few more K-Pop acts live in concert this year and next year.
Before the show began, we also interviewed two Cassiopeia, named J’lyn and Catherine, who have been fans of TVXQ for more than five years.
How long have you been a fan of TVXQ?
J’lyn: 7 years!
Catherine: Since 2007, it is been almost 5 to 6 years.
What is it that TVXQ has attracted you to become their fan?
J’lyn: I saw the promotion advertisement on the television when they were scheduled to hold a concert in Malaysia in year 2006. Actually I was attracted to them because of a word, ‘Hello’ spoken by Yunho when he picked up the phone and I thought this guy(Yunho) was good-looking. Then I went online to check out more about them.
Catherine: I have to admit that it was because of their appealing looks when I first discovered them in a magazine. I don’t know why but I just feel like they are kind of my taste. So I went online to find out more about them and slowly developing love and support to them.
Which is your favorite TVXQ’s album and why?
J’lyn: Rising sun because it was the first album I know when I get into them.
Catherine: Mirotic because when they were in Japan when I discovered them and I merely can watch them. Mirotic has left me with the most impression.
What makes TVXQ different from other groups?
J’lyn: Dancing and their singing!
Catherine: I think it is their staging charisma and also that they really care about their fans.
What do you expect to see in the concert? (Besides the red ocean)
J’lyn: I am really looking forward to listen to Changmin to perform the Chinese song Ting Hai by A-Mei (Tran: Listen to the Sea)
Catherine: Yunho’s Honey Funny Bunny and definitely Mirotic too!
Is there anything TVXQ said or have done motivated you or inspire you to do something?
J’lyn: I am now majoring in Korean Studies in University of Malaya. It is because of TVXQ that I chose to study this course. I am in my third year now and have visited Korea as an exchange student under this program for three times already. I will be going to Seoul this September for internship.
Catherine: I remember Changmin has once said this, ‘学习并不是人生的全部。但既然连人生的一部分―学习也无法征服，还能做什么呢’( Tran: Life is not all about learning. But if you can’t even subdue learning as part of life, what can you do in life?) It motivates me to study whenever I feel tired during the exam period.
Hellokpop expresses our thanks for the opportunity and time given to us for the road show and look forward to more K-pop events in Malaysia organized by JPM Music!
Event covered by seckvoon@hellokpop