YG Entertainment has come out to defend itself about their decision to cancel promotions around the MIXNINE franchise. The company according to reports on SOOMPI and Allkpop.com have made a statement about the feasibility of the group and its inability to attract a wide enough audience, based on challenging ratings figures for the television program that gave birth to the boy group.
The statement written by YG Entertainment reads;
“Hello, this is YG Entertainment, the producing company of ‘MIXNINE.’
“First of all, we’re sincerely grateful for the many fans who have supported ‘MIXNINE’ so far.
“Articles about the canceled debut of the top nine contestants on ‘MIXNINE’ were released before YG Entertainment’s official statement. We are endlessly sorry and feel great responsibility for all those disappointed in the turn of events.
“The original aim of the show ‘MIXNINE’ was to unearth those desperate to achieve their dreams of being a singer despite the harsh environment and to increase awareness through good opportunities of those in other agencies who have already debuted but haven’t succeeded yet.
“In addition, the ultimate goal was to encourage the development of a star group whose name would be known not only in Korea but also in Asia, and even all around the world. This would be achieved through YG Entertainment, which has 21 years of experience in music production, meeting trainees in other agencies for the first time and making use of all their music production system, strategies they developed in time, and global infrastructure.
“Unfortunately, however, the program did not receive the amount of attention that was expected.
“Regardless of the program’s popularity, YG Entertainment’s producer Yang Hyun Suk seriously thought about it and planned strategies for how to make the group consisting of top nine contestants successful. He then met with representatives of six entertainment agencies (including YG Entertainment) in person.
“The contract period of ‘MIXNINE’ was ‘four months + overseas performance’ as known.
“No matter how great the group is, the reality of the music industry these days is that it’s very difficult to get attention immediately after debuting. Because the producers were the ones who understood this better than anyone else, they decided to meet in person to explain the new plans and exchange their opinions.
“What is the new plan of Yang Hyun Suk?
“It was a suggestion that the members each promote in their respective agencies for half a year and for the remaining half, the nine members of ‘MIXNINE’ get together to promote as a team. This would continue over the span of three years.
“Why did Yang Hyun Suk make this new suggestion?
“He believed that the promised four months were not enough even to prepare their new song, film the music video, and practice choreography. In addition, at least 15 songs were required to hold a solo concert and it was impossible to achieve all this in the promised four months.
“After making the first proposal and gathering each agency’s opinions, the majority of the agencies felt that six months was burdensome.
“Yang Hyun Suk also fully understood and accepted that opinion and in the second proposal, he suggested three months in a year with a month of preparation and two months of promotion. Unfortunately, he failed to get the consent of all representatives in the final group meeting held last week.
“The meetings that took place seven times were held in a very comfortable and calm mood and were carried out in an atmosphere of mutual consideration rather than argument. We would like to make it clear that there was not a single moment of discomfort.
“We would like to take this opportunity to thank the representatives who have dedicated their time for ‘MIXNINE’ in the midst of their busy schedule even though we could not come to an agreement.
“In conclusion, YG Entertainment has no excuses. We thought the least we could do was to let you know what happened, albeit in a summary.
“We are deeply grateful for fans who have supported ‘MIXNINE’ so far. YG Entertainment will sincerely support the future and prosperity of not only the top nine members of ‘MIXNINE’ but also all contestants who participated in ‘MIXNINE.’
“Again, we sincerely thank all of you and deeply apologize for failing to keep our promise.”
Fans of the television program and the resulting boy band have been outraged by the move and have been left devisated that they wont get to see the final 9 contestants of the group debut as a group. Some members of the line up, now not meant to be, have spoken about the ordeal on social media including Seven O'Clock member Song Han Gyeom (ranked #6 during the finals of the competition), watch a piece of his Vlog below, thanks to Kpop Trends.
Do you think the group deserved to debut? Was it fair for YG to take the direction it has? Share your thoughts below.
Some may say that the world is becoming more progressive, others who are of minority groups may have a differing of opinion, especially those in the LGBTIQ community (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex and Queer). Often thought of as one of the more conservative countries of Asia, Korea’s LGBTIQ community is starting to change, year by year becoming more visible and more vocal. This week the first out openly gay male k-pop star made his debut.
A few years ago, there was a TV drama called “The Lover” that was about three different relationships, one of which highlighted a same-sex attracted couple (featuring Takuya from Cross-gene). From my known memory, this seems to be the only mainstream Korean drama to do so. On January 1st 2017, a k-pop group called Varsity made their debut. What was interesting about that was that they become very famous very quickly as one of the groups members were openly muslim! I know. Muslim. It was all over the news, locals were interested as he followed a religion that wasn’t Buddhism or Christianity. Christian values are strong still today in Korea, often making it a challenging thing for LGBTI youth, or young people of diverse religious backgrounds to be open or proud of who they are. Is this a sign of things to come.
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Holland can give thanks for his debut to alt-R&B artist MRSHLL, who came out before releasing his first music last year, you can read about the musician here. Since the videos release on Jan 21, its clocked up more than 3.3 million views and enjoyed over 70,000 comments, most of which we are thankful to say are supporting of his work and his brave venture into the industry.
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Now, to delve into his song itself, titled Neverland (hold up, its not U-kiss you old school Kpop fan you!), the song has a slower beat that puts you into a dreamy state of mind. Its cool, calm and sophisticated. Just in time for those of us in the southern hemisphere, it's the perfect song to chillax to during a long, hot summer, but we’re confident those literally chillin’ up north will be just as content. Perhaps breaking down stereotypes, his voice is deep and ‘manly,’ in a very soothing way. We love what we see so far Holland and there are plenty of reasons for you to be our new bias!
Written by: Siobhan Stollznow
Diversity is our thing at Asian Pop Radio and that’s one of the reasons why we were excited to interview Soju Love!
Soju is a Korean drag queen based in Chicago, USA, who has just released a super sweet and super juicy debut track “So Juicy”! It’s a fun and catchy bubblegum pop song that has a slight nod to the older style of K-Pop music like Girls Generation and f(x). The single is available on all digital platforms, and will be accompanied by a music video very soon!
In the podcast, Jhube talks to Soju about the highlights from her career. From (still) being a baby drag queen to being asked to fly to New York and report on one of the biggest drag events in the world RuPaul’s DragCon, she is still as humble as ever! You can tell she loves the art of drag and loves all of her fans that support her in everything she does.
You can watch Soju on her YouTube channel where she interviews many talented artists on her show “Shot With Soju”. She self describes herself as "the Connie Chung of drag" but she’s totally Oprah Winfrey! What do you guys think?