BTS? What’s that, behind-the-scenes, you ask? Well, not exactly, but after reading this, you’ll be enlightened about some behind-the-scenes information about them. And by them, we mean the K-pop group BTS.
Well, BTS is actually an abbreviation for Bulletproof Boy Scouts, a Korean idol group who is also known as Bangtan Boys or Bangtan Sonyeodan (방탄소년단). Yup, it’s a little confusing, especially to the uninitiated, but we are sure that you’ll be feeling like you know them inside out after you get through this post. 😉
Before we start, here’s a short history of the group.
BTS is a 7-membered group made up of leader Rap Monster, lead rapper Suga, vocalist V, lead rapper and dancer J-Hope, main dancer Jimin, vocalist Jin, and maknae Jungkook. They are formed by Big Hit Entertainment, an ex-subsidiary of JYP Entertainment, back in 2013. On 13th June 2013, they debuted with their 1st single titled “No More Dream”, which is a song about the unrealistic expectations that society has on the young.
After an explosive debut, the hip-hop group proceeded to snag several rookie awards, including those offered by MelOn Music Awards, Golden Disk Awards, Seoul Music Awards, Gaon Chart K-pop Awards, and YinYueTai V-Chart. However, it wasn’t until last month when the group won their 1st music show award, which was awarded to them by SBS MTV‘s “The Show”. They then went ahead and swept up 4 more awards from multiple music shows for their song “I Need U”.
They proved their popularity when they kickstarted their 1st solo concert in Seoul last October, where they had to announce an additional show as tickets for the 1st show were sold out in 5 minutes. Due to popular demand, the solo concert was expanded into a world tour, going to countries like Philippines, Taiwan, Australia, US, Mexico, Brazil, and Chile.
The best part of the world tour? Malaysia is included in the list of countries and they will be coming to town this Saturday for their debut showcase in Malaysia!
To prepare you for that, we’ve prepared a list of things that you probably didn’t know about the boy group.
1. They produce and compose most of their songs.
You could say that BTS is different from most generically churned out Korean boy groups in the sense that they are known for producing and composing their songs. Each member adds on their personal flavour to the group’s music, as they are encouraged to aid in the production process of the songs, whether they are contributing ideas, writing the lyrics, or composing the melody.
The members were involved in producing 12 out of the 14 songs included in their latest full studio album, “Dark & Wild”. Leader Rap Monster participated in 12 songs, while dancer J-Hope proved his talent by contributing to 11 songs from the album, followed by member Suga who wrote the lyrics for 10 songs.
2. They are talented in several fields, even before their debut.
The boys from BTS are already considered quite talented prior to joining the company. Rap Monster was a underground rapper who was in the same crew as Block B’s Zico, and according to him, they were “kind of like the rising stars of the hip-hop community”. J-Hope was also part of street dance team “Neuron” and even won an underground dance battle and performed at a huge-scaled festival. Jin was chosen to be a BTS member through an audition, but before that, he was actually a student majoring in film and arts, rather than music. Suga was already a lyricist back in his hometown Daegu and he revealed that he worked his days off and skipped dinner every day as he wanted to buy musical equipment in order to expand his interest.
V and Jimin also proved their worth as they were accepted into Big Hit Entertainment via auditions. V went through a nationwide contest that was held at many different provinces, but he emerged victorious after presenting his singing and dancing skills, while Jimin was recruited into the group through a closed-door audition. Maknae Jungkook, however, was chosen by the company when he left Superstar K3, a reality talent show broadcasted by Mnet, when he was 12 year old.
3. Documentary/reality show featuring Coolio and Warren G.
Just last year, the members were given an opportunity to go to America in order to experiencing true hip-hop culture. They took a break off their usual schedules and headed to Los Angeles, California to film the documentary/reality show titled “American Hustle Life”. The program ran for 8 episodes, and took a few months to film.
Well, shooting a reality program is no big deal, but what made it exciting was that legendary rapper Coolio and the talented rapper and producer, Warren G, were involved in giving the boys a few tips. Coolio acted as their mentor in episode 2 of the series, while Warren G appeared in episode 5.
Watch a snippet of the show here (psst, the video is subtitled in English, so no worries!):
4. They have posted more than 100 short videos on YouTube
The 1st video of them joking amongst themselves was uploaded on 19th June 2013. Since then, they have posted around 100 short videos, titled “BANGTAN BOMB“, of them goofing around on their official YouTube channel. These playful boys never take the chance to rest as they are always up to some crazy and/or mischievous antics. Fans are not complaining, as it gives them a chance to get closer to the boys. The videos also show their fun side instead of the serious image they exude on stage.
Wondering how funny those boys can be? Well, take a look at this video and you’ll know the answer:
5. Jin cried during debut stage.
Member Jin cried during the group’s debut performance on Mnet‘s “M! Countdown“. And it wasn’t because he was touched or overjoyed. Apparently, his pants fell down when the group was performing “We Are Bulletproof Pt. 2”. It was his 1st time wearing a microphone pack and it turned out too heavy for him. He did try to rectify the embarrassment, but sometimes, there’s nothing you can do when bad luck decides to strike. In his own words, “I quickly pulled them back up but they fell off again during the second time”.
It also certainly didn’t make things better as the choreography required them to jump frequently over the duration of the song. To be fair, the camera didn’t catch him with his pants down (literally), but it you pay attention to it, you’ll notice that the poor boy was trying to hold on to his pants:
6. Rap Monster has an IQ of 148.
An IQ of 140 and above makes you a genius. Leader Rap Monster, real name Kim Nam Joon, reportedly has an IQ of 148, and that makes him a genius too. The highly intelligent young man was also placed in the top 1% in South Korea’s national mock exams.
No one is disputing his intellectual capabilities, but sometimes, it’s hard to believe the fact when the leader also has a nickname of “God of Destruction”, named after his tendency to break things around him.
7. The members are multilingual.
Rap Monster is well known for his ability to converse in fluent English (he taught himself to speak the language), but did you know that he can speak in Japanese as well? V can also speak Japanese fluently and he, along with Rap Monster, are always the ones to talk to the media when they are in Japan for their Japanese promotions.
What’s more surprising is the fact that Jin can speak in Mandarin, and he might have influenced the other members because J-Hope and V both revealed that they are taking baby steps in order to learn how to speak in Mandarin.
8. They look up to BIGBANG.
When asked if they had any role models that influenced their decision to be a singer, 3 out of the 7 of them synonymously cited BIGBANG members T.O.P., G-Dragon, and Taeyang. Jin idolises T.O.P. as he sees the rapper as both an excellent idol and actor while Jungkook simply stated that he likes G-Dragon. Jimin also gushed about Taeyang’s amazing vocal performances and expressed his wish to become a capable singer like his idol.
During their “No More Dreams” showcase, Rap Monster also said, “We really respect Big Bang sunbaenim. Jungkook likes G-Dragon, and V likes T.O.P. Big Bang is at the top as hip hop idols, so we’re learning from them. We want to be like them in a lot of ways.”
Here’s a video of them channeling their inner fanboy and dancing to BIGBANG’s “Sunset Glow” + “Fantastic Baby“:
So, that’s all for the fun facts about BTS. There’s obviously more things to discover about the talented hip-hop group but you’ll have to find out by yourself 😉
Meanwhile, here’s a video of BTS greeting their Malaysian ARMYs (as BTS fans are lovingly known) to tide you over until their concert this Saturday!