We’ve heard stories of Malaysian celebs expanding their career after migrating overseas. Ipoh-born actress Michelle Yeoh started her acting career in Hong Kong and eventually in Hollywood. Singer Yuna also made a name for herself in the United States after she signed a record deal with Fader Label.
For Korean star Han Byul (한별), however, it’s a different story. His career grew after settling down in Malaysia. In an interview with The Star, the former Led Apple member revealed not only how he now considers Malaysia as his second home but as well as the mistreatment his band endured before they separated in 2016.
Han Byul first rose to fame after debuting in Korean rock band Led Apple back in 2010. During the interview, the 33-year-old revealed that despite the band’s success, they were apparently mistreated by their agency which ultimately led him to exit the group in 2014 and pursue a solo career. He claimed that he and his fellow members were not being paid well despite working so hard.
“The band went from being based in South Korea to being based in Japan for about a year and a half. During that time, we stayed in a secluded place, surviving on only RM30 for food and eating instant ramen every day. It was one of the most gruelling periods we had to go through,” said the former vocalist. Unfortunately, the “Shooting Star” singer’s solo career in Korea also did not go as planned as he was told to leave his former agency, The Groove Entertainment in 2017.
He shared that he went on hiatus for a few years as he had no sense of direction on how to get back on his feet. During that hiatus, he received an email from an Astro production staff, who happened to be a Led Apple fan, inviting him to be part of the Big Stage 2019 singing contest in Malaysia and that’s when his life changed for the better. The singer accepted the invite and eventually won the competition. The victory led to multiple job offers in our local soil.
Han Byul also revealed that he initially came to Malaysia to make up for a past fan meet event that went wrong but eventually fell in love with the country and its people. Thanks to his loyal fanbase – the Twinklers, who helped reignite his passion for music, the singer decided to develop his career in Kuala Lumpur.
After spending a few years restarting his career here, the “Lecturerku Oppa” star said he now considers Malaysia as his second home. “I didn’t expect Malaysia to be so harmonious. It is one of the most beautiful places in the world,” he said sharing that the country’s diverse culture and community was what captured his heart. Han Byul is currently active in both Malaysia and South Korea.