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[Op-Ed] Proper distribution of the Spotlight, How After School can win in the end

News via allkpop.com

After School holds a special place in my heart. I initially found it hard to commit myself to any K-pop artist or group when I first began listening. I was a fan of the music, but nothing drew me in so much to make me full-on support and believe in the genre. One night though while browsing music sites, I came across a blog post recommending girl group After School, emphasizing the harmonies and genre-blending of their 2009 single “Because Of You”. I was intrigued, took a listen, and instantly fell in love. A piano ballad mixed with electronic dance elements and rapping blew my mind and, of course, the harmonies were on point (I have a thing for harmonies).

They were After School; a girl group with seven members with a unique system where members would be admitted and eventually graduate. But this was an afterthought as I further explored. From what I could tell, After School’s graduation system was nonexistent and only gaining members; topping off at nine at one point. One member had graduated, but I saw no reporters or fan comments upset about the member leaving. It just seemed like After School would just keep growing in power with new girls. I watched every second of the campaign for their first full album Virgin, watching what I saw as a perfectly staged comeback with the flawless “Let’s Step Up” tap dance routine (after already proving they could create a drumline with “Bang!”) and the “Shampoo” single.

Before After School Red and After School Blue began their respective sub-unit promotions, it was announced that member Bekah would be graduating from the group. While Bekah always impressed me with her rap skills and was the best English speaker, it was not the biggest blow to the group. They were still After School comprised of eight girls with different personalities, such as their visionary leader Kahi, the model-esque NaNa, and the adorable Raina. Why wasnt it such a huge blow to see Bekah leave? Was it because she simply did not stand out enough or had she not had her rightful time in the spotlight? Fans know how hard these groups train; was Bekahs pop career that started with AH about to end now? These are all valid questions.

Then last month, news broke about leader Kahi graduating. Kahi inevitably became the face of After School with her singing, rapping, and dancing skills; even extending her fame with a solo mini-album and acting stints. So when the face of your group leaves, what happens next? As well, what happens when all the original faces of your group leave?

Some may envision disaster but the way I see it, with the right moves, After School could potentially end up as one of the most influential groups in K-pop.

There is the argument that when a member leaves, the members fans leave too. While the group’s newest recruit Kaeun may be special in her own way, she has no following yet. Kahi may have been a core reason fans were interested in After School and one of the faces they could automatically recognize. There were people who supported Kahi as the After School leader and additionally in her non-After School endeavors. Now, with seven other girls, Kaeun could easily be a nameless face amongst the more popular members—but what happens when they leave? Is Kaeun now expected to be a force in After School after stepping in following Kahis departure?

What After School and Pledis Entertainment need to make sure to do is to give each member their time in the spotlight. The comeback single “Flashback” sees a more even distribution of parts compared to past singles, but I couldn’t help but be overwhelmed by the newly shifted focus towards Nana, Raina, and Jungah. Nana particularly in getting her own solo track on their new maxi single with the standout “Eyeline” song plus lots of lines on “Flashback”, which means even more video time. Raina received a large amount of vocals on the title track and there was more emphasis on Jungah than ever as After School’s new leader; the girls also duet on the “Timeless” ballad.

Does it matter that Kahi isnt in the new single Flashback? Do you enjoy seeing new members?

While it may be time to focus on these three members, the other five girls cannot be forgotten. The company is making strides in making sure all have their own projects, as member Lizzy is also a part of sub-unit group Orange Caramel with Nana and Raina, while UEE hosts a music program and takes on various roles in dramas. This should help solidify both the girls, though the other members do risk being cast aside.

Theres two ways to look at this risk though. On one hand, there is the possibility that like Mexicos Menudo, The U.K.s Sugababes, and Americas Pussycat Dolls, that After School will be Koreas music brand. Perhaps thats why Kaeun, Juyeon, and E-Young have all been styled somewhat similarly for this comeback. They are beautiful girls and if they are not going to be the stars, then they will at least give off the brands impression of beautiful, talented girls. Or Pledis could take the challenge of making all their members stars. Perhaps a sub-unit is needed (or coming?) to highlight the three aforementioned members? A hosting gig similar to Tiffany, Taeyeon and Seohyun of Girls Generation?

If After School and Pledis can make sure that all their members are distinct in their own ways when the time comes to graduate, they could very well find themselves with huge presence in the Korean entertainment world. While Bekah left to be a designer and occasionally is written about, Kahi could be a strong solo female force, extending Pledis’ capital as well as After School’s credibility.

Kahi would succeed because of the spotlight that was put on her during After School. Bekah never went soloperhaps for several reasons. She may never have wanted to or it would not have been wise for her to do so as she may have not had strong enough star-power to make it. If the other After School girls are worthy of being in the same class as Kahi, then ideally they could all perform equally making After School a true force in K-pop for years to come.  As other instantly recognizable groups age and are unable to perform as they may once have, After School may be able to do this with any batch of members. As long as the spotlight is fairly distributed making each student special in her own way, After School may have the system that ultimately proves to be the best in the world of K-pop.

Gif Image Source: After School Daze

Jeff Benjamin is a Singer, Songwriter, DJ, Photographer and freelance writer who has written works for Billboard, Rolling Stone and now allkpop. Follow him on Twitter @Jeff__Benjamin

Yewon Updates Her Instagram With a up to date Photo

News via soompi.com
Yewon Updates Her Instagram With a up to date Photo

Yewon Updates Her Instagram With a up to date Photoboxclub February 8, 2016 0 The whereabouts of Yewon has been printedvia a recent Instagram post.

On February 8, Yewon posted on her Instagram, “Is each person having a just right New Years? I'm hopingeverybody has laughter and happiness and smart fortune this year. Please force carefully. I pass over you all.” In the posted picture, whilst she does no longerseem like the full of lifesymbol she portrayed when she used to be actively promoting, she still looks adorable and sophisticated, drawing attention for her beauty.

YouTuber JREKML will have you choking with laughter at his 'transformations' into K-Pop stars

News via allkpop.com
YouTuber JREKML will have you choking with laughter at his 'transformations' into K-Pop stars

You won'tfinally finish uptaking a lookprecisely like your favourite celeb--K-Pop star or not--but it is the closest demented editionyou are going to ever get to it. JREKML took the freedom to switch faces with no longerbest K-Pop stars like Rap Monster, V, Jay Park, Taeyang, T.O.P, CL, Ailee, Amber, and more, yet also with Obama, babies, Beyonce...and well, I'm going to just leave it up for you in finding out who else he morphs into. 

BIGBANG’s latest Eastern album unlock tops Oricon Charts

News via koreaboo.com
BIGBANG’s latest  Eastern album unlock tops Oricon Charts

On February 9th, Japans biggestsongwebsite Oricon published the ratings for this weeks album chart with BIGBANG leading the manner amongst 128,000 devices of their MADE Series album sold in the week since its release.

The first time befell in June 2012 with their album ALIVE MONSTER EDITION and the 2d one time in December 2014 with THE Very best OF BIGBANG 2006-2014.

Meanwhile, BIGBANG is decidedto accomplish in Japan as a phase of their MADE globalexcursion on February 23rd and 24th at the Tokyo Dome.

Song Triplets Carry Excellent Fortune With New Year’s Greeting

News via soompi.com
Song Triplets Carry  Excellent Fortune With New Year’s Greeting

Song Triplets ConveyExcellent Fortune With New Years Greetingboxclub February 8, 2016 0 Song Il Gook’s triplets have remodeled into lovely princes to send their new year greetings.

C-JeS Entertainment publishedan image of Song Il Gook’s 3 sons Daehan, Minguk, and Manse thru their professional social media account on February 8. In the picture, you'll see the cute smiles of the triplets as they are dressed in their fancy hanboks, posing for a photo shoot.

The triplets’ final episode on the preferred KBS display “The Go back of Superman” aired on February 7, concluding a 19-month run at theprove that garnered much attention and love from audienceall over the place the world.

Who Has Been the Maximum Memorable on “King of Mask Singer”?

News via soompi.com
Who Has Been the Maximum Memorable on “King of Mask Singer”?

In an interview with OSEN, when asked to select out the most memorable 3 singers he has had on the display so far, he first spoke of Solji, saying, “While the entire singers who had been on the prove accept sung very well, Solji especially sang very well. I used to be so shockedonce 1 heard her.” He added, “A contemporary singer who has receiveda massive number of tending from the display is Dana. I had forgotten about her after she starred on “Nonstop,” yet I had heard that she sang neatly so I asked her to guest on the show. Every otherfantastic singer I take note is Lee Ji Hoon. Whenever you asked me to selectthe 3 stars who surprised with their vocal prowess, it should existthe ones three.”

Solji starred on the pilot episode of the show remaining year below the call “Self-Imposed Mosaic” and won on that first episode. Dana, under the name “Heart Attack Snow Flower,” drew attention with her implausible rendition of the vintage song “A Scar Deeper than Love” and Lee Ji Hoon, with the name “Follow Me,” competed with the champion “Cats Girl,” but unfortunately lost and had to expose himself under the mask.

Min also added singer Hyun Jin Young and Kim Seung Jin to his list, remembering the seriousfestival between Hyun Jin Young’s “119” and “Cats Girl” that in the long run ended in “Cats Girls’” victory. He also discussed Kim Seung Jin’s memorable functionality of “Desert Island” as person whowas once impressionable for him as well.

Junsu and Byeon Yo-han take selfie in combination to end up friendship

News via hancinema.net

On February 8th, JYJ Junsu posted a photo on his private Instagram, pronouncing "Yo-han ssi got hereto appearance at my musical 'Dracula'. It is a little awkward yet, yethe isthis kind ofjust right friend of mine. Hoping the day I might call his call without 'ssi', will come soon, let's get closer. This man, his personality is in reality cool".

Watch: Solji Groups Up With Her Older Brother For a Performance

News via soompi.com
Watch: Solji Groups Up With Her Older Brother For a Performance

In addition to Solji, Kangnam, BTOB’s Seo Eunkwang and Lee Changsub, VIXX member Ken, BTS members Jungkook and Jimin, Rainbow’s Jaekyung and her more youthful brother N.Flying’s Jaehyun and so much of other idols joined in this special holiday episode.

Related Tags EXIDIdol and Household National Singing CompetitionSoljiPost NavigationOldTaleWatch: A Pinks Jung Eun Ji and Her Duet Spouse Display an excellent Collaboration on Duet Song Festival

Lee Jong Suk makes a beneficiant donation in spirit of the Lunar New Year holiday

News via allkpop.com
Lee Jong Suk makes a beneficiant donation in spirit of the Lunar New Year holiday

Lee Jong Suk is in a giving temper for the Lunar New Year holiday it seems; the actor's 2 hundred million KRW (~$165,674 USD) donation to UNICEF is making headlines!

Lee Jong Suk expressed his need to give relief to the underprivileged kids who are suffering to get through in the bloodlesswintry weather in an insufficient environment.

He said, "I wondered what approach would be easiest for returning even a tiny bit of the entire love that enthusiasts have given me and idea that I mayproportionthe affection alongside more other peoplethru UNICEF. I'm going to continue to be an actor with a warm center who does notput from your mind the neighbors who could also be stuck in tricky situations."

14 Male Idols Who Glance The maximum efficient Without A Blouse On

News via koreaboo.com
14 Male Idols Who Glance  The maximum efficient Without A Blouse On

Share on FacebookShare on Twitter Those male idols are known for dazzling fangirls on each occasion they take off their shirts, especially whilstfunctioning on stage! Why leave the entireamusing to the lady groups, when the guys also have amazing bodies?

Its shirtless Korean men! This ones for your entirefeminineenthusiasts out there, whenever you havent ogled at the rest still today, nows your chance!

Watch: A Pink’s Jung Eun Ji and Her Duet Spouse Display screen an outstanding Collaboration on “Duet Tune Festival”

News via soompi.com
Watch: A Pink’s Jung Eun Ji and Her Duet Spouse  Display screen  an outstanding Collaboration on “Duet Tune Festival”

Watch: A Pinks Jung Eun Ji and Her Duet SpouseDisplay screenan outstanding Collaboration on Duet Song Festivalkminjungee February 8, 2016 0 Jung Eun Ji and her partner Kim Dae Su were the 3rd pair to sing on MBC’s Lunar New Year special, “Duet Music Festival,” which aired on February 8.

Kim Dae Su, who used to bein my viewselectedvia Jung Eun Ji as her duet partner, reveals, “I haven’t discovered my dream yet. I came about to follow by chance, and it’s truly an honor.”

They two sing Yoon Do Hyun Band’s “I Am a Butterfly.” It starts off with Kim Dae Su, with Jung Eun Ji following his lead, appearing off an improbable teamwork from the very beginning. The temper shifts in the direction of the song, and the 2 continue to sing with overflowing confidence. Either Jung Eun Ji and Kim Dae Su captivate the target market alongside their nice looking voices. The lyrics also describe Kim Dae Sus situation, who had to surrender his normal dreams so as to earn money, adding to the emotional charm every bit well.