BEAST, Cube Entertainment, Yoon Doojoon, Jang Hyunseung, Yong Junhyung, Yang Yoseob, Lee Gikwang, Son Dongwoon
BEAST a.k.a Boys of East Standing Tall, the first boy band of Cube Entertainment, started this year with an international tour titled "BEAUTIFUL SHOW" which was held in 12 different countries around Asia, Europe, North America, and South America. From the international concerts which started from Seoul on February 4th and ended in Thailand on May 26th, BEAST gained interests from all around the world as they prove their skills, endurance, and 3 years' experience after debut.
Throughout the concert, the six members of BEAST-Yoon Doojoon (leader, vocalist), Jang Hyunseung (lead dancer, vocalist), Yong Junhyung (rapper), Yang Yoseob (main vocalist), Lee Gikwang (main dancer, vocalist), and Son Dongwoon (youngest, vocalist)-performed their songs since debut days until the recent album of that time, Fiction and Fact.
They also performed members' solo songs and two songs that was released near the first concert's date, which the lyrics were made by no other than the rapper also lyricist of the group, Yong Junhyung. The two songs are "I Knew It" (BEAST) and "Living Without You" (Yong Junhyung's solo). These were the first two songs that BEAST released after their last comeback at that time, which was around May 2011. The "I Knew It" themed music video (MV) was out on January 25, starring member Son Dongwoon as the main character and a short of video for "Living Without You" was out on February 2.
Talking about the early 2012 scene of BEAST, there was also the hype of Trouble Maker, a unit group consisted of BEAST's Jang Hyunseung and 4minute's HyunA. Although they debuted around late 2011, they still performed their sexy and sensational song titled "Trouble Maker" until early January and still received awards (for topping the music chart), which were from jTBC's Music on Top (January 5) and SBS Inkigayo (January 8). Recently, the unit proved their undying popularity once again with achievement of Mnet 20's Choice Awards : Hot Performance Star, 14th Mnet Asian Music Awards : Best Collaboration Performance, and 4th Melon Music Awards : Hot Trend Song.
Aside of doing their BEAUTIFUL SHOW concerts, at the meantime BEAST were also active in their homeland. BEAST performed in local/national scaled joint concert held by TV stations and releasing few digital singles, which were collaborations with other singers. On March 14th, BEAST's Yoseob and A Pink's Jung Eunji released a digital single, "Love Day", which was from the project 'A Cube for Season # Green'.
Then, on March 26, BEAST released Japanese digital singles and promotional videos for Shinramen (name of a Korean noodle brand) promotion activities, under the project ShinramenXBEAST. The songs and MVs used in promotion were named after the flavor variation of the noodle, which were Black, Red, and RedBlack. There were 3 types of the song, 12 short individual promotional videos (6 for Red 6 for Black), 1 short MV for Red, 1 short MV for Black, and 1 short MV for RedBlack in total.
On April 22, BEAST held their 2nd BEASTBEAUTY Fanmeeting in Seoul Jamsil Indoor Stadion. As the name said, it was the second official fanmeeting between BEAST andtheir fans, B2UTY (read as BEAUTY). Hosted by MC Kim Shinyoung, the event contained talk sessions, game sessions, and singing sessions which was made specially for BEAST and B2UTY to interact with each other and had successfully helped the artists and fans to create great memories together.
Later on April 24, there were two digital singles that was released at the same time, April 24. One was "In The Cloud", a solo song of Son Dongwoon for the Shinsadong Tiger's Project, Super Market, and the other one was "What I See", a song of Prepix featuring Yong Junhyung, Beenzino, and Esna. "In The Cloud" is Son Dongwoon's first solo which was created by Shinsadong Tiger, BEAST's producer for most of their songs, and "What I See" is the second collaboration of Yong Junhyung and Prepix, the dance team which created most of BEAST's choreography.
Moving to May, it's a month where mostly Yong Junhyung a.k.a Joker's featuring were released while other BEAST members were busy with the concert or their own individual schedules. On May 9, Une Annee, A Pink's First Studio Album was out. The album contained two songs that were made in collaboration with Yong Junhyung. Those were "I Got You" and "Up To The Sky (feat Joker)". Then, on May 17, "Good Boy" was out. "Good Boy" is a song of Baek Jiyoung, a senior female solo singer. Yong Junhyung participated in the rap making, rapping, appearing on the MV, and also performing on the stage with Baek Jiyoung.
Next, on May 22, the English version of G.NA's "I'll Back Off So You Can Live Better" was out, featuring Yong Junhyung for the rap part. On May 26, BEAUTIFUL SHOW in Thailand was held, marking the end of the BEAUTIFUL SHOW concerts. Also, around that time, BEAST attended Cube's vice president wedding ceremony which was held in Thailand.
In June 11th, "Hateful Person", an OST of KBS drama "Big" which was sung by the whole group was released. Prior to that, on the 3rd of July, "I am, I am Music" was released. "I am, I am Music" is the solo song of Jang Hyunseung, who played the role of Young Mozart on the musical "Mozart!"
On July 9, "Be Alright", OST for Road of Hope was released. It was sung by 4minute's Heo Ga Yoon, BEAST's Yang Yoseob, G.NA, and BTOB's Lee Changsub. Then, on July 15, a digital single from their upcoming comeback-their 4th mini album, Midnight Sun-was out. The song was "Midnight", produced by Shinsadong Tiger. Along with the release, there was also the release of the short-"Midnight"-themed MV and the teaser for their title track, "Beautiful Night".
On July 22, finally Midnight Sun, BEAST's 4th mini album which consisted 6 songs was out. The tracks on the album are "Midnight", "Beautiful Night" (title track), "It's Not Me", "When I Miss You", "The Day You Rest", and "Dream Girl". There are three types of this mini album: the regular edition, the limited edition, the gold edition. The gold edition was basically the same with the regular edition, only the package was gold colored, and it was initially sold only in CUBE Cafe, leaving only the regular and limited edition on sale for normal purchasing.
Midnight Sunwas particularly the mini album where BEAST's music style changed, from an electronic-dance type like "Shock" and "Fiction" into a dance-pop one, like "Beautiful Night". The song lyrics on this album were different from their past ones. BEAST's song lyrics were usually like "Midnight", the one about being left behind by a lover. Yet, "Beautiful Night" was really different, as it represented the heart of a man being crazily in love. When they released the mini album and doing promotions, BEAST said that it might be not really popular among people, but they have no regret and would still go with it as they think that they needed change.
Yet, in contrast to their worry, "Beautiful Night" proved its popularity by receiving various awards by topping the music charts. "Beautiful Night" ranked the first place three times in a row on Mnet's "M! Countdown" (August 2nd, 9th, and 16th), once in KBS "Music Bank" (August 10), and once in MBC's "Show Champion" (August 21st). This was of course, thanks to the fine music quality and the awesome support of their solid fan base.
Along with the promotion performances, during the "Beautiful Night" promotion period, BEAST did various promotional activities, such as holding the Google+ Hangout Live On Air with BEAST, appearing on radio shows (Boom's Youngstreet, Yoo In Na's Raise The Volume, Jung Sunhee's A Night Light This, and Hong Jin Kyung's radio), TV shows (KBS "Dream Team", "Hello", "Invincible Youth 2", "Gag Concert", MBC "Weekly Idol", SBS "Running Man" (Yoon Doo Joon)), doing magazines interview, photo shoot, holding fan meetings , fan signings, and also doing promotional for sponsor brands.
More to it, on August 8, "I Hate You", a song of Eru featuring Yong Junhyung was out, together with its MV where Yong Junhyung appeared with Eru. Later on, Yong Junhyung also joined Eru's promotional stages. On August 9th, BEAST was appointed as K-comic ambassadors with the Korean comic titled "The Beast : Beginning of Destiny". The comic was illustrated by Jena, a famous comic artist. The series itself, which gained so much popularity, is said to be made into a TV animation, while the second volume titled "The Beast - Another Beast" is going to be released on January 16th, 2013 (information from knews.co.kr, via MYB2UTY).
On September, an unfortunate event happened. On the 20th, Jang Hyunseung's father passed away, leaving behind Jang Hyunseung, his mother, and his older sister. Upon hearing the sad news, CUBE decided to cancel the entire schedule that BEAST members had on the day, and they all went to the wake of Jang Hyunseung's late father. After the day ended, BEAST members continued with their schedules, while Jang Hyunseung didn't go on to the stage for a while.
In October, BEAST released a Japanese digital single, "Midnight~Hoshi wo Kazoeru Yoru". The single was released on October 17th and contained four songs, "Midnight" and "On Rainy Days" Japanese version, and its karaoke versions. It was released after October 16th, where BEAST had their 3rd year anniversary. On the 16th, BEAST had the 3rd Anniversary Special Live Streaming to celebrate their 3rd year after debut with fans around the world. During this month, BEAST also held the BEAST Zepp Tour 2012, which took location on 6 different cities in Japan, starting from October 11th until 30th.
Moving to November, it's time for one of BEAST member to have solo activity. None other than BEAST's main vocal, Yang Yoseob made his solo debut with the mini album The First Collage, which was produced by his fellow label mate, Yong Junhyung. Yong Junhyung participated in the making of 5 songs on the album, lyrics making, and also featured in the title track, "Caffeine". The songs on the mini album are "Look At Me Now", "Caffeine (Feat Yong Junhyung)", "Just Do As You Always Did", "Even Then,l I", and "You Don't Know".
Thanks to Yong Junhyung's fine music making skill quality, Yang Yoseob's awesome vocal, everyone who participated in the album making, and BEAST's fans endless support, "Caffeine" gained huge amount popularity. Even though it's a solo, "Caffeine" managed to get the first place on Mnet "M! Countdown" (December 20th, 27th) and KBS "Music Bank" (December 14th, 21st) two weeks in a row. Also, during the promotion period, Yong Junhyung once again proved his skill as an idol-composer-rapper, by featuring in Natthew's "She's Bad" and C-Clown's "Cold". Yong Junhyung participated in the rap part of "She's Bad", while he composed and rapped in C-Clown's "Cold".
So far, aside of the awards mentioned above, in 2012 BEAST received the 21st Seoul Music Awards : Bonsang Award (for Fiction and On Rainy Days), 7th Asia Model Awards : Popular Artist Award, 26th Japan Gold Disc Award : Best 3 New Artists, 1st Gaon Chart Awards : Album of The Year, Korea Kids Choice Awards 2012 : Best Male Singer, 4th Melon Music Awards : Top 10 (Bonsang), Netizen Choice Award, and Artist of The Year (Daesang).
Even though they had a busy schedule as a group, BEAST members didn't let 2012 pass away without any individual activities.
Yoon Doojoon, the leader of BEAST, is active in the acting world. He is currently starring in the drama "Iris 2" as agent Seo Hyun Woo, an action drama which is a sequel from its infamous first prequel, IRIS. He also starred in the movie "Marrying the Mafia 5-Return of The Family" as the main character, Jang Young Min. Also, Yoon Doojoon was casted as the MC of Hallyu Dream Concert and few episodes of jTBC's Music on Top, appeared as a cameo in Fat Cat's "Is Being Pretty Everything" performance, and appeared on SBS's infamous "Running Man" along with other artists.
Jang Hyunseung, the second oldest and also one of the dancing machines of BEAST, was active in the unit group Trouble Maker and also in the musical "Mozart!" As his achievement upon his individual activities has been stated above, it will not be discussed further here.
Yong Junhyung, the rapper who acclaimed that he will go to the recording studio whenever he has the time, was really active in the K-pop music scene personally as a featuring rapper, lyrics maker, and also a composer. Though he could be considered as a new composer, his songs are well received by the audience and he is also successful in every featuring he did, hence raised the interest of other artists to work together with him. Aside of music path, Yong Junhyung also stepped a little bit on the acting path, as he was doing a cameo on the sitcom "Salamander Guru", along with INFINITE's L on February 10.
Yang Yoseob, the cute-as-ever main vocal of BEAST, had his solo album activities, as mentioned before. Aside of that, he participated in one of the SBS Gayo Daejeon's 'Color of K-pop' groups, Dramatic Blue. He was also chosen as and is currently one of the judges of Mnet "Voice Korea Kids", along with Seo In Young and Yoon Sang. With this position, Yang Yoseob is acknowledged as one of the best vocalists of idol group.
Lee Gikwang, the main dancer of BEAST, was busy with his MC activities. Lee Gikwang was a regular MC for KBS "Win Win" since August 8th 2010 until October 9th, 2012. He had to leave his post as BEAST was promoting overseas. Other than that, Lee Gikwang was also an MC for SBS K-pop Super Concert which was held in LA, an MC for MelOn Music Award, and one of the hosts of KBS Entertainment Award. Aside of his MC activities, Lee Gikwang was featured in Ailee's "Heaven" MV, was a part of SBS Gayo Daejeon's 'Dynamic Black', and did a voice over of "Sammy Adventures 2" as the role Ricky.
Son Dongwoon, the youngest of the group, was also given the light to do individual activities this year. After starring in the "I Knew It" themed MV and releasing "In The Cloud", he is currently busy with his first musical attempt, "Catch Me If You Can" as one of the actors of the main character, Frank Abagnale Jr. The musical started on December 14th and will end on February 9th, 2013.