Big Bang is a Korean musical group made up of five Korean men. When they first debuted, they were considered to be the new face of the YG Family, a pet name for their management company YG Entertainment. Although their debut was somewhat successful, it was not until the release of “거짓말” (“Lies“) that the group gained mainstream success. Big Bang have been noted for their music as well as their fashionable clothing, becoming famous throughout the country in the process.
Before Big Bang’s major debut, each member had his own degree of success and popularity in the entertainment industry. Leader G-Dragon and lead vocalist Taeyang had already been with YG Entertainment since they were both twelve years old, known as GD and YB back then. Member T.O.P was well known as an underground hip-hop rapper while Seung Ri was first introduced to the entertainment industry through the show Let’s Cokeplay Battle Shinhwa.
After the lineups for the group was finally made, the television network MTV Korea released a ten-episode documentary that showed the members in training before their debut as an official group (an eleventh episode was added after final members were decided). The first six episodes detailed each individual member’s background and motivation for becoming a singer. The documentary portrayed the arduous process of training by showing their dancing and singing practice sessions. Beyond being just a behind-the-scenes reality show, the series also eliminated various candidates unfit for Big Bang. Two members, SO-1 and Seungri (Lee Seung Hyun) were considered for elimination, but they were given second chances to showcase their abilities in singing, dancing, and performing. However, this eventually resulted in Yang Hyun Suk (the CEO of YG Entertainment) dropping SO-1 because he lacked stage presence and was “too shy”. On the other hand, Seung Ri was able to successfully impress Yang with his dancing and singing skills, thus making the group. This documentary helped gain recognition for the group.
Before deciding on an official name for the group, the members had suggested several names, such as “Apex”, “Stump,” and “Diamond”. Finally it was decided on “Big Bang” as producer and founder of YG Entertainment Yang Hyun Suk thought the other names were too childish. Big Bang made their official debut at the YG Family concert, held on August 19, 2006 at the Gymnastics Arena in Seoul Olympic Park.
Prior to the release of their first album, the group had a unique release schedule, with three EPs released within a span of a few months. Their first EP was The First Single Album, which spawned the top-ten hit single “This Love”, a remake of the American boy band Maroon 5′s own single. The single debuted with over 17,000 copies sold in the month of August and later went on to sell approximately nearly 40,000 copies. The second EP Big Bang is V.I.P. was released a month later, selling 21,000 copies in that month. It finally netted sales of 32,000 copies. Their third and last EP, B I G B A N G 0 3, followed the success of their previous EPs with final sales nearing 30,000 copies.
Later in the year, Big Bang’s own official fan club was created, calling themselves the “V.I.P.” (in reflection of their second single “Big Bang is V.I.P.”). Unlike other fan clubs, Big Bang’s fans do not have a balloon color for showing support at concerts; instead, fans wave black and white BB (obviously standing for Big Bang) handkerchiefs/bandannas. At the end of December 2006, Big Bang held their very first concert titled The Real. The following month, their first debut album Since 2007, which was essentially a compilation of songs from their previous singles, was released; it sold 48,009 copies by the end of February 2007.
By the end of 2009, Big Bang became the most searched artist in South Korea. They also became the first foreign group in Japan to receive the Japan Cable Broadcasting Award for “Best Newcomer”, and the first from Korea to receive the Japan Records award. In recent years, the members have branched out to do solo activities: Taeyang and G-Dragon have released solo materials while T.O.P, Daesung and Seungri have started acting.
- Origin : Seoul, South Korea
- Genres : Pop, R&B, hip-hop, dance
- Years active : 2006 (2006)–present
- Labels : YG Entertainment
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