[CAPS | NEWS] 120623 The Star (Malaysia Local Newspaper) CNBLUE Embracing Fame

The guys of CNBLUE are happy with their accomplishments in the music arena.

SINCE its debut in South Korea in 2009, CNBLUE has been one of the few rock bastions in the ultra-competitive music scene dominated by danceable electro-pop. 

The group's lasting success has comforted some about the continuing appeal of rock, while detractors accused them of packaging insipid poppy sounds, even calling them a "fake band". 

At a recent interview with the four members - front man Jung Yong-hwa, bassist Lee Jung-shin, guitarist Lee Jong-hyun and drummer Kang Min-hyuk - they did not seem bothered by it. 

Rather than trying to rationalise their career, the barely 20-somethings are embracing it with ample humility, as sometimes even they are at a loss to describe the reason behind their success. 

"Compared to when we were touring (East) Asia with the single Love, (from their second EP Bluelove) nowadays K-pop is riding on a much bigger wave," said Jung, adding that their audience and fan base have expanded, thanks to the expansion of Korean pop music in recent years. 

"The age profile of our fans is changing. Most of our fans used to be in their 30s or 40s; now we have more in their 20s or younger." 

Much like their K-pop fellow singers, CNBLUE has gone from nobodies to superstars almost overnight, starting with their debut Korean EP Bluetory and its catchy lead single I'm A Loner. And they have not stopped since, writing and performing new material for the Korean and Japanese markets. 

Most recently, they released their third mini-album titled Ear Fun, with the single Hey You topping domestic on- and offline charts. 

Their continuing run of hits in their home country and even their rise to fame in Japan, was a surprise to many, simply because they are different from the usual dancing troupe model of K-pop, now noted across the world. 

There were many critics, however, including Korean rock legend Shin Hae-chul, who publicly accused the boys of plagiarism. 

But since their debut, seeing guitars and a drum set on the stage of weekly pop music shows, has become less alien for them. 

"The format of live television shows hasn't changed much," said Jung, adding that they are constantly trying to improve themselves. "We're content with the fact that we can let our music be heard." And they certainly have pushed themselves hard on that front. 

According to lead guitarist Jong-hyun, in the first four months of this year, they have performed in 30 showcases, including nine concerts outside their usual domains of South Korea and Japan. 

The group is also looking further afield when it comes to giving back. In March, a school named after them was opened in a small village in southwestern Burkina Faso in West Africa, partially funded by the proceeds from the band's earnings. 

"A lot of times we want to help but we don't know how to," said Jung. "We recently watched a video clip of the school being completed and in operation. We are very proud of this." 

The band's management agency, FNC Entertainment, stated that the contribution to the Burkinabe project, organised by the Korea Food for Hungry International, will continue. The band, now in its third year in the industry, took a long time to answer when asked about their future plans and ambitions. 

"The lyrics of foreign bands are so much more varied. Some of the subjects are simply unimaginable to me," said Jung, adding that the group is also stepping away from the syrupy, lovesick words that fans have come to associate them with," said Jung who longs to travel. 

"I want life to be a bit more spectacular," said Jung-shin. "We have been working endlessly, we need a break." 

"I want to chill out for a little while," said Jong-hyun, laughing. 

The members of CNBLUE indeed looked exhausted from their non-stop schedule, but glowed with hope. 

"We are going to be together for 20 to 30 years, at least," Jung-hyun said emphatically. 

p/s:I really love the article...TWO PAGES!!

Source: The Star Mobile / www. enewsworld.com / jay@koreatimes.co.kr
Captured by : Puiyee add via CNBLUESTORM Malaysia BOICE Group
Posted by: yunhae @ cnbluebeat

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