Credit to: CNBLUESTORM
CNBLUE, Time Flies so Fast
To CNBLUE, time flies so fast; now it’s been 6 years since their debut. Music activities, acting, variety show appearances, song-writing and overseas concerts, everything was done without a pause. We met the grown-up CNBLUE, whose members have their own goals and strived each one’s own way to achieve their dreams.
<Jung Yong Hwa>
Q: You have sneaky yet full-of-sense personality. Seems like it is your charm to be particularly sociable. Do you have your own know-how at befriending people quickly?
A: We have to be good to everyone, but I’m not the type who is close with everybody. There are people with whom I am really close, and there are ones I am less. With the people I’m close with, I didn’t remember them on purpose. It’s just that I tried my best in catching their detailed changes well. Like asking them if they had a haircut, or if they dyed their hair. Is it something like being good in picking things up (observant)? I am like that. I’m quick-witted and I have good memory that even when meeting someone only for a short time privately, I act like I remember them well. People like that.
Q: Recently, FNC Entertainment had recruited many entertainers like Yoo Jae Suk, Jung Hyung Don, etc., and has become a fast growing company. How do you feel, as someone who’s been a part of FNC Entertainment for a long time, about the company still checking the attendance even when there’s no schedule?
A: Of course I feel good about it. Even moving from Yeongdeungpo office to a building in Cheongdamdong feels like a huge thing. Though the reason of the success is obviously not me, I feel like if the company is doing well, I will be doing well too.
Q: Your sense of entertainment is good. Do you practice it?
A: I don’t have big expectation in variety and I don’t practice, because I do well even if I don’t practice. (Laugh) I believe in my sense of entertainment. For example, I told a story and it received a good reaction, I would tell the story whenever I have a break until the end of the day of the recording. Therefore I can naturally secure air time.
Q: Which celebrity do you think is better than you in terms of sense of variety?
A: All variety seniors in our company? I made an appearance on MBC’s <Infinite Challenge> in the past, and at that time there were more than ten guests. All of them have excellent sense of entertainment, I couldn’t even talk easily. Especially senior Kim Young Cheol. Hahahahaha. On the day I guested, the popular “Cheer up, superpower” was made. It’s still funny when I look back at it. It was way funnier on the filming set. Everyone was exhausted from the long recording so nobody was saying anything but all of a sudden he said “cheer up, superpower”. About 100 staffs there were laughing like they would collapse, it was such a chaos. That is really a gift.
Q: From the “ski resort handsome guy” era until now, you look as handsome as ever.
A: It was simple a picture I took while playing in the ski resort. Because of that picture I got casted and became a celebrity who I am now. To be honest, I didn’t come to the audition because I wanted to be a celebrity, but because they had personally come all the way to Busan to cast me. After that, I started becoming a celebrity. That picture had made many things come true.
Q: Your technique in taking selca is obviously on a different level from other people as you even got the nickname “the master of selca”. Please share your secret technique.
A: The very important thing is lighting. You have to take selca in a bright place. The best place is that with natural lighting. If you have to take selca in a place with no light, you must lower the resolution. Then it will be a success. If there’s many light, the selca will turn out great whatever application you’re using.
Q: How long does it take from the moment you take the picture until you post it to your SNS?
A: It takes quite long. Hahaha. If it looks good I’ll start posting it on Instagram, then Weibo, and lastly Twitter. I post to all these sites. But if the picture lacks 2%, I posted different pictures for different account. This picture for Weibo, that picture for Instagram. I also check the caption several times to avoid any mistake.
Q: Never knew there was such a hard work. Are you happy with what you posted on your SNS so far?
A: No. Sometimes when I look at the photo album on my SNS, I think there are too many selcas and I have to divide it a little bit. But I don’t know what else to take picture of other than my face. Other people take picture of some bookshelf of scenery, but I don’t quite understand why. It’s meaningless. (Laugh) Especially a picture of cactus. To be honest I just want to post only selca. Hahahaha.
Q: This year alone you have composed 27 songs. Where do you get the inspiration mostly from?
A: I write song whenever I have break. There are ones I wrote because I want to, and there are ones I wrote because I have to. I get the inspiration mostly from insignificant, normal occasion, because it doesn’t come by deliberately sitting on the producing room and write song. Good lyrics or melody come to mind while I was just playing around or having a chit-chat. At such time I just write it down on a memo, and that’s how I write a song.
Q: You featured various artists in your previous album. Do you have any artists you want to work together in your next album?
A: Hmm… I’ll figure that out when I’m writing the song. Usually, when I write a song, I find the artist whom I think will match the song. When I figure that out, I’ll personally contact the artist and respectfully ask them if they want to work together.
Q: I heard you recently have your teeth fixed. Your snaggle was charming, do you have any reason to getting it fixed?
A: I hated it to begin with. I wanted to do it during my school days, but I couldn’t get a good lingual orthodontic system then. I didn’t want to show my friends that I got my teeth fixed. But now that I think about it, I regret not doing that back then.
Q: You rarely have acting activity this year. What’s your plan in acting in the future?
A: I have received a few scenarios but the schedule for this year is packed so I’m planning to do it around next year.
Q: On MBC Everyone’s <Weekly Idol> I see you have talent in girl group dancing. You even catch the expression in the dance moves. Do you usually practice that?
A: Of course not. I don’t have any reason to practice that. I just watch that and dance along. It’s a gift.
Q: Seems like you could’ve done well as a (dancing) idol.
A: Me? Dancing? Hmm… Yeah I think I could’ve done well.
Q: Is there any girl group dance which catch your attention?
A: What “catching my attention”… They’re all there. Though I can’t do the whole dance, I know the main moves. No need to learn that.
Q: 6 years after debut you finally escaped from being “someone with narrow shoulder”.
A: Back then when I heard that, I thought of why people would call me so. But I gained so much weight during days without promotions so my body became so heavy and it was hard to perform during concerts. That’s why I started working out. But my body naturally becomes better in shape. I’m not saying I’m happy with my body now, because I’ve been busy recently so I couldn’t work out. I should work out hard again.
Q: What do you want CNBLUE to develop like in the future?
A: I want CNBLUE to go “bold and long lasting”. I don’t want us to hold back in doing our activities. I want CNBLUE to be a dignified band. It’s even better if we can become a good example to junior bands.
<Lee Jung Shin>
Q: You look a lot like Model Nam Joo Hyuk.
A: I’m close with Joo Hyuk in real life. Before I got to know him, I heard a lot from a photo director I know that there’s a model who looks like me. But when I met him, he didn’t resemble me that much. I get the feeling that Joo Hyuk has become the type that women like.
Q: Somehow it’s been your 6th year since debut. Which part do you think changed the most?
A: I’ve come to reflect on myself a lot. There’s also part where I become used to the activities as a celebrity. I think now is a really important time, because the lacking parts are starting to show.
Q: In your early debut days you looked innocent like a “pretty boy”, but recently you look bolder and manly overall. Is it natural change that comes with time?
A: I personally don’t prefer the “pretty boy” style. I want to turn 30 as soon as possible so I can look manlier. That’s why I’m not quite happy about how I look now. I don’t look young but I don’t look old either so it feels confusing. I want to quickly have that serious vibe only the adults have.
Q: During the promotion for the first album Lee Jung Shin‘s short hair was picked as women’s “wannabe short hair”.
A: I also heard that a lot from the people around me. I found some short hair style recommendations personally and asked the hair stylist to do that haircut. Back then I looked up to Kimura Takuya and senior Won Bin‘s short hair pictures as reference. Funny thing was, after I debuted, I went to a hair salon to have a haircut and there was a woman who looked like she’s in her 30s told the hairdresser, “this person is a man, but please do that haircut for me”. Turned out it was my short hair. (Laugh)
Q: Matching that short hair is difficult, and styling it using straightener is not easy.
A: Indeed. That C-curl doesn’t come out that easily. (Giggles). That’s why I can’t do that hairdo if it’s not with the help of the hair stylist.
Q: I heard you like taking pictures as a hobby.
A: My brother’s work involves photography so it naturally became my hobby to take pictures. Now that I live with my brother, and whenever we have time, we usually talk about photography while looking at foreign magazines.
Q: Who would you pick among CNBLUE members as the best model for your photo?
A: I took pictures of three of them during world tour, and each of them had their own strength and weakness. I’m not a master at photography to say this, but it was the most enjoyable when I took pictures with Yonghwa hyung. Jonghyun hyung wasn’t really comfortable with taking picture, while Minhyuk, perhaps because I was the one taking the picture, didn’t really accede to what I said. Since Yonghwa hyung matched the way I wanted the picture to be, it came out well. I think it’s obvious that the model has to open his heart so the picture will come out well.
Q: I think it would be fine if you personally take the picture for CNBLUE album cover in the future.
A: I think so too, but right now I want to do it just as a hobby. I like doing it when I want to do it and not as a job.
Q: It’s said you have your own firm standard in clothes.
A: I don’t have any special preference, but if there’s something I dislike the moment I see it, I dislike it right away. If I wear something I don’t like in a photoshoot, the picture won’t come out well.
Q: Is today’s outfit fine for you?
A: Oh, I really like it today.
Q: During the past 6 years you’ve spent with CNBLUE members, you must have seen their dating stories. In your opinion, who is the master in dating and who is the opposite among CNBLUE members?
A: There’s no master no matter how much I think about it. I just believe in myself. There’s also no one giving dating tips to anybody among the members. As I’m not someone who says everything but rather the type who likes by myself and dates silently, there’s no need for advice. As for the opposite, probably Minhyuk? If you see him liking or dating someone, you’ll be surprised by his innocence.
Q: Among the members, I heard your relationship with Jung Yonghwa is special. He also paid for your orthodontic.
A: I got my teeth fixed from early debut. As Yonghwa hyung had started promoting first, he made more income. So he jokingly said “I paid for your braces”. But we didn’t deny that because it’s true.
Q: For the past 3 years you have been doing music and acting at the same time. As for your acting, is there any senior advice that you remember the most?
A: Early this year I appeared in KBS Drama Special <Thank you, Son>. The one playing the role of my father was senior Choi Jin Ho. Though the filming didn’t take long, he told me many things and took care of me well. He also said to me, “you’re always the best”, supporting me everyday. I’m really thankful for that. Because of that, now I can call him on holidays and whenever I have time.
Q: Are you the type to evaluate your own acting?
A: Yes, I look into everything in evaluating my acting, so I won’t feel hurt when I get bad evaluation. When people see my acting and say it is so-so then it is, and when they say it is good then it is. I don’t cling to those words. I really want to be good at acting. That’s why I’m doing my best to be so.
<Kang Min Hyuk>
Q: After MBC’s <I live alone> was broadcasted, you’ve become the topic of the talk among many women. Flower arranging, raising pets, and cooking, those are exactly the example of what women dream of in life.
A: I just do exactly how I live my life. After the show there are many of the people around me asking about my detailed actions. How to chop, how to pour seasonings, I’m thankful that many people look favourably of those trivial things.
Q: The way you look when arranging flowers by yourself is impressive. Do you learn that well now?
A: I can’t attend the lesson recently because of promotional activities. Since I have to buy the flowers beforehand prior to attending the class, I have to put it into my schedule in advance.
Q: How did you start doing the flower arrangement?
A: At first, since I really like flowers, I went to find a florist. But the flowers were too expensive. However, the people around me suggested that I should check out flower market so I went there. There were surely more kinds of flower and the price was also cheap. I bought it there and arranged it alone ever since.
Q: What’s your favorite flower?
A: I like Stachys the most among dry flowers. Even though it is dry, I like how it keeps holding together the way it is. The basic hue is purple and I like it.
Q: I see there are pictures of flowers, scenery and cats on your Instagram and thought I had found the wrong account. Looking at those pictures I think you sort of have the feeling of a boy.
A: Really? Haha. I never knew that. It’s nothing in particular. I just become a bit emotional when I’m alone. I liked being alone when I was little, but ever since I started working I can feel the loneliness. I don’t like being alone and that’s how I’ve come to raise pets and learned arranging flowers. But aside from this, I have a lot of other hobbies. The loneliness goes away when I do something with my body.
Q: I heard you have a sister. If you were to pick one of the CNBLUE members who will suit your sister as her husband, who would it be?
A: Do I really have to do this? Hahahaha. Actually, it doesn’t matter. As they feel like family though we’re not related by blood…
Q: I think CNBLUE never experienced a slump. Aren’t things going well after the first mini album “I’m a Loner”?
A: No. There are invisible slumps. There were times where things were not working even after we struggled, and there were also times where time settled things for us. When we think that life won’t be forever hard and wait, the slump naturally passes by.
Q: Since your appearance in SBS’ <The Heirs>, you’ve become really popular in Asia. You even had your solo fan meeting last July in Thailand.
A: It feels completely different compared to when I was with the members on stage. But since it was a fan meeting and not a concert it also felt comfortable and fun.
Q: What do you think is the most important thing right now?
A: To be honest, I can’t think of anything right now. Like I’m in the state of mental breakdown? I think now is the hardest time in terms of work. It feels like I’m going through puberty again. There are times when I worked hard for something but it didn’t turn out well, it feels exhausting. In that case, I would contemplate on leaving that behind but then when I do leave it behind, I would think that I should work even harder. I don’t know what to do.
Q: What kind of music do you want to do in the future?
A: Just the kind of music I want to do with no pressure.
<Lee Jong Hyun>
Q: Seeing you on MBC’s <We Got Married>, you seem like someone who shows your affection aggressively, some sort of a romantist.
A: Romantist! Haha. Being casted in that kind of show, there’s no need to hide my feelings. Just do it as my usual self, and I think I did show my best. If I were to hide my feelings and didn’t enjoy it why would I do the show in the first place?
Q: Even though it was just for the show, what was your impression on your marriage life?
A: I think it was good that I did the show. It was fun. I didn’t think of the people around me when I did it, I filmed it without regret.
Q: When do you think you will get married?
A: I’m more of the extreme type so I think it will be early, or if I miss the timing then it’ll be really late.
Q: The way you talk is so carefree. I’m curious about your real personality.
A: Is that so? I do things my way, really the way I want it. That’s why people around me are never really concerned about me. Because I’ll deal with it well.
Q: I heard you did Judo until high school.
A: I started doing Judo back in Junior High through the suggestion of the director of the Judo club. I was tall and my physical condition was good then. When I tried it, it was fun. I got an award for that and then I thought of doing that seriously. There were many people around me who are good at Judo, and I thought it was too late for me to begin with so I gave up.
Q: You seem really competitive.
A: I think it’s just the right amount of competitiveness. Basically I’m more strict to my own self than to others.
Q: What part of you is strict?
A: I hate something that’s not cool and dull. Especially doing things that are not masculine. It’s a little bad, but in the events where I got to meet fans and I was asked to do aegyo, I would never do it. All the fans understand that now, but when I was just debuted they would be quite upset with that. I’m not someone with no affection or cold. Saying thank you when I’m thankful, I always express my true feelings. I just hate doing aegyo.
Q: What kind of student were you back in the days?
A: I think I tried to be good at everything. That’s why I did well as a student. I ranked 15 in the whole school and I was also a gold-medalist. Though it wasn’t a school that’s too good in terms of academics, I tried my best to do well in whatever they tell me to.
Q: You sound like someone who would always be the class president at school.
A: Wrong. I was only vice-president. (Laugh) I hate being the head. If someone asked me to choose to be a snake’s head or a dragon’s tail, I would say a dragon’s torso. I like being the 2nd, but a strong 2nd. This is my life’s motto.
Q: On KBS2’s <Cool Kiz on the Block> it was revealed that you had surgery on your ears because of wounds due to judo, and you’re naturally handsome as you didn’t get anything done on your face. With that face, you must have been popular when you were little.
A: I was. Among men and women of all ages, everyone. I don’t like being surrounded.
Q: On KBS2’s Drama <Orange Marmalade> you were matched with AOA‘s Seolhyun. Was it burdensome for you to have love scene with a “younger sister” from the same agency?
A: It was a little bit uncomfortable. As she was a sister I’ve watched over since she was young, it was hard to focus on acting as someone who has feelings for her.
Q: I think CNBLUE works restlessly. As it seems like all members have packed schedules, don’t you want to take some rest?
A: I do. It would be great if someone didn’t look for me for a month. I want to try living with nothing to think of. But since I can’t do that, I just have to do my best and enjoy living my life now.
Q: Outside of your celebrity status, when do you think was the most comfortable time for the Lee Jonghyun who is in his 20s?
A: When I was working out, perspiring? That is the most peaceful and most comfortable time.
Q: I heard you’re close with Ailee. You composed and wrote the lyrics for the track <Fill Your Glass> on her album released last September.
A: I like people who are really good at music. As for Ailee, she’s naturally good and her talent is a gift. She’s one of the friends I like and envy. I know her acquintances to begin with, but as I talk about music with her, we become close instantly. She’s a really cool friend.
Q: Don’t you have plan to release solo album?
A: I don’t know when it’ll come out but I’m currently working hard on writing songs.
Q: What a meaningful life. As life lies ahead, what kind of person do you want to be in the future?
A: I want to live in a cool way. Live or die with style. Not the kind of fashion victim, I just want to live a cool life.