All members of BTS launch personal Instagram accounts

Members of K-pop boyband BTS have officially joined Instagram with individual accounts.

On December 6, all members of the septet – comprising RM, Jin, Suga, J-Hope, V, Jimin and Jungkook – shared their first posts on their respective new Instagram accounts. In years past, the group’s members had shared personal images through the @BTS_twt Twitter account or the community app Weverse.

Since the accounts were launched, each member of the group has amassed over 16million followers. V currently has the most, with over 18million followers, at time of writing. Notably, commenting access has been limited on the all of the members’ posts.

Advertisement

The launch of their Instagram accounts also comes hot on the heels of their hiatus announcement. According to their label Big Hit Music, the septet will go on an “extended period of rest” for the first time since 2019.

“The period of rest will produce the members of BTS… a chance to get re-inspired and recharge with creative energy,” Big Hit said in its statement. “It will also be the first time for them since their debut [in 2013 where they will get] to spend the holiday season with their families.”

The group recently concluded their ‘Permission To Dance On Stage’ concerts at the SoFi Stadium, which became the biggest single venue concert engagement by any act in almost a decade. The four-night show sold 214,000 tickets and grossed US$33.3million (£25million), according to data from Billboard.

In related news, member Jin commemorated his 29th birthday with a new solo song titled ‘Super Tuna’. The singer co-produced the upbeat trot song with frequent SEVENTEEN collaborator Bumzu, who had also contributed background vocals.

Images & transcripts are copyright to their respected owners.

STAYC say they were initially “confused” by their signature catchphrase

Rising K-pop girl group STAYC have opened up about how they had initially misunderstood their catchphrase.

In a recent interview with South China Morning Post, the girl group shared that they “didn’t know” what their signature tagline meant. The members revealed that they were initially confused by their catchphrase, “STAYC girls, it’s going down”, which they usually say at the beginning of each of their songs.

“When we heard [the catchphrase], we were all confused. Isn’t going down a bad thing? We want to go up in our career,” confessed Sumin, the group’s leader. “But now we know it means that we’re going to start something amazing, so we feel confident now when we say the phrase.”

Advertisement

“We were so confused and didn’t know what it meant,” added main vocalist Yoon. “Was it like people will watch us? ‘Stay and see?’ But then we found out what it means and we love it.”

Elsewhere during the interview, STAYC also spoke about their goals as artists to inspire others. “I’m happy that we can show that we can have a career where, even if you’re young, you can work hard for your dream,” said rapper J, also the group’s youngest member.

“I hope we can inspire others that it’s OK to pursue dreams that you have since being young – you don’t need to give up those youthful desires,” she added. “Obviously, there are things we’ve given up to pursue this career. But because I get so much happiness from what I’m doing now, I think it’s OK.”

Last month, it was revealed that STAYC had been nominated for ‘Best New Female Artist’ and ‘Best Dance Performance (Female Group)’ at the upcoming Mnet Asian Music Awards. They had received the latter nomination for their April breakout single ‘ASAP’, which had peaked at Number Nine on the Gaon Digital Chart.

Images & transcripts are copyright to their respected owners.

BTS’ ‘Permission To Dance On Stage’ gigs among best-selling of all time

BTS continue to break records as their recent ‘Permission To Dance On Stage’ Los Angeles residency has achieved the biggest single venue concert engagement by any act in almost a decade.

According to Billboard, the four-night stand at Los Angeles’ So-Fi Stadium – which took place November 27-28 and December 1-2 – sold 214,000 tickets and grossed $33.3million (£25million).

This figure marks the biggest box office draw at a single venue since Roger Waters earned $38million (£28.7million) over nine shows at Estadio River Plate in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 2012.

Advertisement

The US hasn’t seen a single venue box office total that big since Bruce Springsteen put on a 10-show run at New Jersey’s Giants Stadium in 2003.

Billboard‘s BoxScore lists BTS’ ‘Permission To Dance On Stage’ as the sixth largest since reporting began over 30 years ago.

The five engagements ahead of BTS were each at least twice as long as BTS’ four-show run. Take That sits in the top two spots with eight-date stretches at London’s Wembley Stadium and Manchester’s Etihad Stadium in 2011.

BTS concert Permission To Dance On Stage
BTS. CREDIT: BigHit Music

The previously mentioned Springsteen and Waters shows ran for 10 and nine shows, respectively. Meanwhile, the Spice Girls boast the biggest-grossing arena engagement in Boxscore archives, via 17 gigs at the O2 Arena in 2007-08, just out-earning BTS’ recent run with $33.8million (£25.5million).

The K-pop powerhouses yesterday (December 4) released a “holiday remix” of their chart-topping English single ‘Butter’.

Advertisement

The latest remix is now the fifth version of the original song, which was first released in May this year. It follows the “Hotter”, “Cooler” and “Sweeter” remixes as well as one that featured a guest verse from American rapper Megan Thee Stallion.

Meanwhile, three members of BTS have sold some of their shares of HYBE for over $8million.

According to Bloomberg, members J-Hope, Jin and RM recently sold a combined 31,986 shares of HYBE stock, which had netted the trio a total of approximately $8.4million per regulatory filings.

Images & transcripts are copyright to their respected owners.

BTS members RM, Jin and J-Hope sell HYBE stock worth over $8million

Three members of K-pop powerhouse boyband BTS have sold some of their shares of HYBE for over US$8million.

According to Bloomberg, BTS members J-Hope, Jin and RM recently sold a combined 31,986 shares of HYBE stock, which had netted the trio a total of approximately US$8.4million per regulatory filings.

The sale of the shares took place between October 13 and November 9, a week before stock in the entertainment company had peaked at all-time-high on November 16. At the time, the price was double of the company’s initial public offering (IPO) price from October 2020.

Advertisement

Before the IPO, HYBE founder Bang Si-hyuk had reportedly given 478,695 shares – a 1.41% stake in the company that is now worth approximately US$165million – to the group’s seven members, split evenly, per Bloomberg. 

Jin (real name Kim Seok-jin) sold 16,000 shares worth US$4.1million, J-Hope (real name Jung Ho-seok) unloaded 5,601 shares for US$1.57milion, while RM (Kim Nam-joon) sold 10,385 shares in exchange for US$2.75million.

Bloomberg also claimed that all seven BTS members are considering to cash in “as much earnings as possible” before their pending mandatory military conscription begins. It’s worth noting that the group’s oldest member Jin, who turns 29 on Saturday (December 4), has been granted a deference for his military service and is now slated to enlist in late 2022.

Meanwhile, BTS are reportedly unable to attend this year’s Mnet Asian Music Awards (MAMA) ceremony, due to a newly-implemented quarantine order enacted by South Korea that requires all inbound travelers to serve a self-isolation period of 10 days.

Images & transcripts are copyright to their respected owners.

New K-pop idol stirs controversy over family’s alleged ties to 2014 Thai political crisis

A new K-pop idol has become embroiled in controversy following allegations that her family allegedly had ties to the 2014 Thai political crisis.

Sitala, a member of the upcoming K-pop girl group H1-KEY, which are slated to debut on January 5, has caused a stir online over her family’s alleged involvement in the 2014 political crisis in Thailand.

According to both The Korea Times and The Bangkok Post, Sitala’s father was late Thai actor and filmmaker Sarunyu Wongkrachang, who had allegedly been a supporter of the People’s Democratic Reform Committee, which played a key role in the 2014 Thai political crisis. He had also later reportedly produced and released a propaganda film in support of the Thai military government, per The Korea Times. 

Advertisement

The news of Sitala’s upcoming debut as a K-pop idol has since garnered uproar online from Kpop fans and Thai citizens alike on Twitter, with many citing a self-written profile from the singer that her “role model” was her father.

“She is totally part of it all,” one Thai Twitter user wrote in protest. “Why [does] she has such a privilege to be an artist in a democratic country after [ruining] our freedom & rights?”

Other have also voiced similar criticisms towards the group’s agency, Grandline Group (GLG) and Sitala across social media, calling for her to be removed from H1-KEY. GLG has yet to respond to the allegations as of writing.

However, others have also called for calm amid the controversy. Notable Thai activist Nattha Mahatthana has spoken out against the online uproar, saying that the singer deserves freedom of expression and should be responsible for their own actions, per The Bangkok Post.

Advertisement

H1-KEY are the first K-pop act from the Grandline Group, which is a subsidiary of popular K-hiphop label Grandline Entertainment. The latter is home to acts like Stella Jang, Geeks and more.

Images & transcripts are copyright to their respected owners.