RM (BTS) fights the world’s bias against K-POP and the dehumanization of idols Soompi

RM (BTS) fights the world’s bias against K-POP and the dehumanization of idols Soompi

RM addressed many issues in a recent interview.

While in Barcelona recently, the head of BTS gave several interviews to the local media, and in particular he discussed the future of BTS after military service with the media. EFE:.

In an interview with El País, he addressed many other issues, including attacking prejudice against KPOP, inciting the dehumanization of artists, and talking about his future.

Selected Pieces.

The country : Is K-POP’s stratospheric success dehumanizing artists?

RM: “You started your career very young in a band. There’s not much time to be an individual, but that’s what K-POP is: Very young people who work very hard at the same time… You can’t generate that energy until you’re in your 20s. You struggle day and night to perfect your choreography, your videos, your music and there is an explosion, a big bang. From the age of 20 to 30, we put all our energy into BTS. You get success, love, influence, power and after that? The root of everything is music… What was the question? »

The country : Does the system dehumanize?

RM: “My agency doesn’t like the way I’m answering that question, because I admit that’s partly the case, and then the reporter throws up his hands and yells, ‘It’s a terrible system, it’s destroying you Youth! But that’s part of what makes it such a special industry. And things have improved a lot, in terms of contracts, money, education. Now there are teachers, psychologists. »

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The country : Korean agencies train their artists for years, you lived with your peers from 16 to 19 years before debuting on BTS in 2013. What do your parents say?

RM: “My mom spent two years telling me, ‘Go back to school, you were so good, go on, go to college, make music a hobby!’ But there was no turning back for me. »

The country : The biggest lesson you learned as a trainee?

RM: “Dancing because I wasn’t able to do it at all. »

The country : And what did you lose as an apprentice?

RM: “University life. »

The country : That cult of youth, perfection and overwork in K-POP… are these Korean cultural traits?

RM: “People in the world don’t understand that. Korea is a country that has been invaded, devastated and split in two. We received help from the IMF and the United Nations. But now the whole world is watching Korea. How is it possible ? Because people work so hard to improve. You’re in France or Britain, countries that have been colonizing others for centuries, and you come to me and say, ‘You’re putting so much pressure on yourself, life in Korea must be so stressful! Yes, that’s how things are done. And that’s part of the charm of K-POP. Of course there are shadows, but anything that happens too quickly and too intensely has side effects. »

The country : What is the biggest prejudice against K-POP?

RM: “That it’s prepackaged. »

The country : What career could you have had if you had grown up differently or in a different country?

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RM: “I often think of the multiverse, and Doctor Strange’s lesson is always the same: your version of the universe is the best there can be, don’t think of others. There is nothing better than being a member of BTS. »

The country : Can you imagine this version?

RM: ” No way. My dream wasn’t to be a K-POP idol. I wanted to be a rapper and before that a poet. »

The country : You say you are jealous of the people you admire. An example ?

RM: “Kendrick Lamar, always. And Pharrell Williams. He lives history. I wish I could do that too, maybe in the future. That’s why I don’t paint: to be jealous of Picasso or Monet would really be too much. »

The country : Tired of the “K” label for Korean music?

RM: “We may be tired of Spotify calling us ‘K-POP,’ but it works. It’s a premium label, the guarantee of quality that our grandparents worked so hard to achieve. »

The country : You went through multiple impersonations, as a teenager you were Runch Randa, then Rap Monster in BTS and finally RM. Have you ever thought about using your real name?

RM: “(laughs) We all have a past, a dark history, as they say. Runch Randa was my nickname in an RPG, then I wanted to be a rap monster, and then I matured… I prefer my name to be as little known as possible. I’m not John Lennon or Paul McCartney, I can walk into a hotel unnoticed and I like that. »

The country : Is it hard to carry such a large army of fans?

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RM: “You can’t walk down a street anywhere without being recognized and the standards you’re held to are high. But you have to be mature and accept it, not say to yourself, “Oh, I just want to be normal!” “. If you want to think of fame as a rock, then it is a rock; but for me, it gave me what I wanted: to have influence as soon as possible and financial freedom to be able to make the music I want , without worrying about the charts… I’m not there yet, 100%, but I’m trying to focus on the noise inside, not the noise outside. »

The country : And how are you doing in your thirties?

RM: “I’ve never experienced anything so confusing. I was the leader of BTS for a decade and it was very stable and fun, always going up. A lot has changed personally and professionally in 2023, I can’t say anything about that. I love myself more when I’m 30 than when I was 20. Now I’ll do my military service for a year and a half, which is very important in the life of every Korean man. After that I will certainly be a different, hopefully better and wiser person. »

Source: elpais