23rd, 24th solo concert..next year debut 10th anniversary album
Shinhwa’s Lee Min Woo (32) says he cannot forget how touched he was during Shinhwa’s debut 14th anniversary concert, that was held at Olympic Park Gymnastics Stadium last March.
Because it was immediately after he completed his military service and a stage that Shinhwa stood on after 4 years.
Lee Min Woo, whom I met in a cafe in Apgujeong recently, said “What I missed the most during my military service was going up on stage and holding a mic,” adding “At that time when I held the mic and sang the first line, my heart was pounding. It felt like my wish was fulfilled. That seems to be a sign that I’m addicted to the stage” and smiled.
He, who spent the whole of this year promoting as Shinhwa, will be having his “M Lee Min Woo Christmas Concert – Original” on the 23rd and 24th at Yonsei University’s auditorium. It is his first solo stage in 2 years and 10 months following his 2010 solo concert and also the first solo concert he is holding after completing his military service.
“It’s amazing that I feel a different sense of nervousness as compared to when I hold the mic as Shinhwa. I can’t predict how I would feel but probably, as I go up onstage, it’ll be overwhelming? I felt like I was on cloud nine while preparing for the concert.”
This concert sold out all 4000 seats for a 2 day concert within 2 minutes after ticket sales opened. Since 2003, under the name of “M”, he has released up to 4.5 album, while showing his self-composed songs, and even in Shinhwa, he is also picked as the number 1 in performance, all of which is thanks to the fans anticipation.
Lee Min Woo said, “In this concert I’ll be showing “M’s” original side”, introducing that “I’ll be working with a band for this concert too, just like my first solo concert. I’ve upgraded the sound by adding in brass players. From a dynamic stage with strong beats of African-American music to rock, funky soul, etc, it’ll be an extremely fun stage where various genres will be shown.”
The point of this concert, which he personally participated in directing, is its composition, which gives a sense of dynamism, and a natural flow.
“It’ll be filled with my songs, such as ‘The M Style’, ‘Minnovation’, ‘Bump!!!’ etc. Initially I was going to be showing my performance techniques but after setting a theme, it became a musical-like stage with videos and a story. After returning to the original me, which is emphasized by a performance that is unique to me, there’ll be a carol medley to create a white christmas atmosphere.”
The result that Shinhwa has shown this year plays a big part behind the confidence that Lee Min Woo has with coming back as a solo artist.
He said, “80,000 copies of Shinhwa’s 14th anniversary album was sold and our domestic concert and even the Asia Tour sold out too”, adding “Even though Shin Hye Sung injured his leg during the concert, whatever we had prepared within the overall flow managed to be completed successfully. It was a year that relieved the pressure and worries we had regarding our comeback. Also, Shinhwa, which has been together for 14 years with its initial members, seems to have received recognition from the general public and hoobae groups so it was meaningful.”
He says that, through this promotions, the members also gained a feeling of ease and responsibility.
“The responsibility that we feel towards maintaining the team’s brand has become stronger. When one member has difficulties, the remaining members have worked hard with helping to solve that member’s problem together. Even during our break, we had gathered on March 24, our debut date, and held a party only for us, which of course strengthened our unity. Because times like that existed, now all the members cannot betray this group called Shinhwa. That, of course means, we ourselves think ‘we’re kinda cool isn’t it.’” Haha.”
In JTBC’s variety program “Shinhwa Broadcast”, which the members have staked the team’s name on, their closeness remains intact and can be seen throughout. Shin Hye Sung, who is usually shy, Eric, who has won on charisma, Kim Dong Wan, who had been serious, etc; as the members let themselves down and destroy their image, they have given fans a fresh sense of shock.
Lee Min Woo said, “Even though I too showed a charismatic side on stage, in ‘Shinhwa Broadcast’, my image is that of a fool,” further explaining that “Also, each of us has gotten a fixed character, such as ‘Shin-brief’ for Shin Hye Sung who always does the briefing, and ‘Dong-gumong(black hole)’ for Kim Dong Wan, through his lame jokes. Even though initially we were worried because there was no MC and we were hosting it ourselves, it ended up becoming comfortably showing ourselves as it is, without having to be conscious of others.”
“Not too long ago, ‘Shinhwa Broadcast’ had a get-together, and Eric said ‘Lee Min Woo is the most accommodating now’. Actually, I’m very ambitious and stubborn. But while having promotions this time round, I threw away my desires. And it became that I was able to gather people’s opinions and even when completing our schedules, as compared to thinking of it as work, it was more a feeling of playing happily. Each member has gained a lot.”
Next year is a special year to both Shinhwa and Lee Min Woo. It’s Shinhwa’s 15th anniversary, and Lee Min Woo’s 10th anniversary since his solo debut.
He said, “Next March, in accordance with Shinhwa’s 15th anniversary, we’re planning for an album and an Asia Tour, so I’ll be spending the first half of the year as Shinhwa,” emphasizing “The memories we have of us rolling around and fighting in the dorm during the times when we debuted as Shinhwa under SM Entertainment is our driving force. It is something I’d want to experience again even if I have to pay for it. Now, Shinhwa has to work even harder, in order to go pass descriptions such as “Ancestor of Idols”, “Original Idols”, and become a group people will recall when asked for a group that represents South Korea.”
Following that, he said he expects to release his solo 10th anniversary album in the second half of the year. In his 10th anniversary album, as compared to the focus being on flashy dance songs broken up by beats, he expects it to contain songs that are groovy and showcase his vocals, as fitting with his own age.
“I normally look at the Billboard charts out of habit, and work hard to try finding the trend from there. Of course I like Jeff Burnett and Maroon 5. Domestically, I love “See Through”, which was composed by Primary, a lot. Gradually, as compared to electronic sound, I’m liking music where real pianos, guitars, basses are used. Although I don’t know how my thinking will change next year, as compared to matching with my ‘feel’, I’ll be showing music where I am in tune with the general public.”
source: yonhap news
cr: rj1905 tumblr