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All About BTS

The K-pop sensation that's taking over the world.

May 15, 2018

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BTS  dropped their seventh studio album and the second album in the Love Yourself series on May 18th, 2018. Fans are glued to the internet with excitment.

If you haven’t been following their meteoric rise to superstardom, here are a few facts about the band and its members to catch you up.

BTS is a seven-member boy band from South Korea. The name is short for “Bangtan Sonyeondan”, which translates to Bulletproof Boy Scouts, but in 2017, the group changed their name to “Beyond The Scene” to reflect their new image. The boys, who are now 20-25 years old in 2018, do more than just rap in Korean, Japanese, and English, sing, and dance in sync. They are also big personalities who practically live on-camera, whether they’re posting a selka (that’s Korean for selfie), competing on a goofy game show, or just going about their daily life followed by a crew of cameras. They even have two web comic series and a video game with characters they designed based on their unique personalities.

The Music

The group debuted with their School series of albums, which included 2 Cool 4 Skool, O!RUL8,2?, and Skool Luv Affair. They were criticized when they first debuted for imitating American culture without understanding it. Their producer took the criticism to heart and sent the boys to Los Angeles on a surprise mission. The boys thought they were making their American debut onstage, but they were really going to a Hip Hop academy where they studied under true rappers and dancers to make their music and dancing more authentic. Their 14-day trip was captured on camera and became the weekly web series "American Hustle Life".

Their next phase was their Dark and Wild stage. They released the singles “Danger” and “War of Hormone”, which became instant hits in South Korea.

They received international recognition for their music with The Most Beautiful Moment in Life, parts 1, 2. The songs became the inspiration for a series of cinematic MVs (music videos) that refer to suicide, depression, and anger, but also celebrate friendship, hope, and support of each other in beautiful, although often hard to understand videos. The videos bring in references to classic film and novels. The messages and symbolism run very deep.

Youtuber Pumking Sora has compiled all of The Most Beautiful Moment in Life MVs in one video, with credit to Big Hit Entertainment.

 

Their third comeback album series, Wings, was their first number one hit in Korea. They received Artist of the Year award at the 2016 MAMAs, a Korean award show. They released their next music video series which explored the nature of truth and existence, and went even deeper into symbolism and literary references.

By the time Love Yourself: Her was released, fans all over the world knew about BTS and were eagerly awaiting its release. They were not disappointed. “DNA” and “Mic Drop” were instant hits, hitting a record-breaking 300 million views of DNA in 24 hours .

The group is so popular, their albums now sell out before they’re even released. A month before the May 18th, 2018 release of Love Yourself: Tear, amazon.com reported they had sold out of pre-order copies.

The official Love Yourself: Tear trailer was released on the official BTS Website.

 

Get to know the members

In Korean culture, age is very important. The oldest is called Hyung and is the most respected, while the youngest is called Maknae and is considered the baby of the group. The members of the group spend almost all of their time together, from their trainee years where they all shared one room until today where they live together in a mansion and all but two members have their own rooms.

The seven members of BTS. V, Suga, Jin, Jungkook, RM, Jimin and J-HopeThe seven members of BTS. V, Suga, Jin, Jungkook, RM, Jimin and J-HopeCourtesy of Getty Images
 

Jin (진), full name Kim Seok-jin (김석진), born December 4, 1992, Vocalist

  • Nicknames: Hyung, Worldwide Handsome, Car Door Guy, the third one from the left
  • Personality type: Likes cooking, eating, and being handsome
  • Life before BTS: Was discovered as an acting student on the street by a producer

Suga (슈가), full name Min Yoon-gi (민윤기), born March 9, 1993, Rapper

  • Nicknames: Agust D (his solo rapper name), Motionless Min, Grandpa, Genius
  • Personality type: Likes quiet places, sleeping, playing piano, and writing songs
  • Life before BTS: Was an underground rapper

J-Hope (제이홉), full name Jung Ho-seok (정호석), born February 18, 1994, Rapper, Singer, Dancer

  • Nicknames: Hobi, Hoshiki, Beagle (someone who is full of energy like a puppy)
  • Personality type: Supportive, friendly, and likes reading
  • Life before BTS: Had a contract with JYP before he joined Big Hit, and was a member of a street dance crew called Neuron.

RM, full name Kim Nam-joon (김남준), born September 12, 1994, Rapper, Leader

  • Nicknames: Rap Monser, Rapmon, God of Destruction, Namjoon
  • Personality type: Intellectual with a very high IQ (148), he likes to read, write music, and study different cultures.
  • Life before BTS: Was an underground rapper called Runch Randa. Bang Si-Hyuk discovered him and was inspired to start BTS.

Jimin (지민), full name Park Ji-min (박지민), born October 13, 1995, Dancer, Singer

  • Nicknames: Bagel (for his “chocolate abs” and glamorous face)
  • Personality type: Dedicated to diet and exercise, he is teased by the others for being the shortest member.
  • Life before BTS: Was a dance student at an arts high school with V before auditioning.

V (뷔), full name Kim Tae-hyung (김태형), born December 30, 1995

  • Nicknames: 4D, Tae-tae, Blank Tae
  • Personality type: 4D means unique and out of this world. V likes to seek out things that are unusual. He also plays the saxophone.
  • Life before BTS: V comes from a farming family and moved to the city to study dance at a performing arts high school.

Jungkook (정국), full name Jeon Jung-kook (전정국), born September 1, 1997

  • Nicknames: Jungkookie, Golden Maknae,
  • Personality type: Good at everything he tries, including all sports and art, Jungkook is very competitive but good-natured.
  • Life before BTS: After his audition for Superstar K (similar to American Idol in Korea), he was scouted by all the major K-pop producers.

The future is bright for these groundbreaking idolsThe future is bright for these groundbreaking idolsCourtesy of Big Hit Entertainment

The story behind the band

BTS had their big debut in 2013 with their School series. The group was started by Bang Si-Hyuk, also known as Hitman Bang, a producer who wanted to start a band based on substance and the true personalities of the artists in the group. This is a big departure from most K-pop groups who are completely manufactured, with the members going through complete transformations and plastic surgery to fit the mold of ideal K-pop stars.

BTS members, on the other hand, are encouraged to celebrate their individuality, write and produce their own songs and videos, and even have solo careers outside the group. Hitman Bang discovered Rapmon when he was part of the underground rap scene. His rapper name was Runch Randa. Bang paired him with another rapper and prepared to launch BTS as a rap duo. They call themselves "bulletproof" because their mission is not to let the pressures or the criticism of the world get to them. Their message is that they feel comfortable being themselves no matter what, and they hope their fans will follow in their footsepts. While the group changed from a rap duo to a seven member idol pop boy band during the trainee years, this strong message of confidence and independence remained and is a big part of why they are so popular among young people everywhere.

Promotional photos for the release of Love Yourself: Tear showcase each member's personal stylePromotional photos for the release of Love Yourself: Tear showcase each member's personal styleCourtesy of Big Hit Entertainment via Bangtan_Official Facebook

BTS Official Pages

Follow these sites for up-to-date, official information on all things BTS

BTS Official Website: http://bts.ibighit.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/bts_twt
Blog: btsblog.ibighit.com (in Korean)
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/BANGTANTV
VLive official videos: http://channels.vlive.tv/FE619/video

Have Your Say

BTS’ official fanbase is called ARMY, which is short for Adorable Representative MC for Youth. Are you ARMY? Do you have a bias (favorite member)? What do you like best about BTS — the music, the moves, or the adorable members? Share your love for BTS in the comments below!