KOREAN MUSIC: Lee Hi (Lee Hayi) Updates (9)

Lee Hi's Debut Single "" Unveiled

SBS's "K-pop Star" Season 1 runner-up Lee Hi just released her debut single "" today (Oct. 29 (KST), Oct. 28 (US Time)). The song was created by Choice37 and Lydia Paek, YG's in-house producers, and its lyrics were written by the rapper Masta Wu.  Choice37 also participated in writing Big Bang's "Bad Boy" and G-Dragon's "One of a Kind" and Lydia Paek (of Quest Crew) is a writer of 2NE1's "I Love You" and Park Bom's "Don't Cry."

YG Entertainment, her label/agency, promised that she had completely transformed her music as well as her look, beyond anyone's expectations, and her fans had been eagerly awaiting the release of her song/music video, the genre of which is known to be retro-soul.  And voilĂ !  Here's the music video of her debut single. (Please scroll down to see its English lyrics.)

In an interview he had with Star News yesterday (Oct. 28), YG (Yang Hyunseok) said he had become fascinated with Hi's twisted charm while producing her debut single. "As she's had no dance training ever, her dance moves in her music video will give fresh charm (to all her metamorphoses)," said he. The twist he sees in her is that her voice is really mature for her age (16 (Western age), 17 (Korean age)) yet her cute appearance exactly shows her age. He said, "When she danced to 2NE1's "I Am the Best" on her first "K-pop Star" stage, we the judges all laughed 'cause she was really cute. I saw there was more to her than just her cuteness. Something that is beguiling, as epitomized in her debut single."

Actually, I still remember how YG reacted to Hi's dance: "You danced like you got two left feet but I really like you - your confident look and sassy gestures. You must have been really nervous (but it didn't show)." Let us now watch her first "K-pop Star" stage, which brings a smile to my lips every time I watch it.

Lee Hi sings Jazmine Sullivan's "Bust Your Window" @ 0:44
and dances to 2NE1's :I Am the Best" @ 2:25.
(Aired on 12/11/11)

So how much do you think she's changed?  Do you agree with the direction she's heading in?


Hey, c’mon now!
I said, 1, 2, 3!

Stop kidding yourself by thinking I'm still yours.
I'm not the girl I used to be.
A flower has bloomed at the sound of morning dawning
but why can't you snap out of it?

(Refrain) ## I’m sick and tired of your hypocrisy.
Sloppy liar, ooh! Will you get lost already?
I think I’m going, going crazy, ooh!
I think I’m going, going crazy, ooh!

Don't look so miserable!
Please disappear, far away from me.
No, no, Nananananana!
Don't cry; it's pathetic.
Please forget everything forever
(=Please kiss everything goodbye),  no, no.

Don't worry about me and mind your own business.
I don't need your pity, uh!

I said, 1 and 2 and 3, 4 , ooh!
Time will fix everything.
1 and 2 and 3,  4, ooh!
Game over, game over, ooh!
Game over! ## 

 A girl like me is almost impossible to find.
I'm sometimes sexy and sometimes innocent
and it makes men surrender so childishly.


I'm so hurt.
You seem to have forgotten me already.
Hey baby, please leave me.

I said, 1 and 2 and 3, 4 , ooh!
Time will fix everything.
1 and 2 and 3,  4, ooh!
Game over, game over, ooh!
Game over!

1 and 2 and 3, 4!
1 and 2 and 3, 4!
1 and 2 and 3, 4!
Game over, game over, game over!


Music by Choice 37 & Lydia Paek
Lyrics by Masta Wu
Translation by ONSEMIRO

UPDATE 1: Summary of Two YG Interviews

YG said in today's interview that in her debut single and music video, Hi showed her fans everything she has in her at this point. He didn't even try to sugar coat or hide her weaknesses - she's a clumsy dancer. He didn't even think about making her have dance training. For Lee Hi is a soulful singer and clumsy dancer at the same time and they wanted her fans to take her the way she is.  He said he was proud of her 'cause her song is doing great when she is not a typical K-pop idol star. He said today's K-pop industry is pretty much all about dance music or ballad and the fans are thirsty for a different type of music/singers with new content. He said he really appreciates just how much K-pop fans acknowledge their effort.  (Sources: Star News & Dispatch)

UPDATE 2: Summary of Korean Blogger's Post  

YG & Lee Hi, Match Made in Heaven

Here's my summary of this blog post: The blogger first compared Hi's song and Jimin's and Ayeon's ballad song. He said Jimin and Ayeon made the best possible choice when they chose to sign with JYP 'cause it is the mecca ballad label/agency in S Korea. Comparing the fans' response to each singer's debut song, as of now, Hi's debut can safely deemed most successful of three. Of course, it was Hi's strengths and charms that made it happen. But here, we have to appreciate YG's role and effort 'cause it seems they have prepared everything for her (debut). From her collaboration with Epik High to their marketing efforts to provoke curiosity. But most of all, they had her debut single custom-made to maximize her soulful voice and her vocal ability and style. Especially the part in the middle of the song where she sings with no accompaniment is absolutely something to remember. I think this part is irresistibly captivating.

In short, I think Hi and YG are a match made in Heaven and her voice that's different from Park Bom's will be a great addition to YG's 'cause they have one more singer to feature on the albums of other YG artists.

UPDATE 3: Two Behind-the-Scenes videos Released

Making of the "1,2,3,4" Music Video (English Subtitles)

Album Cover Shoot

UPDATE 4: YG Interviews with OSEN about Hi's stage debut (11/3/2012)

YG said in his interview with OSEN that he had cancelled his planned trip to Los Angeles to help Hi prepare for her stage debut on SBS's Ingigayo, scheduled to air on November 4. He was originally planning to meet Psy he hasn't seen for a while and also watch Big Bang's concert. He revealed he has an exceptional attachment to Hi as if she were his daughter. He said, "Had I gotten married a little earlier, I might have had a daughter her age." "As I said at the K-pop Star finale that she was the number one in my heart, I have strong convictions about her talent," added he.

UPDATE 5: Lee Hi SBS Ingigayo Debut Stage (11/4/2012)

Hi is really a cute, adorable, confident, and great singer! 

UPDATE 6: Lee Hi Wins Mnet's Countdown Award (11/8/2012)

UPDATE 7: JYP & YG on Hi, Jimin, and Ayeon (11/9/2012) (News Link)

JYP said, "When I watched Lee Hi's (music video and stage), I thought YG could call himself tiptop. He produced her song by extracting her essence that is uniquely Hi. Strangely, I adore Hi, Jimin, and Ayeon all, even without thinking about the agencies/labels they signed to. They are all lovely and I'm unconditionally rooting for them."

YG said, "The fans may consider them rivals. But as I once said to Ayeon that I wanted to join her fan club, I still like her. And also, I still remember how Jimin affected the public. I hope you don't consider them competition. Honestly, we couldn't even start competing 'cause JYP had stayed in the Middle East for two months. We consider one another family and just like JYP gave his song to SE7EN, I can always ask for his help."