Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Tasty Crushie Tuesday: KPop Prince, Se7en


Choi DongWook (Korean: 최동욱, 崔東昱; born November 9, 1984), better known by his stage name Se7en, is a South Korean singer from YG Entertainment. He has also advanced into Japan, China and the United States.

* More info and photos after break...

Career

2003: Debut

He began training under the management agency YG Entertainment at the age of fifteen. After four years of training in voice and dance, he made his debut in 2003 with "Come Back To Me". He released his debut album Just Listen on March 8, 2003. Later that year, he received the Best Newcomer Award from MNET. MNET described Se7en as a super rookie who could only stand against Rain, although these two were friends back in their high school years, alongside Boom.

2007–2009: American debut

Se7en and the YG Family (including Big Bang, 2NE1, Jinusean, Gummy, PSY and Tablo) made an appearance on the now defunct MTV K, followed by three concerts in Washington DC, New York City, and Los Angeles, to celebrate YG Family's 10th Anniversary and to help promote Se7en before his American debut. The MTV K documentary aired on December 11, 2006.

Se7en is a featured guest on Amerie's Take Control on her album, Because I Love It, which was released in May 2007. This remix is available on Asian versions of the album.

Yang Hyun Suk, (CEO of YG Entertainment) had announced that Fabolous would be featured in Se7en 's first U.S. single. However, due to a leak in March 2007 of his US debut song, "This is My Year" featuring Fabolous, which was produced by Rich Harrison and Lionell Davis, on Myspace and YouTube, this caused some changes in Se7en's U.S. debut.

Se7en worked with former CEO of LaFace Records, Mark Shimmel and Grammy-winner Rich Harrison and Richcraft producer Lionell Davis on his first American album. A new production team called Noize Trip, who produced The Black Eyed Peas' Disco Club also contributed some work.

YG Entertainment and Se7en also took necessary steps to ensure his debut such as trademarking his name in America.

Se7en began promoting his English songs through a U.S. album preview party tour with his first stop at the Hiro Ballroom in New York City on March 14, 2008 (produced by Swerve Media and Base NYC). Three of his U.S. album tracks were played at this preview party. Verizon Wireless sponsored his preview parties and autograph signings for a charitable cause.

On March 10, Se7en 's first single "Girls" featuring Lil' Kim was released through digital stores such as iTunes and Amazon MP3. The music video for "Girls" was also released on Myspace that same day. Se7en 's "Girls" music video premiered on BET 106 & Park on June 2, 2009.

2010: Korean comeback

Se7en made an official comeback in Korea after a 3-year long hiatus on July 31, 2010 with his 1st mini-album "Digital Bounce." The album consisted of 6 songs including a song from his American debut titled 'Money Can't Buy Me Love'. His 2nd track 'Digital Bounce' featured the rapping skills of Big Bang's T.O.P. Se7en began his follow up promotions in October with the song 'I'm Going Crazy' which featured his longtime girlfriend Park Han-byul as the main actress in the music video. Throughout his comeback, Se7en attended many variety shows and even featured in fellow labelmate 2NE1's hit reality show 2NE1TV, where he described his hardships in America and his hiatus. Se7en ended his promotions on the October 30, 2010.

2011: Japanese comeback

Se7en has recently revealed, by means of 2NE1's Nolza Japan Concert, that he is planning a comeback in Japan after his four-year hiatus since 2007. He has revealed that this album will have a Pop concept and that his first official fanmeet will be on November 6 of this year. Se7en has also revealed that he will be releasing a digital single named 'Angel' in November of this year, and will release a full Japanese album alongside a Korean album in January 2012.

Se7en released his 2nd mini-album on February 1, 2012 with title track "When I Can't Sing." The track was produced by JYP and written by JYP making it the first ever official collaboration between YG Entertainment and JYP Entertainment.

2013–present: Military service

On March 19, 2013 Se7en enlist for his mandatory military service at the 306 Reserve in Uijeongbu, Gyeonggi Province for five weeks of basic training followed by 21 months as an active-duty soldier. On that same day, YG Entertainment released Se7en's music video "THANK U (고마워)".

Artistry

Acting career

Se7en accepted the lead role for the Korean drama Goong S, a spinoff of the drama Goong. The first episode of Goong S premiered on January 10, 2007 on MBC; the average nationwide rating for the entire series was 9.7%. Goong S was the most searched and rewatched drama online; it ranked higher than its competition: KBS2 Dalja's Spring and SBS Surgeon Bong Dal Hee. The drama has also gained a wide variety of support from international fans in the U.S., Thailand, Malaysia, Brazil, Australia, and Singapore.

Se7en has stated an intention to continue acting in the near future. Se7en had said that even though the drama was not of much of a success, he does not ever regret accepting the role of his character in the drama. It even helped Se7en to sing with more emotion during performances. He also mentioned that he was thankful to have a chance to work with the drama crew and take his career to a new level by acting.

Voice

Se7en's vocal range can be classified in the tenor range. His voice can be described as smooth, mellow, and sometimes mildly abrasive (see vocal belting) when songs, such as "Crazy," "La La La," "Hikari" and "I Know," call for it. He often sings with a vibrato in his voice that American R&B singers are known for, and also incorporates beatboxing into many of his songs such as "Passion." Se7en maintains an adamant belief that he should not lipsync during his live performances.

Personal life

In June 2009, Se7en acknowledged on his website that he and actress Park Han-byul had been in a relationship for seven years, with the couple having first met when they were seniors in high school. Se7en had previously denied rumours that they were a couple in order to protect Park's privacy and let the relationship grow naturally. Now they have been dating for more than 10 years. Han-byul was featured in Se7en's music video for his song "I'm Going Crazy".

Controversies

Se7en is currently under investigation for allegedly visiting a massage parlour, famous for prostitution, whilst on military duty on June 22, 2013 alongside Sangchu of Mighty Mouth. It was decided that they broke curfew trying to get massages. They allegedly visited several parlors that were closed before they found one that was open late. They left as soon as they realized that is a parlor for prostitution. Both received ten days in military jail for their actions. At the same time, five other celebrity recruits were sentenced to 4 days military jail for possessing cellphones, and one was sentenced to 10 days probation for leaving to watch a movie after hours. The incident caused a severe backlash, & caused the Ministry of Defense to abolish the Celebrity Soldier unit.

Discography

Albums

2003: Just Listen
2004: Must Listen
2006: 24/SE7EN
2006: Must Listen
2006: First Se7en
2006: Se7olution
2010: Digital Bounce
2012: 2nd Mini album
2012: WHEN I CANT SING

Tours

'FIRST SE7EN' JAPAN YOYOGI CONCERT (2006)
747 LIVE CONCERT (2007)
'Are U ready?' JAPAN TOUR CONCERT (2007)
SE7EN 10TH ANNIVERSARY TALK CONCERT – 'THANK U' (2013)

Television

2007 Goong S (as Kang Hoo/Lee Hoo)
2010 Running Man (Ep 6)
2010 Happy Together
2010 Strong Heart
2012 Strong Heart



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