[TRANSLATION] Sports Donga Interview: Hong Jinyoung “Hurtful Comments… It Hurt for Exactly Two Days” (May 2018)

If there are stars who are difficult to approach even though they are popular, there are also stars who you’re happy to greet and hold hands with as if you’ve known for them for a long time even though it’s your first time meeting them. There’s no need to explain which side singer Hong Jinyoung (33) falls on. From continuous new songs, event stages she restlessly stands on all over the country and to TV entertainment programs she’s all over where she shows her charms. Hong Jinyoung, who seems like she lives her life split up by the minute, wants to enjoy her daily life and says “I never want to settle”.

For ‘conversations with female journalists’, she sat oppositely me despite a busy schedule and even on that day, it was after she had finished an event at a department store in Seoul. After the interview, she headed to Daejeon. When I asked her if she is tired, she said “When I’m at least a year younger, when I still have passion left, I want to attempt even more.” Along with her unique eye smile. I met Hong Jinyoung, the person with relentless energy and whatever she does becomes explosive.

It seems you’re really busy.
“When I look back, I ran to this point without even breathing. But now that I’m a year older, I’m more relaxed. I find passing time to be really regrettable. Even if I fail, it becomes experience, and that’s how I can plan a better future so I move busily.”

Does your popularity feel real?
“These days, wherever I go, elder ladies are especially fond of me. I just came from a department store event and as soon as they see me, they kiss me. And pat my butt. At festivals where people in their 20s and 30s gather, a different reaction comes out. That’s why I sing. Before there were so many people who were confused if my name was Hong Jinkyung or Hong Jinyoung.”

Tell us your tips for positive energy.
“I laugh a lot. When I read comments these days, I’ve seen reactions that say ‘Hong Jinyoung’s laughing is forced’. But I’m the same person, in the past or now. What has changed? Is it because I got injections? Haha! I tend to laugh furrowing my forehead and the doctor at the skin clinic I frequent told me those wrinkles can’t be ironed out with injections, so I’ll need to live with it for the rest of my life.”

It seems you tend to read comments often.
“Mmm… That’s true. Hahaha! I was recently really hurt. It’s my first time feeling like this. I couldn’t think straight for two days. Up to now, I just let things like this go and laughed them off, but now they prick my heart. I even saw comments that said ‘She’s abusing her power’. I was so upset. I cried while eating curry, and I even teared up while washing my face. I didn’t have anywhere to explain myself, so I had to withstand it alone.”

Source of Hong Jinyoung’s aches came from her appearance on MBC entertainment program ‘Omniscient Interfering View’. It honestly showed her close appearance with her manager who she spends most of her days with but a portion of the viewers saw it and were not happy. Their reason was that it was ‘too much’.

“When I was a rookie, I spoke strongly and acted over the top. I needed to stand out. That’s how you don’t get edited out of broadcasts. There were many times when I would record for hours and only be shown on screen once or twice smiling and saying hello. When I would speak strongly, I would be shown on screen more. I needed to live too. Since then, there have been comments saying ‘Hong Jinyoung is venomous’.”

As time passes, and as she gains experience, Hong Jinyoung is finding her boundaries. Her thoughts are to “Show exactly who I am, and don’t create something over the top”. Even the recent heartaches she experienced, she didn’t step out of her house for two days and endured it alone to be able to shake it off.

Hong Jinyoung debuted in a girl group but wasn’t able to receive a lot of attention. She didn’t get discouraged and stepped onto the path of trot, a choice that can’t have been easy for a singer in her 20s, and became the ‘current trend’. ‘Love Battery’ which she released in 2009 was the start of her popularity. She strengthened ‘youthful trot’ that was created by Jang Yoonjung and Park Hyunbin and expanded her areas of activity. She appears on all kinds of entertainment programs, from reality, observation to variety. Her recently released song ‘Good Bye’ is popular too. Last year, comedian Kim Youngchul sang ‘Ring Ring’, a song she composed and wrote, and it became huge.

Hong Jinyoung said, “I want to show that you can do a wide range of activities even in the genre of trot” and “Like how I realized trot can be young while watching (Jang) Yoonjung unnie and (Park) Hyunbin oppa, I want junior singers to look at me and help them expand their outlook with trot”.

Are you eyeing the royalties from ‘Ring Ring’?
“Everyone said it’s huge so I really thought that was the case. I’m not chasing money but since I’m human, I thought perhaps? People around me talked about royalties a lot so I anticipated it a bit. When I look at my bank account, that’s not the case.”

Reactions to ‘I Kicked My Luck Off’ sung by Kang Hodong was good too. Do you have more songs you’ve composed and wrote?
“I have two songs left. One song is a ‘bbong’ (trot) ballad and the other is a typical ballad. A ballad singer asked me to give it to them so I’m going to. It’s still a secret!”

When you open your eyes in the morning, what do you do first?
“When I wake up, I eat breakfast. Recently after going through hardships, I wanted to live so I diligently ate breakfast. Haha! These days, it’s performance season. I go to corporate events, university festivals and regional festivals. I stand on stage, indoors and outdoors. My May schedule was mostly filled up at the beginning of the year.”

The description ‘Queen of Events’ suits you well.
“It puts me in a good mood to hear that. It means I’ve become symbolic of something. When I go to performance venues, I always remind myself, ‘Don’t lose your intentions’. When I wanted to be a singer, I was desperate. Because I wanted to stand on stage. So when I stand on stage, I try to be devoted. I know very well that this situation can’t go on for a long time. So when there are places that seek me out and want me there, I want to go to one more place.”

Another area where you can sense Hong Jinyoung’s popularity is advertising. She is the advertising model for 8 brands, including cosmetics and chicken. Recently, she added karaoke machine advertising to her roster. Hong Jinyoung said, “Starting this year, I’ve had big luck. Even when you say you got lucky, your life is what you make of it”.

You must think of marriage nowadays.
“My parents do get requests often. I don’t like meeting artificially. (Showing the ring she’s wearing on her index finger) I wear this ring every day. I’ve seen comments that say I must have a boyfriend, but I really don’t. I went to the department store and thought it was pretty so I bought it. Honestly, there are people who confess to me that they like me. But I want to date when my heart is more relaxed.”

How do you maintain your health?
“I eat red ginseng but as expected, meat is the best. I love meat. When I look at my monthly card bill, I spend the most money on meat. I like meat with a bit of skin on it like Jeju whole pig. I’m wondering what it would be like if I opened a meat restaurant.”

Hong Jinyoung’s manager who was listening to her words beside her shook his head saying “I wish you wouldn’t”. His gaze wanted her to stop creating so much work. It’s the manager who appeared on ‘Omniscient Interfering View’ with her. Off-camera, the two people seemed to have deep confidence in one another as partners who work together.

What kind of a person is Hong Jinyoung viewed from Hong Jinyoung’s perspective?
“A person who doesn’t get tired! After a performance, I’m tired and exhausted. But when I go to a different performance venue, I get my strength from somewhere. When I go home dragging my tired body and rest for a little bit, I get strength again. I’m the person who doesn’t want to go to sleep early, so I resist and fall asleep passed out.”


Hong Jinyoung is a ‘girl boss’ who has an entrepreneurial streak. She’s also a woman of ‘action’ who puts the ‘picture’ she envisioned in her head straight into action. Although she quietly closed down the internet shopping mall that she started with her sister 2 years ago because it was difficult to maintain, she’s not afraid of failure and she’s endlessly thinking of businesses daily thinking ‘What should I try this time?’.

Currently, the business item that she’s planning is a ‘photo app’. She really likes to take photos so there aren’t any photo-related applications she hasn’t used. However, none of it was able to meet Hong Jinyoung’s standards. She made her own thinking that it would be good to create an app that combined all of the best parts of various apps. The photo app that Hong Jinyoung created will be pay-to-use and release in June. She learned coding with the help of an acquaintance so she is planning to use the profits for a good cause.

She also has plans for a different business. She’s thinking of fostering a male trot singer with the mind of a singer and a producer. She wants to call it ‘Hong-dition!’ (Hong Jinyoung + audition). “Whatever I do, I started with the thought of wanting to do it in a fun way. Like the ‘Ring Ring’ contest that Heo Kyunghwan and Kim Youngchul oppa did, I want to hold an audition over SNS. For that friend, I’m planning to create a song and a debut stage. I want to communicate the know-hows that I learned first-hand and experienced to a hoobae.”

This plan won’t end with a one-off and she wants to hold it every year so next year she’s planning to create a ‘3-member trot group’.

Source of new ideas come from Hong Jinyoung’s personality. Since her life philosophy is ‘In a fun way, no matter what’, various ideas come to mind like a spring that will never go dry.

“It’s regrettable to live life repeatedly like a turning wheel. I want to work while attempting different things, and even if I fail, I won’t give up. When I’m older and I look back on my past, I want to have the satisfaction of ‘I really lived my life to the fullest’.”

Source: Part 1 / Part 2


[TRANSLATION] Star News Hanbok Interview: Hong Jinyoung “Marriage? My Parents Tell Me To Do It When The Time Is Right” (February 2018)

“This lunar New Year, listen to my new song and spend your way back to your hometown in an exciting way!”

Singer Hong Jinyoung (34)’s eye smile remained the same. Hong Jinyoung, who met up with Star News prior to the lunar New Year holidays, had well wishes for fans while promoting for her new song ‘Good Bye’, the first song she released in a year.

Hong Jinyoung is planning to spend this lunar New Year holiday resting and also promoting her new song. On New Years Day, she will rest spending time with her parents who are coming from her hometown, and the rest of her holidays will be spent preparing for music broadcast stages and focusing on work related to her new song. 

“Typically, the holidays are a ‘high season’ for me. Haha. This time, I think I will need to have more time resting. Soon, university orientations will approach and in the spring season, various events are approaching. After the lunar New Year holidays, I have to work diligently so I’m trying to conserve my stamina.”

Hong Jinyoung spoke about her parents’ reactions to ‘Good Bye’.

“From the time my parents heard the demo version of ‘Good Bye’, they liked it and cheered me on a lot. They are always a big source of strength. My parents always tell me ‘You have to focus on your health’ as my life is busy.”

One of the questions often heard during the holidays is ‘marriage’ and we asked if her parents mention it.

“Marriage? My parents don’t say ‘Hurry up and get married’ yet and they tell me ‘Get married when the time is right’. Truthfully for me, perhaps it’s because I’m busy with work, I’m not eager about marriage.” 

In regards to her ideal type, Hong Jinyoung responded “I hope they have a comfortable appearance looks-wise and I hope they can be a comfortable person when they are with me” and “I don’t wish for a lot of things. It doesn’t matter if they work in a similar field as me, I just want a person I can lean on”. Hong Jinyoung added while laughing, “I will date first and if I do get married, I will tell you personally”. 

On the 7th, Hong Jinyoung resumed her activities as a trot singer through her new song ‘Good Bye’, her first release in a year. ‘Good Bye’ is a trot number in a retro genre. It has a peculiarly familiar melody and an addictive chorus, completing a trendy trot song that’s unique to Hong Jinyoung. Regarding this song, Hong Jinyoung confidently revealed, “This is a song created with the essence of my hit songs ‘Love Battery’ and ‘Cheer Up’”. 

“Personally, ‘Good Bye’ is a song that I’d like to give a perfect score of 100 out of 100. While recording, the most difficult part was the choreography. There’s a lot of bending technique in the song, so there are a lot of choreography where the body naturally twists. I think ‘Good Bye’ is a song that contains many emotions. The point is sad lyrics contained within an exciting melody. You will feel an deep lingering image.”

‘Good Bye’ received attention as the first trot song that popular lyricist Kim Eana wrote. With regards to her teamwork with Kim Eana, Hong Jinyoung revealed, “I heard unnie wrote the lyrics with my image in mind. I think it suits me well” and “If there is an opportunity next time, I definitely want to work with her again.”

Through 2009’s ‘Love Battery’, Hong Jinyoung has received a lot of love as a new generation trot singer and this year is her 10th year of solo activities. Hong Jinyoung revealed her honest thoughts on having had a lot of popularity for a long time as a trot singer and the gazes that are directed toward her.

“‘Love Battery’ did really well. So when people look at me, they always think of ‘Love Battery’. Everyone’s impression of ‘Love Battery’ is so strong that even when I release a new song, the reactions are ‘Love Battery is the masterpiece’, ‘It’s difficult to surpass Love Battery’. But I’m confident that if you listen to ‘Good Bye’ for a long time, it will become a masterpiece. I think it’s because people aren’t used to it yet.”

Hong Jinyoung also emphasized that although she has been promoting as a singer for nearly 10 years, “There’s a lot I’m lacking in.”

“I think I need to work even harder. I believe that trot can become a trendy genre. I have a huge desire to bring generations together through trot that’s not too old. So I (although I am comparatively a young singer) thought that I need to break down the generational wall and decided on ‘Morning Plaza’ as my first comeback stage.”

Along with this, Hong Jinyoung mentioned her ambitious dream. Which was ‘CEO producer’. 

“I want to personally compose and write and give songs to hoobae singers. I have a dream of being in the management business and train hoobaes. I don’t know when I will be able to fulfill this dream. Haha. If you do a public audition through SNS Live, I think you’ll be able to attract the attention of the public even more. Although I am happy living as a singer, new challenges are thrilling to me!” 

Source: Star News

[LYRIC TRANSLATION] “Good Bye” (잘가라) – Hong Jinyoung (홍진영)

Korean Lyrics (한글 가사)

잘 가라 나를 잊어라
이까짓 거 사랑 몇 번은 더 할 테니

알잖아 내가 뒤끝이 좀 짧아서
알잖아 내가 너 말고도 님이 많아서
난 싫어 간질간질 거리는 이별
이 맘 때쯤 때쯤 흐르는 눈물
할 만큼 했잖아 미련이 없잖아
짠짠 짜잔 짠

잘 가라 나를 잊어라
이까짓 거 사랑 몇 번은 더 할 테니
잘 가라 돌아보지 말아라
여기서 난 안녕 멀리 안 나갈 테니
울지 마라

알잖아 내가 깔끔한 게 좋아서
혹시나 하는 맘에 하는 얘기인 거야
비라도 부슬부슬 오는 늦은 밤
술이 한 잔 두 잔 들어가는 밤
혀 꼬인 말투로 전화하지 마라
짠짠 짜잔 짠

잘 가라 나를 잊어라
이까짓 거 사랑 몇 번은 더 할 테니
잘 가라 돌아보지 말아라
여기서 난 안녕 멀리 안 나갈 테니

잘 가라 나를 잊어라
이까짓 거 이별 몇 번은 더 할 테니
잘 가라 돌아보지 말아라
여기서 난 안녕 멀리 안 나갈 테니
울지 마라 울지 마라 울지 마라

English Translation

Good bye, forget me
This trifling love, I’ll have it a few more times

You know how I don’t hold grudges for long
You know how I have many more aside from you
I don’t like goodbyes that itch
Tears that fall right about now
I already did as much as I could, I have no regrets
Jjan jjan jjajan jjan

Good bye, forget me
This trifling love, I’ll have it a few more times
Good bye, don’t look back
I’m saying goodbye here
I won’t go too far ahead
Don’t cry

You know how I like things neat
I’m telling you this in case your heart lingers
Late night when rain falls gently
A night when a glass or two of alcohol goes down
Don’t call me with a tongue-twisted tone
Jjan jjan jjajan jjan

Good bye, forget me
This trifling love, I’ll have it a few more times
Good bye, don’t look back
I’m saying goodbye here
I won’t go too far ahead

Good bye, forget me
This trifling goodbye, I’ll have it a few more times
Good bye, don’t look back
I’m saying goodbye here
I won’t go too far ahead
Don’t cry, don’t cry, don’t cry


Jal gala naleul ijeola
Ikkajit guh sarang myeot buneun deo hal teni

Aljana naega dwikkeuti jom jjalbaseo
Aljana naega neo malgodo nim-i manahseo
Nan silh-eo ganjilganjil geolineun ibyeol
Ee mam ttaejjeum ttaejjeum heuleuneun nunmul
Hal mankeum haetjanha milyeoni eobjana
Jjanjjan jjajan jjan

Jal gala naleul ijeola
Ikkajit guh sarang myeot buneun deo hal teni
Jal gala dolaboji mal ala
Yeogiseo nan annyeong meolli an nagal teni
Ulji mala

Aljana naega kkalkkeumhan ge joaseo
Hoksina haneun maum-eh haneun yaegiin guhya
Bilado buseulbuseul oneun neujeun bam
Sul-ee han jan du jan deuluhganeun bam
Hyeoh kkoin maltulo jeonhwahaji mala
Jjanjjan jjajan jjan

Jal gala naleul ijeola
Ikkajit guh sarang myeot buneun deo hal teni
Jal gala dolaboji mal ala
Yeogiseo nan annyeong meolli an nagal teni

Jal gala naleul ijeola
Ikkajit guh ibyeol myeot buneun deo hal teni
Jal gala dolaboji mal ala
Yeogiseo nan annyeong meolli an nagal teni
Ulji mala ulji mala ulji mala

[LYRIC TRANSLATION] “클랜즈: 달의 그림자” OST / “Clans: Shadow of the Moon” OST

Korean Lyrics (한글 가사)
달빛 가득 비추는 밤
그대의 추억이 스쳐가
눈물 짓던 그 모습에
차마 떠나보내지 못해
백지 한장한장속에
그대와 보낸시간 기억하나
바람향기 스며들며
눈물로서 그대를 보내

언제 어디서든
함께 하려던
그대추억 스쳐지나가
세상뒤로한채 살아야하네
언젠간 만날수 있을까

불빛하나 비춰지는
떠난그대 생각에 젖다가
아무것도 못하는날
그져 바라 보고싶어요

언제 어디서든
함께 하려던
그대 스쳐 지나갔다면
짧은 인연에도 웃어 보련다
언젠간 만날수있을까

세상을 다가진 오직한사람
그대를 잊을수없네요
부디 그대 나를 잊지말아요
영원히 그대와 함께

English Translation
Night full of moonlight reflections
Memories of you pass by
That appearance that would shed tears
I couldn’t let you go
Within each and every page of the white paper
I remember the time spent with you
As the scent of the wind seeps in
I send you away with tears

Whenever, wherever
The memories of you
That I tried to keep pass by
I have to live now, leaving the world behind
When will I be able to meet you again?

Reflected in a single source of light
I was lost in thoughts of you, who have already left
Days when I can’t do anything
I just want to look at you

Whenever, wherever
If you, who I tried to be with,
Passed by me
I’d try to smile at our short relationship
When will I be able to meet you again?

One person who possesses the world
I can’t forget you
Please don’t forget me
Forever with you

Dalbich gadeug bichuneun bam
Geudaeui chueog-i seuchyeoga
Nunmul jisdeon geu moseub-e
Chama tteonabonaeji moshae
Baegji hanjanghanjangsog-e
Geudaewa bonaensigan gieoghana
Balamhyang-gi seumyeodeulmyeo
Nunmulloseo geudaeleul bonae

Eonje eodiseodeun
Hamkke halyeodeon
Geudaechueog seuchyeojinaga
Sesangdwilohanchae sal-ayahane
Eonjengan mannalsu iss-eulkka

Bulbichhana bichwojineun
Tteonangeudae saeng-gag-e jeojdaga
Amugeosdo moshaneunnal
Geujyeo bala bogosip-eoyo

Eonje eodiseodeun
Hamkke halyeodeon
Geudae seuchyeo jinagassdamyeon
Jjalb-eun in-yeon-edo us-eo bolyeonda
Eonjengan mannalsu-iss-eulkka

Sesang-eul dagajin ojighansalam
Geudaeleul ij-eulsueobsneyo
Budi geudae naleul ij-jimal-ayo
Yeong-wonhi geudaewa hamkke

[TRANSLATION] Big Issue Interview: “Singer We ‘Totally Like’ for her Honesty, Hong Jinyoung’s OVER THE TREND” (April 2015)


“I totally like her!”

You totally like that person? When you say you like someone, it’s not easy to simply summarize and say it like this. But we’ve heard these words about her many times. Regardless of age, she’s overflowing with aegyo (cuteness), sexy and bright, so it’s no wonder that men like her. But among young women and middle-aged women, there are many who say these words about her. So when we ask about the reason why they are a fan because we are curious, they all uniformly say this. Because she’s honest. We like her because she’s honest!

What do you think is the reason you receive love across generations?
I often hear that I’m exactly the same as my normal self, whether I’m performing or on broadcasts. I think people look at me favourably because I’m plainly honest. Elderly people tell me that they’d like me to be their daughter-in-law or daughter, and there are many female fans who tell me that they’d want me as an older or younger sister. After appearing on variety programs, my fan base has become diverse, and a lot of younger people like me.

It seemed like there were lots of good and bad.
When I debuted with “Love Battery”, I heard this often. One reason was because I was a young person who appeared in the trot genre, and when I did variety promotions in the early days, working and trying hard because I was a rookie came across like I was trying too hard and stood out, so it didn’t come across well.

Are there any times when you incur damages or problems because you’re too honest?
When I lie, you can see it on my face right away. So I try not to lie at all. Since I didn’t do anything wrong, I just say everything honestly. Even if damaging incidents occur, it doesn’t matter. To date, nothing like that has happened, and now, people know what my personality is like, and it’s a big reason why they like me, so I don’t think I have any reason to be dishonest going forward. (Laughs)

The reaction to your appearance in was good. What do you think your real married life will be like? When you marry, what kind of housewife do you want to be?
I think I will be almost the same as the appearance that was shown on . When I get married, more than anything, I want to become a firm mom. I want to educate my kids well, especially when it comes to manners. I want to be able to listen well to what the kids want, but also want to be a strict mom from time to time. I also want to be a wife who is good at assisting my husband.

As expected, with a lot of aegyo?
Aegyo is fundamental. (Laughs)

If there’s an aegyo method unique to Hong Jinyoung?
Should I say it’s hereditary? My mom has a lot of aegyo, and she still calls my dad ‘honey’. They both meet to go to dinner together and their relationship is very good. I frequently saw my mom showing aegyo since I was young, so I’ve naturally gotten used to it.  

If there’s a goosebump-inducing aegyo that they both showed recently?
My dad is a bit straitlaced. So they don’t show a lot of it in front of their children, but my mom said this last time. Ah, but am I allowed to say this? Won’t I be scolded… My mom was washing the dishes and she said dad gave her a back hug. (Laughs)

What is your ideal type in a man?
I like plain people who make me comfortable when we’re together. I don’t need psychological warfare and ‘push and pull’, I just want a comfortable person who knows my heart well. It doesn’t matter if they talk a lot, or if they talk little. If they talk a lot, we can talk together, and if they don’t talk a lot, I can chat. I just wish our personalities will be compatible, and that we can have good conversations. I also hope they are someone who can plan and have restraint for the future, and doesn’t just look at and calculate what’s in front of them. Suppose they earn a million won (approximately $1000 USD), I hope they know to use half for now and save half for the future, for example. When it comes to everything, I like men who think deeply and are mature.

What are your plans or intentions for marriage?
I don’t know when I will marry, but I feel like I could get married suddenly. I don’t yet have thoughts or plans of a timeline for marriage or that I want to get married, but if there’s a person who I love to the point I can give up my work, I think I can get married immediately.

We think your personality is very optimistic and bright. Are there any times when you’re not like that, or are depressed?
Personality-wise, I tend not to get stressed. So I’ve never been depressed without a reason. I’m sad when I’m sick, when I can’t eat well because I’m too busy due to work, and when I can’t eat because I need to lose weight. Because I always work to eat. (Laughs)

Since the topic of food came up, are you good at cooking?
I’m good at making steamed short ribs, I’m good at making stir fried chicken and pork, and I’m at making most stews. I can make good pan fried meat, and pumpkin pancakes or kimchi pancakes are too simple, so I don’t even think I need to say it. (Laughs) My mom is really good at cooking. At holidays, if my mom made pancakes, I would follow along and make them too, and I think learning from watching this has helped a lot.

If you live alone in Seoul, you must miss your family and home-cooked meals.
My parents come up to Seoul once a month. So I tend to see them often. My mom comes often because of side dishes, and every time she comes, I gain weight. I eat really well. (Laughs) But the dish that comes to mind most when I’m sick is duck stew. My mom makes incredible duck stew. My body must not be well today because I really want to eat the duck stew that my mom makes.

“Before I get on stage, I put on makeup. I put on mascara to create the shape of my eyes, I tie all of hair up like the singers from many years ago to bring out the glamour. I sing while wearing an open-back dress and making elegant gestures. I try doing aegyo that matches with the delightful rhythm. People enjoy watching that look of mine, so they start cheering. But the hearts that they have for me could be for another look of mine, not necessarily for the dressed-up look. Then, what do I want to show them…”

You could have debuted as an idol or an actress.
I sang 5 songs at my audition. I sang some normal and dance songs, at the end I sang “Flower” by Jang Yoon Jung. My present CEO and vice-CEO heard it, and suggested that I should do trot. I ran away from that suggestion for half a year because I didn’t want to do it. (Laughs)

So what made you decide to sing trot?
My CEO was very good at convincing me. He said that the trot that I thought of is not that old, it has become very young now, and it will continue to grow younger in the future. So “Love Battery” debut in 2009 was the movement (that he talked about). At that time, many young people have advanced to listen to trot, and at music programs there were some trot teams. He also said that trot singers now do not just sing on stage, they can influence people and participate in many activities. That was how he convinced me. I was very touched after listening to him. I made my decision because of his words, and I think it was a very good decision becoming a trot singer.

What is the charm of trot?
People of all ages can sing trot very easily and together enjoy the atmosphere. I think trot can create an atmosphere like that and even if time passes by, there are trot songs that people still love to sing, it’s the charm of trot.

What is your favorite singing song? What kind of music do you listen to when you rest?
(Singing) “Why~ Do you not know me~” I like the song called “You Do Not Know” by Choi Sungsoo sunbaenim. I enjoy listening to piano or violin when I want to rest. Oh wait. Why are you guys laughing? (Talking to her staff) I really like listening to instrumental songs. (Smiles) It’s good that I can listen to melodies without thinking of anything. Recently I listen to “Last Carnival” a lot. I also like “Top of the World” by the Carpenters, I also like music by artists like Eric Benet…I especially like songs with piano instrumentals incorporated.

Who do you look up to? Or a sunbae you respect?
Joo Hyunmi sunbaenim. But honestly, it’s impossible to just choose one person. There are so many sunbaenim who actively promote even though they have aged. I like how they enjoy singing and promoting without caring about their popularity. Even if time passes by, I respect that unchanging personality of them and try to take after them.

I feel like Jinyoung will become like that too.
I think so too. (laughs)

“The dream that I sincerely wanted since I was young. I never gave up once, and I never went a day without having that dream, so the dream has come true. Now that she has become a singer, Hong Jinyoung can’t help but be happy. She says complaining about only sleeping 3 hours a week and having a tired body to go on stage is like making a fuss about being too full. Now as she gets older, she’s dreaming of showing the same side of her without changing, and being a sunbae who opens a new path in the world of trot for hoobaes.”

What do you think is a condition for a successful life?
It’s life that I’m satisfied with. Life where I’m happy today and I’m curious and excited about tomorrow. Isn’t that what happiness is? Even if my body is tired and it’s difficult, if I can be happy each and every day, I think that’s a successful life. I’m happy when I stand on stage, I’m happy when I’m shooting like this, and there are times when I can only sleep 3 hours a week because there’s a lot of work, but if I can be happy, I think that is a very successful life. (Laughs) But if I don’t love work and if I can’t enjoy it, I will be unhappy. At that point, I think it’s would be right to pursue other work.

Do you think you will be unhappy doing something else other than being a singer?
I think so. I haven’t thought of doing anything else rather than singing. I wanted to become a singer since I was little. I just really liked singing and appearing in front of people. That’s why I was in charge of entertainment in class, MC-ed the show and sang when we went on student trips. I called into radio broadcasts and sang. I also won at singing contests and received prizes, I received a microwave before. I loved it! (Laughs) Since then, there wasn’t a moment that I thought of being something else rather than a singer. So I became a singer and living the dream of my life. If my body is tired and it’s difficult and makes me sad, that is not work that’s meant for me.  

Jinyoung has achieved her dream by sincerely wishing for it.
That’s very true. I feel like if you sincerely look and draw your dream everyday, the reality will become that dream eventually. I am undoubtedly that case. I really wanted to become a singer. I thought that “If it’s not singing, I won’t do anything else!”. I am the kind of person who thinks “I will continue trying until I succeed”. At the beginning of my career, I debuted as a girl group member and failed within 2 months. I was so embarrassed I couldn’t even return home. But I gained self-esteem. I performed on public stage once or twice, so I thought now that the knife has been drawn, I might as well chop radishes. (Meaning: I might as well finish what I’ve started.) Let’s try till the end. I cannot just go home like this. I endured through the hardship.

You also did some theater acting?
That time I picked a wrong company. It was a theatre managing company and they were trying to debut singers so I got into the company. Since they were new at managing singers, it was very bad, so they just asked me to act at theater plays. That’s how I got to do acting at theaters.

Did you feel sad because you had to do something different to your dream?
Yes. I was working hard to become a singer, and if there was a character that fits my dream, I would have enjoyed acting at the theaters. But in the end, my dream was to become a singer, and I didn’t even get to start building that dream and had to do theater plays…I didn’t like that.

It must contain two different meanings though you stood on the same stage. Now that you have achieved your dream, how would you reply to acting love calls?
I never forget that I am always a singer no matter where I go. With that in mind, I think that I’d like to try doing different business if there’s a chance. I want to break the assumption about the trot genre, as I’m singing trot. I think that trot is not just about running to events and performing on stage. I think I will have to try harder to break that assumption and expand my work. Some reporters wrote articles calling me “the second Jang Yoon Jung”, saying that Yoonjung unnie opened the road for me, and Park Hyunbin oppa is also promoting, implying that there are many young trot singers, and that I made a good decision following them. I wish that I can become a sunbae who hoobaes look up to and also want to break the assumption and bring hope to the trot genre. I want to become a sunbae who opens the road for them. 

When do you think you’ll become the sunbae who plays that role?
Mmm…. Won’t I need to surpass 40? To train hoobaes, I think I would need to at least be that age. I’m lacking too much to do it right now. (Laughs)

What kind of a person is Hong Jinyoung in your mind?
A really decent kid. (Laughs) Should I say I have a deep heart? If I’m like this at this age, I haven’t been that stained, and naivety and purity are different, aren’t they? I’m not naive, but I think my heart is pure. But I’m not weak. It’s awkward to say this with my own mouth, but from that aspect, I think I’m pretty okay. Even from my perspective. (Laughs)

Staff: She’s genuine. Genuine.

Even when you’ve become a grandma, I think Hong Jinyoung will be like that.
That’s right, I think I will be the same.

You also seem to have a lot of loyalty.
Again, it’s a bit awkward to say this with my own mouth, but without loyalty, you’re a dead body, a dead body. (Laughs) If I have a relationship with someone and make a promise, I tend to try to go until the end. Even with people that I work with now.

You must have your own convictions.
I really dislike inconveniencing others, and I’m really bad at asking things of others. So I try not to inconvenience others as much as possible, and I work hard at doing my own work, by myself. Enjoy living each and every day. Live like today is the last day. I try hard to live with this mindset.

What are your thoughts on featuring on Big Issue? Any words you would like to let the magazine sellers know?
The purpose of Big Issue is very good, I think of it as a good opportunity for me. When dealing with busy schedules everyday, I only had the intention (to help others). I hope to have more chances like this in the future to become helpful to a lot of people, by spending some time and putting in effort. I hope that the sellers (for Big Issue) would never give up selling magazines even though it’s tiring. I hope that there is at least one person who succeeds in achieving their dream. Like how I successfully became a singer because I decided to do so, I believe that you can do anything eventually, if you never forget your confidence.

[TRANSLATION] Hong Jin Young Interview in ANA DRONE Magazine (May 2017)



The lady who knows about drones through entertainment and music shows. When she saw a drone at a recording near the beach, she expressed her opinion about drones, stating that there is a lot of advantages in using drones for recording. “Drone is an equipment that can capture the whole view, not just a specific part. From a close-up shot to an overview full shot, it is a device that can capture at many angles. Looking at a drone makes me think that I want to have one too”, said Hong Jin Young.

If I Could Ride a Drone~

Hong Jin Young expressed her unexpected imagination about drones. She imagined riding a drone around. “I know that a pilot is not needed for a drone, but I would like to manipulate and make it into my own device which I can ride on. It doesn’t have to travel very far like to overseas, but nearby places like the supermarket in the neighborhood. I think it is great to have a drone that can travel comfortably to somewhere nearby. Since there are heavy stuff I need to carry when I go shopping, I want to take the drone to drop them at the verandah.”, said Hong Jin Young. A comment that is very Hong Jin Young-like.


The Hong Jin Young when the camera is on and the Hong Jin Young in real life outside the camera’s angle are exactly the same. In the middle of busy schedules, she kept asking the staff “Would you like to have pizza?” during the shooting. She has the power of bringing smiles to the people around with her bright smile and carefree personality.

Hong Jin Young wanted to become a singer since she was little. With an amazing vocal ability and full of cuteness, she has come a long way since those difficult trainee days. She has never complained about her recent busy schedule. When thinking about the trainee era, Hong Jin Young is always thankful for every moment she is on stage now. She said that she is always feeling happy and thankful in spite of her busy schedules which leave her no time to rest.

Hong Jin Young in real life when the camera is off is exactly the same as she is on air. She is even brighter and full of life when the camera is off. “I am always full of life and excitement. I often turn on club music to listen when I’m alone. It’s exciting! But I tend to listen to ballads and pop songs when it rains.” Though she is alone, the girl that is full of life listens to music on her way to schedules.

“Love Battery” Which Made Me the Person I Am Today

Of her various hit songs, she says she is most attached to ‘Love Battery’. “If ‘Love Battery’ didn’t exist, the person that I am right now would not exist either. Through that song, I was acknowledged by the public. Of course, I like my recent song ‘Loves Me, Loves Me Not’ as well. When I sing a song, the empathy attached to it is different; an exciting song should be sung excitedly and a sad song should be sung sadly, so I try hard to carry emotions according to the song.”

Hong Jin Young has recently shed new light on herself through ‘Unnies’ Slam Dunk’. Behind her lively appearance, she endured difficult times in silence, and she honestly communicated an incident that made her who she is today to the viewers and has gained a lot of sympathy from them.

She said, “As various people have gathered under the theme of dreams and share stories on broadcast, I think an honest side of me is coming out a lot more than normally” and she showed a bright smile saying she would like to be the ‘Vitamin of the Trot World’.

We were curious about her marriage plans and asked Hong Jin Young and she firmly said, “I don’t have any thoughts of it yet”. Hong Jin Young said, “It could be because I’m busy but I haven’t yet given big thoughts to marriage. But if I do get married, my dream is to live normally like everyone else.” Hong Jinyoung’s ideal type is a ‘comfortable person’. “My career is one where I have to dress up every day. But even if I don’t dress up, for example, if I wore a stretched out T-shirt and very comfortable sweatpants, a person who I can reliably lean on without any burden is my ideal type. However, the one thing I would like is that they do not look at other women, other than me. That must go for anyone though…”

When Hong Jin Young has time off, she watches movies or searches for delicious restaurants. She drinks coffee with people in her life and chats to relieve stress. Considering she doesn’t like exercising, and even watching it, her figure must be interpreted as being born with it. Hong Jin Young, who possesses a voluminous figure, says the strength of optimism makes who she is.

Source: Special thanks to @cicjenny for the tip and photos!

[TRANSLATION] Star News Interview: “Hong Jinyoung’s Remarkable Activities on ‘Unnies’ Slam Dunk Season 2’” (June 12, 2017)

[Star News – Let’s Eat a Meal Together] Hong Jinyoung’s Remarkable Activities on ‘Unnies’ Slam Dunk Season 2’


Singer Hong Jinyoung (32) sang while getting completely soaked by rain at a regional university event the day before. That might be why her fatigue symptoms she’d been having has gotten worse. Despite that, she tried not to lose her special quality of being bright. “I should be dieting, but I need to eat well when I’m sick~”

As she put a freshly fried donkatsu in her mouth, a smile spread on Hong Jinyoung’s face. Her voice was low but she said “I have to work even harder when people like me and seek me out” and re-energized herself.

Through Star News’s “Let’s Eat a Meal Together” feature, we recently met Hong Jinyoung at a restaurant in Seoul Gangnam. 

She achieved yet another dream through the KBS 2TV entertainment program ‘Unnies’ Slam Dunk Season 2’ that wrapped up at the end of last month. She wished to stand on stage as a girl group member and a rapper, and on ‘Slam Dunk 2’, she debuted with the project girl group ‘Unnies’ and she was able to achieve her dreams.

“Using a popular phrase these days, I want to ask ‘Is this real life?’” Hong Jinyoung smiled and opened up but it was as if there were lingering feelings as it hadn’t been that long since the program wrapped up. 

“With ‘Unnies’ Opened Dreams That Had Not Yet Bloomed.. Is This Real Life?” (Interview Part 1)

After finishing ‘Slam Dunk 2’…

Of all of the broadcast I’ve done so far, it was a broadcast from which I received the most returns. More so than bittersweetness, the feelings of sadness are greater. The relationship between members were so good. Everyone has a good personality, so filming was enjoyable the whole time.

Have you seen the members after the broadcast ended?

Yesterday, there was a dinner for ‘Unnies’. I had cold sweats and I wasn’t feeling well, so I just quickly showed my face and then came home and passed out. It was our first time meeting after filming wrapped up. We exchanged gifts. (Kim) Sook unnie gave sneakers, (Jeon) Somi gave honey, (Gong) Minzy gave perfume, (Hong) Jinkyung unnie gave dumplings, (Kang) Yewon unnie gave diffusers and bags, and (Han) Chaeyoung unnie and I gave bracelets as gifts.

Since it hasn’t been that long since the broadcast ended, there must be a lot of lingering feelings. 

If we could do it according to our hearts, we want to appear on all 3 major music broadcasts, and go to many schedules, but it’s regrettable that we couldn’t do that.

You cried a lot at ‘Unnies’ last schedule, on stage at Konkuk University.

Yes, we must have grown very affectionate for each other. It was incredibly meaningful for me in many ways. The fact that it was the end continued to not feel real, but as we said our last goodbyes, the tears poured out all at once.

I’m curious what made you decide to appear on ‘Slam Dunk 2’. 

I’m older now so I thought this would be my last chance at being in a girl group. I wanted to achieve dreams that I wasn’t able to achieve, so that’s why I took on this challenge.

You also attempted rap through ‘Slam Dunk 2’. 

When will I be able to ever rap again in my life? Haha. It has been a long time since I have been promoting alone, but I wasn’t lonely when I was with members. Of course there were difficult times while practising but since there were people I could lean on, we received encouragement from each other and it was good.

How does it feel now that ‘Slam Dunk 2’ has ended?

It was a happy dream. It feels like I’ve woken up from a sweet dream. People say it like this these days. Is this really real life?

“‘Unnies’ Dance & Singing 1st Place is Gong Minzy, Visual is Han Chaeyoung” (Interview Part 2)

In ‘Unnies’, Hong Jinyoung is in the middle according to age. 

Yes. There are four older unnies and two younger dongsaengs. 

What would you consider to be your role in ‘Unnies’?

As I’m a trot singer, I know how to deal with fans who are in their teens to their 50-60s. Since I was in the middle of the members age-wise, wouldn’t I have been the connecting link between the unnies and dongsaengs?

As soon as ‘Unnies’ song ‘Right?’ was released, it reached #1 on multiple music charts. Did you predict the outcome would be like this?

We didn’t know. We thought that if we were in the top 5, it would be ‘daebak’. We couldn’t believe it was #1, that’s really crazy. The members thought it was unbelievable and were really shocked. Haha.

Is it your first time reaching #1 on Melon music charts?

Yes, that’s right. It was so good this time. I got #1 while doing ‘Unnies’, I got to rap, I lived 3-4 months really busily. I feels like I’ve done a lot. 

Was it your dream to attempt being a rapper?

Yes, I normally like hip hop. When I listen to music, I don’t limit myself to genres and I like them all. I really liked attempting something new. That’s also the reason why I attempted composing ‘Ring Ring’ recently. Before I get older and when I can do it, I want to attempt this and that, and continue to improve myself. 

Do you have any thoughts on including a rap in a new album?

No. I don’t think you should put a rap in trot. If they ask for ‘Unnies’ at end-of-year ceremonies, I’ll do it then. Since I’m the rapper for ‘Unnies’. I’ll only rap with ‘Unnies’. 

Truthfully, ‘Slam Dunk 2’ was a bit regrettable in terms of viewership ratings. Despite that, ‘Unnies’ had good results, so the conclusion was successful.

I think a lot of people watched it on re-airings or downloaded the show. Whenever I performed, I often heard that people were watching ‘Slam Dunk 2’ well. So rather than worrying, I only had thoughts of doing my best in whatever work I was given. 

I’ll ask a fun question. Name the #1 dancer, #1 singer and #1 visual in ‘Unnies’.

#1 dancer is Gong Minzy, of course. Minzy is a dancing machine. #1 singer is mmm, it went back and forth between myself and (Gong) Minzy, but I’ll say Minzy is #1. Hoho. #1 visual is Han Chaeyoung! Chaeyoung unnie is really pretty. 

Rank yourself too.

For dance, 4th or 5th? I’m not last place. Hoho. For singing, 2nd or 3rd in the upper ranks, since I’m a singer with vocal ability. For visual, wouldn’t I be in the middle? I’ll be conscientious and won’t say I’m in the upper ranks. 

What was the most memorable moment while doing ‘Slam Dunk 2’?

The day we first went to the dorm and slept with the members and the day we stood on stage for ‘Music Bank’. At the dorm, the members were able to become closer and friendlier. ‘Music Bank’ was so touching. It felt like spreading wings that I hadn’t been able to spread properly before. I fulfilled my wish. It felt like indigestion suddenly disappearing. 

You’ve stood on the ‘Music Bank’ stage before many times as a singer.

The feeling was so different from then. It’s different when you’re alone compared to when there’s many, and the genre is different too. It was momentary but it really felt like we’d become a real girl group. 

What kind of a program was ‘Slam Dunk 2’ to Hong Jinyoung?

It was a program that was like a savior to me. It allowed me to achieve the dreams that I hadn’t been able to accomplish and while working in the entertainment world, it was a program on which I opened my heart the widest, in the most sincere way. A lot of people tell me that they saw a new side of me while watching ‘Unnies’. While promoting as a solo singer, there’s a sense of needing to be even stronger and tougher. With this show, it was incredibly comfortable and I didn’t need to do it like that. That’s why I cried like that. Now that ‘Unnies’ has ended, I need to become tough again.

“Heo Kyunghwan Can’t Bring ‘Ring Ring’ to Life, Kicked Away Blessings That Rolled His Way” (Interview Part 3)

Hong Jinyoung recently transformed into a composer. She personally wrote and composed ‘Ring Ring’, an EDM-trot song that released this past April. Before this song was released, there was a public SNS audition to choose the singer between comedian Kim Youngchul and Heo Kyunghwan that became a topic of conversation. 

Through the audition results, Kim Youngchul became the ultimate recipient of ‘Ring Ring’, and Heo Kyunghwan, who was eliminated, recently appeared on MBC ‘Radio Star’ and made everyone laugh by saying, “I don’t want to hear the ‘Ring Ring’ sound so now I don’t even pass by the neighbourhood playground anymore”. 

‘Ring Ring’ is actually a song that Hong Jinyoung first offered to Heo Kyunghwan 2 years ago. Hong Jinyoung said Heo Kyunghwan “kicked away a blessing that rolled his way with his own feet” and laughed. 

Recently, ‘Ring Ring’, which you released with Kim Youngchul, became a big topic of conversation. Kim Youngchul seemed to have benefited from Hong Jinyoung.

I hope Youngchul oppa succeeds as a singer. Thanks to him, I was able to debut as a composer. Do you know my composer name? It’s ‘Godttery C’. People call me ‘Godttery’, which is ‘Battery’ from my hit song ‘Love Battery’ and ‘God’ added to it. I added the ‘C’ from Vitamin C to it. There are a few more songs that I’ve prepared. There are 2 ballad songs. 

Who would you want to sing the ballad songs? 

I want to give it to Huh Gak. 

Can we look forward to a sequel to ‘Ring Ring’?

Yes, please look forward to it. I made a song for Heo Kyunghwan oppa too. But I don’t think Kyunghwan oppa has the will to want to do it. He said he’d be on ‘Radio Star’ so I created the dance and even sent a video of it, but he didn’t do it like I suggested. He kicked away the blessing that rolled his way. Hoho.

It seemed like Heo Kyunghwan is dejected, as he said he’s never declined the song.

*sigh* You need to listen to both sides of the story. I gave him the song and Kyunghwan oppa sang it strangely.

What kind of appearances can we anticipate from Hong Jinyoung going forward?

Since I’m a singer, I’ll show you through music. I will work hard to stand on stage with even better songs, I will meet with viewers on even better programs, and I will try hard to show good sides of me in various ways. I’ll also show you a side of me as a good composer. 

Source: Part 1 / Part 2 / Part 3