Korean dragons are legendary creatures in Korean mythology and folklore and trace their influence to the Chinese dragon. However, as opposed to European mythology, Korean dragons are considered benevolent beings related to water and agriculture, and believed to bring rain and clouds. [Source]
Yes, this post was bound to happen. Jung Yonghwa x Kwon Jiyong. The Dragon Flower and the Willful Dragon. Both musicians and leader of their respective groups. Beautiful men too, not to mention their facial moles (both on/near the left eye).
Imagine my thrill watching an old clip of them on Night After Night, which YH used to co-host and where GD appeared once. Literally a case of fandoms clashing.
It’s also interesting to note that their discovery has something to do with skiing: Yonghwa’s photo from a ski resort caught the attention of an FNC casting agent; and GD during a ski trip with his family after he vowed he won’t be an artist anymore following his early disappointment as part of a children’s group.
So what about the two dragons in the Korean music industry?
Jung Yong Hwa (정용화)
Birthday: June 22, 1989 (27, Korean age)
Debuted as a member of the band on Aug 19, 2009 through Now or Never, a mini album released in Japan under indie label AI Entertainment. He composed two tracks from the album: “Love Revolution” and “Just Please”. Debuted as an actor months later in October playing the second lead, Kang Shinwoo, in You Are Beautiful.
I have written a lot of posts on JYH so what is there left to write about? I’ve written about his mole, his charms and even his imperfections that add to his appeal.
Even though I first noticed him in a drama (Mirae’s Choice), I like him more as a musician than an actor. I have to admit that I haven’t watched him that much on variety shows, except for a few including his self-produced reality show Hologram.
He’s an alpha male and quite competitive, though he does not strike me as bossy when he’s with his band, but just a natural leader. Without his humor and his penchant to be a dork, that trait would come out as cocky. I find it endearing when he’s the first to laugh at his jokes and gets embarrassed at his self-confidence.
If I have a quibble with him, it’s his need to please everyone and we all know no one can. He’s an earnest boy who wants to please his fans and the public in general that oftentimes, I feel he overdoes it. Now, that’s not a bad thing. He’s in the business of pleasing people after all and he’s not Mr Fan Service for nothing. Something has to be said about him being Mr Nice and Mr Manners, despite the pressure that he must be under–having to lead a group, being a solo artist, and all the million and one expectations and criticisms heaped on him. That’s why I admire him for his steadfast personality, not crumbling under all that pressure and managing his public image well.
I look forward to seeing him rise higher as a musician in the industry: write more songs, charm more fans and be recognized for his talents…to the top of the world.
Kwon Ji Yong (권지용)
Birthday: August 18, 1988 (Turning 28, Korean age)
G-Dragon entered the industry at five as part of the group Little Lula. However, after releasing a Christmas album, the group’s contract was terminated by their record company. He was eventually recruited as a trainee under SM Entertainment for five years, from age 8 to 13 years old when he left. He officially debuted in 2006 with BIGBANG after six years of training under YG Entertainment.
G-Dragon is a paradox. Yonghwa himself said on NAN that he thought GD was scary and was surprised to find him very down-to-earth.
Indeed, there is a big disconnect between GD’s stage persona and public image to how he is when he appears on variety shows. I have been hooked to watching him (and BIGBANG) on variety shows because they are hilarious and I still can’t wrap my brain around that fact.
I mean, you watch this slim guy with the eyeliner, colored hair (these days, it’s orange) and the gangstah swagger perform onstage, and then you see this soft-spoken little boy covering his face or his mouth whenever he gets embarrassed on variety shows. It’s really so hard to reconcile these two images, especially when you juxtapose it with his hip hop music.
Even GD is aware of how he is viewed by the public, noting that the words that hurt him the most when his drug scandal broke out years ago were “I knew it.”
He does not look like the leader of the so-called K-pop avengers at all with his unassuming ways. He looks like the youngest among them, in fact. So it also took me some time to get over my shock that this was the G-Dragon I have heard so much about. I was expecting someone who was an ass-kickin’, tough-talkin’ punk, but instead, I get a Peter Pan who’s a lover more than a fighter.
Maybe it’s because he’s been working in the industry since he was what, five years old, that’s why nothing fazes GD anymore. Considering the time he’s invested in the industry, he’s more than the regular veteran and I guess that explains why he is so adept at variety and does not have the ego nor the hangup of someone who needs to protect an image out of fear of losing fans.
I mean, what’s there to lose? He’s had his fair share of scandals, frustrations and disappointments, and as we have seen in other successful artists’ cases, they serve as a battle scar and always make for a more compelling, if not, inspiring success story.
And as a bonus… a cut from A Gentleman’s Dignity where Yonghwa had a cameo and the character of Jang Dong-gun sang BIGBANG’s Blue. (This is the only cut I can find on YT.)
I hope they will have more interactions and though they come from different agencies, wouldn’t it be great to see a summit of the group leaders in K-pop? I’m sure the two dragons would be interesting to watch. And if ever they collaborate, dude, they’d be spitting fire.\
Author’s note: Someone has been using this post to harass me. I have gotten in touch with the website that was being used for the harassment and basically, they don’t care (I’m an unknown blog, why would they?). Should that person choose to harass me again, please make sure you do so by owning up to your identity and not hide behind a “fandom” . Anons are empty canons. And please, take yourself elsewhere instead of wasting time reading my “shitty opinions”. What’s your business reading them anyway. Don’t pass your time on weekends in Batam reading me. Get a real life. I am sure there are more important things in this world.
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2 thoughts on “[blog] Yonghwa & Jiyong: a tale of two dragons”
I am a fan of your blog. Thanks for another nice writing about Yong Hwa, the true idol in my heart.
thank you for reading! have a good day XD