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[Herald Interview] Roy Kim returns with breakup ballad, talks about future plans

  • Published : Sept 19, 2018 - 12:39
  • Updated : Sept 19, 2018 - 12:39

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Roy Kim (Stone Music Entertainment)


Roy Kim is best known for his upbeat spring-inspired songs, but he always knew that a part of him deeply craved a tear-jerking ballad.

The sentimental pop-rocker has returned with a breakup song, “The Hardest Part,” the most emotional song he has written and crooned in his career. It is an extension from his previous hit “Only Then.”

“Technically, ‘Only Then’ wasn’t about a break up. It talks about how lovers should break up only if the time comes when the two wish to part from each other, not when people tell them to. But ‘The
Hardest Part’ is the next story, in which the couple finally decides to break up,” said Kim during a recent interview with The Korea Herald in Seoul.

When it comes to songwriting, Kim often draws on his personal experience, but for the new single, he tried to shift his view to other people’s relationships. The song was also an opportunity for the singer-songwriter to expand his artistic range.

“What’s different from the past is that I paid more attention to each letter and I found new sounds. I think I reached my highest note through the song. I also tried to fill the song with the minimum level of instruments,” Kim said.


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Roy Kim (Stone Music Entertainment)


Musical development and success on the charts are different matters for the singer. The success of “Only Then,” released while he was in the US, was totally unexpected. In the same way, he does not have high hopes for his new song.

“I didn’t expect ‘Only Then’ to be that successful. Since then, I don’t get bound by my results. I just do music that comes to my mind in that moment,” he said.

Since winning the competition show “Superstar K 4” in 2012, Kim has been keeping himself busy with a dual life. While pursuing a degree at Georgetown University, he has been simultaneously releasing albums in Korea.


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Roy Kim (Stone Music Entertainment)


With only one semester left before graduation, he hopes to focus more on his musical career in the future.

“I’ve never promoted in Korea longer than a year since 2013. After graduation, I want to be indulged in things related to music only. In the past, I used to do music in a very limited time period and schedule due to my academic life in the US,” he said.

In the meantime, the ambitious singer plans to go to graduate school in the US, where he hopes to promote his music in English. The bilingual singer said he has been writing songs in English for a while, with about 40 of them now, enough to be compiled into an album.


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Roy Kim (Stone Music Entertainment)


“There are so many things I want to do before turning 30, and one of them is to study social welfare or psychology in a graduate school. Promoting in the US is also one of my dreams. I’ve actually received some suggestions for tours in Europe and the US, but I want to hone myself a bit more,” Kim said, adding he’s been studying Japanese and French these days.

“But I don’t want to sing ‘Bom Bom Bom’ or ‘Only Then’ in those countries. I hope to mature more until I can finally sing in their languages. Touring around the US with my fans in a van, that’s also my dream,” he added.

“The Hardest Part” has topped seven local music charts since its release Tuesday.

(lotus@heraldcorp.com)