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[OH MY ROOKIE] Jang Dae-hyun talks burden, excitement over solo debut

  • Published : Aug 27, 2019 - 10:13
  • Updated : Aug 27, 2019 - 10:13

Going solo is a huge burden for any artist, and Jang Dae-hyun, who already has a fair amount of showbiz experience under his belt, is no exception.

Having competed in the second season of “Produce 101” and debuted as a member of since-disbanded boy band Rainz in 2017, Jang sat down with The Korea Herald last week to talk about his long-awaited first solo album. The humble and candid musician kicked off the hourlong conversation, which preceded his album release, by expressing how nervous he feels about his upcoming debut.


“It’s three days before my debut, and I feel very nervous especially because I used to be in the seven-piece boy band and now I have to deal with everything on my own. I just want people to know my song. Even if they don’t recognize me, I’m fine,” said the 22-year-old singer.

Admitting he was somewhat overwhelmed with the worries and anxiety in the process of working on his solo record, Jang continued, “I had to be more scrupulous about myself and have stricter standards on myself, as my shortcomings were so visible as a soloist.”


Jang’s first solo album titled “Feel Good” is led by a track of the same title. The rhythmical R&B pop tune relays a romantic message, “I don’t need anything else. Throw it away. You are my No. 1,” Jang cheerfully sings in the chorus. Having solely penned the song’s lyrics himself, the singer shared that it took him one whole day to come up with the aforementioned refrain.

“It was so hard to come up with the word ‘throw,’ as I didn’t want the chorus to sound so childish, but addictive at the same time.

Then I got stuck with that word, and the rest of the lyrics came along. What I’m glad about is that I got to have a say in almost every step of preparing this album, from my hair and makeup to musical style,” he said.


Originally a rapper, Jang also emphasized that he’s tried to showcase his artistry as a vocalist in the song.

“Since my main position in Rainz was a rapper, some might feel unfamiliar with my singing in ‘Feel Good.’ I hope they like it,” Jang added. The single album also features the smooth ballad track “So.”

While looking cheerful and perky on the outside, Jang confessed that deep inside he is the kind of person who is always hard on himself, and he blames himself for not being good enough. For instance, Jang at one point lost over 15 kilograms in less than a month as he wasn’t satisfied with his appearance. Another time he woke up in the middle of night and washed his blanket at 2 a.m. as he felt it was not clean enough.

“I do have lots of worries that I can get really hard on myself. While working on my solo album, I just couldn’t get satisfied with myself as I thought I lacked in talent. I’m still very worried, but I also believe that I would do fine at the strength of my fans,” he said.

Throughout the session, Jang successfully communicated with global fans by switching between Korean and English, cracking jokes and showing more casual sides of him.

Upon releasing “Feel Good” on Aug. 24, Jang kicked off promotions with a solo debut concert in Seoul on the same day.

Watch the interview with Jang below.

By Hong Dam-young (lotus@heraldcorp.com)