[Exclusive] An Interview with Jaejoong, Best Artist for the First Half of 2012 by KpopStarz


Q. How does it feel to be voted Best Artist for the first half of 2012 by KpopStarz, US Media?

Jaejoong: First of all, I would like to say thank you. I had a chance to greet fans through the World Tour last year. Once again, I could feel that there are many fans in many different countries who love us. Through receiving this award, I could feel that love once again.

Q. What has been your most memorable moment so far in 2012?

Jaejoong: World Tour I mentioned was one of the most memorable moments. I got a big impression of how much we are loved. In fact, today was one of the most memorable moments because a very precious award was given to me. I hope tomorrow will be another one of those memorable moments as well.

Q. You held a solo meet & greet with fans this year in Taiwan and Turkey. And this summer, there was the JYJ Fan Exhibition. How were these experiences for you? Is there a memorable fan moment that sticks out?

Jaejoong: I had visited Taiwan a few times before for other fan meet-and-greets but it was my first time visiting Turkey. I was very surprised by many of the fans there and just how many there were. I don't know how to speak their language but so many of the fans there could speak Korean. I was reminded of the saying-- "there are no boundaries in love." I was really touched by the gifts they prepared for me. As well as Korean songs they completely memorized and sang along to.


Q. When was the last time all 3 JYJ members were together? What did you do?

Jaejoong: There hasn't been enough time to hangout together these days. Junsu was having a world tour, I was filming a drama and a movie at the same time. Although there has not been an opportunity to meet personally, we met together for a shooting game commercial recently.

We also went to the US for 2 weeks for work and vacation. It was really enjoyable. I don't think there's any special activity we do. When we meet usually, there are things we need to do. It is really fun because the conversations we have are not normal. Our members are so funny.

2 weeks is not enough for us to hangout together since there are many stories to share with each other. We are so happy we get along. I have big expectations for tomorrow because we will meet again for another commercial.

Q. How much do Junsu and Yoochun mean to you?

Jaejoong: Junsu? He is the most handsome man in the world. That was a joke. Will he feel bad if I say it was a joke?

He is handsome. But you are referring to what he means to me, right? Junsu and Yoochun are almost like family to me. In a way, our relationship is closer than family that we don't even need words to communicate with each one another.

I just met Junsu right before at our shop. It wasn't strange to see him again even though I had not seen him in a long time. Since we are like family, It's not necessary to say "how are you?" because we are really close to each other.

Q. In the midst of difficulties in promotion after coming out as a new group, what is the strength of JYJ?

Jaejoong: JYJ's strength? I am the oldest, but I think JYJ is a team that doesn't have the concept of a leader in the group. There are times that Junsu leads the other members. Sometimes Yoochun takes the role as the leader. There are times that I lead.

I think the leadership of the groups is distributed very well. Members lead each other with their own strength. They even share their weaknesses as well. I think this membership is the source of strength for JYJ to go firmly.


Q. What was your childhood dream? Did you expect to be a singer and go around the world on tours?

Jaejoong: I didn't expect. My childhood dream was to become the owner of a supermarket. I also wanted to become a hair designer. But I became a singer and actor. I didn't expect to receive this much love from fans around the world. I am really thankful to have met the JYJ members. I am very happy that we get to create music that we love.

Q. What is the value of being a singer over any other profession? When do you feel happy about being a singer?

Jaejoong: There are no words needed. I am happy with everything. I am happy that, as a singer, I can do the music I want to do. I am very happy to perform on stage; sharing moments with members who have the same heart and the same values.

Q. Which songs do you listen to the most these days? Who has influenced your music the most?

Jaejoong: I listen to piano music a lot. It might not match my image, but I try to listen to calm music rather than loud music since I spend more time at my house by myself these days. I really love Jay Holiday. I try to listen to his music whenever I have time. When I was a rookie, I really loved Boyz II Men and R. Kelly's music. They influenced me musically. I was also influenced by the Japanese group, Gasperats. I really loved Kubota Toshinobu, too. I am not sure if he is still doing music though.

Q. Are there any artists you would like to collaborate with? And why?

Jaejoong: I have too many celebrities to choose from to the point that I feel it is too difficult to choose. I think I have mentioned her before...Beyonce, who I really want to meet in person and work together with. No matter what kind of music I bring to her, she could make it into good music.

Q. Where do you see yourself professionally in the next 15 years?

Jaejoong: I will be an uncle around that age. I will be trying to enjoy my life as a young person. I will be continuing my career as a singer and an actor since I will be more experienced than I am now. I will be challenging myself in new fields of profession, even at that age, as I meet new people.


Q. What do you usually do in your spare time? Do you recommend any good hobbies?

Jaejoong: I enjoy hiking these days. I think it's really good. You don't really go hiking by yourself; you go with somebody. If you go with your friends, the friendship will become stronger. If you go with the person you love, the relationship will grow closer since you need that pull and push while climbing up mountains. It's good for your health, too. I really encourage you to go hiking.

I also go bicycle riding a lot these days. I usually ride by myself. If you just run, you may feel bored. But riding a bicycle is not boring. It helps you exercise, too.

Q. If you could go back to high school, what do you wish to do the most?

Jaejoong: I would enjoy normal life with my friends rather than just be focused on following my dream. But I don't think I could, because of the dream and how much it means to me.

Q. If a genie granted you 3 wishes, what would you wish for?

Jaejoong: First of all, I want to wish for creating a direct airline from South Korea to South America. My last trip to South America was too difficult. It would be much more convenient with a direct airline. Then, JYJ can go to South America more often and more conveniently. People from South America can also come to South Korea more easily.

Secondly, I wish to live up to 200 years. Not that I become 200 years old, but 1 year becomes like half of a year. I always thought that the time we live is too short. Time flies so fast but I have so many things I need to do.

Thirdly, I wish for the amount of natural disasters to decrease. Typhoons came to South Korea 3 times this month and people suffer from them. I wish that natural disasters would disappear.


Q. Now that it seems Psy has blasted the door open for K-Pop in the US, what are your thoughts on the phenomenon Psy has become? Do you think this will benefit other Hallyu stars?

Jaejoong: I think Psy is really wonderful. When I see his activity in the US, I really feel that he's so great and inspiring. I say this to myself. He is always honest when he speaks. He's never copied someone else's music. He doesn't believe in making music just for the sake of making music. I think it was music that was created from his own thoughts and style that made an explosion in the US. His popularity is not just limited in the US, but it's all over the world. I think his own style and personality appealed to people around the world. His sincere music really appealed to people.

Due to this one artist from Korea, people may have more of an opportunity to listen to other K-Pop music, which can strengthen other junior musicians. I think it will become a good opportunity for many other Korean artists.

Q. How far do you think K-Pop can go? What is the next step K-Pop needs to take in order to continue the sensation or go even further?

Jaejoong: I think we ourselves will need to work hard. It will require more time. We will need to show our continuous efforts, try different genres. I wish that artists in Korea were not combined into the one genre of K-Pop.I wish for all to continue to challenge themselves with new things and have the will to go worldwide. It requires more time, right?


Q. Any updates on movies, dramas, or an album in the near future?

Jaejoong: I am looking for a new drama to appear in. A movie, "Jackal Is Coming," will release in November. We are still working on the ending part of the movie while promotion is going on at the same time. I am also looking for another movie to appear in because I want to.

Q. Finally, will you greet all of our KpopStarz readers in the US and worldwide?

Jaejoong: Thank you so much for the love that you gave. I have to say this to express my heart of gratitude. I really wish to meet all of you in person under better conditions. I will work really hard to be a better musician and actor. Please continue to express your love.

I love you all. Thank you. Oh... I am embarrassed.

Photo Credit : C-JeS Entertainment



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