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Fresh Faces in K-pop This Summer

2007/07/24 Source

By Cathy Rose A. Garcia
Staff Reporter

As if the public has not had enough of K-pop groups like TVXQ and Super Junior, a new batch of girl groups and boy bands are coming out this summer.

This August, top entertainment companies S.M. Entertainment, CJ Media and JYP Entertainment are introducing new groups that they believe will be K-pop's next big thing.

S.M. Entertainment will try to replicate the success of its super-sized boy band Super Junior with new all-girl group. The nine-member So Nyeo Shi Dae, which translates to The Era of Girls, will make its debut next month.

To generate more buzz for the new group, S.M. Entertainment introduced the members one at a time. Individual videos showing the pretty, fresh-faced girls talking about themselves are also available on the Internet.

S.M. Entertainment said the group members would not just sing and dance, but also take on acting, modeling, DJ and emceeing jobs. This obviously follows the approach taken with Super Junior, whose 13 members are not just singers and dancers, but also actors, models, emcees and DJs.

The group is composed of Sunny, Kwon Yuri, Taeyeon, Tiffany, Yoona, Choi Soo-young, Jessica, Hyo-yeon and Seohyun. Jessica and Tiffany are fluent in English since they have been raised in the United States, while Hyoyeon can speak Chinese and Choi Soo-young can speak Japanese.

S.M. Entertainment has a mixed record when it comes to launching girl groups. While it scored a success with S.E.S. in the late 1990s, S.M. Entertainment's recent girl groups have yet to achieve the same level of success. Cheon Sang Ji Hee The Grace is slowly gaining popularity, while I-13, a girl group that debuted with Super Junior last year, barely made a ripple in the music scene.

Another girl group that is set to debut in August is Black Pearl. The four-member group is produced by CJ Media, the same company who produced R&B stars SG Wannabe and Seeya.

Black Pearl is composed of Cho Young-su, Kim Do-hun, Min Myoung-ki and Han Song-hu, whose ages range from 17 to 25. Their first single shows off Black Pearl's vocal talent, following in the footsteps of Seeya.

CJ Media also recently introduced FT Island, a five-member boy band who released their first album "Cheerful Sensibility" last June. The group, whose name stands for Five Treasure Island, is gaining fans because of their good looks and pop-rock music.

JYP Entertainment, former management company of K-pop star Rain, is also introducing a boy band this August. The company had launched a girl group Wonder Girls, who released their mini-album last February and already has a reality show on MTV.

With all new faces in the K-pop scene, it will be very interesting to see who gets the public's attention this summer.

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