Kim JiMin was currently at the concert venue ‘Greenlight’ along with Lee HyunJi and professor Choi ChanYang.
Seeing an indie concert for the first time was a wonder itself for her. The stage that was underground, as well as the lights. Everything was like a new world to her.
“Professor. Is HyunAh-unni going to perform up there?”
“Yeah. She’s up last.”
“That’s amazing. The unni I always see at the office is going to perform there…”
Lee HyunJi burst out laughing after hearing those words. Girls around Kim JiMin’s age would giggle at almost anything.
“Oh, dear JiMin. What can I do about your cuteness?”
Lee HyunJi lightly pinched Kim JiMin’s cheeks.
“Ii hursh (It hurts).”
While the three were waiting for the concert to start, the lights started dimming. The stage was about to begin.
Just as Lee HyunJi said, the lights on the stage brightened and a male presenter walked out. He introduced the concert casually and briefly; and spoke about the singers and that would appear today. The lights then dimmed again, and the sound of footsteps could be heard.
Then the lights turned on again.
“h.e.l.lo? It’s Jang HyoJi.”
Amongst the cheers of the audience, Jang HyoJi took a deep bow. Then, the band at the back of the stage started playing and made the audience clap according to the beat.
It was very short but was enough to draw out the reaction from the audience. These people were here to enjoy the concert, so they only needed to be fanned slightly and they would jump to the beat.
“It’s a nice day today. Should we do that again?”
Jang HyoJi heightened the mood with another round. Since all of these people had come here ready to play around, everyone jumped in unison. And after she judged that it was around time, she gave a signal to the drums. Then, the drums started playing some light beats and the ba.s.s started the song. It was a fun song with a fast beat.
“Set fire – to the boring life – and go on a —“
The lyrics spoke for the people, while the fun beats made them jump. Jang HyoJi’s hefty and powerful voice gave a refres.h.i.+ng feeling to the audience.
Kim JiMin also jumped with the rest of the audience. Lee HyunJi by her side did the same. Professor Choi ChanYang waved his hands in the air and enjoyed it in his own style.
The song slowly reached its climax.
“I wish to – go back to the days – I was happy about small things—–!”
Jang HyoJi shouted the lyrics. Both the music and the audience reached their climax. Everyone became one and jumped in unison. Their reactions were, needless to say, amazing.
“Thank you. Should we do that one more time?”
In the following song, Jang HyoJi again sang a song that had a fast 16-beat tempo and the audience jumped around again.
“Her stage manners are definitely okay.”
President Kang s.h.i.+Myoung of Yerang Entertainment was currently at the back of the audience seats watching Jang HyoJi’s stage. Beside him was chief Min JoongSup of the scouting team with a nervous expression.
(T/N: Yerang is the place that tried to steal KY off MG. Their president was the burly guy.)
“Sh… she’s definitely capable. There’s no need to talk about her manners.”
seems to be the case.”
President Kang s.h.i.+Myung narrowed his eyes and watched Jang HyoJi’s stage until the very end. Jang HyoJi didn’t take her eyes off the audience until the end, and she had very good concentration. She was an overall good singer. However, he kept shaking his head as though she was lacking.
“She’s good, but it’s a bit of a pity. She’s lacking when compared to the girl called Lee HyunAh. She’s bright, but she doesn’t s.h.i.+ne.”
“But… Lee HyunAh said that she won’t come unless we accept the entire band….”
“That can’t be helped. Our budget doesn’t allow that…. Oh yes, I heard that HyunAh that girl also signed a contract.”
“It’s called World Entertainment.”
For President Kang s.h.i.+Myoung, this was something he heard for the first time. He tilted his head.
“It’s a newly made company. Their first singer is Lee HyunAh as well. So that’s why they accepted her condition to accept the entire band.”
“Looks like they’ll go down pretty soon. It’s not like affection earns money.”
When they talked for quite a while, the stage ended. Jang HyoJi exited amongst the cheers of the audience. The next band continued with the mood that Jang HyoJi had set up but was lacking compared to Jang HyoJi.
President Kang s.h.i.+Myoung crossed his arms and watched the stage.
“She is definitely the best out of all of them.”
The words President Kang s.h.i.+Myoung spoke after the fourth band ended made chief Min JoongSup smile. His scouting was acknowledged by the president.
“This is good. Let’s see. The last in order is White Moonlight? Weren’t they called The Formidables before?”
“Yes. They were called that last time, but I think they changed the name.”
“Looks like the company made them change it. Well, it’s better than what it was before.”
President Kang s.h.i.+Myoung watched the stage with a blank expression. This band had rejected his offer, in the end, he didn’t have good feelings about them.
The stage lights dimmed, and the last team was getting ready. The sounds of tapping and the occasional sounds of tuning could be heard. This was the fun in small clubs. The lights brightened again and shone on Lee HyunAh, who was at the center.
“h.e.l.lo! I’m Lee HyunAh from White Moonlight, our new name for the band, The Formidables.”
As to reflect Lee HyunAh’s status as the Hongdae G.o.ddess, the reactions from the audience were very hot. Lee HyunAh commented that she was excited to show them a new song. The people’s eye’s s.h.i.+ned in expectation after hearing that there was a new song.
“You jumped for a while until now. Consider it as resting for a small while. Then let’s begin.”
Lee HyunAh clicked her fingers towards the drums. Then, Kim JinDae tapped the sticks together to set the beat and then beat on the tom-tom drums. The other instruments started playing.
People raised their hands while listening to Lee HyunAh’s humming. They were tired after jumping around all this time. They turned their phone screens on and waved their phone lights.
“Today – just like yesterday – I walk the same streets –”
The grand instrumental faded out, and Lee HyunAh started singing. The refres.h.i.+ng singing style added taste to the song.
As the song progressed, the people started falling into her voice. Some people fell into the deep emotion and teared up as well. It started happening in one of the front rows and it spread around to the others.
The drums that only set the beat started getting louder while the ba.s.s and electric guitars raised their volumes and heightened the mood. Lee HyunAh’s voice resounded across the stage. The people raised their hands and followed along with the singing.
“whenever – wherever–”
The drums changed to an offbeat accent, while the ba.s.s heightened the mood even more. The distortion effect decorated the surroundings and made Lee HyunAh’s voice s.h.i.+ne. The people reacted even more pa.s.sionately. As though affected, Lee HyunAh took out the mic from the stand.
“Blossom beautifully again ——Aaaah—”
The drummer played all the drums, including snares, tom-toms, rides, and gave a decorative effect, and the rest of the instruments all boasted their skills as well. The audience reacted pa.s.sionately, as though they hadn’t jumped around this entire time. Their voices had already gone hoa.r.s.e, but they still shouted, and jumped. Everyone seemed to be crazy about the song.
Lee HyunAh sang some more songs. She never knew that she would receive such a pa.s.sionate reaction from the audience. She received energy from the audience and exploded with power.
After a fancy round of instrumental skills, their new song ended and introduced itself fully to the world.
President Kang s.h.i.+Myoung, who was watching from the back s.h.i.+vered in frustration. Min JoongSup, who was by his side, gulped and couldn’t stop being nervous.
The exclusive producer for MG Entertainment, producer Oh JiWan, didn’t feel good recently. Ever since chairman Won JinMoon collapsed, the company was centralized around the director’s a.s.sociation and the company went in a strange direction. Thanks to that, he, who only had work centered around recording before, now had to manage trainees and do other things as well.
But today was the day he relieved his stress. He had a schedule in Gangnam with a close friend of his that had just come back from the military. He left the company early and headed to the place.
“Hyung, it’s been a while.”
When he arrived at the bar, an ordinary-looking man with very short hair was walking around. Producer Oh JiWan greeted him and entered the bar.
The bar was room-style (had several private rooms). The two ordered quickly and poured each other some alcohol. When they drank, they started talking.
“Wow, Kim JaeHoon. How long has it been?”
“It’s been 2 years. We met just before I went to the military.”
“You vicious little p.r.i.c.k. You didn’t even call me once during your leave.”
“Sorry. I just… didn’t have the leisure to.”
The guy called Kim JaeHoon poured alcohol while saying sorry. Seeing him apologize with a very sorry face, producer Oh JiWan said that it was okay, and they clashed gla.s.ses. Along with the gla.s.s clas.h.i.+ng sound, the two emptied their gla.s.ses in one go.
The two had met after such a long time and started talking about various things. Military, the entertainment world, etc. There were a lot of things to talk about.
Producer Oh JiWan, whose face reddened after drinking so much, asked carefully.
“JaeHoon. Are you looking for a management company?”
“Not yet. I can’t trust anyone so easily.”
“Well, yeah. If you’ve met those guys, then it couldn’t be helped that you think so.”
Producer Oh JiWan frowned in displeasure.
“Those d.a.m.ned guys. They did nothing, and they want three times the contract deposit. How does that make any sense?”
“They didn’t even pay for the rearrangement fees and the concert profit. And they canceled the contract outright….”
“What happened to the lawsuit?”
Kim JaeHon lowered his head implying that the results weren’t good. Producer Oh JiWan had nothing to say either.
“I just…. Want to sing without thinking about anything else. Just sing….”
Kim JaeHoon truly wished to do that. 2 years of lawsuit plus 2 years of military. He hadn’t stood on a stage for four years. Moreover, the result of the long lawsuit was terrible. His expression behind his smile was colored in demise.
Producer Oh JiWan couldn’t easily say anything either. Is there really a company that is willing to accept him? Yes, his singing skills were top-notch. However, there was a 4-year gap. And what about the money problem? Is there really a company that is willing to accept him despite all those risks?
Well, maybe it would be possible if it’s the three big companies with a lot of funds.
“Did you contact places like Yerang?”
“What did they say?”
Kim JaeHoon shook his head. Meaning that it was no good.
‘If Yerang said no, then what about us? No, the company’s doing horrible nowadays. It would be better to go to the place President Lee HyunJi set up…. Oh, wait.’
Something flashed by in producer Oh JiWan’s head. The new company that Lee HyunJi and KangYoon built. Although their scale was small, he felt that they would be okay.
“JaeHoon. The scale of the company doesn’t matter, right?”
“A company is a necessary evil.”
“Y… yeah. Anyway. I have a place to recommend to you….”
Producer Oh JiWan started talking about World Entertainment with him.
“That was awesome. Ah, The Formidables are the best.”
“It’s White Moonlight. They changed their name.”
“Whatever, same thing. Anyway, they’re so cool. Ah, HyunAh-unni….”
After the whole concert was over, the audience left the concert hall like a receding tide. The concert venue was emptied in an instant. However, the heat from the concert still remained behind.
Inside the empty concert hall, President Kang s.h.i.+Myoung stood there quietly.
“That’s a pity. Really, it is.”
President Kang s.h.i.+Myoung remembered back to the last stage by White Moonlight. Even the tired people waved their hands and shouted. Even he, who was used to this after visiting countless stages, fell to it. The fact that he couldn’t get Lee HyunAh to join his company was painful.
At that time, he saw KangYoon who was looking at the stage. President Kang s.h.i.+Myoung approached him.
“Mr. Lee KangYoon.”
“President Kang s.h.i.+Myoung”
“So you still remember me.”
President Kang s.h.i.+Myoung. KangYoon shook his hand and took a bow. KangYoon never thought that he’d see him here.
“You aren’t someone I see frequently. What brought you here?”
“Oh, I came here for a singer from my company.”
“Oh, I’ve heard that you were doing a new business with President Lee HyunJi. So, it’s about that.”
KangYoon acknowledged that but didn’t reveal any more.
Just as President Kang s.h.i.+Myoung was about to ask more, Lee HyunAh and the band left the waiting room.
“O…resident! We’re ready.”
“Okay, let’s go. Then I shall take my leave.”
“Lee HyunAh? Wait. Your work was… wait.”
President Kang s.h.i.+Myoung’s expression turned strange. He had heard that Lee HyunAh joined a company. She called KangYoon… ‘oresident’? or something. The situation was simple. KangYoon scouted Lee HyunAh and the band.
“Then I shall take my leave.”
KangYoon shook hands with the panicking President Kang s.h.i.+Myoung and left the venue with White Moonlight.
“Haha… ha. Lee KangYoon. It’s that guy. Interesting.”
Seeing KangYoon leaving the venue, President Kang s.h.i.+Myoung muttered in a low voice.
“Did you say World Entertainment?”
“Investigate everything about them and bring it to me.”
President Kang s.h.i.+Myoung continued looking at the door that KangYoon had just left through and narrowed his eyes.