Tong Vfang Xien Qi aka TVXQ is one of the biggest names of the K-Pop world. They’re also known as DBSK (acronym for Dong Bang Shin Ki) in Korea and Tohoshinki in Japan. But all these names just have one meaning: “The Rising Gods Of The East”. The name says everything you need to know. They definitely made it big worldwide, even entering the Guiness World Records in 2008 for having the biggest fanclub of the world (800,000 Cassiopeias in South Korea only), but the group is also marked by a complicated and controversial history.
Being active for more than 10 years in the K-Pop industry is a remarkable thing and TVXQ surprised everyone since they first debuted back in 2003 under SM Entertainment. They are the personification of the perfection of K-Pop: breathtaking voices, awesome dancing, handsome appearances, and worldwide success. TVXQ has all of it. So far, they’ve sold more than 12 millions of albums and even draw the attention of Billboard, gaining their title of “K-Pop Royalty”.
At their debut, TVXQ had 5 members: U-Know Yunho (leader and bass singer), Max Changmin (high notes singer), Hero Jaejoong (lead singer), Micky Yoochun (mid-low singer) and Xiah Junsu (mid-high singer). They had their debut stage during a BoA and Britney Spears concert on December 26, 2003. Their first single “Hug” was a great success, reaching number 4 of the monthly South Korean album charts.
Tri-Angle was their first studio album and was released in 2004. It was another great success, selling almost 243,000 copies (8th best selling record of 2004)..
In 2005, they signed with the label Avex, having their Japanese debut as Tohoshinki, but it didn’t turn out to be as successful as expected.
After the Japanese promotions, they came back to South Korea and released “Rising Sun”, the breakthrough, multi-award winning album and the track of the same name is still one of the most famous TVXQ tracks.
With the years, the fame of the group is steadily grew, releasing various singles and albums, winning different awards and holding concerts all over the world.
In 2009, their biggest success ever hit the market: I’m talking of the 4th Korean album “Mirotic”. Due to the high rate of pre-orders, the release of the album was delayed by a few days and then debuted at the top of the charts with around 308,000 copies sold. By end of 2009, the album sales registered 502,837 copies sold. It’s the first Korean album in 6 years to pass over the 500,000 mark. Moreover, the lead track “Mirotic” is the most distinctive TVXQ song of all the time.
In July of the same year, Jaejoong, Yoochun and Junsu filed a lawsuit against SM Entertainment, claiming their 13-years long contracts were too long, that the profits of the band were distributed unfairly and that the schedules were inhumane. TVXQ’s activities in Korea were suspended but the Japanese activities were carried out as planned. However, the members had their last public appearance as group of 5 on December 31, 2009.
In April 2010, Avex announced the hiatus of Tohoshinki and the formation of JYJ, a new group formed by Jaejoong, Yoochun and Junsu. Immediately, SM Entertainment filed a lawsuit against JYJ to validate their contracts and in response, JYJ submitted a lawsuit against SM Entertaiment to void their exclusive contracts. SM Entertaiment attempted to denounce JYJ and their new agency, C-JeS, again and the fight did not end until a few months ago, even if there are still controversies going on. Not a world was heard from Yunho and Changmin regarding this issue during the period of the splitting up of the group.
After some time of inactivity, TVXQ announced a comeback as a duo. In January 2011, Changmin and Yunho released “Keep Your Head Down”, gathering some success with the highly anticipated comeback. They also attracted loads of attention because they were accused that “Keep Your Head Down”, the lead track, was a diss song directed to the former members Jaejoong, Yoochun and Junsu.
In 2012, they released their 6th Korean album called “Catch Me”, another big success thanks to the lead track “Catch Me” and the famous ‘dragon dance’, and the repackaged version “Humanoids” topped the charts again thanks to their great voices and stunning tracks.
After an official announcement during the 10th anniversary celebration concert, their latest album “Tense” and was released in January 2014. “Something”, the lead track with jazz and swing influences, hit the charts as always, became another huge TVXQ success.
Even though they had to undergo some drastic changes during their career and they had a difficult time to overcome, TVXQ is still an astonishing duo that continuously shows us that they’re really talented. Changmin and Yunho are a great vocal match and their songs always mark out their capability as artists. Even if they’ve been criticized to be weak without the former 3 members, I think they’re still awesome and that there are not a lot of other groups that can stand up with their striking voices and their uniqueness as a duo.
Yunho, the leader of TVXQ, was born in 1986 in Gwangju, South Korea. He joined SM Entertainment at the age of 13, after winning a dancing competition. As his financial situation was not good, he had to work part time during his training period. Unable to have a proper accommodation due to the lack of money, Yunho even spent a period of time homeless.
In 2001, he was a background dancer and rapper in “Diamond”, the debut single of labelmate Dana. Before debuting with TVXQ, he was then assigned to be part of the project “4 Seasons” together with Jaejoong (now member of JYJ), Heechul and Kangin (now both members of Super Junior) but SM Entertainment dropped the project soon after.
His voice has a really recognizable trait, filled with bass notes that many people love. He’s also one of the most renowned dancers of the K-Pop world and his Michael Jackson tribute dances are undoubtedly amazing. Moreover, he is active as songwriter and actor. Thanks to his role as Baek Do-Hoon in Queen of Ambition, he won the Seoul International Drama Award for Most Popular Actor in 2013.
As TVXQ are extremely popular, they have loads of fans but also anti-fans. In 2006, during a variety show filming, Yunho was rushed to hospital after drinking a beverage mixed up with super glue that an anti-fan gave him. Fortunately, he did not suffer severe injury but the whole accident affected him more mentally than physically. Since then, he does not like to have close contact with strangers.
As the leader of TVXQ, he’d always been respected by all the members and with his meticulous way of doing, he always demonstrated to be capable leader through all these years.
Changmin was born in Seoul in 1988 and he is TVXQ’s maknae. He was spotted by a talent scout as he was playing badminton but he had no interest in becoming an idol at the time. It’s said that, as his mother really wanted to meet BoA, she dragged him to an SM Entertainment casting and that he passed the audition with no efforts.
Changmin is famous for his high pitched notes and his screams are breathtaking. Probably one of the only people in the k-pop world to be gifted with such a voice. He works really hard in training his voice, showing a lot of perseverance to impress every single one of us.
He’s also a lyricist and has worked on many different tracks for TVXQ. Moreover, he’s also a passionate actor, and recently he was the male lead actor in the drama series “Mimi”.
Moed88 – April 2014