t/n: this isn’t exactly an interview. It’s more like a discussion they had while they were doing the photo shoot. Once again, it gives us a glimpse of the Yoon Mirae – Tiger JK relationship.
Her powerful voice, her stage manners, her visual… It’s an image different from Yoon Mirae who is actually very shy, sweet and feminine in real life. It’s a point that Tiger JK underlines. He says that she isn’t used to show herself and being in front of the camera brings out this side of her. He says that because he wants to show off her hidden charm.
“When we had an interview two years ago and I asked you if you were dating Tiger JK, why did you reply that you weren’t?”
As she is getting her makeup done, Yoon Mirae remains silent and just shows her unique youthful smiling eyes, then she speaks. “Back then, it was a little…I was worried it’d become an issue… Hehe.”
Seeing her embarrassed, Tiger JK speaks up. “I was the one saying that because I was worried that Tasha would get a bad image because of me. My image was a mess back then. I was blacklisted from TV shows. When I went to perform overseas, other singers hated performing after me because when I was on stage, it turned into a chaos. I didn’t want Mirae to suffer because of me. “Yoon Mirae is dating a thug”, I worried that we’d hear things like that.”
This was why he avoided the internet for a while when they announced their marriage. In the end, he couldn’t hold it anymore. When he went on the internet – as Tiger JK put it – “with a “whatever” mindset” – the reaction waiting for them was the complete opposite of what he was worrying about. Their marriage being the main news on entertainment TV programs, interview requests from morning programs and women magazines coming in were more than what he could have imagined. That was because the residents of Uijeongbu put it out there to the point everybody would know and they were a dating couple sometimes [?], but they couldn’t think of themselves as popular stars like that.
Although Yoon Mirae told him to sit down and wait patiently as she was getting her makeup done, Tiger JK doesn’t leave the surroundings of the vanity table. “That’s because I want to be close, even if it’s just a little…”
As he cracks jokes, the staff erupts in complaints. Tiger JK didn’t almost sleep the night before. March 17th was chosen to be the release date of his new full album, but there are still ten songs he hasn’t finished recording yet. He said that was the reason he couldn’t personally prepare their moving to a new house the next day as well as Jordan’s first-birthday party that is next week.
“The album concept is a secret, but you’ll be shocked,” he brags. Yoon Mirae’s new full album that was planned for this spring was also delayed. “JK-oppa is my closest friend before family and he’s my closest colleague. It’s not because I love him. As a musician, there are many moments of surprise,” Yoon Mirae says. “I’m Tasha’s biggest fan,” Tiger JK says after being 11 years with her as a lyricist, composer, producer and rapper.
“In our family, Tasha’s nickames are “Chairman Yoon”, “Foul King” [t/n: 반칙왕 ; banchik-wang, I don’t know any better translation for that nickname]. If there’s a problem between people, the moment Tasha appears, everything is solved. She’s very honest, so she’s Chairman Yoon. If you take the example of Dynamic Duo, when I listen to a song and say “it’s good as it is”, they still don’t believe me because they say “let’s ask Chairman Yoon just to be sure.” If you want to know why the nickname “Foul King”, it’s because when she’s recording with the hoobaes, Tasha says she’ll go first, she says it won’t take long. So she goes in, she records just once, then she leaves as she says “thank you for your hard work”. When they see that, the hoobaes are very frustrated.”
Don’t most of singers need to record a few times and put together the pieces one by one to make an album? When she heard the question, she stares with wide eyes and asks, “How do you know that?” “It’s something that we hear a lot. The fans know it too.” She briefly reveals her snaggletooth as she laughs as if she were amused. “Singers are just something else. Hehe.”
The one who suggested that Yoon Mirae be the star of this modern and feminine photo shoot and presented Sade’s “King of Sorrow” as a draft was Tiger JK. The visual he imagined won over all the staff. He said he wanted a cool magazine like “Dazed” to show off the various charms of Yoon Mirae that she wasn’t able to show until now. “As a musician or as a your wife?” “As a fan”. Then, Yoon Mirae spoke with a serious expression on her face. “Even if it’s just for one time, I wanted to see myself through the eyes of JK-oppa because he talks about an image of me that I can’t think of and he always gives me these generous/undeserved compliments. I’m curious to see how I am in oppa’s eyes.”
But she put on a black fringe dress and, as soon as she stood in front of the camera and started acting, the staff members who were more than ten looked at her in the same loving way as JK. “She looks good in anything, so you will have to buy her a lot of clothes.” Tiger JK is cracking jokes again. “There are a lot of pretty clothes even in the Uijeongbu area. Haha.” When they held their wedding ceremony, Yoon Mirae wore a pink mini skirt she had bought in their neighborhood instead of a white wedding dress. The proposal ring was a ring with a fake gem bought at the last minute in the street, but Yoon Mirae cried when she received it.
“The most upsetting rumor is that I live in a big villa, that I wear jewelery and a fur coat and that I drive an expensive car like foreign hip-hop artists do. It’s something that is flying around behind the Korean hip-hop scene. When they don’t like someone, they prevent this person to do music activities.” Hearing Tiger JK’s words, Yoon Mirae huffs as if to show her anger. “This just doesn’t make any sense.” Titles like “the R&B Queen”, “the Godfather of Korean hip-hop” trigger a neurotic [?] reaction. “If you just say “singer”, it’s enough. When I go on music programs, they call me “Yoon Mirae, the R&B Queen”. I understand they want to give me a cool introduction, but to be honest, when other singers go their programs, they’re introduced in the exact same way,” Yoon Mirae says. They’ve been doing activities for a long time, but they both had conflicts with their agencies. Because they signed an unfair contract about copyrights when they were young, they weren’t able to make a lot of money. “Me buying a house for my mom is a rumor”, Yoon Mirae says, but now that she’s married and has a baby, there’s no more room in the home they’re living in today. They live with Yoon Mirae’s mother in Uijeongbu. Their relationship began when Yoon Mirae was having a hard time because of the battle with her agency and Tiger JK played a proactive role to help her. “We’re not greedy. We just want to enjoy our lives while doing the music we want to do. Tasha received many offers from overseas. They’re from artists and agencies that are so big that you’d be quite surprised if you knew their names. But Tasha didn’t want to leave.” “I look at my mom and I just can’t go to live overseas. All my friends are in Uijeongbu. Hehe.”
Getting married, having a baby, enjoying happiness, it’s naturally a good thing, but this stability is sometimes a poison to artists. When I hint vaguely at my concern that his music would become dull, he answers. “If you forget, the pain comes back to find you.” Tiger JK is suffering from myelitis. The big gossip saying it was a promotional strategy to sell his album became another source of pain for them. He said his condition improved, but when the drug effect disappears, the pain becomes incredibly keen. In moments like this, he picks up a fight mostly with Yoon Mirae. So she says “take your medicine”. As he says that her not abandoning him is a relief, Tiger JK nods. “Oppa never speaks about the past because it feels like the first time we met. Who would believe that? Even when I speak honestly and I’m fine, it looks like I’m worrying. But I’m really okay. I’m old, so isn’t it natural?” As she speaks, Yoon Mirae has a sullen expression like a baby. It’s probably because she’s aware that her Korean isn’t perfect, Yoon Mirae tries to show her emotions through expressions that are a bit exaggerated.
As soon as Tiger JK sees her walking in wearing a Piazza Sempione dress, he compliments her by saying “beautiful”. Then, he amplifies it in a joking way as he says “the hair, the makeup, the outfit”.
They refrain themselves to show their obvious affection, but their discussion and the gestures they have for each other show the intimacy of a couple who has been together for a long time as lovers and as colleagues.
“When I listen to “Uncensored Love Song”, you’re not only good at rapping, you sing well too. Have you ever thought about doing a ballad as a duet?” I ask. Yoon Mirae elbows him as she makes fun of him with an amused expression on her face. “Hey, hey, do you like it? Hm? Hm?” Yoon Mirae is shy and doesn’t speak much in front of other people, Tiger JK is the one who is mostly very chatty, but the situation is reversed this time.
“I can’t sing complicated songs. I drank three bottles of soju before I recorded this song. If you listen carefully, you can hear this kind of sound.”
He doesn’t deny or confirm this. Yoon Mirae seems to like the idea to sing a duet for a ballad.
“But Tasha is actually the hardest artist to get in touch with.” “Still, you know each song I did was put on your album. And your songs are put on my album. When did it begin…?”
Because of the current situation of the market, Tiger JK explains that releasing a full album and not a single is some kind of adventure. But the music market has big expectations for their albums that should be released in the first semester of this year. And the expectation is even bigger with each album they release as they show more valuable experience.
As they promise that Tiger JK will definitely be the photo shoot star next time and Yoon Mirae will appear as an extra, they leave the studio.
Looking at them walking away, jealousy suddenly comes to me. Because a couple cool like that does exist…
Original article: dazed