During the photo shoot, it seems that you meticulously took care of everything from your styling to your makeup and even the pictures. Did you also do everything on your own during “Unpretty Rapstar”?
Indeed. It’s absolutely not because I don’t like having people do things for me. It’s just that if there’s something I don’t like, even just a little, I will keep thinking about it even when I’m on stage. Each rapper could personally picked up their stage outfit in the showroom of the brand sponsoring our clothes. I could bring my items because I was the one going to the store the earliest when it opened. During my previous activities, when I went to the hair shop to get my hair and make-up done, I quietly took my pouch with me. And when it was over, I left the shop and I used to fix discretly the things I wanted to change. These people were pro and I felt sorry for them having to do me this favor so often. To be honest, there isn’t much difference. (laugh) I make it exhausting for me. It’s just how I am.
You were always cool during the show. You weren’t seen really criticizing or hating on someone. You looked always dignified on stage.
When I was recording the comment interviews, the producers often asked me what I thought about the other contestants in a way to make me express critics against the others, but I never fell for it. And there was nothing for me to hate or think badly of the other contestants in real life. This person has this personality, so what? Saying that I don’t like it won’t change it, so might as well accept it because that’d make it less tiring for me to deal with it. I just focused on what I had to do and I didn’t waste time worrying about the other contestants.
You were seen taking care of the other rappers. You seem to be a warm-hearted and affectionate person in real life. When you’re like this, it’s hard to picture the strong and sharp image you have on stage.
Hm… In my daily life, I’m just Kim Eun Young. Cheetah is only who I am on stage. My music brings it out of me, but I think being pro is about showing the best charisma as much as it’s needed because this other me is the way to represent my voice. And when I’m singing a song on stage, it’s more about getting the feeling of the universe I create rather than just being on stage. Other people’s reactions or the audience’s reactions aren’t what’s important. The only important is the confidence and the words I spit? That’s how I felt for “Coma 07′”.
What’s Cheetah’s swag?
It’s like “my way”. I’m going down my own path. I don’t want to make compromises or back down when it comes to my music or hip-hop.
How busy are you these days?
I did about 30 interviews since the end of the show. In one word, it’s been hectic, for me. It suddenly hits me a few times a day. Like “am I doing an interview right now? Amazing! Are they putting makeup on me for a fashion photo shoot?”.
There were times when you were in a difficult situation during the competition, but you always seemed easygoing.
It’s already over, so what else should I do? I’m the type to just do things and forget about it. To be honest, I wanted to run away, but I couldn’t actually do it. (laugh) More than anything, I wanted to show people that even if I did big mistakes in “Show Me The Money”, I was someone who could do well.
I was looking up your profile on portal sites and your display picture is you with long hair and a floppy hat.
It’s the complete opposite of your current boyish image. You were famous in the past with the nickname “Kyunggi-do’s daughter”. What’s your real image?
Every image is me. I think I’m this way because I like trying many things. To be honest, I just change things when I’m bored. My
agency stopped me and advised me that I should have long hair because the styling was good, but I cut it as it pleased me. And I also completely changed my fashion style for a hip-hop style. The style for today’s photo shoot is exactly the style I’ve had lately. And I actually own a t-shirt like this one. I also wanted to buy a necklace, but it’s expensive… (laugh) I’ll be able to change when I’m older. I don’t know. I just love who I am right now.
Which one of your lyrics would you choose as the best you’ve written so far?
“To.Mom” I sang for the semifinals. The filming schedule was hectic, but I went on a 3-day-2-night family trip to Jeju Island five days before I recorded my last episode. This trip had been planned for a long time, so I couldn’t back out. That’s how I ended up going on a trip right before an important stage. I didn’t know if I’d be able to write lyrics. However, when my family was sleeping at night, I wrote my lyrics and it came out smoothly. It was the right timing. I was able to complete my lyrics like that. That’s why it was even more meaningful.
What’s Kisum’s swag?
Hm, will it do if I say “real swag”? I’m exactly the same anywhere I go. I don’t try to look better on stage and my behavior doesn’t change when I’m not in front of a camera. I’m like what I seem to be in real life.
Do you have the feeling that you learned a lot through “Unpretty Rapstar”?
Of course, I do think that meeting such talented sunbaes through this program made me improve too, but as time goes by, I feel like my mindset about the stage is changing. Like “I have no reason to lack confidence”. I’m still not a complete rapper, but I think I was able to compete equally against these people. To be honest, it’s a program about measuring talents, so isn’t it funny to also be in the posture of studying? I was earnest as I did things my way.
Is there a style or a brand you’ve been interested in these days? Isn’t style as important as music for rappers?
Is it? I still haven’t figured it out yet. Everyday, I just wear my training suits, even after school, so people ask me if I have 10 training suits at home. However, while I was shooting the show, I got to doll myself up once and I was like “oh, that’s what it’s like?”. That’s why I’ve been buying a lot of clothes with my dad’s credit card these days. I don’t know if I exceeded the limit.
How do your school friends react? Isn’t receiving so much attention a burden?
Some of them are like “nuna, you’re pretty”, and others make fun of me behind my back. I don’t really care. When I think about the critics I got in the past, this stuff is really not that much. My close friends really like me. They were upset when I was going through a hard time. However, I have the feeling that as I get more famous, my friends are being filtered. In front of me, some pretend we’re close and they say something different behind my back. I realized who my true friends were.
What’s Yuk Jidam’s swag?
“Infinite possibilities”. Can people know how this still unpolished rapper called Yuk Jidam will grow? That’s why they will anticipate and enjoy my songs even more.
Translation: @thesunnytown – thesunnytown.wordpress.com