The K-pop King begins his next industry step with a firm vision for music, new talent and, eventually, retirement: "I want to share the things I learned."
PSY had big plans before releasing his career-defining hit "Gangnam Style" – he was going to retire after its release.
The Korean rapper was not looking to tour the world, relocate to America or Signing with a super-pop manager for a global hit, the then-34-year-old was planning to embark on an earlier dream in his career to "establish the largest entertainment agency in Asia." Yet it's only now in 2019 that PSY feels with almost 20 years in the business and a higher-than-ever interest in K-pop, that he feels he can really be a backbone to a company he envisioned years ago.
At the Top of this year, PSY has taken social media to announce the creation of P NATION, a new management agency and record label where the star acts as founder and CEO. The company will not only support PSY's artistic career, which will include new music in 201
"Right now, a lot of young kids' dreams about being a K-pop star," he says. "When I sign young kids these days, I meet their parents and they're really different from my parents. They're so supportive. The world has been changing: K-pop has done a great job – and great applause to BTS, "
The only son born into a family-owned semi-conductor business, PSY (born Park Jae-sang), and the" He remembers butting heads with his parents on his early career path ("My dad would even say," Really? Is that my son? ") and need to manage himself as an artist early in his career (running his own business affairs from 2003-2007), this next chapter is somewhat of a return home but also one he approaches with a keen business sense in hopes to help his artists establish themselves in ways he has after nearly two decades on the scene
"Trying to be different is really dangerous, I think, I just want to focus on the basics – our b Asics are, of course, making good music and making proper music with great dancing and great videos, "he says of his vision. He centers that around the goal for creating career, where his artists have long-lasting successes similar to the semi-annual staged concerts he holds in Korea. "When I launched the company, I wrote Instagram that I want to share the things I learned. Among the things I learned was directing my concerts and showing myself for 19 years. I'm thinking of how to make that same great concert. for Jessi, HyunA, E'Dawn, and a boy or girl group. If we say what the special essence of P NATION will be, it's those big concerts, those big performances. "
In this exclusive, PSY opens up Billboard for the first time about the plans for the artists of the P NATION, his crop of new talent, where his artistic inspirations lie today and more.
The New Jersey-raised Korean-American rapper, Jessi has more than a decade in the Korean music business with stints as a solo artist and part of hip-hop collectives. During her time under former home YMC Entertainment (a label that housed a few Korean singers, bands and actors), Jessi's fame grew from reality TV shows and some success with her solo work – like her 2017 single Gucci, which has more than 15 million views on YouTube. Jessi was announced as the first signee to P NATION when PSY initially revealed the company.
First Steps at P NATION: A big commercial hit that showcases not only her talent as a rapper, but her singing and dancing abilities. "She has a lot of hip-hop and urban elements, but I still want her to perform very commercial pop music," PSY says. "Of course, it's going to have some hip-hop elements – all the pop has hip-hop and hip-hop is pop these days – but I want her to create a pop song. I'm Convincing her hard to do some dance moves because she's a really good dancer – really good! "
Jessi's Future: Songs in English focused on the US the market. "In Korea though, mostly, Jessi has been known for a lot of TV shows, but we see her Instagram or her perform abroad, and she has a powerful, organic fan base. I thought," She has such a good hardware, if I could get her an appropriate song, that will be my first and last job. ' It's that easy. I will not have anything to do, she already has everything. She's ready. She also raps English very well. Not right now, but in the near future, I'm thinking of making some good US songs as well. "
PSY is Jessi's Business Acumen: " She's been in this industry for so many years, she's from the States and has a lot of global ideas. I will tell her from time to time. 'Hey Jess, you should work as A & R, I want to pay you.' The songs she listens to and the videos she watches, they're really good and she finds them when they have only a thousand views on YouTube. She has so many ideas and she has a good taste. My job is choosing and concentrating Jessi's big ideas In the best they can be. She's a good person. "
One of K-pop's most famous faces, HyunA spent a short time as a member of Wonder Girls, debuting in 2007, before making her mark on the scene with her longtime girl group 4Minute and as a solo artist under Cube Entertainment. The singer-rapper co-starred in PSY's Gangnam Style video in 2012, which brought her international star to a new level, and continued successfully even after 4Minute's 2016 disbandment.
In 2018, HyunA left her longtime home in Cube after revealing a relationship with E'Dawn, a member of the Cube Entertainment band band Pentagon. Both she and E'Dawn were announced to be dismissed from the label, only to have the decision reconsidered by the company, with eventually both artists leaving and later signing with P NATION.
First Steps at P NATION: The solo K-pop star is writing songs and PSY envisions new music that focuses on her strong performance style. "We are doing the right thing," he says with a humble confidence. "After" Gangnam Style "we were close friends and I have a habit that if I team up with a friend, I imagine," How would I work with them? " HyunA's great performer, a great performer. "
How She Helped E'Dawn: HyunA and boyfriend E ' Dawn signed separate, solo contracts and it was only after meeting with the starlet that PSY even considered signing the former boy-band member. "When I first met E'Dawn, I did not think about making a contract, but then I heard what HyunA had to say. We came together, we talked, and then when I talked with him, I thought, 'Wow. Separately , he's good. ' They're dating, but that's it. "
Her Competitive Relationship: " I've never seen lovers like that, "PSY says through a fit of laughs. "When we date someone, we go out to fancy places, go to restaurants. But these two? They dance together, they write songs together, and they compete with each other. That's really funny thing! I'm like," You two are so strange. ' They write songs, they do dance practices together, but when they make a good song separately – they do not share it with each other! Individually, they will send me songs, they are very competitive. I love them, I Love the way of love – it's very creative. "
After debuting on the K-pop scene in 2016 as a member of the Pentagon, E'Dawn became known for Helping shape the band's musical identity, co-writing and co-producing several of the band's singles including their breakout hit "Shine." E'Dawn became entangled in the aforementioned conflict over his label mate HyunA and both departed the company by the end of 2018.
First Steps at P NATION: A mainstream-hit hit that can showcases his talent for trendy, melodious hip-hop. "These days, a lot of young artists in the US are doing a melodic rap – it's a rap but it has melodies and stuff like that. E'Dawn's really good at it and I'm a big fan of him doing that. But he's I also want to do some pop music, I do not want anyone going so obscure, you know what I mean? We have to do pop music to be popular at first … I respect E'Dawn a lot as a solo artist. He has great dance moves, he can rap great, he can sing great, he's dresses great and he can really write a song. "
How He Feels About E'Dawn's Relationship: PSY takes a practical approach when considering the relationship that saw them dismissed from their former record label. "They were in love before meeting me so …" he trails off before laughing and becoming serious again. "That's a really delicious thing. They are very good looking – I mean, every idol is very good looking. They are young, they are so talented and, you know, it's human nature. If you're good looking, talented men and women, you're inevitably going to feel good feelings about each other. "
P NATION TRAINEES
P NATION is also a home to twenty-something male and female trainees who are preparing to debut in a girl band or boy band. It's not clear which hip-hop will be the main component of these future group's musical identities.
The Importance He Places on Himself as CEO: "As a human being, I have a very heavy feeling about touching others' lives," he says when observing the young talent in his company. "I do not want to set their expectations too high or too low. I really have to be careful about my decisions, because these are not tiny decisions – that's someone's life. I'm just watching them being trained. I don ' t say nothing to them because I do not have any comments on that moment. They have much to learn still, but I see some good performers among them. "
On Letting His Artists Date: "I will tell everyone that if you're going to do something, please let me know first," he diplomatically explains his policy on dating. "If you let me know first, then I'm going to have some suggestions like," Hey, I think you're better off focusing on work right now and you can do romantic things later? " It's more about fans. They are getting some rights, support and love as an artist, and at the same time earning duties as an artist. If my idols can maintain vibe that they focus on music, if it is possible, I Do you believe that this is the best thing? "
What if" Dating Scandal "Hits P NATION? "For me, I do not like the word" scandal ", because if some men and women are dating, that's just dating. That's not a scandal, if they talk with me. For me, the scandal is when I did You know about it before then … in the whole species and in the whole universe, love is the strongest thing. Someone who is older or the CEO of a company, they can give advice, but if they are in love, Well, they've got to do it. "
The viral-sensation-turned-CEO says he's building a path to retirement with plans To release at least two more full-length albums.
First Steps at P NATION: At least one single in 2019, but he's not sure if it will be accompanied by more music. " I'm going to release a new song this year," he explains. "My dilemma is whether it's a single, EP or full-length album. Personally, I prefer a full-length album. But before I retire, I want at least 10 full-length albums. My last one [ 4X2 = 8 released in 2017] was my eighth, so I have two more to go! So, if I want to accomplish that I got to release a full-length. But these days, LPs are too long. If we do an album, there might be one big single, three or four songs that are popular, and the other six or seven other songs just go away, and I feel really sorry about that. "
He reads the comments: "When I revealed [the news] about my company and my artists, a lot of K-pop fans were supportive, I was really surprised," he says back to January of this year. "So many K-pop fans all over the word were so supportive and they show me high expectations and stuff, so I really appreciate that." But that does not mean he's out to snatch every artist from their agency, adding, "I only needed four or three artists to show the color of our company, and I think it's really enough for now," while shutting down the rumors that he was planning To sign his former "Daddy" collaborator CL.
The Future of PSY: He's focused on consistency and high-quality releases until he eventually does decide to retire. "Next year is my 20th anniversary. When I first debuted in 2000, at first people were laughing, secondly they were watching, and then they were participating … Every first of January, I'm thinking about announcing my retirement because the word I really like is 'Good bye.' Not just 'bye, but' good bye. ' I made my appearance as a singer very happy, very energetically and with a laughter. I want to leave in the same way. I want to make a good bye eventually, and if I want to do good bye, then I really got to be good until I say bye. That's my goal – that's the only goal. I want to be good until I say bye. "