Even for those unfamiliar with K-pop, BTS is hard to ignore.
The seven-member boy band, which was named by Time magazine as one of the 25 most influential people on the internet, is taking the world by storm, one follower at a time.
If you're not already on board with BTS' catchy songs, smooth moves and adorable personalities, you soon will be. Here's everything you need to know about the K-pop group.
What Does BTS Stand For?
BTS, also known as Bangtan Boys, is an acronym for the Korean expression Bangtan Sonyeondan, meaning Bulletproof Boy Scouts. In July 2017, they announced they'd also be known as Beyond the Scene as part of their new identity.
When Did They Start?
The seven-member band was formed through auditions by Bit Hit Entertainment in 2010 and 2011, and finalized in 2012. BTS made their musical debut in 2013 with the first of their school trilogy series, their single album, 2 Cool 4 Skool. The group quickly became one of the hottest acts in South Korea, winning several New Artist of the Year awards.
What Happened Next?
BTS evolved their identity, channeling different themes throughout their music, through eras like School, The Most Beautiful Moment in Life and Wings. In just four years, the band has completed three world tours, released four studio albums (two in Korean and two in Japanese) and five EPs, gaining millions of fans across the world -- though it was their 2017 Billboard Awards win for Top Social Artist that marked the start of their breakthrough in the U.S.
What is ARMY?
ARMY (a fitting name for the organized passion of BTS fans) is actually an acronym for Adorable Representative MC for Youth.
What is Love Yourself: Her?
Love Yourself: Her is BTS' latest EP and the next chapter of their career. The album was pre-ordered over 1 million times over two weeks before its release on Monday, but the records don't stop there. By Tuesday, Love Yourself had already topped the iTunes Album charts at No. 1 in a record-breaking 73 countries, the largest debut release for any South Korean artist. And "DNA," the album's lead single, is also blowing up on YouTube with nearly 30 million views since its early Monday release.
Full Name: Kim Seok-jin
The oldest member of the group and one of its four vocalists, Jin was discovered on the street while studying film at Konkuk University and invited to audition for Big Hit Entertainment. He loves to cook, can play the guitar and is the king of dad jokes. Jin also co-produced his Wings solo track, "Awake."
Full Name: Kim Nam-joon
The BTS "leader" was working on his skills as an underground rapper before BTS was founded, and was the first member to be selected for the group. He's known for putting his creative spin on songs, and has worked with several hip-hop and indie artists, like Primary, Don Mills, Gaeko, MFBTY and Wale. Rap Monster usually does most of the talking in BTS' English-language interviews, after teaching himself English while watching Friends.
Full Name: Min Yoon-gi
Like Rap Monster, Suga had a career as an underground rapper in Daegu before joining BTS, but his talents go far beyond just spitting rhymes. The 24-year-old likes songwriting, producing and playing the piano, and released a solo mix-tape, Agust D, last year.
Full Name: Jung Ho-seok
J-Hope was part of a street dance team named Neuron before joining BTS, and is known for his impressive dance abilities and upbeat personality. He chose his stage name because he wanted to be a source of hope and light for fans. In 2008, J-Hope won a national dance competition in South Korea, but has proven that he can also rap.
Full Name: Park Ji-min
Before joining the group, vocalist Jimin was enrolled at Busan High School of Arts as one of the school's top students in modern dance, but later transferred to Korea Arts High School with fellow band member V, who auditioned for BTS in Daegu. Jimin is known for his perfectionism and caring personality.
Full Name: Kim Tae-hyung
V is known as a surprise member of BTS, as the rest of the band was known to the public before its 2013 debut. Though V grew up in a family of farmers, he's embraced his artistic path. He's a big fan of art and photography, and recently began acting in the Korean drama Hwarang.
Full Name: Jeon Jeong-guk
Jungkook was just 15 years old when BTS debuted, and started high school a year late to focus on the band (he graduated this February). Though he's the youngest member of the group, Jungkook was one of the most in-demand singers after auditioning for South Korean talent show Superstar K, and eventually chose to sign with Big Hit Entertainment. He's known for both his singing and dancing, and loves gaming in his free time.
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