CNBLUE spills about love and drama in a Valentine's Day special interview
I think CNBLUE is the only K-boy band in which all the members have experience acting in K-dramas. They are the perfect group for those who like both K-dramas and K-pop. I went to their New York City concert, and they were so good at singing and playing songs, and most importantly, they were all so handsome! I want to give chocolates to these four perfect men on this coming Valentine’s Day. Do they like chocolates? The answer is here. CNBLUE had a photo shoot for the fashion entertainment magazine The Star with the concept "Romantic Blue," and were interviewed about their fourth anniversary and Valentine’s Day.
I want to ask you this first: Yong gentleman, why do you shake hands so hard?
It is my habit, I think. When I was in school, I did it to my friends. Even though there is no reason, I do it. I am not sure whether it’s good or not, it is just my habit.
Ever since you were little, you have been very much a people person.
I was. I think I was more than now.
Isn’t shaking hands making an effort to improve your personal relations?
Yes. I make an effort. I think shaking hands is the best way to show friendliness without placing any burdens. I do it as my own way to greet people.
I watched Marry Him If You Dare, which recently finished.
I left much to be desired as an actor, but I also learned a lot. It was my first drama after a two year break. I was able to act more easily in the drama rather than feeling burdened.
Because of the character you played, there was something that made me see your growth while witching the drama.
I also think I’ve grown as an actor. It doesn’t mean that I acted well, but much time has passed, I've become familiar with cameras, and I've done various things, so now I am confident like, "I can do it."
As an actor who has played a main role, how do you view the other member’s performances?
Frankly, I can’t always watch every work by our members. When Min Hyuk was starring in Heirs, I couldn’t see it very many times because I was also working on a drama. However, I don’t give advice to the members. My acting is not good enough to do that. (Laugh) I usually say "good job" to everything that they do, and I said, "Min Hyuk, you did well."
You know how to comfort other people. You seem mature.
I can do it because we have spent about 5 years together, not because I'm mature.
Can I ask you a light question? Do you have a memorable Valentine’s Day?
I haven’t assigned any meaning to days like Valentine’s Day, White Day, and BBae BBae Ro Day since I was little. I don’t have a memory where I gave a gift to someone on White Day, and I also haven't celebrated any special days between lovers. Of course, I will celebrate the days if I have a girlfriend, but I haven’t had a girlfriend when the days came. It wasn’t on purpose. Haha. I don’t know. I might have been doing image management from the beginning.
Does it mean doing Uh-jang Gwan-ri? (refers to when a person pretends to be close to the opposite sex, and acts like the person is about to date them, but doesn't)
No. It never means that. It never means Un-jang Gwan-ri. I have been aware of the way other people look at me. I have a very tiring personality. I am also quick-witted.
I think that you were popular among girls when you were in school.
I have been asked the same question before, but I wasn't that much. (Thinks seriously) Um…No, I wasn't.
Isn’t the reason you have been asked the question over and over because people can’t believe your answer that you weren’t popular?
I am going to go crazy. I don’t want to lie, but it might seem that I lie.
What kind of man are you in a relationship with a girlfriend?
I used to be funny with my girlfriend. I tried to make her laugh. I like a relationship to be like a friendship.
There are many celebrity couples these days. Is there a couple you are jealous of?
When I hear that kind of news, I envy them, but we can’t go to an amusement park, and we don’t see couples. It is okay because we can’t see other people dating that much. If we saw it a lot, I would feel lonely, but I am busy so it helps me not feel lonely.
You are busy, but also the reason you don’t feel lonely is because you guys have great teamwork?
I am not sure. I don’t know other groups’ stories. We actually stay at home together a lot Especially now. I don’t have time to feel lonely because we're preparing our album. We are going to launch a World Tour, and I don’t want to date someone now. I will meet someone when the tide serves, but I don’t want to meet someone grudgingly.
When this interview is published in February, you will be holding CNBLUE’s World Tour in Peru, Mexico, Chile, New York and Los Angeles etc. The day really seems to be coming when your dream that your song appears on the top of the Billboard Chart comes true.
I really want it to happen. I don’t talk idly. It seems that I am running toward that goal. To be frank, I don’t have many goals during our activity.
Like Psy became a world star last year, it isn’t a dream that can never happen.
Psy is a senior who has a lot of experience. Even if the dream comes true, that popularity will be too much for me. I don’t care when it comes true. I want to make it happen step by step. There isn’t an exact day that I set to be my deadline. It would also be good to see my dream come true when I become a middle-aged man.
The guitarist of CNBLUE, Lee Jong Hyun starred in A Gentleman’s Dignity.
What were you doing just now?
I was exercising. There was an hour between recordings.
Uh, you speak in dialect?
I don’t want to change it. I will live in my way (laugh).
Do you remember 4 years ago today?
How can I forget it? The day was crazy for me. I was young and everything was amazing. Many people tell me to return to my original intentions but I think it's better now. I am more passionate now, and I want to do more than 4 years ago. Now I'm pretty settled into writing songs. Our goals are high from all the love we get from people, so we try hard to be a plus to our team. We are still in running mode, and we are proud of ourselves, thinking that we have done a good job since we made our debut.
What is your motivation?
I am not sure. It is because there are fans supporting us, but sometimes it is because I want myself to become something. I want to look more grown and have a nicer figure. My goal isn’t a big deal. I just want to be a nice, good-looking, middle-aged man. I want to hear that I am still cool even when I get older. When we see foreign countries’ artists like Eric Clapton, they are so cool. Getting older nicely, that’s it. I don’t want more fame than I have now, but I want to keep my life like this for longer. If I keep it, it will naturally become bigger than before.
When you said ‘a good-looking middle-aged man,’ it reminded me of Jang Dong Gun who starred in A Gentleman’s Dignity with you.
They have different charming points. Dong Gun Hyung is also awesome. I want to get older nicely; being loved by people for my music as much as I can. I think I have done well compared to others, but it’s not easy to make myself into someone I want to be. Maybe I need to do more. Just stay with it and I will find my time.
Speaking of Jang Dong Gun, when can you see yourself acting in a drama again? I thought you were going to star in another drama after playing Colin in A Gentle Man’s dignity. It was deeply impressive.
I don’t mean that I won’t act again. Once I actually did act, it was really interesting. I want to do that, but one day is too short to do too many things at the same time. Even though I am working on music, one day is too short. Now I am working on an album, practicing playing guitar and singing songs, learning English, taking lessons, and exercising. There are many things I have to learn and practice, so one day is too short. I want to present a more prepared performance for other people after I learn more about acting, so my conclusion is that I have to concentrate on music for awhile. However, I want to act again (haha). Is that a way people live? I am not a person who has big ambitions, but I can’t stand with doing nothing. That’s why I bring my guitar everywhere. I feel sad if there isn’t a guitar when I want to play it, so I brought it today.
You really have many things to do. And you also were active as a duet with Juniel. I think a staunch girl like Juniel would be a good girlfriend for you.
Oh, really? I was successful in a duet with her because making us look good together was our job. It was a good thing. I am a pro (Laugh). Juniel is a pretty, young sister. As my girlfriend? Uhg, I have known her for 7 years.
How about a woman of Jeon Ji Hyun type. Did you say that she is your ideal type?
I have no ideal type for my girlfriend. I just say the names of hot actresses at that time as my ideal type because I am often asked the same question (haha). A person keeps changing. Who doesn’t like Jun Ji Hyun? I also watch My Love From Another Star starring Jun Ji Hyun. Every time I watch it, I am surprised because of her outstanding performance.
Watch a 400-year old alien hunk fall in love with a beautiful actress in My Love from Another Star.
Don’t you really have an ideal type?
No. Even if I set my ideal type, I meet different types (Laugh). For one thing, I prefer an easy-going person. I don’t like someone snapping at me. Someone who can accept me the way I am, who doesn't play games with me. I like that kind of person. I have a casual manner. Of course I will do all I can do for her. For example, I can write or sing songs for her, but celebrating event days is not my things. I don’t even know my schedule. For example, I didn’t know about this shooting until today.
You will be in trouble with your girlfriend if you don’t celebrate anniversaries.
I celebrate important days. If I never did that, my girlfriend would feel sad. Come to think of it, I fortunately avoided special days while I was dating someone. I don’t even celebrate my birthday. I like spending the day without any fuss.
Valentine’s Day is coming soon. However, it might be just February 14th to you.
Valentine’s Day is on February 14th. I forget every year. Oh yeah, will I receive chocolates on Valentine’s Day? And the day I give candies is White Day. Actually, I don’t like receiving chocolates. It makes me uncomfortable. I don’t get that many, actually.
Because of your cold face? Girls couldn’t give you chocolates for fear of being rebuffed by you.
People who don’t know me are scared of me. There are fans who say that they can’t even talk to me because I scare them.
Isn’t Jung Shin the one who is scared of you the most? You and Jung Shin are called Mayonnaise and soybean paste.
I can overlook Jung Shin because he is cute, but Min Hyuk is scary. He nags a lot. Now we are becoming like each other, but Min Hyuk scolded, "Who messed up?" before when I did. At that time, I was pretending not to (haha). By comparison, Jung Shin has a lot of Ae-gyo and is gentle.
You and Jung Shin won a couple prize on a TV show. Do you think the relationship between you is going further?
Jung Shin is cute. I actually feel bored when he doesn’t talk to me. So I let him do that to me (haha). People around us call us Tom and Jerry.
So what does Jung Shin mean to Jong Hyun?
Jung Shin is a younger brother whom I’m not okay with or without (haha). Many times I am bothered by him, but I feel lonely without him. I'm thankful for him because he seems to come and make me not bored.
Anyway, why are you Mayonnaise?
Because I have fair skin and look buttery? (Laugh) Jung Shin is dark-skinned. Sometimes he is envious of me for my fair skin.
What do you want to say as your last statement?
Nowadays, I am thinking about a celebrity’s life. What else can I do? I should accept it.
CNBLUE’s members are all tall, so it looks good to see you guys in suits.
Nowadays, everyone is tall and handsome. When I was on a drama’s set before, all the actors were tall. Min Ho hyug and Woo Bin hyug are both tall, so I am not tall in comparison (haha).
The cast of Heirs is especially tall. My first question is about Heirs, which finished with a high popularity. That was a really good drama. How was acting with actors and actresses who are your age?
We got along with each other so we acting was like playing. The older brothers were very funny and took care of the younger cast. I am close with Shin Hye noona because we starred in Heartstrings together. Krystal and I became close because of Heirs. We shot the drama comfortably. She was like a cute younger sister. Hyung Sick is just my age so it was funny.
Were you and Krystal (Soo Jung) new to each other? You and her worked in harmony.
Yes. She and I met through this drama. When I connect with my old buddies, some of them make a joke that whether I am a real boyfriend to Krystal or not, our success could be attributed to the drama’s writer and director who made the couple so lovely. On the drama’s set, Krystal was so shy, but once shooting started, she did well. So it could be naturally great I think.
Yoon Chang Young, who you played, was a perfect boyfriend. What is your idea of a perfect boyfriend?
Was he? People around me say to me that he is a man who doesn’t exist in the real world, but I don’t know what kind of man is a perfect man and why people said that the man seems not to exist in reality. Was he seen that way because he was qualified and had many things?
From the point of view of a woman, first, he is handsome and smart but the smartness isn’t only for him. He takes care of other people in a good manner, and he knows only one woman who he loves. Meanwhile, he is even good at 밀당 Mil-dang (playing games in a relationship).
I can’t remember well because it has been a long time being single, but I am not the kind of man who plays games. I think the game is needed in a relationship but what I do is just pushing. If I like someone, I rush towards her.
If you are that kind of a person, can you handle love and work at the same time?
I think that if I date someone while working, I will work harder. Because there isn’t a person at my side who gives me energy when I work, I can't get energy, and if I only do work, it’s boring. I don’t know because I’ve never had a girlfriend while I work, but it would be a great support for me to meet a girlfriend, eat something together, and call her. Ah, but she doesn’t show up till now.
7.Today’s concept is Valentine’s Day. I'm sorry to hear that it has been a long time that you've been single. How are you going to pass the day?
Even if I had a girlfriend, it seems that I wouldn't prepare the day. I would give a gift when I want to do it. Not on any special day.
You guys give the same answer like you had a conversation before (laugh). Women will sulk if you don’t prepare these special days.
Do they really do that? I don’t know whether my girlfriend would get angry or not because I haven't had a girlfriend in a long time. I am in a serious state.
What should we do? Your cells of love are dying.
That’s what I mean. I was trying to save them while playing BoNa’s boyfriend, but it is getting harder again after finishing the drama. I think I should keep acting. When I play a character in a drama, it isn’t real, but I date someone, so I want to act (haha).
Who do you want to be your lover?
It could be anyone. I might become close with someone who is new to me, or I might hate someone because of their character.
It makes sense. What thing left much to be desired for you in Heirs?
I have a lot. It was true that I was greedy. There were many characters in Heirs, so I thought I should try to appear in more scenes. But it was wrong. I changed my mind to melt into the drama in the middle of the shooting. Trying to overly stand out doesn't seem to be right.
You learned an important thing. You have a gentle and right-minded image, and now it has become stronger. Kim Woo Bin chose you as the man who he wants to introduce to his younger sister. Isn’t it the best compliment that you can get from him as his co-worker and a man?
Ah, I knew that. I was really glad about it. If people read his interview closely, he said that he wanted to introduce Chang Young to his sister, but anyway I played the character, so I think it is related to me a little bit. (Laugh) I texted him to say thank you.
What did he answer?
Articles become overly exaggerated (haha). Nowadays, what he says becomes an issue in real life so he’s careful while talking.
Do you like your right-minded image? Sometime it seems very stuffy. Have you dreamt of deviating from that image?
Of course, I like that people look at me in a good way. And the right-minded image is just an image. I can play other characters in the next dramas. for example, right now I have a right-minded image, but if I play a human trash character later, isn’t that a plus in my job? I think it is.
The more guy friends you have, the more difficult it is to be a couple.
My friends are all good at having relationships with someone. My lover will appear in due time, but that ‘in due time’ has been a long time. I feel the necessity of dating. It has been one or two years. It was okay before, but now I can’t spare my 20’s. It is said that having a variety of experience with dating is good. I think it isn't bad to have a girlfriend. In my situation, not dating is bad (haha).
15. Aren’t you the kind of person who lectures your girlfriend a lot? According to one member of CNBLUE, you nag a lot.
If I am with a person who isn’t quite like me, or I am in the position to say something. I talk a lot to Jong Hyun hyung. We have different ways of thinking. He is older than me, but it’s fun to tease him. Actually, I don’t talk a lot in order to be considerate of other’s feelings, even if I have something to say. That is my way of taking care of them, but sometimes people think that I am not interested in them, so they feel sad. Even one word is so important.
Do you think that one word came out well in this interview?
It’s our fourth anniversary, so I want to say thank you to our members. I am not a funny guy, and I am a poor speaker. Please say that I appreciate our members in writing, and write about our album well. In a year, our album comes out, and we did our best, especially Yong Wha did.
The bassist of CNBLUE, Lee Jung Shin starred in My Daughter Seo Young and Sword and Flower.
Ever since I met you, you guys have looked like mischievous friends.
Yes, it’s fun to be with the members. Today’s shooting is more meaningful because today is our fourth anniversary. As I've heard, the trendy color of this year is blue. We are CNBLUE, so I hope this year becomes our year.
Wow. You are really good at answering questions. I was sorry to make you work on a special day, but this interview seems to be good (haha).
We only buy a cake for birthdays. That’s it, so I am okay with working today. Being alone with our members is good, but shooting pictures like this is also meaningful. It was hard to see each other recently because Yong Wha hyung and Min Hyuk hyung were busy starring in dramas a while ago. I only saw them sleeping.
You starred in two dramas, My daughter Seo Young and Sword and Flower. How was it acting?
I liked it. I experienced extreme hot and extreme cold (laugh). It is said that viewer rating depends on the plan of nature. I was glad to experience various things. Most of all, I starred in one historical drama and one present-day life drama. I learned how to ride a horse while I starred in a historical one, and there was a chance to use that ability when I shot the end-of-year awards. I want to ride more, but I hold back for fear of getting hurt. Our concerts are soon. Acting is so interesting. I want to act more.
I asked Jong Hyun what Jung Shin meant to him. Can you guess what he said? A younger brother who is not okay with or without him.
I am disappointed in that answer. It’s not easy to say things like that. I will take my mind off him. Haha. He says that, but he is actually glad when I take care of him. He can’t speak in an affectionate way. This is his own way to show his thanks.
You are the youngest member of CNBLUE, don’t other members (hyung) love you? Do they scold you?
They don’t scold me. We usually aren’t in conflict with other members. We don’t do something if we think it will bother each other, so we always work in a good mood with a smile. We know each other well. It is an interesting fact that we have lived together for a long time.
You might want to live separately with your members when you start to date someone.
Maybe… dating someone. It would be nice.
What kind of man are you when you are dating someone?
Honestly, I don’t know. As people know, I am bright, good at laughing, and am the youngest member of CNBLUE. I actually laugh a lot because I can’t work when I feel my work isn’t my pleasure. But it isn’t all about me. It depends upon the situation. My personality might change, and it depends on the girl I meet. I also wonder how I'll change. I have lived with only men.
Date someone, really.
People around me say that I should date people a lot when I am young. I also feel the need to meet someone to catch up to other people’s ordinary things in life, like dating and college life that I can’t experience. Dramas are usually about love. If I act in a drama without any experience with love, isn’t is hard to understand a character? Songs about parting also are sung differently by people who experience it than those who do not. Experience makes a difference but it doesn’t mean that I want to meet someone by constraint.
Have you ever loved someone to death?
Not yet, maybe sometime in the future. I want that person to be my bride. People get married after meeting dating people, but I don’t think it has to be that. I don’t want to share my love. I want to give my love to only one person. Right now I am keeping my love.
Wow! Your fans are giving a squeal of delight because of what you said. Could you give more hints for fans who want to be that girl? What conditions are there?
I used to care about many things before, but now I don’t know. A person who can understand my job? I think there is no one. I am so busy. If I were a person who met me, I would also hate to meet me. Anyway, I don’t have a special condition, but I prefer a girl who has brighter skin than me. I can’t give up that one thing.
Lee Bo Young is still your ideal type?
Yes. I like Bo Young noona's style. I am actually close to her, so it's stronger. I hope my girlfriend’s appearance looks like Bo Young noona's style.
Here is the last question: I read an article where you said that you often typed your name into the Internet. Do you still do that?
Yes. I check whether there are strange posts or not. (Young Wha said that he also does that. It is almost the first thing he does to start a day.) Especially when we release our new album. I check articles that measure me and my music. I won’t be hurt, but I try to find parts of my personality that I have to correct. Haha. However, there are not many posts about me. I will work harder (laugh).