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K-pop female artists heat up competition in chart race with comebacks this month

Female solo artists in K-pop, including IU, from left, HyunA and Chungha, are set to compete in the music charts. Courtesy of EDAM Entertainment, P Nation, MNH Entertainment
Female solo artists in K-pop, including IU, from left, HyunA and Chungha, are set to compete in the music charts. Courtesy of EDAM Entertainment, P Nation, MNH Entertainment

By Lee Gyu-lee

High-profile female solo artists are making comebacks this month, heating up competition in the sizzling K-pop chart race this year.

Singer Yubin, a former member of the girl group Wonder Girls, kicked off the competition with the single "PERFUME," which hit the streaming sites Jan. 13.

The fast-beat song with a retro flair is the artist's first piece in about eight months since the release of her single "ME TIME" in May last year.

Partnering with songwriter DrJo, who worked on her solo debut song "Lady," Yubin wrote some of the lyrics.

Singer Yubin released the single
Singer Yubin released the single "PERFUME," early this month. Courtesy of rrr Entertainment

"From the start, I wanted to express a lady turning into a villainess. So it would be fun to compare this song with Lady," the singer said through her agency early this month.

Solo artist Chungha dropped the new single "X" last Tuesday, prior to releasing her upcoming album "Querencia," Feb. 15.

The modern-rock, pop genre song is one of three pre-released tracks from the album, following "Stay Tonight" in May and "PLAY" in July, last year.

"The lyrics of the song describe a page of her life," the singer's agency MNH Entertainment said.

Chungha was originally scheduled to begin the year with the release of "Querencia" before she tested positive for COVID-19 last month. It is her first studio album since her solo debut in June 2017.

After recovering, the artist picked up on the album's promotion with the single "X."

IU is also poised for a comeback with the new single "Celebrity" on Wednesday.


"The song is a bright, upbeat pop genre that IU never tried before," the singer's agency EDAM Entertainment said of the new single.

The singer unveiled the concept teaser video for the song on her social media, Friday, offering a glimpse into her new project since her collaborative song "Eight" with BTS's SUGA in May last year.

"Celebrity" is one of the tracks from her fifth full-length album, the first in four years after the 2017 album "Palette," whose title song featuring GD topped various charts.

Details of the upcoming album have yet to be revealed.

The last to make a comeback is singer HyunA, who has been building a successful solo career since the breakup of the girl group 4Minute in 2016.

The artist will release a new mini-album, "I'm Not Cool." Her last release was in November 2019 when she dropped the single "FLOWER SHOWER".


HyunA's label P Nation shared a sneak peek of the album on social media Saturday, with two teaser photos of her in a tight black bodysuit.

The album will include a total of five songs, including the title song, "Party, Feel, Love" featuring her boyfriend Dawn, and "Good Girl."

The title song is produced by singer PSY, who is also the head of P Nation, and is co-written by HyunA and Dawn.

"I've never been this happy. This was the most fun and emotional experience I've ever had, which made me cry a lot while filming the music video for 48 hours," she wrote on her social media, Friday.

The artist was set to make a comeback with the single "Good Girl" last August but postponed the release due to health issues.

Lisa and Rose of BLACKPINK will make their solo debuts. Courtesy of YG Entertainment
Lisa and Rose of BLACKPINK will make their solo debuts. Courtesy of YG Entertainment

Two members of BLACKPINK ― Lisa and Rose ― are also gearing up for solo acts following in the footsteps of their team member Jennie, who has built a successful solo career since 2018.

YG Entertainment, the group's agency, announced on Dec. 30 that "Rose and Lisa are working on their solo song release."

Adding that the two are in the process of making their music videos, YG hinted at their imminent solo debuts early this year.

As Jennie's solo act with the single "Solo" was a hit, fans have high hopes for the upcoming projects of the other two members.


Female solo artists in K-pop, including IU, from left, HyunA and Chungha, are set to compete in the music charts. Courtesy of EDAM Entertainment, P Nation, MNH Entertainment
Female solo artists in K-pop, including IU, from left, HyunA and Chungha, are set to compete in the music charts. Courtesy of EDAM Entertainment, P Nation, MNH Entertainment

By Lee Gyu-lee

High-profile female solo artists are making comebacks this month, heating up competition in the sizzling K-pop chart race this year.

Singer Yubin, a former member of the girl group Wonder Girls, kicked off the competition with the single "PERFUME," which hit the streaming sites Jan. 13.

The fast-beat song with a retro flair is the artist's first piece in about eight months since the release of her single "ME TIME" in May last year.

Partnering with songwriter DrJo, who worked on her solo debut song "Lady," Yubin wrote some of the lyrics.

Singer Yubin released the single
Singer Yubin released the single "PERFUME," early this month. Courtesy of rrr Entertainment

"From the start, I wanted to express a lady turning into a villainess. So it would be fun to compare this song with Lady," the singer said through her agency early this month.

Solo artist Chungha dropped the new single "X" last Tuesday, prior to releasing her upcoming album "Querencia," Feb. 15.

The modern-rock, pop genre song is one of three pre-released tracks from the album, following "Stay Tonight" in May and "PLAY" in July, last year.

"The lyrics of the song describe a page of her life," the singer's agency MNH Entertainment said.

Chungha was originally scheduled to begin the year with the release of "Querencia" before she tested positive for COVID-19 last month. It is her first studio album since her solo debut in June 2017.

After recovering, the artist picked up on the album's promotion with the single "X."

IU is also poised for a comeback with the new single "Celebrity" on Wednesday.


"The song is a bright, upbeat pop genre that IU never tried before," the singer's agency EDAM Entertainment said of the new single.

The singer unveiled the concept teaser video for the song on her social media, Friday, offering a glimpse into her new project since her collaborative song "Eight" with BTS's SUGA in May last year.

"Celebrity" is one of the tracks from her fifth full-length album, the first in four years after the 2017 album "Palette," whose title song featuring GD topped various charts.

Details of the upcoming album have yet to be revealed.

The last to make a comeback is singer HyunA, who has been building a successful solo career since the breakup of the girl group 4Minute in 2016.

The artist will release a new mini-album, "I'm Not Cool." Her last release was in November 2019 when she dropped the single "FLOWER SHOWER".


HyunA's label P Nation shared a sneak peek of the album on social media Saturday, with two teaser photos of her in a tight black bodysuit.

The album will include a total of five songs, including the title song, "Party, Feel, Love" featuring her boyfriend Dawn, and "Good Girl."

The title song is produced by singer PSY, who is also the head of P Nation, and is co-written by HyunA and Dawn.

"I've never been this happy. This was the most fun and emotional experience I've ever had, which made me cry a lot while filming the music video for 48 hours," she wrote on her social media, Friday.

The artist was set to make a comeback with the single "Good Girl" last August but postponed the release due to health issues.

Lisa and Rose of BLACKPINK will make their solo debuts. Courtesy of YG Entertainment
Lisa and Rose of BLACKPINK will make their solo debuts. Courtesy of YG Entertainment

Two members of BLACKPINK ― Lisa and Rose ― are also gearing up for solo acts following in the footsteps of their team member Jennie, who has built a successful solo career since 2018.

YG Entertainment, the group's agency, announced on Dec. 30 that "Rose and Lisa are working on their solo song release."

Adding that the two are in the process of making their music videos, YG hinted at their imminent solo debuts early this year.

As Jennie's solo act with the single "Solo" was a hit, fans have high hopes for the upcoming projects of the other two members.


Lee Gyu-lee gyulee@koreatimes.co.kr


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