Secret (South Korean band)
|Origin||Seoul, South Korea|
|Genres||K-pop, Pop, R&B, Dance-pop|
|Labels||TS Entertainment (Korea)
Sony Music Associated (Japan) (2011–2013)
Kiss Entertainment and Universal D (Japan) (2013–present)
|Associated acts||B.A.P, Untouchable|
|Website||Official Japanese website|
Secret (Korean: 시크릿; Japanese: シークレット, often stylized as SECRET) is a South Korean K-pop girl group formed by TS Entertainment in 2009. Consisting of four members, Jun Hyoseong, Jung Hana, Song Jieun and Han Sunhwa, the group released their debut single, "I Want You Back" on October 13, 2009. In 2010, they released two mini albums entitled Secret Time and Madonna with lead singles "Magic" and "Madonna" respectively. In 2011, Secret released three other singles, namely "Shy Boy", "Starlight Moonlight" and "Love is Move". Jieun, the main vocalist, also released a solo single titled "Going Crazy" featuring B.A.P's leader, Bang Yong Guk. In August 2011, the group made their official debut in Japan. Secret was the third Korean girl group to debut in the top ten on the Oricon charts, with Kara and Girls' Generation being the first and second groups respectively. In October 2011, Secret released their first full-length studio album, Moving in Secret. Aside from their commercial accomplishments, Secret is well known for their transitions to cute and the girl-next-door image through songs like "Shy Boy" and "Starlight Moonlight" from the sexy and powerful image back in 2009 and 2010. In support of their 2nd Japanese single, "So Much For Goodbye", the group embarked a promotional tour in Japan named "Secret 1st Japan Tour" held on March 2012. In September 2012, Secret released their 3rd mini-album entitled Poison after almost a year of absence in the South Korean music industry due to Japanese promotions.
- 1 Career
- 1.1 2009: Debut
- 1.2 2010: Korean breakthrough, Magic and Madonna
- 1.3 2011: Shy Boy, Starlight Moonlight, Moving in Secret; Japanese debut and rising popularity
- 1.4 2012: Continued Japanese promotions, Poison and Talk That
- 1.5 2013: International activities,YooHoo, and I Do I Do
- 1.6 2014–present: Japanese promotions
- 2 Members
- 3 Artistry
- 4 Endorsements and other activities
- 5 Concerts
- 6 Discography
- 7 Filmography
- 8 Awards
- 9 Trivia
- 10 See also
- 11 References
- 12 External links
The documentary Secret Story which aired on Mnet introduced Secret to the public. The show chronicled the debut process of the members and aired their invitation-only debut showcase, which took place on September 29, 2009. On October 13, 2009, Secret officially debuted with the release of the music video of "I Want You Back", their first single. Two days later, on October 15, 2009, they had their first live stage on M! Countdown. Secret participated in the Master of Study OST with the song "Friends" which was released on January 2010.
2010: Korean breakthrough, Magic and Madonna
On March 31, 2010, Secret revealed the music video for "Magic", the title track of their debut mini album Secret Time. Secret had their comeback performance for "Magic" on M! Countdown on April 8, 2010. The song peaked at No. 5 on the Music Bank K-Chart. The music video quickly reached one million views on video sharing sites such as YouTube and Cyworld, and the "Suspender Dance" which appeared in the video, gained popularity amongst netizens.
Secret released their second mini album titled Madonna on August 12, 2010. The music video for the title track, also named "Madonna", was released on August 11, 2010. Kang Jiwon and Kim Kibum, the composers who wrote "Madonna" highlighted that the inspiration behind the song is about living with confidence by becoming an icon in this generation, like the American singer Madonna. Just like their previous single "Magic", the music video for "Madonna" reached one million views on video sharing sites such as YouTube and Cyworld. "Madonna" was better received than "Magic", topping every major online music chart within two weeks and peaking at No. 1 on the Gaon Chart. The song also won the Main Award at the 20th Seoul Music Awards. On December 9, 2010, Secret attended the 25th Golden Disk Awards, and won the Newcomer Award.
2011: Shy Boy, Starlight Moonlight, Moving in Secret; Japanese debut and rising popularity
Secret released the teaser for their single "Shy Boy" on January 2, 2011. On January 6, the official music video was unveiled. The song had a "swing dance concept" with outfits, hairstyles and a set that draws inspiration from the American culture in 1950s. Additionally, labelmate Son Heonsoo makes a surprise appearance in the music video as a player. Secret made their comeback stage on M! Countdown on January 6, 2011. On January 13, Secret won their very first music show award on M! Countdown Secret also managed to stay at number one on Music Bank for three consecutive weeks. During that timespan, Secret also won a Mutizen award on Inkigayo. After about two months, Secret closed all promotions for "Shy Boy" even though the song was still going strong on music charts.
"Starlight Moonlight" continued their experimentation of aegyo inspired songs with influences from the traditional Korean folk music. The song became one of their biggest single in South Korea selling over 3 million digital downloads in 2011.
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On February 26, 2011, TS Entertainment revealed that Jieun would be releasing her second solo single, "Going Crazy" on March 3, 2011. The teaser for "Going Crazy" was released on February 28, 2011 and the official music video was released on March 2, 2011. The song features Secret's labelmate Bang Yong Guk. The music video stars actress Min Hyo-rin. "Going Crazy" topped the Gaon Chart and also dominated major real-time charts in Korea such as Melon, Bugs!, Dosirak, and Mnet.
Secret released their second single album, Starlight Moonlight on June 1, 2011. Promotions began on June 2, 2011 with their appearance on M! Countdown. The song proved to be a huge success as Secret won their second "Mutizen" on Inkigayo with the song. TS Entertainment announced that Secret will debut in Japan with a Japanese remake of "Madonna" as their debut single. On June 6, 2011 the group performed in Japan for their debut showcase. Initial reactions for the group were positive in Japan. Secret performed at the "Mezamashi Live 2011" in Odaiba on August 4, 2011 and at a popular music program, "Coming Soon!!". On August 3, 2011, the group officially released their first single in Japan entitled "Madonna". Proving their strong start in Japan, the single debuted at number nine on the Oricon charts. Additionally, Secret was one of the first three Korean girl groups to debut on the Oricon chart in the top 10, the others being Kara and Girls Generation being the first and second respectively.
TS Entertainment also announced that Secret's first full-length studio album will be released in mid-October. The music video teaser for the title track "Love is Move" was released on October 12, 2011 and the full music video was released on October 17, 2011. On October 18, 2011, Secret officially released their first studio album, Moving in Secret. "Shy Boy" was remade to serve as the title track on their First Mini Album in Japan. The music video was made public on October 8, 2011. It was later announced that five other tracks will be tacked with "Shy Boy" to be released as an EP. One of the tracks include a Japanese edition of "Starlight Moonlight" added with a Christmas feel, titled "Christmas Magic". The full music video for "Christmas Magic" was released on November 9, 2011. On November 16, 2011, Secret released their first Japanese mini album, Shy Boy. They have attended the KBEE (Korea Brand & Entertainment Expo) in Paris, France, on December 1 to 3, 2011, and have performed a free concert, as well as a successful fanmeeting/signing event. On December 28, SECRET was officially appointed as PR ambassadors for the Korea Consumers Forum at the D-Cube City.
2012: Continued Japanese promotions, Poison and Talk That
In February 2012, Secret released their 2nd Japanese single entitled "So Much For Goodbye". On February 22, 2012, Secret won two "Singers of The Year Award" at the Gaon Chart Awards for Shy Boy and Starlight Moonlight. In support of their Japanese single, "So Much For Goodbye", the group will embark on its first head-lining tour in Japan named "Secret 1st Japan Tour" that will be held in March 2012. The concert will take place in ZEPP Osaka on March 5, ZEPP Nagoya on March 7 and ZEPP Tokyo on March 8, 2012. Secret released their 3rd Japanese Single "Twinkle Twinkle" on June 13, 2012. Twinkle Twinkle is used as the Ending Theme Song of the Naruto spin-off, "Naruto SD: Rock Lee and his Ninja Pals" aired on TV Tokyo. On July 6, 2012, TS Entertainment announced that the group will release their first studio album in Japan named "Welcome to Secret Time" on August 22, 2012. The group also announced the news through a small video which was revealed through their official Japanese website, Secret revealed the release date and title of their first full length Japanese album. The Japanese version of "Love is Move" dubbed as "Ai wa Move" will serve as the lead single. It will include their Korean releases “Madonna” and “Shy Boy“, Japanese versions of “Love is Move” and “Starlight Moonlight“, and their Japanese original singles “So Much for Goodbye” and “Twinkle Twinkle“.
In August 2012, TS Entertainment announced that after nearly a year absence in the South Korean Industry, Secret will have a comeback in South Korea sometime in September. The song is described as an "upbeat dance track" and was written and produced by Kang Ji Won and Kim Ki Bum whom they previously worked with their previous hit singles. According to TS Entertainment, “Poison will have all the unique characteristics and colors of Secret but will have a change in concept from the cute and friendly image [shown in the past] to a sexy and feminine concept. It will be a new leaping point for Secret.” Between September 2–5, 2012, TS Entertainment released the teaser photo of the members. According to their stylist, the girls are going with a concept “based off the 1940s British ‘lady look’ and ‘espionage look’. On September 7, 2012, TS Entertainment released the MV teaser for "Poison". Featuring an old Hollywood styled concept, the teaser is first seen that a valuable diamond has been stolen. Along with scenes of Hyoseong entering a detective’s office, the teaser briefly showcases the other members in a bar. A repetitive saxophone tune is played throughout the teaser. The lyrics “you are my poison” are heard at the end.
After wrapping up promotions for Poison on October, TS Entertainment revealed that Secret took a quick break while preparing for a new single in December 2012. TS Entertainment also revealed that they will be working with a new producer. On November 26, TS Entertainment released Jieun's photo teaser for their upcoming single entitled, "Talk That". It was also announced that the group worked with Shinsadong Tiger for the track, whom they have previously worked with for their hit track "Magic" and the song will be released on December 4, 2012. On November 27 TS Entertainment released Hyoseong's teaser image for "Talk That". The following day TS Entertainment released Hana's teaser photo for "Talk That". On November 29 TS Entertainment released the music video teaser for "Talk That". The music video for "Talk That" was directed by Johnny Brothers‘ Hong Won Ki. "Talk That" received generally positive reviews from critics, most of whom had praised the song for its mature musical style and concept as opposed to their previous singles.
On the night of December 11, 2012, Secret as they returned to the dormitory were involved in a serious car accident from which Hyoseong, Jieun and Sunhwa miraculously received only a few scratches and knee pain, but from which Hana suffered broken ribs and a bruised lung. TS Entertainment revealed that the girls will be paused until 27 to give them ample time to rest until the '2012 KBS Gayo Festival 'on 28. On December 27, Han Sunhwa and B.A.P's Yoo Youngjae teamed up to released a digital single entitled "Everything is Pretty" commemorating as a present for Secret and B.A.P fans.
2013: International activities,YooHoo, and I Do I Do
During the first month of the year, Secret continued to perform "Talk That" on various music shows and award shows without Hana. On January 8, TS Entertainment stated that Hana is expected to rejoin with Secret on January 16 to perform at the 27th Golden Disk Awards held in Kuala Lumpur but was later postponed due to the choreography of the performance deemed to be dangerous for her full recovery. On January 10, 2013, KBS revealed that Han Sunhwa will make its acting debut on prime time television with Advertisement Genius, Lee Tae Baek as Lee So Ran, an aspiring actress and the younger sister of Lee Tae Baek played by actor Jin Goo. Hana ended her hiatus and officially joined Secret when she performed at the 22nd Seoul Music Awards and won a bonsang award. On January 2013, Jun Hyoseong signed an exclusive contract with the lingerie brandYes as the face of the brand for its spring and summer collection which targets women in their 20s. A representative from Yes marketing said that "Jun Hyoseong is the next generation′s sexy icon, and she′s become the role model of women in their 20s with her cute image and voluptuous curves." On March 11, 2013, Yes reported that the lingerie's sales increased between 40 to 50 percent after Hyoseong was chosen as the model of the brand. Yes’ marketing director stated that, “Yes’ loveable and trendy image was strengthened after Jun Hyoseong was chosen as its model, and it has naturally spread to the sales increase.”
On March 18, 2013, TS Entertainment revealed that Secret will go back in Singapore for a solo concert. The concert dubbed as "Secret Live in Singapore" was held with 5,000 fans at the landmark Marina Bay Sands Convention Hall on March 29. TS Entertainment released a video footage of Hyoseong performing Beyonce's "Crazy in Love" and Zinger (Hana) performing her solo track "Amazinger" and Ciara's "Ride". During the press conference of the concert, Secret hinted for an upcoming comeback in late April. On April 14, 2013, MBC reported that Han Sunhwa and ZE:A's Kwang Hee will be ending its 8 month streak of the virtual reality dating program "We Got Married".
Secret is slated to comeback in April 30, 2013 with their 4th mini album entitled Letter from SECRET with the title track "YooHoo". The teaser of the music video was released on April 25 featuring the members of Secret strolling in a beach filmed in Saipan. Starting from this album, Zinger will officially use her real name Jung Hana in their upcoming releases. In May 2013, the tourism board of Northern Mariana Islands named Secret as their newest tourism ambassador joining fellow South Korean artist and international pop star Psy, who joined in 2012.
Secret was confirmed to make a comeback with the new single called I Do I Do on December 9. The song is said to be warm and cute, which will match the Winter season. On December 1 an official teaser image of leader Hyosung was revealed on Secret's official Facebook page. This will be Secret's 3rd single album titled Gift from Secret set to be released on December 9, 2013.
2014–present: Japanese promotions
In mid January Secret released the Japanese version of their Korean single I Do I Do along with a music video. This marks their first Japanese release with Kiss Entertainment.
|Stage name||Birth name||Date of birth||Position|
|Hyoseong||효성||Jun Hyoseong||전효성||October 13, 1989||Leader, Lead Vocalist, Main Dancer |
|Hana1||하나||Jung Hana||정하나||February 2, 1990||Main Rapper, Lead Dancer, Vocalist |
|Jieun||지은||Song Jieun||송지은||May 5, 1990||Main Vocalist |
|Sunhwa||선화||Han Sunhwa||한선화||October 6, 1990||Vocalist, Visual, Maknae |
1 Prior to April 2013, Hana used the stage name Zinger.
Musical styles and theme
One of Secret's hit songs that uses retro sound with live instruments. The song lyrically tells that women shouldn't be taken for granted because her affection towards her lover might change instantly.
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Retro is the main musical style of the majority of Secret's singles, although the group has channeled other genres such as Pop, Dance, R&B, and Hip-Hop. Love is the main subject of the majority of Secret's songs, although the group has recorded themes such as female empowerment and self-confidence. Secret were originally formed with an intention to be an RnB and Hip-Hop group as seen in their debut single, "I Want You Back". As Seoulbeats wrote, "Originally debuting with an urban RnB concept, the girls of Secret have transformed themselves into the queens of retro ever since their breakthrough hits with “Magic” and “Madonna”. Furthermore, with Wonder Girls recently vacating their long-held affair with retro in favor of a more fresh and futuristic(?) approach, Secret lays claim as the next best group to have established a retro identity." Catherine Deen of Yahoo! Philippines shared its same sentiments and said that the group is known "for its unique ability to take retro music and make it their own." While reviewing "Love is Move", Park Hyunmin of enewsWorld commented that Secret is "known for its pop-heavy beats and easy-to-follow dance moves". Hyunmin further added that "Secret's main appeal is its retro beat and sexy choreography".
Secret's output particularly with their work with Kang Ji Won and Kim Ki Bum makes use of live instruments such as brass, saxophones and drums with the incorporation of synthesizers and electric guitars. While reviewing "Poison", Seoulbeats commented "Furthermore, the composition [of "Poison"] contains a very fitting saxophone hook along with recognizable brass and drum instrumentals that have become the trademark of Secret and their in-house composers, Kang Ji-won and Kim Ki-bum, who have produced all of Secret’s retro hits. Secret’s secret formula for success lies not only in their determined execution of one particular style, but their consistent development of a concept that suits them very well." Seoulbeats concludes that "Secret has carved out its conceptual niche in the K-pop market by developing a distinct and consistent style, and thus they are now in a position to elevate their success and recognition in the industry. While most other groups undergo drastic changes over time to keep current fans interested and to attract new fans, Secret clearly benefits from the advantages of continuity. What other groups or idols have carved out a stylistic niche over the years?"
Secret is also known for their transitions to cute and the girl-next-door image through songs like "Shy Boy" and "Starlight Moonlight" from the sexy and powerful image through "Magic", "Madonna" and "Poison" while still retaining retro as the main theme for their sound. Although a commercial success with "Magic" and "Madonna" peaking at number two and number one respectively on the Gaon Charts, Secret failed to win a first place award on any televised South Korean weekly music shows such as M! Countdown, Music Bank and Inkigayo until "Shy Boy". Seoulbeats wrote, "Secret embarked on an aegyo phase in their following release of “Shy Boy" although with much voiced displeasure from the members. Despite the radical change in their personalities, their style remained consistent in staying with and expanding upon their retro identity. The song became a major success as Secret traded in their sex appeal for a heavy dose of aegyo, resulting in much hardware for their chart-topping song." Secret kept its cute imagery with their following single "Starlight Moonlight" until the release of "Love is Move" and "Poison". During their promotions with "Poison", Jun Hyoseong commented "Secret has always been known as a cute group that appeals to the general public. This time, however, we′ve escaped that and showed off our unique charms. Our visuals have also changed for the sexy." Jun added, "We′re actually closer to Shy Boy in real life."
Endorsements and other activities
The group's popularity and success in Korea has led to endorsement deals such as Gueoseu Chicken, Googims mall, Grand Mer(Online Fising Game), Nike, Nene Chicken, Good Day Soju and Parkga among others. Sunhwa became more active in acting, modelling and frequently participating in variety shows. In 2009, she became a fixed cast on a popular variety show called Invincible Youth. In November 2010, Sunhwa won the best wedding dress idol award on MBC‘s “Bouquet" which landed her a magazine cover feature on Wedding 21's December issue. On February 2, 2011, Sunhwa guested on the KBS’s Lunar New Year special, “Idol Health Beauty Contest“, during which she was chosen as the star with the healthiest and most beautiful skin. Sunhwa, along with many other female idols, participated in a skin evaluation by select professionals. In the end, results showed that Sunhwa’s skin was actually 10 years younger than her actual age. In April 2011, Sunhwa was chosen as the model for the cosmetics company, The Skin House. Sunhwa reportedly received a $100,000 deposit for her six-month contract. Sunhwa is slated to star with Jeong Joon-ho in a new movie called "Little Hero.
Han Sunhwa, Jun Hyoseong, Kim Himchan and Bang Yong Guk were chosen as models for KELLAN sportswear 11/12 Winter Collection in September 2011. In December 2010, Secret and the Korean Non-Life Insurance Association (KNIA) teamed up to film a Commercial Film in a Kangnam studio to share their message of concern against drunk driving. With Secret, they were also appointed as ambassadors in campaigns and events such as The Seoul Competition Movie Content 'Streamed Seoul 2009' Goodwill Ambassador(2009), The 18th National Women's Soccer Tournament ambassador(2010), The Eco-Project environmental campaign 'URBAN FARM'(2010), The 8th International Paralympic Skills Competition(2010) and others. On December 28, 2011, Secret were appointed as PR ambassadors for the ‘Korea Consumers Forum’. After the group filmed the music video of "YooHoo" in Saipan during the month of April in 2013, the tourism board of Northern Mariana Islands named Secret as their newest tourism ambassador for 2013. Secret joined fellow South Korean artist and international pop star Psy as their new tourism ambassador who joined in 2012.
- 2009 Gueoseu Chicken
- 2010 Googims Mall
- 2011 Grand Mer
- 2011 Nike
- 2011 The Skin House (Sunhwa)
- 2011 Nene Chicken
- 2011 Kellan Sports Wear (Sunhwa & Hyoseong)
- 2011 Good Day Soju
- 2011 Parkga
- 2012 California beach
- 2013 Sudden Attack (Sunhwa & Hyoseong)
- 2013 Yes (Hyoseong)
- 2013 The Skin House (Sunhwa)
- 2010 Maxim
- 2010 Wedding 21, December issue. (Sunhwa)
- 2010 Vogue Girl, May issue. (Sunhwa & Hyoseong)
- 2012 1st Look (Sunhwa)
- 2012 Nylon
- 2013 InStyle, September issue. (Sunhwa)
- 2013 Ceci, May issue. (Sunhwa)
- 2013 Ceci Campus, September issue. (Jieun)
- 2009 Seoul Competition Movie Content 'Streamed Seoul 2009' Goodwill Ambassador
- 2010 Eco-Project Environmental Campaign 'URBAN FRAM' participation
- 2010 18th National Women's Soccer Tournament Ambassador
- 2010 The 8th International Paralympic Skills Competition Ambassadors
- 2011 KBEE (Korea Brand & Entertainment Expo)
- 2011 Korea Consumers Forum PR Ambassadors
Showcase and events
- Secret Story debut showcase (Korea)
- Secret Premium debut (Japan)
- Secret mini-outdoor concert (Japan)
- "Shy Boy" release party (Japan)
- For Hyoseong's filmography see, Hyoseong's Filmography.
- For Hana's filmography see, Hana's Filmography.
- For Jieun's filmography see, Jieun's Filmography.
- For Sunhwa's filmography see, Sunhwa's Filmography.
|2011||MTV Secret Diary||SBS MTV|
|2013||Beatles Code 2||Mnet|
In 2010, Secret released their hit single "Magic" which was nominated at the 12th Mnet Asian Music Awards for Best Dance Performance by a Female Group. The same year, the group released their number one hit single "Madonna" which won them a Bonsang award at the 20th Seoul Music Awards. With the success of "Magic" and "Madonna", the group received the "Newcomer award" at the 25th Golden Disk Awards.
"Shy Boy" earned the group's first win in Mnet's M! Countdown and SBS's Inkigayo. The song was their first Triple Crown in KBS's Music Bank and garnered them multiple awards and nominations. The song was nominated for Song of the Year and Best Dance Performance by a Female Group at the 13th Mnet Asian Music Awards. The song won a Bonsang award at the 21st Seoul Music Awards and at the 3rd Melon Music Awards. The song also won the Songs of the Year Award at the 1st Gaon Chart Awards for the month of January. Following the success of "Shy Boy", Secret released Starlight Moonlight in June 2011. The song earned them their second win in Inkigayo and won them a Digital Bonsang award at the 26th Golden Disk Award. In 2012, "Starlight Moonlight" won the Songs of the Year Award in the 1st Gaon Chart Awards for the month of June.
- Official fan club name: SECRETTIME
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- (Korean)"박가부대, 철판닭갈비 출시에 맞춰 고객 커뮤니케이션 강화 나선다". News Nate. SK Communications. November 28, 2011. Retrieved 2012-03-07.
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|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Secret (South Korean band).|
- Official Japanese website by Universal Music (Japanese)
- Official Korean website by TS Entertainment (Korean)
- Official fan cafe
- International Fan Forum