Bang Yong-guk

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Bang Yong-guk
20171014 B.A.P 방용국 @구미 LG드림페스티벌.jpg
Bang performing at the LG Dream Festival in Gumi, October 2017
Native name
Bang Yong-guk

(1990-03-31) March 31, 1990 (age 29)
Seoul, South Korea
Other namesJepp Blackman, Andrew Baag
  • Rapper
  • songwriter
  • record producer
Musical career
GenresHip Hop
Years active2008–present
LabelsTS Entertainment
Associated actsB.A.P
Korean name
Revised RomanizationBang Yong-guk
McCune–ReischauerPang Yong-kuk

Bang Yong-guk (born March 31, 1990) is a South Korean rapper, songwriter and record producer who served as the leader of boy group B.A.P up until his departure from TS Entertainment in August 2018.

He made his musical debut in 2008 as a member of an underground hip hop group called Soul Connection under the alias of "Jepp Blackman". In March 2011, he featured on Song Ji-eun's single "Going Crazy", which became a number one hit in South Korea. In July of that year he released his first solo digital single, "I Remember", featuring BEAST's Yoseob and in November he promoted in a sub-unit called Bang & Zelo with fellow B.A.P member Zelo, releasing the single "Never Give Up". B.A.P released their first single in January 2012.


Bang Yong-guk was born in Seoul, South Korea, on March 31, 1990.[1] He is the youngest out of two sons and one daughter in his family. He has an identical twin brother named Yongnam, who has also performed as an underground artist, and an older sister named Natasha.[2]

He moved with his family to the coastal Ijak islands of Incheon when he was young, living there for a short period of time before moving back to mainland Incheon.[2] He studied at Gae Woong Elementary School and Gae Woong Middle School, and at 18 graduated from Yuhan High School. He got offered a scholarship for college, which he did not attend.


2008–2011: Career beginnings[edit]

Yong-guk first began meeting with other members of Soul Connection when he was in his second year of middle school after posting his rap lyrics on an online forum and being recognized for his skill. Through meeting with seniors that were actually active in the music industry, watching them compose and produce, and learning from them, he was able to refine his own techniques and become better at making his style of music[3]

In 2010, Yong-guk was contacted by TS Entertainment to be part of a hip-hop idol group after the duo Untouchable recommended him. Though he was worried that the type of music he could make would be limited, TS Entertainment assured him of being able to live out his dreams. Thus, he joined.

2011: "Going Crazy", "I Remember" and Bang&Zelo[edit]

On March 3, 2011, Song Jieun's single "Going Crazy" was released, featuring Bang Yong-guk.[4] The single was a commercial and critical success, with fans praising Yongguk's "husky and fiery delivery".[5][6] It topped the Gaon Chart and Gaon Digital and Streaming Chart[5] and gained attention for Yongguk as an artist; following the single's release, he trended on major portal search sites in South Korea[6] and was requested for multiple broadcast appearances. However, his agency declined these appearances, stating that he was still a trainee and not ready to appear on broadcasts outside of promotional performances.[7] The agency thanked fans for their interest nevertheless.[6]

On August 11, TS Entertainment released Yongguk's single "I Remember", featuring Yang Yoseob of B2ST.[8] The song was a moderate success, peaking in the Top 10 on real time charts in Korea and at #22 on the Gaon Chart.[9] However, the single was deemed unfit for broadcast promotions by KBS because of multiple scenes of shooting and violence.[10]

On December 11, Yongguk debuted with Zelo as part of the sub-unit rap duo Bang&Zelo with the song "Never Give Up".[11][12]

2012–2018: B.A.P[edit]

Bang at a fan meeting, March 2017

Yongguk was the first member to be announced as part of new TS Entertainment boy group B.A.P, of which he acts as the leader and main rapper.[13][14][15] The group released its first single, "Warrior", in January 2012. They held their debut showcase in Seoul with over 3,000 attendees on January 28.[16] The single met with critical acclaim, with media outlets describing the single as "powerful and charismatic".[17][18]

The following year, Yongguk performed at the 2013 SBS Gayo Daejeon as part of a collaborative hip-hop stage featuring Tiger JK, Yoon Mirae, and Bizzy and also including Zico, RM and Eun Jiwon.[19]

On November 27, 2014, it was reported that all B.A.P members had filed a lawsuit against their label to nullify their contracts, claiming unfair conditions and profit distribution. The group entered a hiatus, although on 4 April 2015, Yongguk released a solo song titled "AM 4:44".

On August 1, 2015, it was revealed that B.A.P had reached an agreement with and returned to TS Entertainment. B.A.P made their comeback in November 2015 with the mini-album Matrix, produced and written by Yongguk.

On October 25, 2016, TS Entertainment revealed that Yongguk will not be participating in the promotions for B.A.P's upcoming full-length album, Noir, due to anxiety disorders.[20]

In April 2017, B.A.P began their six city 'Party Baby- U.S. Boom' tour. Bang Yong-guk, the leader, returned from his hiatus to join the rest of the boys for the single's promotion, "Wake Me Up".

On July 4, 2017, Bang Yong-guk released a solo track titled "Yamazaki". The track featured lyrics in English, Japanese, and Korean. On April 25, 2018, Bang Yong-guk released the official music video of his solo track titled "Portrait." Which he co-directed alongside Joe Brown. On May 25, 2018, Bang Yong-guk released the official music video of his solo track titled "Drunkenness." Which features falsetto vocals provided by fellow band-member Yoo Youngjae. He co-directed the music video alongside Joe Brown.

Following the expiration of Yongguk's contract on August 19 with TS Entertainment, he decided to leave the company; B.A.P would continue as 5 members.[21]

Artistry and influences[edit]

Yongguk is predominantly a hip-hop artist[15] and cites 50 Cent, P. Diddy, and Pharrell as musical influences.[22] Although his goal was not initially to become a K-pop artist, he was influenced by the roles that Supreme Team and Dynamic Duo played in popularizing the genre in South Korea.[2]

As well as rapping, Yongguk also acts as a songwriter and producer for many of B.A.P's songs, including all the tracks from their debut EP Warrior.[23][24]


Digital singles[edit]

Year Title Peak chart positions


2008 "Cherry Flower" (with Soul Connection)
2011 "I Remember" (featuring Yang Yoseob) 22
"Never Give Up" (with Bang&Zelo) 65
2019 "Hikikomori"
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that region.

As a featured artist[edit]

Year Title Peak chart positions Album


2011 "Going Crazy" (with Song Jieun) 1 Digital single
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that region.

Music videos[edit]

Year Music video Length
2011 "Going Crazy" 4:23
"I Remember" 4:23
"Never Give Up" 4:27
2012 "For A Year" 5:02
2015 "AM 4:44"[26] 4:30
2017 "Yamazaki"[27] 4:01
2018 "Portrait"[28] 3:36
2018 "Drunkenness" 4:30



Year Title Role Notes
2011 Mr. Idol Cameo Himself with Kim Him Chan

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Result
2014 Shorty Awards Social Media's Best Musician Nominated[29]
2015 KMC Radio Awards Idol of the Year Won
2015 Shorty Awards Social Media's Best Musician Nominated[30]


  1. ^ "B.A.P Profile". KBS World. Retrieved 2012-03-14.
  2. ^ a b c Hwang Hyo-Jin (2012-03-09). "(INTERVIEW) B.A.P Bang Yong-guk, Him Chan". 10asia. 10아시아. Retrieved 2012-03-28.
  3. ^
  4. ^ "SECRET's Song Ji Eun releases her "Going Crazy" MV". 6theory Media. Retrieved 2012-02-08.
  5. ^ a b Lee, Hyo-jin (March 18, 2011). 시크릿 송지은, 가온차트 1위 ′돌풍′ [Secret's Song Ji-eun "blasts" to Gaon Chart number one]. Gaon Chart (in Korean). Korea Music Content Industry Association. Archived from the original on May 16, 2012. Retrieved 2012-02-08.
  6. ^ a b c 시크릿 송지은'‘미친거니' 참여 훈남 래퍼는 누구?! (in Korean). Nate (SK Communications). Retrieved 2012-02-08.
  7. ^ 방용국, 송지은 `미친거니` 덕에 방송섭외 `봇물`. Nate (in Korean). SK Communications. Retrieved 2012-02-08.
  8. ^ "Bang Yongguk unleashes powerful MV for "I Remember"". 6theory Media. Retrieved 2012-03-16.
  9. ^ "Bang Yongguk lands in the Top 10 with "I Remember"". 6theory Media. Retrieved 2012-03-16.
  10. ^ "Bang Yongguk's "I Remember" MV deemed unfit for broadcast". 6theory Media. Retrieved 2012-03-16.
  11. ^ "TS Entertainment introduces Zelo, Bang Yongguk's sub-unit partner". 6Theory Media. Retrieved 2012-03-16.
  12. ^ "Bang & Zelo release "Never Give Up" MV". 6Theory Media. Retrieved 2012-03-16.
  13. ^ Park, HyunMin (December 19, 2011). "Bang Yongguk & Zelo to Debut with B.A.P". enewsworld. CJ E&M. Retrieved February 1, 2012.
  14. ^ Lee, Ellie (January 3, 2012). "WHO IS B.A.P?". MTVK. Viacom International Inc. Retrieved February 1, 2012.
  15. ^ a b "Celebrity - Bang Yong Gook Profile". Retrieved 2012-03-16.
  16. ^ Park, HyunMin (January 30, 2012). "B.A.P Brings in Big Crowds for Its Debut Showcase". enewsworld. CJ E&M. Retrieved February 1, 2012.
  17. ^ 2012년 빛낼 아이돌 출격 임박..'신고 합니다!' (in Korean). Star News. Retrieved 26 January 2012.
  18. ^ Xu, Tina (January 25, 2012). "B.A.P MAKES LONG AWAITED DEBUT WITH "WARRIOR"". MTV Korea. Viacom International Inc. Retrieved January 26, 2012.
  19. ^ "Tiger JK, Yoonmirae, and Bizzy Performs at SBS Gayo Daejun 2013". Naver (in Korean). Retrieved 5 July 2014.
  20. ^ "Bang Yong Guk to take hiatus due to anxiety disorder + B.A.P to promote as 5 |". allkpop. Retrieved 2016-12-18.
  21. ^ Hwang, Hye-jin (August 23, 2018). "ko:B.A.P 측 "방용국 계약만료→탈퇴, 5인 체제 지속"(공식)". Newsen (in Korean). Retrieved August 23, 2018.
  22. ^ "Exclusive interview with Bang & Zelo!". Daily Kpop News. Retrieved February 1, 2012.
  23. ^ Hwang, Mi-Hyeon (2012-02-06). "B.A.P "지구정복! 결코 헛된 꿈이 아니랍니다"(인터뷰)" [B.A.P is determined to conquer the world with their music]. OSEN (in Korean). Intigram. Retrieved 2012-03-16.
  24. ^ "B.A.P is determined to conquer the world with their music". 6theory Media. Retrieved 2012-03-16.
  25. ^ a b "Gaon chart search". Gaon. Archived from the original on 5 December 2011. Retrieved 28 November 2011.
  26. ^ Bang Yonnguk: Am 4:44 on YouTube
  27. ^ K, J. "B.A.P's Bang Yong Guk Drops Teaser Photos and Video for New Solo Release 'Yamazaki'". Soompi. Retrieved 23 June 2017.
  28. ^ [MV] BANG YONGGUK (방용국) - PORTRAIT on YouTube
  29. ^
  30. ^

External links[edit]