Lee Hong-gi

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Not to be confused with Ki Hong Lee.
This is a Korean name; the family name is Lee.
Lee Hong-gi
FTISLAND in Paris, La Cigale, 16.JPG
Lee Hong-gi in Paris, 2015
Background information
Born (1990-03-02) 2 March 1990 (age 26)[1]
Gwangju, Gyeonggi, South Korea
Genres Rock, pop, R&B
Occupation(s) Singer, actor, songwriter, composer
Years active 2001–present
Labels FNC Entertainment
AI Entertainment Inc. (Japan)
Warner Music (Japan)
Associated acts F.T. Island
Website fncent.com/ftisland/
Korean name
Hangul 이홍기
Hanja
Revised Romanization I Hong-gi
McCune–Reischauer Yi Hong-ki

Lee Hong-gi (Hangul이홍기; hanja李洪基; pronounced [iː hoŋɡiː ]; Japanese:イ•ホンギ), often credited as Hong-gi or HongKi, is a South Korean idol singer best known for his singing abilities and being the main vocalist of the Korean pop/rock band F.T. Island. He is also an actor, songwriter, composer, writer and fashion designer. Lee released his first solo mini album FM302 in Korea on 18 November 2015 and his Japanese album AM302 on 9 December 2015.

Acting career[edit]

Before Lee Hong-ki debuted as a singer with the band FT Island, he was a child actor, making his acting debut in 2002 in the KBS2 TV series Magic Kid Masuri as Masuri's friend.[2] This sitcom gained popularity among elementary school students. He was also featured in Kkangsooni, where he played the character of Eo Soo-bong, and sang for the sitcom's OST.

In 2008, he was offered the lead role in Master of Study, the Korean adaptation of Japanese drama Dragon Zakura. Master of Study should have aired in the beginning of 2009 but due to preproduction difficulties, the drama was postponed to the beginning of 2010 which led FNC Entertainment to refuse Lee's role because of his busy schedule with FT Island.

Lee then played Lysander in a Korean musical theatre version of A Midsummer Night's Dream,[2] where he showcased his singing, acting and dancing skills. In 2009, after a five-year break, he made his acting comeback and took the role of the quirky but loveable drummer Jeremy in You're Beautiful.[3] To promote the drama, he also contributed solo tracks to the OST, such as "Promise" and "Still/As Ever."[4] He received a New Star Award at the 2009 SBS Drama Awards for his performance. You're Beautiful recorded modest ratings in South Korea, but it became an international success and with it, Lee's worldwide popularity increased.

In April 2011, Lee starred in the TBS Japanese drama Muscle Girl! opposite Yui Ichikawa.[5] This was followed by a 90-minute Korean-Japanese co-production titled Noriko Goes to Seoul, in which he played a young aspiring singer who meets an older woman (Takashima Reiko) who inspires him through hardships to achieve his dream.[6]

In June 2013, he made his big screen debut in the movie Rockin' on Heaven's Door (Korean title: Passionate Goodbye), with Baek Jin-hee, in which Lee portrayed as a rebellious music star who is sent to work in a hospice.[7][8]

Lee began filming Bride of the Century with Yang Jin-sung. He went on a four-week rest after he dislocated his shoulder and suffered facial fractures during December 2013.[9][10] He resumed shooting in January 2014, and the drama aired that February.[11][12]

Lee also starred in SBS Modern Farmer alongside Park Min-woo, Lee Ha-nui, and others. The drama aired from 18 October 2014 to 21 December 2014, at 20:40 on Saturdays and Sundays.

Music career[edit]

Lee in 2012

F.T. Island[edit]

Main article: F.T. Island

In 2007, Lee debuted in the band F.T. Island as the lead singer. He can also rap and beatbox.

Lee decided to pursue a career in singing after he starred in Kkangsooni, for which he sang a song for the soundtrack. At the end of the drama, he performed the song live on stage. He was 13 years old at that time. Impressed by his powerful vocal ability, a few people approached him, not wishing to waste his talent for singing. Then-fledgling label company FNC Entertainment Music signed Lee and fully trained him to become the lead singer of F.T. Island.

Solo debut[edit]

In 2015 Lee announced through social media that he would be working on both a Korean and Japanese solo album, which was released in November and December respectively.[13] Hong-gi's mini Korean album was revealed to be FM302, and the album was scheduled to be released on 18 November 2015,[14] while the Japanese album was revealed to be AM302, and it was released on 9 December 2015.[15] 'FM302' combines the radio terminology frequency modulation (FM) with Hong-gi's birthday which is on 2 March, to create the effect of his own radio frequency that resonates his music across the world. The title song 'Insensible' is a ballad track and it tells the sad story of a man who is unable to forget his previous love. The music video was published on 18 November.[16] The lead actress of the music video is actress Park Shin-hye.[17] Prior to Hong-gi's official music video release, a showcase was organised.[18] Upon the release of FM302, it topped both Naver's real-time search chart, as well as Hanteo sales chart. The album still retained its position next week, selling more than 19,000 albums within two weeks. Moreover, six days after the release of the album, Hong-gi won first place on SBS MTV's The Show for the first time.[19] The album charted at No. 2 on Gaon Chart's national physical albums ranking, as well as No. 5 on the Gaon Social Chart in the 3rd week of November.[20]

On the other hand, the PV for the Japanese album AM302, was published on YouTube on 11 November. It was titled "イ・ホンギ (Monologue)" and it was published on F.T. Island's Official Japanese channel. The Japanese album contained some tracks from the Korean album FM302, but was translated into Japanese. The album is also available in three different sets, namely, the original version, Primadonna version (for fans), and the limited edition DVD version.[21] Upon release, it charted at #4 in the Oricon charts.[citation needed]

Soundtrack appearances[edit]

Lee has sang many OSTs for different dramas such as You're Beautiful, Heartstrings and The Heirs.

On 21 May 2015, Dal Shabet's official YouTube channel uploaded a video titled Joker in Rock Version. The video was a collaboration with Lee and Subin singing Joker in rock version.[22] It was believed that the two decided on a collaboration when Lee and Subin met on Hello Counselor.

Compositions and lyric-writing[edit]

In recent years, Lee has also begun composing music, contributing the songs "Black Chocolate" and "Orange Sky" to F.T. Island's Japanese album Rated FT, as well as the title track "Memory" and the song "Always With You" on F.T. Island's Korean mini-album Thanks To, and "Siren" from their latest album The Mood.[23][24] He also composed Japanese songs 'On My Way,' 'Just Please' and 'Born to be a Rock n Roller.'[25][26]

Personal life[edit]

Lee Hong-gi in Paris in 2015 at La Cigale

Lee was enrolled in Kyunghee University studying theatre and film.[2] His hobbies include listening to music, playing soccer, cooking and nail art.[2]

Nail art[edit]

Nail art is a creative activity that draws pictures or designs on fingernails. Lee was obsessed with nail art since 2010, but only publicly shown it in 2013. It was also revealed that former f(x)'s member Sulli inspired Lee to pursue a nail art career. His desires and passion for nail art was getting noticed as it was rare for a male idol to opt for nail art. However, Lee continued to explore nail art and had his nails painted as his hobby.

I want to break the stereotype that it's weird for men to get nail art.

— Lee Hong-gi

(a quote to reporters during an interview)

Lee's passion for nail art went on to the next level as he produced his first book, titled Lee Hong-gi's Nail Book, where it features various nail art techniques and designs. It was sold at a fast rate showing the public's support for nail art on men. It was also a collaborative book between Lee and nail artist Kim Soo Jung. The nail art book also topped Japan's Tower Record for the pre-order category in both Korea and Japan respectively.[27][28] His nail art was very successful as he has also won several awards for it. For example, Lee won the Best's Man's Nail Art Award in 2013, making him to first foreigner to win this award, which was held in Japan and also in 2015, Lee won the same award – Best's Man Nail Art Award as well, but he was unable to the attend the ceremony due to solo projects and tours, but instead thanked the fans for their continuous support through a video recording.[29]

Skullhong[edit]

Lee started his own fashion brand 'Skullhong' in June 2014. He designs accessories, jewelry and various nail products.[30] Skullhong is centred in Korea, and has since garnered popular support due to Lee's personal designs and phrases, like nail rings that are made of gold or silver, and catchy phrases like "Doesn't Matter". New fashionable items are regularly updated in about once a month with Lee personally designing them.

It was originally based in Seoul, South Korea only, however, due to immense popularity, it has since expanded it's business to Hong Kong, and Tokyo, Japan.[31] Moreover, within just one day, 90% sales items which are meant to be sold over 6 days had been sold out, proving it's huge popularity and interest.[32][33]

Hongstargram[edit]

HONGSTARGRAM, a travel book was personally dedicated to fans as a travel book to capture the different moments of Lee during his first solo trip to different countries. Pictures such as him sight-seeing in China, and even his morning looks were also shown in the travel book.[34]

Hong's Tower[edit]

Lee also founded and is part of Hong's Tower, which is a group of people composing and writing songs. Hong's Tower has since composed several tracks from FM302 and N.W.U.

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

EPs[edit]

Soundtrack contributions[edit]

Year Film/Drama/Movie Song's Title
2004 Kangsooni OST To My Friend
2007 Unstoppable Marriage OST Lately I
2009 You're Beautiful OST Still,
Promise
2011 Heartstrings OST Even If It's Not Necessary
2013 The Heirs OST I'm saying
Rockin' on Heaven's Door OST Jump,
Goodbye
2014 Bride of the Century OST Words I Have Yet To Say
Modern Farmer OST When Love Comes,
Do Or Die

List of songs written by Lee Hong-gi[edit]

Year Label Album Song
2011 FNC Entertainment Five Treasure Island Flower Rock
20 Let It Go!
2012 Five Treasure Box[35] Stay With Me
Life
Compass (The Way)
2013 Rated-FT[23] Black Chocolate
Orange Sky
Thanks to[23] Memory
Always With You
The Mood[24] Siren
Uncharted Future[36] Born To Be Rock'N Roller
2014 New Page On My Way
2015 I Will Pray
BPM69
Do You Know Why?
To The Light
Light
5.....Go To The Light
Primavera
DAYDREAMER
My Birthday
2016 N.W.U You Don't Know Who I Am
Puppy
Come on Girl
Walking Dead
Cycle
We Are...

Filmography[edit]

Television drama[edit]

Year Network Title Role Notes
2002 EBS TV Original Fairytale: Bicycle Thief Educational TV series
KBS2 Magic Kid Masuri Masuri's friend Main cast
2004 EBS There's Light at the Tip of My Fingernails
EBS Kkangsooni Eo Soo-bong Educational TV series
MBC Freezing Point Hwan-yi Supporting role
2005 EBS Flower Butterfly and Sunflower Educational TV series
EBS Winter Child Educational TV series
2008 KBS2 Unstoppable Marriage Hwang Sa-baek's friend Cameo, Ep. 62
SBS On Air himself Cameo, Ep. 1
2009 SBS Style himself Cameo, Ep. 6
SBS You're Beautiful Jeremy Main cast
2010 MBC More Charming By the Day chicken delivery guy Cameo, Ep. 111
SBS My Girlfriend Is a Nine-Tailed Fox Jeremy Cameo, Ep. 16
2011 TBS Muscle Girl! Yoo Ji-ho Lead role
KBS2 Noriko Goes to Seoul Kim Min-ha Lead role
2013 tvN Cheongdam-dong 111 himself Reality show
2014 TV Chosun Bride of the Century Choi Kang-joo Lead role
SBS Modern Farmer Lee Min-ki Lead role

Film[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
2013 Rockin' on Heaven's Door Choong-ui Lead role
2014 How to Steal a Dog Seok-gu Supporting role

Variety show[edit]

Year Title Network Notes
2008 Family Outing SBS Guest (Ep. 13 & 14)
Good Daddy SBS Cast member
2009 Inkigayo SBS Regular MC
Mnet Scandal Idol Show Mnet
2010 100 Points Out of 100 aka Oh! My School KBS2 Cast member (Ep. 1 – Ep. 12)
Running Man SBS Guest (Ep. 9)
Let's Go Dream Team! Season 2 KBS2 Guest (Ep. 15, 20, & 104)
2013 We Got Married Global Edition MBC Cast member (with Fujii Mina)
2015 Witch Hunt JTBC Guest
Golden Fishery aka Radio Star MBC Guest
Running Man SBS Guest (Ep. 242)
King of Mask Singer MBC Guest (Ep. 3)
Happy Together KBS2 Guest (with Fujii Mina)
King of Mask Singer MBC Panel Judge
Hidden Singer JTBC Guest

Musical theatre[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
2009 A Midsummer Night's Dream Lysander Main role
2014 Vampire[37] Dracula Main role
2016 Those Days[38] TBA Main Role

Book[edit]

Year Title
2013 Lee Hong-gi's Nail Art[39]
2014 Hongstargram

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Nominated work Result
2009 17th Korean Culture and Entertainment Awards[2] Top 10 Singers N/A Won
SBS Drama Awards[2] New Star Award You're Beautiful Won
2010 16th Korean Entertainment Arts Awards[2] Best Male Singer N/A Won
2013 27th Golden Disk Awards InStyle Fashionista Award[40] N/A Won
2014 9th Seoul International Drama Awards Outstanding Korean Drama OST I'm Saying Nominated
16th Seoul International Youth Film Festival Best OST by a Male Artist Nominated

Music programs[edit]

The Show[edit]

Year Date Song
2015 24 November "Insensible"

Music Bank[edit]

Year Date Song
2015 4 December "Insensible"

References[edit]

  1. ^ Mark Russell (29 April 2014). K-Pop Now!: The Korean Music Revolution. Tuttle Publishing. p. 60. ISBN 978-1-4629-1411-1. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g "F.T. Island". Korea Tourism Organization. Retrieved 2014-04-03. 
  3. ^ Choi, Ji-eun (27 October 2009). "A.N.JELL actors brighten up Minamishineyo". TenAsia. Retrieved 2014-02-22. 
  4. ^ "Lee Hong Ki Sings You're Beautiful's "Still" In Mandarin". Soompi. 19 July 2010. Retrieved 2014-04-03. 
  5. ^ "Ichikawa Yui and F.T. Island's Lee Hong-gi at the press conference for Muscle Girl". Tokyo Hive. 14 April 2011. Retrieved 2014-02-22. 
  6. ^ Hong, Lucia (10 August 2011). "FTIsland's Lee Hong-ki to star in upcoming KBS one-act drama". TenAsia. Retrieved 2014-02-22. 
  7. ^ Hong, Lucia (30 July 2012). "FTIsland Lee Hong-ki to make big screen debut". TenAsia. Retrieved 2014-02-22. 
  8. ^ Sunwoo, Carla (24 May 2013). "Not all is grim when the reaper pays a visit". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2014-02-22. 
  9. ^ Lee, Sun-min (17 December 2013). "Lee Hong-ki injured on ice". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2014-02-22. 
  10. ^ Hwang, Hye-jin (10 January 2014). "FT Island's Lee Hong Gi Resumes Drama Filming After Injury". enewsWorld. Retrieved 2014-02-22. 
  11. ^ Lee, Na-rae (19 February 2014). "FT Island's Lee Hong Gi Chooses Yang Jin Seong Over Park Shin Hye as Ideal Type". enewsWorld. Retrieved 2014-02-22. 
  12. ^ Han, Ji-hee (20 February 2014). "Interview: Bride of the Century Lee Hong-Ki – Yang Jin-Sung". Get It K. Retrieved 2014-02-22. 
  13. ^ "F.T. Island's Hongki to make his solo debut!". 
  14. ^ "FTISLAND official website". 
  15. ^ "FNC MUSIC JAPAN INC.". Twitter. 
  16. ^ "F.T. Island's Hongki reveals solo debut MV for 'Insensible' starring Park Shin Hye". 
  17. ^ http://entertain.naver.com/read?oid=076&aid=0002837324
  18. ^ "Super Junior's Heechul to MC Lee Hong Ki's First Solo Showcase – Soompi". Soompi. 
  19. ^ "Lee Hong Ki Takes 1st Solo Win With "Insensible" on "The Show" – Soompi". Soompi. 
  20. ^ http://www.allkpop.com/article/2015/11/gaon-chart-releases-chart-rankings-for-november-15-november-21
  21. ^ http://mwave.interest.me/enewsworld/en/article/100668/ft-islands-lee-hong-gi-to-release-first-solo-album-am302-in-japan
  22. ^ http://www.dkpopnews.net/2015/05/subin-and-lee-hongkis-flawless-rock.html
  23. ^ a b c "FT Island to release EP". Korea Herald. 10 September 2013. Retrieved 2014-04-03. 
  24. ^ a b "FT Island Beats miss A and Trouble Maker to Top Weekly Sales Chart". Soompi. 25 November 2013. Retrieved 2014-04-03. 
  25. ^ blog.koreaboo.com "FT ISLAND RELEASES TRACKLIST FOR THEIR "FTISLAND JAPAN BEST ALL ABOUT" ALBUM
  26. ^ kpopstarz.com 5.30.14"Band FTISLAND New Japan Album 'NEW PAGE' Tops Japan Ring Tone Chart"
  27. ^ http://www.allkpop.com/article/2013/07/ft-island-hongkis-nail-book-climbs-to-the-top-of-japans-tower-record-pre-order-chart
  28. ^ http://www.kpopstarz.com/articles/35729/20130726/lee-hong-ki-interview-for-nail-book.htm
  29. ^ http://www.allkpop.com/article/2013/11/ft-islands-hongki-wins-the-best-mens-nails-award-at-japans-nail-queen-2013
  30. ^ "FTISLAND's Lee Hong Ki Launches Website for His Fashion Brand "Skull Hong"". Soompi. 10 June 2014. Retrieved 2015-03-23. 
  31. ^ "skullhong's expansion". 
  32. ^ "skullhong's immense sales". 
  33. ^ "another source for skullhong's 90% sales earning in a day". 
  34. ^ "hongstargram". 
  35. ^ "hongki's lyricwriting". 
  36. ^ "FT Island to Release 13th Japanese Single in April". Mwave. 11 March 2014. Retrieved 2014-04-22. 
  37. ^ "FTISLAND's Lee Hong Ki to Star as Dracula in New Musical "Vampire"". Soompi. 1 July 2014. Retrieved 2015-01-20. 
  38. ^ "FTISLAND's Lee Hong-gi to Star in a New Musical After 2 Years". 6 July 2016. 
  39. ^ "FT Island boy publishes nail art book". Korea JoongAng Daily. 25 June 2013. Retrieved 2014-02-22. 
  40. ^ "Winners from the 27th Golden Disk Awards (Day 2)". Allkpop. 16 January 2013. Retrieved 2013-01-16. 

External links[edit]