Sungha Jung

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The native form of this personal name is Jung Sungha. This article uses the Western name order.
Sungha Jung
2016-04-08 Sungha Jung 02.jpg
Sungha Jung (April 2016)
Background information
Also known as jwcfree (name of YouTube channel), @jungsungha, blueseaJSH
Born (1996-09-02) 2 September 1996 (age 19)
Cheongju, South Korea
Occupation(s) Musician
Instruments acoustic guitar, classical guitar, twelve-string guitar, electric guitar, ukulele, guitalele, harp ukulele, piano
Years active 2006 – present
Korean name
Hangul 정성하
Revised Romanization Jeong Seongha
McCune–Reischauer Jŏng Sŏngha
Sungha Jung at the Musikmesse Frankfurt 2016

Sungha Jung (Korean: 정성하) is a South Korean musician who specializes in acoustic fingerstyle guitar. His YouTube channel currently has more than 3.9 million subscribers.[1][2] Jung creates acoustic covers and arrangements, typically by ear and/or by watching videos, and has original music, which he plays and uploads online. He was nicknamed the "Guitar Prodigy" and the "August Rush" in Korea, though he prefers to be known as a 'guitarist' rather than a 'guitar prodigy'.[3]


Jung developed an interest in guitar after watching his father play. He found his father's guitar playing more interesting than piano, which he was already learning.[4] Jung's father taught him the basics, and after learning the basics, he developed his skill greatly just by trying to play what he heard.[3] When he struggled he would study online videos.[5] Jung came to play fingerstyle when his father discovered the fingerstyle technique on the internet. His first 'idol' was guitarist Kotaro Oshio, from whom he developed interest in fingerstyle.[4] At first, Jung's mother and grandmother disapproved of the 'noise' that Jung and his father continuously created, but they came to understand it as his gift.

Soon after his first debut video on the internet, he garnered many supporters, from whom he asked for advice on his playing.[5] His cover of "The Pirates of the Caribbean" theme song, which currently has over 49 million views on YouTube, made Jung an internet sensation, and his playing caught the attention of world-renowned guitarists, who found his covers of their songs impressive. Jung has since played on stage with them multiple times.[6] Jung has received guitar lessons from Hata Shuji, a well-known Japanese jazz guitarist. He has also been mentored by German guitarist Ulli Bögershausen, who Jung refers to as his musical inspiration,[7] and from whom he learned much about composing and arranging.[8][9]

In a video he recommended the 'AllEars method' for those who like his style of guitar playing and want to learn it.[10] In addition to steel-string and classical guitar, he has been recorded playing twelve-string guitar, electric guitar, ukulele, guitarlele, harp ukulele, and piano. He has also sung live, singing Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová's "Falling Slowly" at a concert in Bangkok.[11] Apart from Korean, Jung speaks English,[4] which he studies to be able to communicate during concerts abroad.[8]


Jung received his first guitar at age nine, a very coarse plywood guitar that cost less than $60.[12] Upon discovering Jung's skill with the toy-like guitar, his father decided to buy him a better one – a Cort Earth900. Jung began seriously playing with this guitar. His third guitar was a custom-made Selma from , a small-combo sized "All Spruce" model, upon which Thomas Leeb wrote "KEEP ON GROOVING! TO MY FRIEND, THOMAS LEEB"[12] In 2009, with the help of Ulli Bögershausen, he established sponsorship from Lakewood Guitars[12] and currently still plays a Lakewood guitar, which has his signature inlaid on the fretboard.

Practice and recording[edit]

Jung's daily practice time is one to two hours long when there is school, and up to three hours during school breaks. Jung usually takes an hour to figure out the notes and fingering to a piece, and typically takes another five hours to practice before recording. However, to make his songs better and more accurate, he occasionally spends from a couple days up to a month practicing.[13]


In 2010, Jung was featured on Narsha's solo album NARSHA, for the song "I'm in Love". In 2011 he performed in the US with Trace Bundy, and also toured Scandinavia and Japan.[1] In 2012 he collaborated with 2NE1, creating acoustic versions of the group's hit songs "Lonely" and "I Love You". Later in 2012, he participated in a live stage with BIGBANG's G-Dragon, where they performed "That XX".[14] He performed "I'm Yours" with Jason Mraz, who described Jung as "amazing" and his "hero", in 2013.[15] Jung played Ahn Hyeok in the 2011 Korean movie, The Suicide Forecast.[16]


Jung released his first album, Perfect Blue, on 17 June 2010,[17] his second album, Irony, on 21 September 2011,[18] and his third album Paint It Acoustic on 15 April 2013.[19] These three were recorded at Ulli Bögershausen's studio in Germany, each featuring increasingly more originals.[9] Jung's 4th solo album, Monologue, is almost exclusively composed of his own compositions, and was released 28 April 2014.[20] This album was recorded at Brickwall Sound in Seoul and produced by Jung himself.[21] Jung's fifth solo album, Two of Me was released on 1 May 2015, entirely consisting of original compositions. He has also recorded an album consisting of guitar duets called The Duets, released on 17 December 2012.[22]


  • Perfect Blue (June 2010)
  • Irony (September 2011)
  • The Duets (December 2012)
  • Paint It Acoustic (April 2013)
  • Monologue (April 2014)
  • Two of Me (May 2015)
  • L'Atelier (2016)

Jung's Endorsements[edit]


See also[edit]

  • Trace Bundy, acoustic guitarist with whom Sungha cooperates
  • Megan Lee, YouTube musician with whom Sungha collaborated


  1. ^ a b Yoon, Ja-young (28 February 2011). "How YouTube impacts lives of ordinary people". The Korea Times. Retrieved 18 May 2011. 
  2. ^ "jwcfree". YouTube. Retrieved 2014-03-10. 
  3. ^ a b Jung, Sungha (10 October 2008). Interview (by DCinside). Interview with DCinside. Retrieved 2014-03-04. 
  4. ^ a b c "Sungha Jung interview -part 1". YouTube, uploaded by Fríðrikur Ellefsen. 1 February 2011. Retrieved 2014-02-26. 
  5. ^ a b "Sungha Was On TV! (English subtitled)". YouTube, uploaded by fatalsignal. 18 December 2008. Retrieved 2014-03-04. 
  6. ^ "Sungha Jung on 文化思索- (En_sub)". YoutTube, uploaded by Dee Kim. 1 September 2010. Retrieved 2014-03-04. 
  7. ^ a b Sungha Jung (2009). "About Sungha Jung". Retrieved 2014-02-26. 
  8. ^ a b "Sungha Jung on TODAY (Eng_sub)". YouTube, uploaded by Dee Kim. 7 October 2010. Retrieved 2014-03-04. 
  9. ^ a b "Lakewood musician Sungha Jung". Lakewood Guitars GmbH & Co. KG. Retrieved 2014-03-04. 
  10. ^ "Untitled". Vimeo, uploaded by Thinksoul. 2 April 2011. Retrieved 2014-02-26. 
  11. ^ "Sungha Jung singing...". YouTube, uploaded by jwcfree. 11 October 2015. Retrieved 2015-10-11. 
  12. ^ a b c supporters of Sungha (2009). "Sungha's Guitar". Retrieved 2014-02-26. 
  13. ^ supporters of Sungha (2009). "FAQ Sungha Jung". Retrieved 2014-02-26. 
  14. ^ "G-DRAGON_0923_SBS Inkigayo_THAT XX (그 XX)". YouTube, uploaded by BIGBANG. 23 September 2012. Retrieved 2015-05-22. 
  15. ^ "(Jason Mraz) I'm Yours – Jason Mraz ft. Sungha Jung". YouTube, uploaded by jwcfree. 16 May 2013. Retrieved 2014-02-26. 
  16. ^ "The Suicide Forecast (2011): Full Cast & Crew". Retrieved 2014-02-26. 
  17. ^ "(Making Film) Sungha's First CD "Perfect Blue"". Youtube, uploaded by jwcfree. 14 June 2010. Retrieved 2014-03-12. 
  18. ^ "(Making Film) Sungha Jung's 2nd Solo Album 'Irony'". YouTube, uploaded by jwcfree. 10 October 2011. Retrieved 2014-03-12. 
  19. ^ "Sungha Jung 3rd Solo Album (Paint It Acoustic) Promo". YouTube, uploaded by jwcfree. 10 April 2013. Retrieved 2014-03-12. 
  20. ^ "The Making of Sungha Jung's New Album: MONOLOGUE". YouTube, uploaded by jwcfree. 15 April 2014. Retrieved 2014-04-28. 
  21. ^ "Mobile Uploads, OK, Sungha Jung New Release [MONOLOGUE] officially out now!!". Facebook, uploaded by Sungha Jung (Official Fan Page). 28 April 2014. Retrieved 2014-04-28. 
  22. ^ "Sungha Jung's New Album "The Duets" Making Film.". YouTube, uploaded by jwcfree. 4 December 2012. Retrieved 2014-03-12. 

External links[edit]