September 14, 1978
Seoul, South Korea
|Other names||Teddy Park|
|Revised Romanization||Bak Hong-jun|
|Revised Romanization||Tedi Bak|
Teddy Park (born Park Hong-jun on September 14, 1978), better known by his stage name TEDDY, is a Korean-American rapper, songwriter, and one of the most famed record producers in Asia. Born in Seoul, South Korea, Park moved to the United States with his family as a young child. When he was 17 years old, Park and his best friend Danny Im flew to South Korea during summer vacation to audition for YG Entertainment, an underground hip-hop label at the time. Both were signed immediately, and after finishing high school in the States, moved to Korea to pursue music.
In 1998, Park debuted in the hip hop group 1TYM with his friend Danny, Jinhwan, Baekyoung. Together, the group recorded five studio albums with Park as their primary songwriter and producer. Today, 1TYM is recognized as one of the most influential figures in Korean music history. At 22 years old, Park began producing for other artists on the label, most of whom were much older and more experienced than him.
After his performing career with 1TYM ended in 2005, Park became an in-house producer for YG Entertainment. He has worked on the entirety of 2NE1's self-titled debut album, the majority of 2NE1's entire discography, substantial amounts of BIGBANG's material, and hits such as SE7EN's Passion and Uhm Jung-hwa's DISCO. Arguably the most prolific Korean music producer of the past two decades, Park has ranked among the top 3 in annual music royalties earnings since 2009. He owns real estate in Seoul and Los Angeles believed to be worth over 30 million USD.
In 2016, he founded the independent label THE BLACK LABEL, a subsidiary of K-pop conglomerate YG Entertainment. The label currently houses Zion.T, Korea's second best selling artist of 2015 after BIGBANG.
Life and career
Teddy Park was born in Seoul, South Korea, but moved to New York City as a young child. Park was heavily bullied there; his father got a transfer to the city of Diamond Bar, California, where he attended Diamond Bar High School. There, he met Im Taebin, and together they bonded over a love of rap music. They auditioned together at Brothers Entertainment, and got accepted. There, they learned about YG Entertainment. They moved to South Korea, where Park attended Myongji University, majoring in English. However, he soon moved to Seoul to start activities with newly formed group 1TYM. He is fluent in English and Korean.
1998–2005: Work with 1TYM
While with 1TYM, the group produced five studio albums. In 1998, they debuted with One Time for Your Mind with a hip hop music style. Park was primarily a rapper and had little input in the songs outside of writing his own lyrics.
One Time for Your Mind was followed by 2nd Round in 2000 and Third Time Fo' Yo' Mind in 2003. Park began to have more input into the songs, and had a more prominent role in producing.
After the initial three albums, 1TYM released Once N 4 All. After this, they went on a two-year hiatus in which member Taebin released his own solo debut album. 1TYM came back with One Way in 2005, their fifth and last studio album. 1TYM went on hiatus after One Way due to Oh Jinhwan's military service.
2006–present: Producer for YG Entertainment
In 2008, Teddy introduced a friend whom he went to high school with to Yang Hyun Suk, known now as Choice37.
In 2009, Park began to become more active as a producer. "Lollipop," a collaboration between Big Bang and new girl group 2NE1, was made by Teddy and topped the Gaon Chart during April. While producing for 2NE1, Park was offered to work for superstar Lady Gaga, but refused due to his prior commitment to 2NE1 He turned his attention back to 2NE1 and had a part in the production of all of 2NE1's debut extended play, 2NE1. In addition, Teddy produced much of Big Bang member Taeyang's solo album  and was featured in leader G-Dragon's song "The Leaders." Near the end of the year, 10Asia named Teddy Park as one of the top 10 people of 2009 for his participation in some of the year's biggest k-pop hits.
Teddy Park composed Seven's lead promotional single in 2010, "Better Together," in addition to other songs from Digital Bounce. After work on Seven's album, Park began working on 2NE1's first studio album, To Anyone. Two of the three main singles, "Can't Nobody" and "Go Away," were composed by Park.
In the first half of 2013 Teddy produced Lee Hi hit single "Rose", 2NE1's leader CL's solo debut single "The Baddest Female" and Kang Seung-yoon YG debut "WILD & YOUNG".
In 2016, he composed and produced the albums 'Square One' and 'Square Two' for the newest girl group formed by YG Entertainment BLACKPINK, along with R.Tee, Seo Won Jin and Bekuh BOOM. Their debut singles hit number one on the Billboard World Digital Songs chart and the fastest act to do so, and only the third Korean artist to hold the top two positions after Psy and Big Bang. "Whistle" topped the digital, download, streaming and mobile chart of Gaon Chart of August 2016. They also reached number one on the weekly, popularity, music video, and K-pop music video chart of China’s biggest music-streaming website QQ Music. Their win in Inkigayo broke the record for girl group with the shortest time to win on a music program after debut (14 days).
Musical style and influences
Teddy's production style is noted for heavy influences from contemporary R&B. In addition, he has been noted for using reggae in his songs. Park stated that his own work from 2NE1's debut EP was highly reggae-influenced. Later, on 2NE1's full-length album and subsequent mini-album, he uses pop and dance music styles, often featuring house elements.
- "Casting Profile: Teddy". Brothers Entertainment. Brothers Entertainment. Retrieved November 6, 2010.
- Gil, Hye-seong (July 30, 2009). 테디 "아이돌 때보다 프로듀서인 지금이 더 행복"(인터뷰) [Teddy, "Idol producer, now more than happy" (Interview)]. Star News (in Korean). MoneyToday. Retrieved November 6, 2010.
- "1TYM". YG Entertainment (in Korean). YG Entertainment. Retrieved November 6, 2010.
- Lee, Su-hyeon (May 25, 2009). "'원타임' 테디, 2NE1 위해 레이디가가 작곡 '거절'" ['1TYM' Teddy, rejects working with Lady Gaga because of 2NE1]. Star News (in Korean). MoneyToday. Retrieved November 6, 2010.
- According to the content on 2NE1 and To Anyone's album jackets.
- Kim Gwan-myeong (October 1, 2010). 9월 음원차트, ★작곡가 이름값 '제대로' 했다 [September music charts, popular composers respected]. Star News (in Korean). MoneyToday. Retrieved November 6, 2010.
- "Gaon Chart Search: 2NE1". Gaon Chart (in Korean). Korea Music Content Industry Association. Retrieved October 30, 2010.
- According to the content on Heartbreaker's album jacket.
- Moon, Hwa-sik (July 1, 2009). "2NE1 첫 미니 타이틀 'I don't care' 1일 전격 공개" [2NE1 first mini album titled 'I Don't Care', public blitz]. Star News (in Korean). MoneyToday. Retrieved November 6, 2010.
- Park, Yeong-ung (September 10, 2010). "'컴백' 2NE1, 댄스 타이틀곡 '고 어웨이' 뮤비 공개" ['Comeback', 2NE1 dance song "Go Away" music video released]. Star News (in Korean). MoneyToday. Retrieved November 6, 2010.