Nine lives bound by one dream. K-pop group Girls’ Generation is still going strong after five years
AUGUST is an eventful month for Sones (fans) of Girls’ Generation a.k.a. SoShi. It not only marks Tiffany’s birthday on Aug 1 but also the group’s debut.
On Aug 5, 2007, nine teens with different personalities (but brought together by one dream) officially debuted with their first single, Into The New World.
And what made them stand out was the special bond between the girls, who had trained an average of five years before their debut. It also speaks volumes that of all the girl groups that debuted in 2007, SoShi’s the only group that hasn’t undergone member changes.
The group was at its lowest ebb in 2008, but the girls persevered and kept bouncing back stronger than before. The defining year was 2009 when they hit the jackpot with the mega-hit single, Gee, after which there was no turning back.
Five years down the road, they have grown into beautiful young women and have achieved tremendous success. Yet, they are still the same — down-to-earth and lovable.
Known as Asia’s No. 1 girl group, they have achieved many firsts. They include the first K-Pop artiste to appear on major American talk shows (Late Show With David Letterman and Live! With Kelly), the first million-selling Korean girl group in Japan (with their debut Japanese album Girls’ Generation) and the first K-celebrity to be featured on postage stamps (Korea Post is commemorating their fifth anniversary with a set of 14 stamps).
Meanwhile, its sub-unit TaeTiSeo also made K-pop history with its retro concept debut mini album Twinkle, which was released earlier this year.
Comprising Taeyeon, Tiffany and Seohyun who are part of SoShi’s’s vocal line-up, the group’s name is made up of the first syllables of their names.
The title track, Twinkle, is an uptempo dance pop number which features a 1970s-inspired beat and emits a Lady Marmalade-esque vibe.
The seven-track album achieved critical success. It peaked at No. 4 on the US iTunes chart, No. 2 on the iTunes Pop Album Chart in the US and debuted at No. 126 on the Billboard Top 200 chart. It also topped Billboard’s World Albums Chart, made it to No.2 on the Heatseekers Albums Chart and No. 21 on Billboard’s Independent Albums Chart. These are the best achievements by any Korean acts.
And since 2010, the girls have topped Forbes Korea list of top 40 Power Celebrities for two consecutive years.
The American-born Tiffany who’s noted for her beautiful eye smile, moved to Korea by herself at 15 despite family objection, to pursue her dreams of becoming a singer. The group’s unofficial spokesperson due to her bubbly and outgoing personality as well as fluency in English, her motto is that “everyone that works hard will succeed”.
On another note, the local chapter of Soshified, the largest international fan community, is planning a charity event to commemorate SoShi’s fifth anniversary.
It is raising funds for the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA), an international humanitarian agency that provides individual and community development and disaster relief. For details, go to www.facebook.com/SSFMY.
Meanwhile, a group of Sones will be celebrating the girls’ anniversary at Wings Cafe, Jalan Kampung Dollah in Kuala Lumpur on Sunday. Organised by fansite soshi9.com, the activities include lucky draw, quiz and a flash mob at Berjaya Times Square. Registration for this party, unfortunately, has closed but you can go to soshi9.com for more details.
Happy fifth anniversary and may there be many more anniversaries to come! And Tiffany (second from left), happy 23rd birthday!