Thursday, June 23, 2011

Z-Zin Interview translated! (long post)

Welcome to the inner world of IU =)

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Z stands for 'Z_ZIN' and U stands for 'IU'.

Z: (While eating ddeokbokki and soondae) Are you good at cooking? Do you cook occasionally?
U: No, but if I do, I'd probably do a good job.

Z: That means you still haven't tried? Then, so far you've only tried cooking ramen?
U: Ramen, Kimchi fried rice, Bulgogi? Something like that?

Z: To be able to cook bulgogi, you should be quite good right? What was the response like when you made bulgogi?
U: They said it was delicious but... hmm... actually I don't really know the proper way to do it. I searched for the recipe, but it tastes different depending on the conditions that day.

Z: Anyway, it was still delicious~ Whether it be in music or in pictures, having a good sense is very important. Someone with a good sense would be able to cook delicious food without really knowing how to cook.
U: That's true. Hehehe

Z: Your real name is Ji Eun, isn't it? How did you come up with IU??? Is it I + YOU?
U: Yes, that's right. It's I + YOU~. Hehe

Z: Really? How long has it been since you became IU?
U: About 3 years.

Z: Ah... it's been awhile. Then how old were you when you debuted?
U: 3rd year of middle school.

Z: You debuted in your 3rd year of middle school? Didn't you only appear last year?
U: Since last year, I started appearing a lot on TV. For the first year after I debuted, those were days when I was still fairly unknown. It was kind of like that. The 'Real' album I released this time is my 5th album and I've had quite a number of mini-albums. Hehe

Z: Your agency is Loen, right? How many artistes did Loen have before you signed on with them?
U: I'm the first singer though?

Z: Ah, then Loen's first singer is IU?
U: Yes~ that's right. Hehehe

Z: At what age did you decide to become a singer?
U: Since my 1st year of middle school~.

Z: Didn't your family members object to it?
U: Not particularly~. They just said things like, "Are you sure you can do it~ As you wish~".

Z: Then before that were there any singers you liked?
U: g.o.d~.

Z: How old were you then?
U: 2nd year of elementary school~.

Z: So you were interested in idols since then. Who was your favourite among the g.o.d members?
U: Kim Taewoo-oppa~ I like idols who can sing well~ Also, he was very cute then ^^.

Z: Then what's your ideal type?
U: Not someone overly good-looking...

Z: Hold on! Why don't you like someone good-looking?
U: I would feel like he doesn't really belong with me. Also, someone who can be serious, but knows how to cheer others up and is humorous.

Z: Someone humorous? Ah... that's rather difficult though.
U: But he doesn't have to be serious all the time, he can just be serious when he's doing his work. I prefer someone who does his own job well.

Z: Do you mean someone who loves his own job?
U: Although it's important that he loves his job, I prefer someone who is good at it. Someone who is well-recognised for being good at his job.

Z: If you were to get into a relationship, what would you prefer boyfriend to be working as?
U: I haven't thought that far yet. As long as he's someone who works under the system here and someone I can communicate well with, it would be fine.

Z: In that case, singing can be a way to communicate too. Why is communication important to you?
U: Without communication, then honestly there would be no need for a singer to be popular.

Z: Who came up with the name 'IU'?
U: Our producer~.

Z: Was there a reason he called you by that name?
U: It means you and I can become one through music.

Z: Even though you already have 5 albums, why do I get the feeling that you're a newcomer?
U: Many people seem to think that way. Many of them think that I'm a singer who hasn't been around for more than a year yet. Instead of someone who has already been around for as long as 3 years.

Z: So you're doing all kinds of things, how does it feel to be reborn as IU?
U: I kind of feel like I entered a different world.

Z: How do you find it then? When you compare your previous world to your current world?
U: In a sense, it's so strange. When I'm standing alone and singing in front of people, sometimes I feel like someone in a completely different world or that I won't be able to understand the average person. So things have changed quite a bit. Between then and now.

Z: Ah! I see. Previously, you wanted to receive a lot of attention from people. Now that you've managed to get a lot of attention, are you still confident when you go up on stage?
U: Yes! I don't seem to get stage fright!

Z: Then when did you first appear on a broadcast? You weren't feeling nervous then either?
U: In 2008. I wasn't feeling nervous then~.

Z: Although you're only 19 years old now, I can say you've achieved a lot. Do you have any fears with regards to that?
U: Of course, I'm afraid of losing things. But recently, I don't think I'm holding onto much stuff.

Z: Currently, is there an album you're preparing?
U: I'm going to release my 2nd full album~.

Z: How do you wish to transform yourself in your next album?
U: Actually I don't plan to go to that extent. I just hope this album will give people the impression that I have grown up.

Z: About growing up, as time passes, do you feel that you've become more matured in your way of thinking too?
U: I feel like I've become stronger. I don't know if I've become more matured though.

Z: What does it feel like to be stronger now?
U: I don't get hurt or irritated easily and if it's nothing much in particular, I don't really get shocked, I guess I'm just sort of getting into the swing of things.

Z: You get hurt easily, don't you?
U: Although I'm the type to get hurt easily, I've heard from many people that I'm calm in some ways.

Z: Although I try to appear strong, I can't really stay calm. Minor issues have put me in a bad mood before. What about you?
U: It's just that when someone disrespects me, that sticks with me longer than anything else. By geting me irritated, the person may have achieved his/her objective, but as I feel victimized, even if it's just a joke, I will bear a grudge with the person for a long time. Clenching my teeth, I think to myself, "I'll show you (what I'm capable of)".

Z: So even though you feel victimized, you seem to be making progress in changing that. Then have you always been studying music?
U: I've never really studied it. About that, these days, I'm feeling slightly regretful and if I had studied music before I debuted, then from the moment I debuted, I would be able to bring good music to everyone. That's what I've been thinking recently, so I decided to start anew. Be it harmonics or guitar, I'm studying all these and because I only studied briefly before I played my guitar on broadcasts, now I'm going study it to properly first. Both the keyboard and guitar.

Z: You sing extremely well. Since you hadn't studied music, was it because you were singing along to g.o.d's songs from a young age?
U: That would be a way of practising too, right? Rather than going for any lessons in particular, when I'm singing to myself, I try to fix things here and there, I probably just gave it a lot of thought to find areas for improvement.

Z: Honestly, I'm really jealous of people who can sing well. Since I'm so tone deaf. Hehe
U: But there are probably many different kinds of definitions of what it means to sing well. Of course there are some people who leave others dumbfounded at how well they can sing. Either with their outstanding technique, a powerful or refreshing voice, all these are really good. But there are some who don't use any techniques, or stir up any emotions, and just sound really sad. Even though it's sung serenely, it can make others cry, such that they feel even more sad than the song itself. For example, I really like the late Kim Kwangsuk (*Note: He was in IU's SK Telecom CF). Compared to other seniors of his time, rather than just producing really cool music, he kept to heavy and sad music that is able to make people cry. I think that's even more incredible.

Z: Kim Kwangsuk's music painted his own life circumstances, right? By painting his own life story, even for someone tone deaf like me, I enjoy his music very much.
U: People are always setting criteria to judge singing ability, but to me, rather than techniques or lung power, it's simply what is conveyed to the audience that matters. What I mean to say is if a singer is able to convey to the audience what he wishes to, then I think that's considered someone with great singing ability. Compared to other singers, I view emotions with great importance, so ever since I was a trainee, I have focused more on talking and listening practice than being in sync with others or my vocals. As a result, there are many areas that I'm lacking in. Since I really feel that I'm weak in my techniques, I'm considering attending lessons on that, but firstly, I think it's still most important for me to be able to express my emotions well. In the first place, that has to do with how much of the emotions I feel...

Z: How old were you when you first started listening to music?
U: Hmm... probably around 6 or 7 years old. Watching Fin.K.L-unnies and G.o.d-oppas on TV programmes.

Z: You can remember all that? Hehe then when you were listen to their music then, did you think to yourself, 'Ah they're so good'?
U: Rather than just thinking they were good, I was probably got excited and sang along to their songs.

Z: Then does that mean you were born gifted? I don't have many memories to do with music in particular. Although I'm good with visuals, my hearing is hopeless. Even when I watch movies, the music doesn't register in my mind. But if I don't want my child to be like that too, what should I do? Should I switch on stuff like <Music Bank> for him/her more often? (TL note: loll asking IU for advice on parenting now??)
U: I have no strong objections to that... Everyone has different strengths, so if you wish to... Hehe

Z: Ah! There's nothing I can do for myself but I would like to raise my child to be a bit more sensitive. Hehe I don't want my child to be tone deaf!
U: Ah... Tone deaf!! Hehehe it's probably best that he/she listens to more music. I think during singing practice, the most important thing is listening.

Z: You did some acting recently. How did you find it?
U: It was really fun~.

Z: You seem to have a personality whereby you find everything interesting. Is that whenever you try new things?
U: I used to really dislike it. Attempting new stuff. I don't feel confident and I'm filled with scary thoughts and feel like I'm taking on the job in vain, so I didn't particularly like taking up challenges, but I liked that when I managed to do it eventually, it would make me smile. However, it seems that for acting, it was really fun right from the start.

Z: Before you received that offer, did you ever think to yourself, 'Ah! I want to try acting too'?
U: I went to an acting school during my elementary school days. At that time, I had some vague thoughts about becoming a celebrity, but I wanted to be an actor rather than a singer. So I went to acting school and then I suddenly had dreams to become a singer instead, so I did so... I always have thoughts about wanting to act, but I don't think these are strong notions.

Z: Then how old were you when you attended acting school?
U: In my 5th year of elementary school?

Z: If one of my friends say, 'I want to become a celebrity too', what would you say?
U: Ah...hmm...I...would...probably...provide...some recommendations. hehe

Z: There was a period of time whereby you were relatively unknown too. Celebrities have to have luck on their side, as well as strong abilities, but which do you think comes first? Luck or one's abilities?
U: I think luck comes first. Firstly, luck and then how far you will go depends on your abilities, but even if you have abilities, without luck, it would be tiring, wouldn't it?

Z: You went to the UK recently too~ How did you find it? Was that your first time travelling abroad?
U: It was my 2nd~ Japan was my first. UK was really great~. The country I've wanted to visit the most has always been the UK.

Z: Why?
U: That's because my favourite singer is British.

Z: Who's that?
U: A singer called Corinne Bailey Rae, but she's British. So I have always longed to visit the UK. I thought to myself, "If I live in the UK, would I be able to sing too just like she her?" UK felt really carefree, with its broad green fields, I felt myself open up to my surroundings.

Z: Where did you go in the UK?
U: London. There were so many parks. The buildings were really pretty too. I thought to myself that people who live among such pretty buildings would have to be really sensitive to emotions. I also thought the place really felt like something out of a fairytale. But it also seems to be be a slightly deep country.

Z: In what way?
U: It's so peaceful and stable, like a country that can serve as a role model? It felt great to see the country in good shape, but a deeper understanding of the place would probably take a long time.

Z: Do you like travelling? If I were to go travelling in future, I would want to go to Indonesia.
U: These days I've taken a greater interest in travelling. hehe

Z: It's been 3 years since your debut right? To produce 5 albums in 3 years is quite a lot, you must have been busy. Changing the topic slightly, usually what do you think of art?
U: I don't particularly like art, since I prefer natural things. I don't really like what is labelled as the arts either and I think the difference lies in how you express it. People who are not interested in fine arts can express themselves through songs and people who are not interested in singing can express themselves through pictures. People who are uninterested in the arts but still talk to their friends about it and go out to these places with them, insisting that's what the arts is about; these people are just being pretentious.

Z: To express your own thoughts is art isn't it? Have you fallen in love before? Be it a crush or puppy love.
U: Yes, I have.

Z: Then what kind of relationship would you want to have?
U: Whew... there's this song lyrics that go "You're my Everything". Right now, I don't get how someone else can be my everything. But I want to fall in that kind of love. I wonder if there's someone who can really be my everything.

Z: When you fall in love, you would feel that way. hehe that just means you haven't really fallen in love before. hehe
U: I just want to try falling in that kind of love. hehe

Z: Is there anything you're interested in besides music?
U: No~. hehe (TL note: loll way to kill a conversation)

Z: We talked about the late Kim Kwangsuk earlier on. He led a difficult life of solitude and his sad love story led him to produce such music. From his voice, you can feel his sadness... but what if you went through a hardship like that too, would you take some time off? Or continue going straight ahead like you do now?
U: Hmm...hardship...I'm not sure what kind of hardship I may face...but if I keep thinking it would be great if there were none, then perhaps it would not come my way? Hehehehehehe

Z: Ah... then I'll just ask one last question~. At the age of 19, you're still young, but have you had any sad or painful experiences?
U: Well... that seems to happen every week. Hehehe How much more can my heart take? I'm really timid so if I receive any impact, even if it's just once, it hurts me deeply. I debuted in such a manner and would feel like that about once every week.

Z: When you come in 1st place on broadcasts, that isn't the case, but probably something you feel at a personal level.
U: That's true. Hehehe

Z: Alright. You worked hard today~ Thank you~~~. Hehehe

Translation: squishyblob @ weheartiu
Source: ㄹㅇㄴ @ dc inside

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