Drunken Tiger - 살자 (The Cure) (Feat. Yoon Mirae & Bizzy) cover

Drunken Tiger, “Cliché but the Hope of Music… Staying Humble”

In Interviews, Translated Interviews by Andrew

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AKR20130913184700005_01_i_59_20130915060202Rapper Drunken Tiger


Drunken Tiger’s new album “The Cure (살자)” with Yoonmirae and Bizzy… “United as one”

(Seoul=Yeonhab News) Lee Eunjung reporter: One could argue that hiphop has become flashy.  The overwhelming sound with increasing syllables and faster flow.  Not to mention the recent diss tracks by hiphop artists attacking each other.

Unlike this seemingly trending and busy hiphop style, Korea’s arguably first hiphop artist Drunken Tiger (Tiger JK) is sticking to his roots.  Netizens recently commented, “A real hiphop artist returns”, “hiphop president”, and “the return of the King”.

At first glance, the title of Drunken Tiger’s new album–The Cure (살자)sounds basic and ordinary.  Even the track titles–Beautiful Life, Time Travel (첫눈이 오면 설레였던 꼬마아이), The Cure–suggests a lack of flavour.

The sound production is relatively light, warmly surrounding the hiphop flow with guitar, djembe, piano, and other acoustic instruments  The album jacket also seems basic, like an LP.

However, one cannot judge a book by its cover.  Two months ago, Drunken Tiger, Yoonmirae and Bizzy left Jungle Entertainment and pursued music with their own label “Feel Ghood Music” founded in Gyeongi-do’s Yuejung-bu.  The lyrics, the sound production, and the style were all inspired by past and current experiences, including Tiger JK’s own father who is currently battling cancer with chemotherapy.

AKR20130913184700005_02_i_59_20130915060202-1(From left: Drunken Tiger, Yoonmirae, Bizzy)

We met with Drunken Tiger, Yoonmirae and Bizzy at a local cafe in Apgujeong.  When we commented about the plain album title The Cure, Drunken Tiger smiled, “Sounds a bit cliche, doesn’t it?”

“The truth is, a track with a positive message seems obvious and boring.  Despite this, we wanted to convey that we should not avoid reality but instead strive to achieve our dreams.  Even though I was told I would never be able to walk again due to myelitis, I am still able to perform on stage.  With this new label, I wanted to recognize my past adversities and experiences and turn them into music of hope.” (Drunken Tiger)

This album can be seen as a tribute to Tiger JK’s father.  The title track “The Cure (살자)” is inspired by his father and sends a positive message to those who are suffering.

“The after hours of nighttime is my companion,
it comes to me so that I am not alone” 
(from “The Cure, 살자”)

The soft melody and lyrics have been refined to match the album theme, stepping away from the aggressive style seen from previous tracks “Monster” and “Isolated Ones, Left Foot Forward! (소외된 모두, 왼발을 한발 앞으로!).”  The soft acoustic guitar from “The Cure” was performed by YouTube star David Choi and piano is the main instrument from “Beautiful Life.”

To perform such tracks, “The Ghood Band” was formed.  The three rappers are complemented by keyboard, guitar, drum, base and percussion.

In contrast to these soft, light-spoken tracks, the fierce and forward rapping by Drunken Tiger, Yoonmirae and Bizzy are also evident in this album.  The three artists, after dropping an album in January under the name MFBTY, have remixed some of the tracks and are available in this album, including “BizzyTigerYoonmirae” and “Sweet Dreams.”

Rapper Yoonmirae

After the success of this album, Drunken Tiger plans to–if supported by Yoonmirae and Bizzy–have the two release their respective solo albums as a series through this new label.

We also asked them about the diss tracks by Korean hiphop artists that became popular recently.

Yoonmirae replied, “It’s unfortunate that these diss tracks were not about the musical talent of the battlers but were instead personal attacks against each other.”

Drunken Tiger continued, “Freestyle battles are actually quite common South Korea and are played by freestylers like a competitive sport.  When one fills their lyrics with their personal philosophy and life experience, we can understand and respect each other as artists.”

We asked about the motto of Feel Ghood Music: to produce good music.

Rapper Bizzy

“Good music is music that extracts emotion from life experiences–whether from good or bad memories–and the ability of that music to move the listener.” (Yoonmirae)

“These days no one gets excited about the first snowfall of the year. Good music has the ability to bring the listener back in time and experience the excitement of the first snowfall… This is the power of music.” (Drunken Tiger)

In other news, Yoonmirae’s OST track from SBS drama “주군의 태양 (The Master’s Sun)” has dominated as #1, sweeping through various music charts.  It seems like Feel Ghood Music is battling the charts on their own with this new album.


[ Article | Naver News ] [ Translation | HiphopKR ]




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