Good boys looking like bad boys

Boys Republic's (from far left) Jo One Junn, Lee Su Woong, Kim Min Su, Park Sung Jun and Choi Sun Woo say they have some regrets growing up such goody- two-shoes.
Boys Republic's (from left) Jo One Junn, Lee Su Woong, Kim Min Su, Park Sung Jun and Choi Sun Woo say they have some regrets growing up such goody- two-shoes.PHOTO: UNIVERSAL MUSIC

K-pop band Boys Republic wear nose rings and have tattoos in promotional shots for third EP

South Korean boyband Boys Republic look like rebels with their nose rings, tattoos and biker jackets in promotional shots for their third EP, BR:evolution.

In real life, however, the pop quintet are no bad boys, as revealed during an interview with The Straits Times in Seoul earlier this year.

All five members - Jo One Junn, 27, Choi Sun Woo, 24, Lee Su Woong, 21 , Park Sung Jun and Kim Min Su, both 23 - profess to having been obedient, well-behaved children who never played truant.

But growing up being such goody-two-shoes has left them with some regrets, they say.

Leader Jo says: "If I could go back in time, I would play soccer. I really love soccer, I would have pursued a career in sports."

Choi's social life suffered because his parents wanted him to focus on his studies. He says: "I wish I had more time to interact with my friends back then."

In fact, Jo says that the most "revolutionary moment" in his life was joining a boyband.

"I never thought I could become a K-pop idol. Now I can dye my hair, put on make-up and dance on stage," he says.

Debuting in 2013, Boys Republic was touted as music giant Universal Music's first K-pop boyband. They went on to release three EPs - Identity (2013), Real Talk (2014) and BR:evolution (2016).

Convincing their parents to let them embark on careers in K-pop was a challenge.

Park did it by showing his parents what he was not good at.

He says: "During my junior high school days, I studied really hard for my final year exams. I even got the school's top student to study with me.

"I showed my mother my lacklustre results to prove that I wasn't cut out for academics. I told her that I was going to focus on my dancing and she supported me."

Choi faced objections from his parents initially, but managed to win them over in the end.

He says: "When I first wanted to be a singer, my parents tried to discourage me by saying there are plenty of people out there who sing better and look better than me.

"But after I became a star, they tell me that I am the most handsome."

• BR:evolution is available at CD-Rama outlets and digital platforms such as KKBox, iTunes and Singtel AMPed.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 03, 2016, with the headline 'Good boys looking like bad boys'. Print Edition | Subscribe