In 10 years time, BTS has taken the world by storm with 5 Grammy nominations and immeasurable cultural impact. Beyond their musical prowess and impeccable dance moves, they have been lauded for speaking up about current issues including mental health and the development of future generations.
Since BTS announced their hiatus from group activities to enlist in the military in 2022, all 7 members have endeavoured in solo careers that have received resounding support from ARMY. Here’s what every member has cooked up so far, from Jung Kook’s latest single “Seven” to SUGA’s August D Tour.
Soulful and charismatic, V is known for his husky voice that pairs perfectly with his love for jazz music. On Instagram, that love translates into covers of classics like Frank Sinatra’s Cheek to Cheek and smooth trumpet renditions of Eric Clampton’s Autumn Leaves.
V’s highly-anticipated solo album Layover is set to debut on September 8, 2023. In true global sensation fashion, V kicks off his return with two MVs released within 48 hours. The first being Love Me Again which offers a glimpse into the soulful R&B vibe rumoured to be expected of the full collection.
V has also flexed his aptitude for acting, being the only member who has made an acting debut by starring as Hang Sung in the Korean period drama Hwarang: The Poet Warrior in 2016. Along with his Hwarang co-star Park Hyung-sik and 3 other long-time friends in the industry, V also stars in In the Soop: Friendcation where the squad embarks on a 4-day friendship trip to the Goseong area. The highly-anticipated last episode of the heartfelt series is set to air on August 22, 2023 on Disney+.
The youngest member of the group has come into his own as the all-rounded “Golden Maknae” (golden youngest brother) with a knack for easily grasping the skills of anything he tries. Last year, the star blazed a path of his own by making history as the first Korean artist to perform at the FIFA World Cup Opening Ceremony and the first Korean artist to release a song with the football association.
Coming in hot is his latest summer pop “Seven” which has just dropped along with its music video, garnering more than 1 million views in less than 10 minutes. Not only does Jungkook show off his perfect English but also his acting skills as he plays a smitten lover alongside Korean actress Han So-hee in the MV. Safe to say the youngest BTS member has grown up from the 15-year-old boy that graced the stage 10 years ago.
Mr. Worldwide Handsome is the first of the group to enlist into South Korea’s mandatory military service, parting with his boyband brothers in a tear-filled entrance ceremony in December 2022.
But before departing, Jin prepared a single with British rock band Coldplay to “say goodbye to everybody for a little while, and tell them that I love them…” The song named Astronaut was performed live for a 65,000 crowd at Coldplay’s Music of the Spheres tour stop at Buenos Aires’ on October 28, which Jin had specifically flown out from South Korea to perform for. Although Jin shared that it was “nerve-racking” without his team, he absolutely showed the crowd why he’s at the top of his industry.
SUGA, also known by his solo moniker August D, has produced songs for artists worldwide including IU, PSY, Epik High and Coldplay to name a few. Just in June, the rapper-producer reworked one of Halsey’s old songs Lilith for the newest instalment of video game Diablo, showcasing the rapper’s gothic vibe.
In April 2023, Suga embarked on the SUGA | August D Tour, making him the first of the group to take on a tour of his own. He dazzled fans from New York to Los Angeles and is set to wrap up the journey back home in Seoul. Doubling down on excitement, his documentary SUGA: Road To D-DAY was released on Disney+ alongside the start of the tour. Tune in to the documentary to watch how one of the world’s biggest musicians draws inspiration from around the world.
Offering a slice of hope with his unparalleled stage presence, j-hope has set the bar for performers worldwide. What’s more, he has built his credentials as songwriter and composer for the group and put out 3 solo tracks over the years: Intro: Boy Meets Evil and Mama in 2016 and Trivia 起: Just Dance in 2018.
Jack in the Box is the artist’s first solo album which came out in July 2023. Not only did it introduce listeners to j-hope’s hip-hop and emo punk sound, he also became the first member to release projects since the band’s hiatus announcement. Shortly after the album release, the mega star became the first South Korean artist to headline Lollapalooza. Although j-hope is currently fulfilling his mandatory military service, he dropped a special single featuring J.Cole titled on the street to connect with ARMY while he’s away.
The leader of BTS (who famously self-taught English through watching the TV show Friends) has always been praised for his introspective lyrics and rapping skills. Lil Nas X, Honne and TxT only make up the tip of the iceberg of artists RM has lent his writing or producing talent to.
In December 2022, the artist’s skills were put on full display with the release of his highly-anticipated album Indigo. Each song explored a different sound and featured artists including American rapper Anderson .Paak, and South Korean rock vocalist Youjeen of Cherry Filter. Speaking with candour, RM shares, “[Indigo] represents my 20s and documents my growth as a person and artist.” As RM steps into his 30s soon, we can’t wait to see what music comes out of this new stage in life.
Jimin, or endearingly known as “Mochi”, was trained as a ballet dancer specialising in modern dance. With his background, you can imagine the graceful yet dynamic interpretations he brings to each choreography.
It goes without saying that his vocals are just as impactful, mastering a falsetto that is unmistakable in songs like Serendipity and Let Me Know. In 2023, Jimin showcased his impressive vocal range with a solo debut album, FACE. He shares that it “tracks the emotions he felt chronologically throughout the pandemic” and hopes that listeners are able to relate to his honest songs. The reception was unprecedented with his breakout single Like Crazy reaching No. 1 in the Billboard 100 chart and the six-track album reaching No.2 on Billboard 200.