EXCLUSIVE [INTERVIEW] Moon Jong Up talks about his long-awaited comeback with ‘SOME’ and the biggest lesson he’s learned over the years

Moon Jong Up, who’s the main dancer and sub-vocalist of B.A.P, has spent over ten years in the industry and has just released another captivating album as a solo artist.

Jong Up’s second mini-album, ‘SOME,’ is intended to showcase his mature side while also maintaining his personal artistry and growth.

Jong Up’s signature sound was infused with his personal story and emotions, as evidenced by his participation in writing the title track “X.O.X” and their lyrics. Additionally, there are other tracks like “Stuck,” “Common,” and “Braindefein”, which pay homage to his loyal fans.

After his much-anticipated release, Moon Jong Up spoke with allkpop about his new album, his participation in JTBC’s reality competition show ‘Peak Time,’ his plans for next year, and more.

Moon Jong Up extends a warm regards to allkpop fans.

Hello and welcome to allkpop! Can you share your 2023 accomplishments with us? What do you think was the most significant moment of your life?

I think my most memorable moment this year was when we filmed “Peak Time” and had to dance to Christopher’s “Bad.” While filming, I got dancing during the mission, but it was actually a task for the dancers in the group.

During your 7-year stint as a solo artist, did you encounter any obstacles during your time in the band?

I was under a lot of pressure to go solo, especially with the energy and commitment I had when I used to be part of comrades in my group. I want to make sure that my releases were different and that it’s important for me to stay motivated during this time of being active as primarily an artist. However, there are also many people who work together, including the CEO, managing directors, employees, and non-professional

Can you explain the theme and message of “SOME” album, which marks more than 2 years since your last mini-album, ‘US’?

“Essentially, I’m singing it for my fans. There are many things I want to express to them.”

Allkpop’s “Common” sub-title includes both Korean and English versions. Some artists choose to release one song in English alongside the title track, but why do they typically do so? And what was your experience like while recording the English version?

Jong Up: We thought about making an English version of “Common” because the sound was so good. However, we were only recently considering “X.O.X” as the title track when we had to make a final decision on which one to choose.

What inspired you to write the lyrics for the title track “X.O.X” in allkpop? How did this title song impact your life, and was it a satisfying experience?

My thoughts on the title of “X.O.X” are a little different than other songs, but considering the theme of the song’s meaning, I went straight to the second verse and put my own personal story and emotions into it. We also experimented with mixing up the lyrics, which were written by me using modern techniques.

From your time in B.A.P to now, have you been actively involved in the creative process? Have you figured out what style of writing suits you better? Do you prefer working independently or as part of a team?

Jong Up: Usually, I work on lyrics and other things with time constraints, but sometimes I don’t have the energy to do them in advance. However, this year, especially with ‘Peak Time,’ where I was also involved in production and negotiation, my role has been more focused on music than singing or writing songs.

What insights and life lessons have you gained from your 10-year journey in the K-pop industry?

As a person, I believe that the key to being an idol is having the ability to adapt and do your best. This also highlights the importance of working with others and sharing experiences has helped me achieve success in life.

Describe the challenges and personal experiences you had while working on ‘Peak Time’ survival show with your team members.

Initially, it was not an easy task as you had to work together with others in a significant competition. The experience was challenging and I remember thinking about the older members of B.A.P who were involved in this project.

With only 2 months left until 2023, what are your top plans for how you want to spend your time in the future?

I am looking to release more albums and be more active, specifically releasing a full album as he wants to be involved in album production. My next big goal is to tour as solo again after my first major concert in four years.

Can you finish this interview and send any messages to your allkpop followers and readers?

“I want people to listen to my album and experience the unique perspective of a solo male artist in K-Pop,” said Jong Up.


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