T.O.P (entertainer)

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T.O.P
Background information
Birth name Choi Seung-hyun (최승현)
Also known as Tempo, Tabi, Bingu TOP
Born (1987-11-04) November 4, 1987 (age 24)
Seoul, South Korea
OriginRepublic of Korea
GenresHip hop, K-pop
OccupationsRapper, singer, composer, lyricist, beatboxer, actor, record producer, model
Years active 2006–Present
LabelsYG Entertainment[1]
Associated actsBig Bang, GD & TOP
TOP signature.png
T.O.P's signature
 
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T.O.P
Background information
Birth name Choi Seung-hyun (최승현)
Also known as Tempo, Tabi, Bingu TOP
Born (1987-11-04) November 4, 1987 (age 24)
Seoul, South Korea
OriginRepublic of Korea
GenresHip hop, K-pop
OccupationsRapper, singer, composer, lyricist, beatboxer, actor, record producer, model
Years active 2006–Present
LabelsYG Entertainment[1]
Associated actsBig Bang, GD & TOP
TOP signature.png
T.O.P's signature
Korean name
Hangul최승현
Revised RomanizationChoe Seung-hyeon
McCune–ReischauerCh'oe Sŭnghyŏn

Choi Seung-hyun (Korean: 최승현; born November 4, 1987), better known by his stage name T.O.P (Korean: 탑), is a South Korean rapper, singer, songwriter, composer, model and actor. Best known as a lead rapper of the hip hop Korean boy band Big Bang, he has branched out to act in various dramas and films, including I Am Sam, Iris, Nineteen and 71: Into the Fire.

In 2011, T.O.P and bandmate, G-Dragon collaborated to record and release the album GD & TOP (2010). The album saw the release of three singles: "High High," "Oh Yeah," and "Knock Out," all of which have charted within the top three positions of the Gaon chart, with "High High" becoming a chart-topper.

Contents

History

2005–2006: Big Bang debut

Prior to his involvement with YG Entertainment, Seunghyun was an underground rapper under the name of Tempo, and a childhood friend of G-Dragon, another member of Big Bang.[2] G-Dragon stated that the two were "neighborhood friend[s] from middle school" and would often dance and rap together.[3] Although G-Dragon later moved away and the two "became distant", he contacted Seunghyun again when YG Entertainment was scouting for candidates to create a boy band.[3] The pair recorded several demos and sent them to Yang Hyun Suk, CEO of YG Entertainment, who later asked Seunghyun to audition.[2] Seunghyun was initially rejected by the record label, which deemed him too "chubby" to fit the "idealistic version" of an idol.[2] Seunghyun later stated that he "went home and exercised really hard because I wanted to join YG Entertainment."[2] Six months later, he returned for another audition and was signed on. He reportedly lost 20 kg in 40 days.[2]

Choi Seung-hyun was given the stage name of T.O.P. (Korean: 탑) by fellow YG artist Se7en. He became one of the two rappers in the group Big Bang, alongside G-Dragon. The two were paired with four others: Taeyang, Daesung, Seungri and So-1 and a documentation of their training was aired to promote them.[4] So-1 was dropped by the record label, and Big Bang made its official debut with five members.[5] Their first album, Since 2007, was a fair success,[6] and included T.O.P.'s first solo song "Big Boy." The group achieved mainstream success with the release of the song "Lies" (Korean: 거짓말; Revised Romanization: Geojitmal) from their 2007 mini-album Always, which topped several charts upon its release. The singles, "Last Farewell" (Korean: 마지막 인사; Revised Romanization: Majimak Insa) from the mini-album Hot Issue and "Day by Day" (Korean: 하루하루; Revised Romanization: Haru Haru) from Stand Up, became chart-toppers as well.[7][8]

2007–2009

Following the release of the band's albums and singles, T.O.P. began working on his solo career. In April 2007, he was featured with fellow Big Bang members Taeyang and G-Dragon on singer Lexy's single "Super Fly" for her album Rush. Later that summer, he appeared as an actor in Red Roc’s "Hello" music video.[9] He later became the first member of Big Bang to venture into acting, starring in the KBS2 drama, I Am Sam,.[1] portraying the school's top fighter, Chae Musin. He also took the role of MC of MBC's Music Core on November 10, 2007, only to resign in April of the following year. In 2008, he collaborated with R&B artist Gummy on the song "I'm Sorry" for her album Comfort, veteran singer Uhm Jung Hwa for her single "D.I.S.C.O." and ZiA for her single "I Only See You". That same year, he was also admitted to Dankook University, to the theater department.[10]

T.O.P later put his solo career on hold while he joined his group for their promotional activities. After more than a year of promoting Big Bang's materials, he returned to acting, playing the assassin Vick in the critically acclaimed[11] Korean television drama Iris.[12] T.O.P. also recorded the song "Hallelujah" for the drama's soundtrack with Taeyang and G-Dragon. Following Iris, T.O.P. and Seungri appeared in the teenage suspense drama, My 19.[13]

2010– Present

T.O.P performing on Alive World Tour in September 2012

T.O.P appeared in the movie 71: Into the Fire which released in June 2010. He received many good critiques and praise for his acting; and eventually won many actor awards at the end of the year. The movie hit 1 million views in a week, making it the first movie of 2010 to reach that number of views in South Korea.[14] He is also in preparation for his solo debut.[15] During Big Bang's Big Show concert in January 2010, T.O.P. performed his new single "Turn It Up." YG Entertainment released a music video teaser for "Turn It Up" on June 14, 2010 which revealed the release date for the full music video to be June 21, 2010. The teaser itself received over 200,000 views within 48 hours of its original posting on YouTube. The official music video was released at noon in South Korea, with over 1,000,000 views and comments in just a few minutes.[16] He is also the first Korean artist to have his song release worldwide on iTunes. On 29 October 2010, he won the Hallyu Popularity Award in the 47th Grand Bell Film Awards.[17]

In November 2010, YG Entertainment announced T.O.P and bandmate G-Dragon would release a collaboration album.[18] Preceding the release of the album, the duo held a world-wide premiere showcase for their album at Times Square in Yeongdeungpo of Seoul, South Korea,[19] which was also broadcast live on YouTube.[20] To promote their album, the duo released three singles: "High High," "Oh Yeah," and "Knock out."[21] All three singles preceded the release of the album. The singles attained commercial successes: "High High" was a chart topper[22] while "Oh Yeah" and "Knock Out" both peaked at #2 and #3 respectively.[23][24] The album was released on Christmas Eve, and debuted at number one[25] with pre-orders of 200,000 copies.[26]

In October 2011, it was announced that T.O.P. had been tapped as the male lead to star opposite Kim Ha Neul in Absolutely Him, the South Korean remake of Absolute Boyfriend, a Japanese manga about a perfect robot boyfriend that has already been adapted into both a Japanese and Taiwanese live action drama. However, there is no confirmation from both actors' agencies yet.[27] T.O.P featured in English artist Pixie Lott's Japanese album along with fellow member G-Dragon. The song is titled "Dancing On My Own".[28]

T.O.P won the cover of 1st Look Magazine in 2011.[29] The photoshoot took place in Brooklyn, New York and was shot by renowned photographer Hong Jang Hyun. Outfitted in the brand’s winter military jacket and black jeans, T.O.P delivered an effortless, street-casual look.

In June 2012, T.O.P had been confirmed to star in the upcoming action film, Alumni, with actor Jo Sung-ha. He will play the son of a North Korean spy who is falsely accused.[30] Kim Yoo Jung will play T.O.P.'s little sister in the drama.[31]

Discography

Collaboration albums

Singles

Year Single Peak position Album
KOR
[25]
2006 "Big Boy" (T.O.P solo)Since 2007
2007 "Friend" (Feat. Taeyang)non-album release
"Act Like Nothing's Wrong" (Feat. Kim Jieun)Always
2009 "Hallelujah" (Feat. G-Dragon & Taeyang) 18 Iris OST
2010 "Turn it Up" 11 GD & TOP
"Because" 19 OST
2011 "Of All Days" 89 GD & TOP
"Oh Mom" 27

Featured & Collaboration singles

Year Title Peak positions Album
KOR
[25]
2006 "Forever with You" (with G-Dragon Ft. Park Bom) Bigbang Vol.1
"We Belong Together" (with G-Dragon Ft. Park Bom)
2007 "Buckwild" (NBK Gray Ft. T.O.P)
2008 "I'm Sorry" (Gummy Ft. T.O.P) Comfort
"D.I.S.C.O" (Uhm Jung Hwa Ft. T.O.P) D.I.S.C.O
"All I See is You" (ZiA Ft. T.O.P) Road Movie
"Forever with You" Japanese version (with G-Dragon Ft. Park Bom) With U
2010 "Digital Bounce" (Se7en Ft. T.O.P) Digital Bounce
2011 "High High" (with G-Dragon) 1 GD & TOP
"Oh Yeah" (with G-Dragon Ft. Park Bom) 2
"Knock Out" (with G-Dragon) 3
"Intro" (with G-Dragon)
"Baby Goodnight" (with G-Dragon) 13
"Don't Go Home" (with G-Dragon) 22
2012 "Dancing On My Own" (Pixie Lott Ft. T.O.P & G-Dragon) Young Foolish Happy (Deluxe Edition)
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that region.

Filmography

Film
Year Film Role Notes
2008 Story of Men Himself Cameo role
2009 Nineteen Seo Jeong-hun
2010 71: Into the Fire Oh Jang-bum
2011 Iris: The Last Vick Film adaption of Iris for Japan
2012 Alumni Myeong-hoon
Television
Year Title Role Notes
2007 I Am Sam Chae Mu-sin
2008 Show! Music Core Host With Sunye and Sohee
2009 Family Outing Guest Ep 34–35
2009 Iris Vick -
2012 Running Man Guest Ep 84-85
2012 "Go Show" Guest Ep 3
Music Videos
Year Title Role
2007 Red Roc - "Hello" Himself
2008 Gummy - "I'm Sorry" Himself
Uhm Jung Hwa - "D.I.S.C.O" Himself
2011 Gummy - "I'm Sorry" (Japanese version) Himself

Awards and nominations

Year Event Category Nominated work Result
201047th Grand Bell Awards Hallyu Popularity[32]71: Into the FireWon
Best New Actor[33]Nominated
8th Korea Film Awards Best New Actor[34]Nominated
Style Icon Awards Best New Actor[35]Won
31st Blue Dragon Film Awards Best New Actor[36]Won
Popularity[36]Won
Max Movie Award Best New Actor [37]Won
5th Asian Film Awards Best New Actor[38]Nominated
47th Paeksang Arts AwardBest New Actor [39]Won
Popularity Award (Actor in a Motion Picture) [39]Won

TV commercials / advertisements

References

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  29. ^ | url = http://www.firstlook.co.kr/?event=cover-event | pages = | accessdate = 2011 |
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External links