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12/04/2018 Interview > Alumni

Title

Onestar on a Steady Rise

the story of a humble and diligent singer-songwriter

박주현

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Contents
BTS, TWICE, Super Junior – these are only a few of the K-pop idol groups that enjoy global attention. Before influencers became a thing, becoming an idol was one of the top dreams of young Korean teenagers. However, as many have tried, it is extremely hard to pass through cut throat competitions, let alone hit the charts with a song loved and supported by the public. Lim Han-byul (Department of Information Sociology, ERICA campus, '15) was one of the exceptional cases that proved that years of hard work and a sprinkle of talent can get you to places.
 
Ever since Lim was young, he had a strong passion for singing. Naturally, he wanted to become a singer and was officially able to become a trainee at the age of 19. Luckily for Lim, he was able to make his debut in just a year as the main vocal in an idol group called “Monday Kiz.” “My trainee period wasn’t that long as it only took me a year to debut. I don’t think I was that good, but I’m guessing they saw some potential in me. The group also needed a main vocalist, so I was lucky. Of course, life as a trainee and a student wasn’t easy. I had to take many breaks from school because the training itself was strenuous."
 
“I've worked so hard to earn my nickname as a 'vocal-textbook,' and I will always strive to do so.” Lim Han-byul (Department of Information Sociology, ERICA campus, '15)
(Photo courtesy by Most Contents)
After five years of his life as an idol, Lim made the decision to stand out as a solo artist. On his first few attempts during practice, he realized how difficult it was to finish one song. “After years of on-stage experience, I never thought finishing one song by myself would be a problem. It hit me hard that I was basically formulated into singing as a group member, not a solo artist. It took me a year or two just practicing until I finally got on track. That’s also when I started my YouTube channel,” said Lim. 
 
Lim's cover on M.C THE MAX - No Matter Where
(Video courtesy of Lim's YouTube channel)
 
Lim is not only known as an ex-member of Monday Kiz, but also as a YouTuber with over 157 thousand subscribers. “I think it was around 2015 when I opened my channel. Back then, YouTube hadn't gained its popularity yet, and there weren’t that many covers on it either. I wasn’t looking for fame. I was simply looking for a platform where I could share my progress with my fans, and YouTube seemed like a great opportunity,” said Lim. As an interesting fact, 97 percent of Lim’s viewers are known to be male. To this fact, Lim commented, “I think it’s because I mostly sang pieces that guys would like. I don’t think I’m the best singer out there so they see how hard I try and feel that vicarious satisfaction. Some also practice with me.”
 
“Multiple failures actually made me stronger. I was able to make many valuable artist friends and focus on studying music."
(Photo courtesy of Lim)

Lim is also an acknowledged and steady-growing singer-songwriter as well as a vocal guide. He was known for having participated in numerous songs of V.O.S., JYJ, Sunnyhill, Super Junior, NCT Dream and many more. “I didn’t have anything to lose. After Monday Kidz disbanded, I started from the very bottom again and worked as a trainer and a vocal guide. Right now, I am working with Mono Tree, a global music production and publishing company also known for working with a lot of SM artists. My new digital single, “The Way to Say Goodbye” is also with that company,” said Lim.
 
“I'm trying to find the right balance as a singer and a songwriter. My experience as an artist in such broad fields has taught me how to look at the bigger scheme of things over the years and to think from a staff member's perspective."

 “The Way to Say Goodbye” is a song that depicts the story of a person on his way to end his relationship. As it is Lim’s first digital single, it took a special place in his heart. According to Lim, since he is not a genius, he gets his inspiration after hours of focusing, contemplating, and editing. His new single was also a product of many weeks of listening to numerous “good” music on top of a rough sketch that fairly reflects his turbulent twenties. Lim plans on releasing his next single album early next year.
 
Despite the continuous build-up of success as a solo artist, Lim was astonishingly humble. Throughout the interview, he did not stop mentioning how much he needed to improve. When asked if such manner of speech could indirectly bring negative influence on his self-respect, Lim chuckled and said, “I am the type of person to easily feel proud and maybe even a bit conceited. If you really think about it, I had years of experience as an idol, as a vocal trainer, a guide, and a singer-songwriter. But this is also because I had failed as an idol which left me in a place to keep pushing myself. In my case, there’s only a fine line between failure and success. The moment I think I’m actually doing great, I start slacking off and be well on my way to failure again.”
 
"Good music is whatever sounds good to you."
(Photo courtesy by Lim)

 “We all have different values, so I don’t really believe in giving advice. However, there is one thing I do want to say and that’s to get your priorities straight, and act upon it accordingly. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes because opportunities do come and when they do, make sure to take it.”
 

The Way to Say Goodbye - Onestar / Lim Han-byul
(Video courtesy by Lim's YouTube channel)

 
Hee Jae - Lim Han-byul Cover
(Video courtesy by Lim's YouTube channel)
 

Mono Tree's Facebook Page
Most Contents (Lim's management company)


Park Joo-hyun       julia1114@hanyang.ac.kr
Photos by Lee Jin-myung
 
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