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Epitone Project talks “Working with Lee Seunggi was a new chapter for me”

Epitone Project “Working with Lee Seunggi, a new chapter for me too”
(Lee Yun Jung, Reporter)

English: LSGfan via Yonhap

One-person band, Epitone Project (Cha Se Jung, 28) is known as ‘Indie’s Idol.’ Despite not participating in any tv broadcasts, each of his albums have sold close to 20,000 copies and fans have stood in line to sell-out concerts. When his second full album was released last June, it garnered a great amount of buzz when it conquered the charts, beating out songs from the likes of idol groups Big Bang and Wondergirls.

Epitone Project is once again seizing the music charts. But the ‘method’ has changed. Not as singer, but producer for singer Lee Seunggi’s 5.5 mini album, Forest, which has been dominating the music charts.

On November 29, we met Epitone Project at a cafe in HapJungDong, and when asked about the “secret to popularity,” he replied, “I’m not sure” and quickly blushed and was very much like a shy young adult.

Not only Lee Seunggi, but he also composed albums for SBS Kpop Star’s Baek Ahyun and singer/songwriter Ryoo Shiya. The now producer chuckled as he said, “I originally planned to travel after my 2nd album, but all of a sudden a bunch of work came in and so I didn’t get too.”

Epitone Project continued, “As I was wrapping up my 2nd album, I got a call from Lee Seunggi. Although this friend was filming the drama ‘The King 2 Hearts’ at the time, he came to find me and indicated that he wanted to work on an album with me. Saying that he liked my music…  I thought he would want like one song from me, so I was completely surprised when he actually wanted me to be involved as producer.”

When asked what it was like to work with Lee Seunggi, Epitone Project said, “It was fun. Seunggi is a very energetic friend, so i felt like his enthusiasm was contagious. Out of the blue, I’d often get a text from Seunggi. When I’d open it it would say something like, ‘Hyung, I emailed you a great theme I found, so take a listen.'”

“He also came by my studio regularly, asking if I wasn’t busy, if we could practice a song and I would guide and record it. After that, I realized ‘I better not play around’ and I was quickly able to get my act together.” (laughter)

Epitone Project said “the goal for both of us was to create music that told a story and would be enjoyed by listeners, and to match this concept, Seunggi worked hard to sing in a gentle, soothing way. I think he also wanted to transform to some degree as well.” 

“I think Forest is a ‘new chapter’ for both Seunggi and myself. Seunggi succeeded in his transformation, and for me, the diverse potential within me was realized. Thinking that I am a person that can do these kinds of things too. I learned a lot.”

“Having produced other people’s albums, I can see what things are a good match and what can be changed. Actually, I was thinking that maybe I’ve been too too confined, and working with Seunggi was one step toward more growth.”

When asked whether there were any musicians he wanted to work with, he answered, “People who sing in a calm, composed way would be good.” He added, “It doesn’t matter if they are idols or veteran sunbaes, so if the opportunity to work together arises that would be great, but I would want their vocals to match my style. ‘Shouting’ vocals are great too, but I have way more songs that can be sung in a more low-key way.”

Debuting in 2006 with his single album ‘1229’ with sensitive lyrics, Epitone Project has received a lot of love from music fans in their 20s and 30s for his refined arrangements.  From his 2009 mini-album to his 1st and 2nd albums, all his albums have sold close to 20,000 copies, gaining popularity and in no need of idol star status.

[Further talk about his albums were not translated]

“I grew up listing to their songs. Gong-il-oh-bee, Toy, Yoon Sang, Kim Dong Ryul, other 1990s singer-song writers were my icons. So to be mentioned together with the likes of them is an honor for me. I want the Epitone Project brand to be thought of in the same way.”

Epitone Project will be holding an year-end concert on December 7-9 at HanNamDong Blue Squire Samsung Card Hall. The first half will include collaboration stages with musicians he has worked with. And Epitone Project songs are planned for the second half.

While preparing for his concert, he is also work on producing albums for 3-4 musicians. He’s also planning to release his own album next spring.

Seunggi is so A-mazing!!!  His contagious way of effecting people, despite how much older or more experienced they are, is simply awesome!  Let’s have some behind the scenes video cuts between Seunggi and Epitone Project hyung please~~~~  now, that’s something I want to see!!!

I’m guessing that Seunggi’s going to guest at Epitone Project’s concert… and to all the fans going to Seunggi’s concert this weekend, I’m sensing a guest appearance by the respected producer himself!

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5 Responses

  1. wow…..amazing news. Thank you …
    This is like a proof for Seung Gi famous work ethic.
    That’s why he coveted….
    They always said that he can bring the best of them…
    Maybe because Seung Gi always put all his might to everything he do, and make the best of it.
    Our mr. Perfectionist…
    I couldn’t thank enough to Teacher Sun Hee who brought him to the Entertainment Industry and Captain Hook who taking care of him.
    Whatever the captain’s weakness…well, he’s only have one arm right ?….and Cody is really really match with his right hand mr. ‘Smee’, always ‘clueless’……….
    Oh dear, I did not realised that it match very very well….

  2. Wow, thanks for this great article! The more we get to know about Seunggi, the more we admire him! His work ethic, his sincere friendship, his rapport, and his respect…it’s just awesome! Thanks for sharing this with us, it gave us a “sneak peek” on what went on in the production of this amazing, amazing album and songs!

  3. Ann, you are awesome!!!! Thanks soooo much for the translation. It’s always so heartwarming to hear how loved he is by his hyung :-) he’s just so lovable!!!!

  4. I was taking a break from all those galleries in Samcheong-dong, feeling kind of cold and hungry. Suddenly, I heard “Turning Back” from a storefront boombox. Cannot say enough about the song’s impact. It’s like all the discomfort I’d felt was lifted instantly. And then I had a Eureka moment. It’s really his singing that gives this song the healing power so many of us have enjoyed. He uses the voice the composer likes – even, light, understated, but deeply felt too. Without it the song could turn weepy or draggy. I just stood there listening. When the song finished, I turned and at once spotted a Paris Baguette about 2 stores down! Thank you, Seung Gi!

    • Thank you for translating & sharing this article with US.. Seunggi is just too undescribable for me..At young age, can’t imagine the respect I had for Him for the personality he had.

      @AnnMcihelle perhaps are you in Seoul right now to attend his concert?

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