On June 8th, Kim Hyun Joong guested on MBC’s “Knee-Drop Guru” and talked about his training period before his debut with SS501.
He began by describing the strict environment of his former label, DSP Media: “It’s a company that makes you fend for yourself. As a trainee, I’d clean up the recording room in the morning and run 20 laps around the field. Every day, they’d add another lap until I reached 40. We also had to eat fast.”
He continued, “When we were being trained in singing, eight of us would be in one small room and had to sing together. It was hard to concentrate on what you were singing.”
MC Kang Ho Dong commented, “Your CEO at the time is known for being quite the scary man.” Kim Hyun Joong replied, “He was hard, but we said everything we wanted to. Even if he said, ‘What do you mean you need dancers, it’s just extra expenses,’ we would still say that we needed dancer hyungs and he’d listen and comply. He was like a father, and he would call me son. He thought cutely of me.”
When asked about SS501’s rivals at the time of their debut, he mused, “We were half confident in our ability to stand on equal footing with TVXQ. We thought of sneakily going from behind and then bursting out in front. It wasn’t necessarily a plan, but just the atmosphere at the time. The public naturally set it up like that for us.”
Reflecting back to his debut on June 8th, 2005, Kim Hyun Joong concluded, “After our first broadcast, I teared up. I think it’s because of that sense of achievement and because I remembered everything we had gone through as trainees.”