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KPOP 101: Meet the members of B.A.P and their Matoki partners

Submitted: Jul 29 2012 11:28 PM by Uni

It has been over half a year since Koreaboo’s last “KPOP 101” editorial, which last featured idol female group Secret. But fear not, the 3rd edition of KPOP 101 has returned with “Rice,” as I like to affectionately call them, or “Warrior” B.A.P as the next featured group.

"KPOP 101" articles: U-Kiss | Secret

B.A.P debuted with a unique concept when they released “Warrior” – all of the members had their hair color dyed to blonde – and while it was interesting, it made it difficult to attach a name to a face. And so, KPOP 101 is here to help you do just that!

Made up of group members Bang Yongguk, Himchan, Zelo, Daehyun, Youngjae, and Jongup, B.A.P began pre-debut group promotions in 2011 with leader Bang Yongguk featuring in Secret member Song Jieun’s solo single, “Going Crazy.” This was followed by the release of Bang Yongguk’s solo single, “I Remember” featuring BEAST’s Yang Yoseob.

Himchan was the 2nd member to be revealed, and while not doing pre-debut group promotions through music, he became an official MC for MTV’s then-new music show, “The Show,” alongside f(x)’s Luna and Secret's Hyosung. At the end of the year, the third member, Zelo, was revealed and TS Entertainment announced that Bang Yongguk and Zelo would be promoting as a duo with the single, “Never Give Up,” under the name of Bang & Zelo.

In January, the remaining three members – Daehyun, Youngjae, and Jongup – were revealed along with the group’s name, B.A.P, which stands for “Best, Absolute, Perfect.” Prior to the release of their debut single, “Warrior,” on January 26th, B.A.P featured in their own reality show titled “Ta-Dah! It’s B.A.P” on SBS-MTV. In only two days, their single “Warrior” sold over 10,000 copies, charting on Billboard’s World Album Chart in 10th place.

Since their debut, B.A.P released a second single titled “Power” and just released their first mini album, “No Mercy.”

Not only has B.A.P differentiated themselves from other male K-Pop groups with their tough and powerful charismatic concept, but they are also armed with their own mascot partners called Matoki, a group of – what I think are adorable – “mask wearing rabbits.”

**NOTE: Slightly older photos were used because some of the group member’s faces can’t clearly be seen in the newer ones, which is needed for this article.

Full Name: Bang Yongguk
Known As: Yongguk
Matoki: Shishimato (Red)
Siblings: older twin brother (Yongnam), older sister
Position: Leader, Rapper
Birthday: March 31, 1990 (Age 22)
Height: 180cm
Blood Type: O
Languages: Korean
Associated Acts: Soul Connection, Bang&Zelo
Associated Agencies: TS Entertainment (2011-present)
Social Networks: @BAP_Bangyongguk

Bang Yongguk was the first member of B.A.P to be revealed to the public, and received a lot of attention for his fierceness on stage when he was featured on Secret member Jieun’s single, “Going Crazy.” Prior to his debut, he was part of an underground hip-hop crew called Soul Connection, with whom he released various songs and did various concerts. At the time, he was known under the persona of “Jepp Blackman.” After B.A.P's debut, Bang Yongguk revealed that he didn't leave Soul Connection and is still part of the group.

He took the chance to become a mainstream artist, entering TS Entertainment as a trainee following fellow label artist Untouchable’s introduction to the agency.

Bang Yongguk has also proven to be a talented singer-songwriter, as he has participated in composing the majority of B.A.P’s songs since “Warrior.” He has also been involved in the rap lyrics, writing them himself.

Prior to his debut, Bang Yongguk can be seen making cameo appearances in Secret’s “Shy Boy” and “Starlight, Moonlight” (ticket seller) music videos, as well as 4minute's "Who's Next" music video and live performance.

Some nicknames he has acquired from fans include Killer Younguk and Inversion Rapper.

His hobbies have been listed as: playing alone, exercising, writing lyrics, and composing. Bang Yongguk has also listed 1TYM’s Teddy as his role model – Teddy is known for composing and writing many hit tracks for YG Entertainment artists.

His favorite motto is, “Do what you like and love what you do,” which is also a line he raps in "Never Give Up" and a tattoo he has on his back.

Full Name: Kim Himchan
Known As: Himchan
Matoki: Tatsmato (Pink)
Siblings: Older sister
Position: Vocal, Rap, Visual
Birthday: April 19, 1990 (Age 22)
Height: 180cm
Blood Type: O
Languages: Korean
Associated Agencies: TS Entertainment (2011-present)
Social Networks: @Himchanchan

Himchan is majoring in Gukak, which is Korean Traditional music, and is also learning Western music. He is proficient in playing a variety of instruments. Prior to his debut, he was known as an ulzzang, winning that title alongside MBLAQ’s Lee Joon, Block B’s Jaehyo, and CNBLUE’s Yonghwa and Jonghyun at “BESTNINE.”

He was also seen in Jung Seulgi’s “Back In Place Again” and Secret member Song Jieun’s “Going Crazy” music videos. Himchan also made cameo appearances in Secret’s “Shy Boy” and “Starlight, Moonlight” music videos as well as Bang&Zelo’s “Never Give Up” music video.

In addition, he was also a backup dancer for TS Entertainment artists, Untouchable and Secret. Following the TS Entertainment announcement as the 2nd member of B.A.P, Himchan became active as one of MCs for MTV “The Show” alongside Secret’s Hyosung, as well as f(x)'s Luna among others.

To BABYs, Himchan is known for his fan service and is always trying to imitate members (though it results in failure sometimes). Fans have given him the nickname of Bunnychan due to his front teeth.

Full Name: Choi Joonhong
Known As: Zelo
Matoki: Totomato (Blue)
Siblings: Older brother
Position: Rapper, Dancer, Maknae
Birthday: October 15, 1996 (Age 15)
Height: 182cm
Blood Type: A
Languages: Korean
Associated Acts: Bang&Zelo
Associated Agencies: TS Entertainment (2011-present)
Social Networks: @ZELO96

When he was little, Zelo dreamed of becoming a soccer player, however, his interest in music soon made that dream fade away. According to Zelo, he began his interest in music by imitating dance moves and raps from tutorials online in elementary school.

Zelo was rejected from several agencies due to his young age, but was finally accepted into TS Entertainment as a trainee. He is the only member in B.A.P to not use his real name, preferring to go by Zelo on stage. Zelo is taken from Greek mythology, the god of rivalry.

His rap in “Warrior” gained him much attention as he drops a rap that is an amazing 16-syllables per second. Zelo also mentioned that he has an interest in writing and producing music.

The maknae’s hobbies include listening to music, writing lyrics, skateboarding, and beat-boxing. Among his fans, he is known for his frequent eye blinking.

BABYs have given him the nickname of Zelbaby, and prior to his debut, he acquired the nickname, "Pocket Boy."

Full Name: Jung Daehyun
Known As: Daehyun
Matoki: Kekemato (White)
Siblings: Older Brother
Position: Main Vocalist
Birthday: June 28, 1993 (Age 19)
Height: 177cm
Blood Type: A
Languages: Korean
Associated Agencies: TS Entertainment (2012-present)
Social Networks: @BAP_Daehyun

Daehyun was the last member to join B.A.P with only 6 months passing between his entrance as a TS Entertainment trainee and his official debut in January 2012 with the group.

Hailing from Busan, fans have given him the nickname of “Busan Wonbin,” describing his good-looking appearance.

According to B.A.P’s debut show on SBS-MTV, “Ta-dah! It’s B.A.P,” when Daehyun doesn’t feel like answering someone, he replies with a “no comment” and walks away. He is also known as the “secret/ninja/spy/observer” of the group.

Some of his hobbies have been listed as watching movies and singing, and he has a frequent habit of licking his lips. His moto is, “If you will, I will.”

Full Name: Yoo Youngjae
Known As: Youngjae
Matoki: Jokomato (Yellow)
Siblings: older brother
Position: Vocalist
Birthday: January 24, 1994 (Age 18)
Height: 178cm
Blood Type: AB
Languages: Korean
Associated Agencies: JYP Entertainment (trainee), TS Entertainment (2012-present)
Social Networks: @BAP_Youngjae

Youngjae joins the list of the many idols who were known to have been a JYP Entertainment trainee previously. In 2008, he placed first in one of JYP’s auditions and become a trainee, however a year later, Youngjae left the agency and was accepted into TS Entertainment.

Similar to other B.A.P members, Youngjae also appeared in Secret’s “Starlight, Moonlight” music video.

Youngjae is known for his love of electronics store, and loves finding things to explain to the B.A.P members. B.A.P has also given him the title of “The Brain.”

He lists his hobbies as listening to music and sleeping, and loves meat. He writes his motto as, “Starting is half the battle.”

Full Name: Moon Jongup
Known As: Jongup, Moontos
Matoki: Dadamato (Green)
Siblings: Two older brothers
Position: Dance, Vocalist
Birthday: February 6, 1995 (Age 17)
Height: 176cm
Blood Type: B
Languages: Korean
Associated Agencies: TS Entertainment (2012-present)
Social Networks: @BAP_Jongup

Yet another B.A.P member to make cameo appearances in Secret’s music videos for “Shy Boy” and “Starlight, Moonlight,” dance machine Jongup is the random passerby and the guy with the newspaper in the respective music videos. In addition, he appeared in Bang&Zelo’s “Never Give Up” music video as the DJ in the booth.

Jongup began his dancing career in his first year of middle school, and gained the nickname of “Dance Shindong” from fans. Among the B.A.P members, he is known as the awkward member due to his shy personality.

He created the saying, “We’re faster than a treadmill, heavier than a dumbbell,” which describes B.A.P.

He lists as his hobbies and skills as listening to music and dancing, and has a frequent habit of “hearing the sound of [his] knuckles cracking.” Jongup also loves raw meat and frequently visits the convenience store.

Jongup writes his motto as, “Always do what you like, and do what you want to do, and try your best to be happy.”

Which group’s members are you interested in learning about in the next "KPOP 101" edition? Drop Uni a tweet at @cosmicsorrow and let her know!

Source: Music Naver, f***yeahbangyongguk, BennieLoe, OFFICIAL B.A.P Facebook, baperfection, @tsbabyz, and fyeahblockbap

Join the discussion

  • dramaswhoo 0 Points

    They're image is great :D They're the only boy group my husband likes, haha... so if any girls are trying to get their guys to like some Kpop, then BAP is probably the best bet.

    29 July 2012 - 04:23 PM

  • dramaswhoo 0 Points

    Oh, and Yongguk raps his motto in "Never Give Up"... it's my favorite line in the song :D

    29 July 2012 - 04:24 PM

  • Mirusako 1 Points

    I absolutely love this group and their Matokis!

    29 July 2012 - 10:12 PM

  • empressxye 0 Points

    maybe add their instagram accounts too for SNs?? realb2ng (yongguk); upcb (jongup); zeloworld (zelo) ^^

    29 July 2012 - 10:29 PM

  • KTbeat 0 Points

    not to be a perfectionist but it was " never give up " thats when BYG said is moto and you guys put rather instead of brother for YoungJae

    29 July 2012 - 10:34 PM

    • Uni 9780 Points

      Ah you're right, for some reason when I read his motto, "Never Give Up" and "Warrior" blended together in my head T_T It's been fixed.

      30 July 2012 - 07:50 AM

  • raenxia 26 Points

    the cyworld link isnt Yongguk. please fix it.

    30 July 2012 - 12:22 AM

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