There Are Only 7 K-Pop Groups That Have Managed To Win The “Rookie Grand Slam”

Can you name all seven?

When a new K-Pop artist receives the “Rookie of the Year” (or similar types) award at all five major music award shows in South Korea — Melon Music Awards (MMA), MAMA, Golden Disc Awards (GDA), Circle Chart Music Awards (formerly known as the Gaon Chart Music Awards), and Seoul Music Awards (SMA) — they are given the title of achieving a “Rookie Grand Slam.” This is very rare and in fact, has only happened to a total of seven groups.

Aespa is one artist to achieve this accomplishment after they received the “Artist of the Year” award at the Golden Disk Awards in 2022!

The term was first coined back in 2008, when SHINee became the first K-Pop group to accomplish this feat.

It was seven years before another K-Pop artist reached the same level of rookie power! It was iKON that was next to achieve this incredible feat in 2015.

After iKON, it was another two years before Wanna One became the next artist to earn the title of “Rookie Grand Slam”, after their debut in 2017. It just goes to show how huge of an impact the group made, even as a temporary project!

It was another two years until not just one, but two more artists were added to this short list: ITZY and TXT, who both managed to accomplish this achievement in 2019. ITZY also became the first girl group to do it!

Now, of course, aespa becomes the sixth group overall and the second girl group to earn the “Rookie Grand Slam” title. This also means that SM Entertainment is the only company to have multiple groups accomplish this!

Aespa at the 2022 Golden Disk Awards, minus Winter

Most recently, ZEROBASEONE became the seventh group to earn this accomplishment after picking up their final award necessary, the Rookie of the Year award at the Circle Chart Music Awards, back on January 10, 2024.

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