VIXX’s Ravi Under Fire For Allegedly “Sexual” Lyrics About Red Velvet In His New Song
VIXX‘s Ravi recently released his new solo single “Cardigan (ft. Wonstein)” and mini-album Roses, but one B-side track in particular is attracting attention. Shortly after the release of Roses, Ravi came under fire from Korean netizens and international K-Pop fans alike over allegedly sexual lyrics about the girl group Red Velvet in one of his B-side tracks, “Red Velvet (ft. Jamie).”
As Ravi opens “Red Velvet (ft. Jamie)” with the lyrics, “I take a bite out of a red velvet / ‘Cause I know you love me,” it initially appears that the soloist is referring to the popular dessert red velvet cake. However, the song takes a different turn when Ravi begins to make several direct references to the girl group Red Velvet.
First, Ravi raps, “Dumb, dumb, dumb / Dumb, dumb, dumb.” “Dumb Dumb” is the name of one of Red Velvet’s most popular songs, released back in 2015. Before mentioning “Dumb Dumb” again, the song also includes the line “Russian roulette“—the title of a 2016 Red Velvet single.
On top of this, the Korean words “sooyoung-haneun” and “yeri-hagien” can also be found in the lyrics. While these words do translate to “swimming” and “sharp” in the context of Ravi’s lines, they also include the names of two Red Velvet members: Joy (whose real name is Sooyoung) and Yeri.
While the references to Red Velvet don’t appear to be problematic in themselves, they become an issue because of the song’s alleged sexual metaphors and undertones. In particular, many Korean fans have pointed out that the lyrics in the chorus and first verse appear to be lewd in nature.
I TAKE A BITE OUT OF A RED VELVET
I can’t hold it back anymore, stop testing me
I TAKE A BITE OUT OF A RED VELVET
CAUSE I KNOW YOU LOVE ME
Take a bigger bite
DRIP it’s dangerous, push that hat down for me
FLIP BABE Turn around and show me your back BABE
You and I shouldn’t be in the same room by ourselves
I GOT NO PLACE ELSE TO GO
Round and round we go
DUMB DUMB DUMB
DUMB DUMB DUMB
— “Red Velvet (ft. Jamie) lyrics
On top of this, several English lines (including “I take a bite of a red velvet” and “I got a crush on you“) come across as inappropriate in relation to the Red Velvet members. Now, Ravi is drawing widespread criticism across the internet for the song, which he and Jamie were the sole lyric writers for. Within two hours, a post condemning Ravi on THEQOO reached almost 50,000 views and over 1,350 comments, with many netizens accusing the VIXX member of sexual harassment.
- “Um… This isn’t just about a cake. Aren’t the lyrics a bit… sexual…? T_T”
- “You know, I hate that he used the group’s name in the song… but what’s worse is that he used a member’s name in it too. But the song isn’t like, “Yay I like Red Velvet.” It’s hinting at a lot of sexual things.”
- “What the f*ck? This is sexual harassment, isn’t it? The lyrics are obviously sexual and it mentions a member’s name.”
On Twitter, meanwhile, many international fans shared similar sentiments.
wait so ravi the one who did a collab with yeri wrote that? you’re disgusting piece of shit. https://t.co/LtxqMbM8X9
— knowles. (@ksgyonce) June 3, 2021
this kind of issue should not be ignored @SMTOWNGLOBAL you better sue @RAVI_GTCK for sexualizing red velvet!!! https://t.co/HuX72aKNsj
— SEULGOD (@redvelvetfaney) June 3, 2021
In an interview with Sports Today, Ravi did confirm that the lyrical references to Red Velvet were intended, but did not allude to any inappropriate meaning. He explained that while the song’s lyrics refer to red velvet cake, using it as a representation of sweetness, he chose to include references to the girl group Red Velvet for some “lighthearted fun.”
I’m talking about red velvet, the cake kind. I decided to use ‘red velvet’ because that’s sweet. I wanted something to compare to the ‘sweet air [in the room].’ The ‘Dumb Dumb’ part is in there for fun. I figured, since the song will immediately make people think of the girl group, why not build on that? I included it for some lighthearted fun.
When asked if he knows Red Velvet, Ravi went on to respond, “No, I don’t know them personally.” While he may not know the members on a personal level, he did participate in the 2020 Cool Summer Project remake series with Yeri. Together with other artists, the pair recorded remakes of Cool‘s “Woman on the Beach” and “Sorrow” together.
As of yet, Ravi is yet to comment on the reported sexual nature of “Red Velvet (ft. Jamie).” Fans noticed that Ravi has now unfollowed Yeri on Instagram, but it’s unclear whether this occurred after “Red Velvet (ft. Jamie) was released, or whether he unfollowed her at some point over the past few weeks. Across social media, ReVeluvs are demanding an explanation and an apology to the Red Velvet members.