K-Pop Pick Of The Day: Violeta

Track: Violeta | Artist: IZ*ONE | Album: HEART*IZ
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IZ*ONE is an absolutely massive Korean/Japanese girl group (12 members!) formed with the finalists from the latest season of Mnet’s Produce series of survival audition television shows.

The premise of Produce is simple: dozens of idol hopefuls compete against each other to survive as long as they can, on the backs of public voting after each episode. The lucky finalists get a time commitment to be promoted as a project idol group (two years and six months, in IZ*ONE’s case), upon which completion the members return to being jobless—but with infinitely better prospects ahead of them.

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As you might imagine, competition is intense, especially given the success of Produce’s other idol groups so far: season 1's I.O.I and season 2's Wanna One. IZ*ONE (somewhat confusingly pronounced eyes one) is the latest, formed after the third season of Produce, this time called Produce 48.

In a first for Produce, IZ*ONE contains several Japanese members, as this latest season was a collaboration with the Japanese producer behind AKB48 (hence the name of the show) and featured trainees from several Japanese agencies. Three of the final twelve members are Japanese: Miyawaki Sakura, Yabuki Nako, and Honda Hitomi. It goes without saying that this inclusion exponentially increases the potential profit that could be gleaned from this mega-group, given Japan’s much bigger—and more profitable—music industry. Taking off the cynical glasses for a moment, though, I hope this is only the first step toward a more unified entertainment industry and indicative of a broader acceptance of crossovers across the ocean.

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About the author

Seung Park

Social Media Editor. Please don't tell me a 13-year-old can do my job