2NE1 is not present at the Grammy Awards, but perhaps hearing their music will suffice this year.
Billboard Magazine is no stranger to the power of 2NE1, and the K-pop girl group proved it again during this year’s Girl Group Week. On Friday, Bill Magazine revealed the results of their annual polls which include categories such as Favorite Girl Group Album, Favorite Girl Group Single and Most Promising New Girl Group. For the second year in a row, 2NE1 won Favorite Girl Group Album with their 2014 release, “Crush.”
In addition to garnering more votes than little Mix and Fifth Harmony for the title, 2NE1 was also named the Most Promising New Girl Group over the other two girl groups.
Last year, “Crush” became the highest-charting and best one-week sales K-pop album on the Billboard 200. This record remains unbeaten one year later. “It felt so great,” said CL regarding the record. “To be honest, we prepared for this album for so long so it felt like a surprise gift and we think it was a perfect way to start off [our promotion]. Thank you.”
Lead rapper CL is also planning to release her solo debut album in American this spring. “I feel like it’s all about good music at the end of the day,” said CL to Complex magazine.
“It’s not like I’m a rookie. I have been doing this for a long time in Asia. It’s just a new market. I have to have good music, so I’m just focusing on that. There are so many Korean people here, and Chinese and Japanese, but they don’t have one pop artist that they can look up to. That’s kind of sad. I wish I could be that person for them to be proud of.”
But unlike earlier rumors, CL clarified that 2NE1 was not disbanded, but on hiatus.
“That’s not true,” said CL regarding the rumors. “We just finished our tour and everybody gets to take a break now. It’s just I don’t get a break.”
The 2014 “SBS Gayo Daejun” has just aired in Korea, and for the first time in memory, 2NE1 performed without one of its four members.
On December 21, the annual year-end event featured performances from some of K-pop biggest acts as well as awards ceremonies. Initially, 2NE1 was reported to be missing all year-end events due to Park Bom abstaining from domestic activities.
“Though they’ve received a number of offers for music award ceremonies, we respectfully declined,” said a YG rep according to allkpop. “Park Bom is still reflecting, so we ask for your understanding.”
“2NE1 cannot put on a show without Park Bom. However, besides that, Park Bom is not participating in any other domestic schedules. She is currently taking time to self-reflect. Please support them until they make their comeback. They will make a good album and come back as 2NE1.”
However, after some rumors, 2NE1 was spotted at the “SBS Gayo Daejung,” where CL, Minzy and Dara performed without Park Bom.
“I don’t like 2NE1’s performance without Bom,” commented sojack47 on YouTube.
“Do you guys see the last seconds when 2NE1 raised their hands up?” asked Minh Hang Bui on Saturday. “There is a spot between CL and Dara; felt like they left it for Bom. And when they came on the stage to receive their award, they left a spot between Minzy and CL too.”
In addition to performing “Crush” and “Come Back Home” from their recent album, 2NE1 also accepted an award for Best Female Group.
Recently, Rolling Stone listed 2NE1’s “Crush” above the likes of Sia, Shakira, Pharrell Williams and Sam Smith. Of the 20 acts on the list, 2NE1 is the only Asian act to be given the honor.
Park Bom Puts On A Brave Face During 2NE1 Yokohama Concerts Amidst Drug Scandal
Despite her alleged drug smuggling scandal, 2NE1 member Park Bom is smiling for her fans nonetheless during the recent concerts in Japan.
On July 5 and July 6, the ladies of 2NE1 held their “All or Nothing” concert at the Yokohama Arena in front of 34,000 fans. Special attention was held for the events, as it was also the first time Park Bom faced the public since reports of her smuggling amphetamines to South Korea dominated headlines.
Despite the founder of Park Bom’s record label addressing the alleged drug smuggling reports in a personal letter, new updates claim that the illegal amphetamines confiscated in 2010 were found inside a box labeled “jelly,” mixed with candies and snacks.
“If the drugs were purchased illegally in the United States, this is a case that can be punished in the United States as well,” said a legal insider according to allkpop. “If the prosecutors did indeed drop the case of someone who smuggled narcotics, then this has to be seen as special treatment.”
In addition, Korean publication Segye Ilbo also questions whether Park Bom’s parents knew that the amphetamines were illegal in South Korea prior to the package being caught by officials, because the singer’s father is reportedly the CEO of a medical treatment company.
On July 5, Park Bom also announced she will not be participating in filming for the reality series “Roommate” this upcoming week, due to the drug scandal controversy.
“I am very sorry to all for having a great controversy because of me,” said Park Bom according to her record label YG Entertainment. “Because I feel terrible, I don’t have the confidence to film for ‘Roommate.'”
Despite such reports, attendees of the 2NE1 concerts in Yokohama took photos showing Park Bom smiling and showing solidarity with her fellow members.
Park Bom and 2NE1 will next be seen at the World Memorial Hall in Kobe, Japan on July 12 and July 13.
The girl group ends a year of accolades by breaking one more record.
After breaking multiple chart records earlier this year, 2NE1 cap off 2014 with one more boundary-pushing victory. The girl group’s Crush album ranks at No. 11 on Billboard’s year-end World Albums chart. It’s the first time a K-pop act has notched an entry on the annual ranking that was first introduced in 1995.
Released in February, Crush became K-pop’s highest-charting album while also earning the best first-week sales for a release. The set hit No. 61 on the Billboard 200 — 2NE1’s first entry on the chart.
In addition to being named Billboard’s No. 1 K-pop album of 2014, Crush also made it onto Rolling Stone’s 20 Best Pop Albums of 2014 and Fuse’s 40 Best Albums of 2014 lists.
In 2014, 2NE1 has found a remarkable amount of Stateside recognition. This included their Korean single “I Am the Best” garnering U.S. radio play (“I Am the Best” was previously released on a 2011 EP), topping Billboard’s World Digital Songs chart, a sync in a Microsoft commercial, a feature in NYLON magazine, appearances on The Bachelor and America’s Next Top Model, plus ranking as one of two acts representing K-pop’s best showing yet on the year-end World Albums Artists chart.
As 2NE1’s international brand seems stronger than ever, leader CL is confirmed to be working on a full-fledged U.S. debut overseen by Scooter Braun.
2NE1 performed the album’s title track and lead single “Come Back Home” on the year-end award show SBS Gayo Daejun without member Park Bom. Check out that performance below: