As May marked an international break through for K-Pop, June marks the month for long awaited comebacks! Amongst the list of anticipated South Korean idols, is solo artist Ailee (ay-lee)!
Ailee is a Korean American singer originally from New Jersey. In her earlier days, Ailee was an artist signed under Muzo Entertainment where she collaborated with Jhonny Phlo and rapper Decipher. In 2008 Ailee was a select contestant on the Maury Show for The Hottest Undiscovered Talent. Her rendition of “Unfaithful” by Rihanna was beautifully done, receiving a huge round of applause from the studio audience.
Ailee was eventually discovered through YouTube by South Korean idol Wheesung. Since then, she had been signed and trained under YMC Entertainment in South Korea. On September 13, 2011 Ailee and Wheesung made an appearance on Singer and Trainee where Ailee impressed with “Halo” by Beyonce.
The trainee finally made her stage debut on February 9, 2012 with her song “Heaven.” The song is about cherishing the one you love and how they are like your heaven. Despite being a rookie in the South Korean industry, her impressive vocals and strong stage presence truly makes her standout from the crowd!
As we look back on a 2010 interview, you can’t help but smile for this local diva that is setting a milestone for this generation of talents:
“Kt213: Where do you see yourself 5 years from now?
Ailee: I see myself on the VMA’s performing with Mariah Carey. At least I hope so. People might laugh and point fingers at my dreams, but I really want to be able to do something big like that no matter how long it takes, I’m willing to wait for that day to come. And I know I am determined to do so.
Kt213: What does it mean to be Korean-American in this industry?
Ailee: It’s hard to make it big in the industry as a Korean-American. But I believe that things are changing as we speak. Many Korean-American artists are doing big things and getting noticed and I’m really proud of us for doing so! I truly believe we will make a difference in this industry and it means a lot to me to be a part of this movement.”