From his underground experience to a brand new journey of being a rookie, Mino of WINNER has so many impressive attributes and The Star magazine was able to capture them all on their December 2014 issue! Check out the full interview below.You often introduce yourself as, ‘When I’m cool, I’m totally cool and when I ruin myself, I ruin myself to the max.’ When do you think you’re the most cool and when do you think you ruin yourself [your image] the most?
▶ Wouldn’t you say I’m the coolest when I’m standing on stage? I feel that way because it’s when I have to sincerely convey our music. When I ruin myself the most is when my members tell me to ruin myself. I’m really playful and I’m a huge jokester. I do a lot of impressions of Kim Hye Soo in Tazza, Kim Soo Mi, KARA‘s Heo Young Ji, and even carbonated water.
You were famous since your underground (rapping) days. Are there any differences between a long time ago when you stood on stage for underground performances and when you stand on stage now after becoming a public idol?
▶ It was definitely a lot different for underground because underground concert venues only held a small scale of audience. I feel like I was a lot more nervous back then. I was young, inexperienced, and underground performances tend to be extremely up-close to the audience. I’m sure I’ll have a lot more opportunities to gain experience soon, though. I’m very happy that I’m able to stand on a bigger stage now.
Your fan base has varied a lot more now and I feel that their inclination and affection for you has also become very different. How would you describe the differences between your fans from underground days and fans these days?
▶ There are many fans who have shown their undying support and unchanging love for me since a long time ago. Those fans from a few years back are more hip hop fans, I’d have to say. However, even the rest of the public’s ears have changed; a lot of the songs that top the music charts these days are all hip hop genres. It surprises me. Also, I have fans that care for my physical well-being. They gift me with a lot of vitamins.
I saw an interview from the past where you mentioned that you enjoy receiving the public’s attention. Artists like DOK2 like to show off their “swag” by posting images of their car, shoes, gold-plated belongings. What kinds of “swag” do you tend to show off to receive the public’s attention?
▶ I love swag, too. Items with swag to be precise. Even with cell phone cases, I like to use the really extravagant and fancy ones. I like those small items that not many people give attention to, but I like the really expensive ones.
All of the members, you’re one of the tallest and have the most unique qualities, so you tend to model a lot and do various activities. Are there any other areas or fields you’d like to challenge?
▶ I want to try drawing. I’d like to open up my own gallery in the future. However, I don’t read or watch manga. I enjoy watching animations a lot, though. The reason, or moment, I started drawing was when I began doing it “for fun”. During class, I would begin drawing instead of studying and it was all because I wanted to do it just for the fun of it. If caricatures were what I enjoyed drawing as a hobby, my new goal is to learn how to use watercolor and paint for oil painting. I want to begin going deeper into the artwork.
Seeing how you’ve done a lot of composing of lyrics thus far, I feel that you are very good at writing lyrics.
▶ At any given moment, if something pops into mind or when I randomly get an idea, I immediately jot it down into my phone memo. Those can often become the key words or double-sided expressions for a new song. I take notes and memos as part of my daily life. The amount it takes to create a song is always different for each and every track. If we have a set theme for a song and that theme fits into your own personal life well, then the lyrics come out fairly easily and quickly. If that set theme is something you have very little experience with or have never experienced before, it’ll take a long time to come up with lyrics just with your imagination.
Of all the lyrics you have written, is there a particular one where you thought to yourself, “Man, I wrote this one really well”?
▶ Yes, it was a song called, “Go Up.” At that time, those lyrics were nothing but the true emotions I was feeling. It described our [WINNER] situation completely. Even amidst all that battling, we all knew that we wanted to move up together. A part of the lyrics were, “Even if we don’t dream, we don’t sleep. We sell our youth for the security and collateral of success. Inside our shoes are broken glasses where we leave our stamps of blood. Even if you rip our friendship in half, our affections will always still be there; so matter if we’re stepping on each other to move up higher, we’re eventually pushing them forward too. We entwine our 110 fingers and up we go, go up!”
Source: Money Today