You may have heard that K-Pop songwriters can earn big if their songs top the charts, but how true is that really? In a new interview with AYO on YouTube, JYP Entertainment composers KOBEE and Holy M revealed what their earnings are like.
Together, KOBEE and Holy M have worked on songs for ITZY, GOT7, and Stray Kids, as well as tracks for other companies’ artists (including ONEUS, UP10TION, and TO1). Some of these songs are undoubtedly huge K-Pop hits—for example, ITZY’s “Not Shy.”
To date, “Not Shy” has accumulated 242 million digital points on South Korea’s Gaon chart, 167 million YouTube streams, and over 113 million Spotify plays. Based on pay per stream figures, “Not Shy” has likely grossed $450,000 USD on Spotify alone over the past year, but has it made co-composer KOBEE rich?
I wonder how much royalty current JYP composers get. In articles, they say I’m ‘young and rich’~
— AYO commenter
First off, KOBEE clarified that’s he’s definitely not rich, despite working closely with one of the biggest companies in K-Pop.
“It’s not that you make a lot of money because you work for JYP,” he explained, “but when you write a lot of songs, you just get more money.”
As such, it seems that making money writing music is all down to quantity. Since KOBEE describes himself as a “rookie” who’s just started, it should come as little surprise that he’s not rich—yet.
“Composers make as much as they worked,” agrees Holy M. Since the pair are building their careers now, they do hope to make plenty of money from royalties in the future.
That being said, their priority is always making good music rather than earning a good wage. “When you make cool music and enjoy it, I think money just comes with it,” says KOBEE, “So I’m just trying to work hard, not thinking about money.”