Have you seen the TV drama ‘Cheese in the Trap’? If you watched it, you must have heard the theme song ‘Maybe it is Love’. When looking into the background of this music, The Dankook Herald (DKH) learned that the song is by the Indi-music band ‘Monkeyz’ and one of the members of this group used to attend Dankook University (DKU). Monkeyz is an award winning group, having first been recognized in the ‘Asian Beats Band Contest’ and then the ‘Asian Beats Thailand Grand Final’. The DKH interviewed our alumnus Park Byung-seok (Graduate, Dept. of Applied Music) and his group, to learn more about them.
Q. What can you tell Dankookians about your group?
A. Monkeyz is an Indi-music band and also can be considered pop rock. We have 4 members in the band. They are Lee Jae-chul (vocals), Park Min-young (guitar), Kim Ji-man (base), and Park Byung-seok (drums).
Q. How did you all meet?
A. Before the drummer Park Byung-seok transferred to DKU, he attended Yeoju University with the vocalist Lee Jae-chul. While preparing for their graduation performance, the group Monkeyz was organized, so that they could continue making music together. Afterwards, the guitarist and bassist wanted in, so we added two new members.
Q. What is the reason behind the name of your group ‘Monkeyz’?
A. We used to be called ‘Gloomy Monkeyz’. This was firstly because our vocalist resembles a monkey and secondly, we were labeled “gloomy’ by our professor during our preparation for that graduation performance. He said we always looked so gloomy, so we started the band under the ‘Gloomy Monkeyz’. However, when we were preparing our first album, our songs were not really gloomy, so we changed our name to just ‘Monkeyz’.
Q. What is the theme of your songs?
A. Our first album was rock, however, the second album ‘Into your Hearts’ is filled with more popular music, with a K-pop feel. In other words, Monkeyz is a rock band in the style of ‘Maroon5’, but we aim to make more mainstream music now.
Q. What are the Monkeyz like?
A. Our songs are popular, and have beautiful melodies and lyrics that many people can sympathize with. However our performances are a strong point. You can see how good our band is live, if you come to a concert. During the concert, the audience can appreciate the energy of our music by listening to us play live, more so than just listening to the album.
Q. Monkeyz is well known for being featured in the TV drama Cheese in the Trap. Did your band’s awareness or popularity increase after this show?
A. We were really surprised how many people were turned on to our music from this show. We were of course, very grateful. Since our songs were on the broadcast, we had a many calls of support and the public response is generally much better. I don’t think it has sunk in yet, how much support we have, but we appreciate it.
Q. What’s next for Monkeyz?
A. We have just published a new album, so we are not sure when we will start recording again. The next release might be a single. Also, we’re planning to do many other activities to communicate directly with our public, rather than enjoying this time in the spotlight by ourselves.
Q. So how do Monkeyz want to be remembered by the public?
A. All musicians are probably of the same mind as us. Producing songs for an album is difficult and painful, so all the records we produce feel like our own children and we want them to be loved by many people.
The musical changes we made in the 2nd album are our attempt to get closer to the public. We just want more people to enjoy our songs, and many more people to come our concerts. The point is, we wish to be remembered as the band, whose songs are really good on record, and live.
Q. Is there anything you want to say to Dankookians?
A. First of all, we are very thankful to DKH for having an interest in us. Although Monkeyz were known to the public before, we are still a small group and growing.
We hope that Dankookians will all keep trying hard to reach their dreams and hope that they come true. We also won’t stop working hard and we will make an extra effort to impress you and everyone else, in order to shine a spotlight on Dankook University.
|▲ It is a second album cover of Monkeyz.|
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