Written by: Nnehkai Agbor
DEAN is on track to take the world by storm with charisma that has yet to be seen in the Korean entertainment industry. While artists such as Crucial Star, Hoody, G.Soul, Liivii, and Babylon have gained attention for their R&B vocals and individual styles, DEAN has been able to create a movement that has mostly been seen by boybands and girl groups.
DEAN created DEANFLUENZA originating from the name he used as a songwriter. Just like influenza his music has quickly spread across Asia and is making its presence known in America. DEAN’s ability to capture an audience with his signature mellow, honey-like vocals while having a rebel presence of similar to James Dean.
His collaborations with Milla J., Anderson Paak and Eric Bellinger gave him a leg up compared to his peers. These collaborations established him into the American music scene and a growing international fanbase which only built anticipation for his official Korean debut. This combined with being a mastermind behind songs for kpop groups: EXO, VIXX HISTORY and f(x) allowed him to create a frenzy that shows no sign of slowing down.
His recent album 130 Mood: TRBL, took South Korea by storm placing No. 3 on Billboard’s World Albums chart and No. 22 on Heatseeker Albums chart. Since his debut, he has remained in the top 100 of Korea’s Gaon chart as well. His album tackles the up and downs of a vehement yet doomed relationship. His vocals and lyrics put the listener in a trance that tugs on his or hers heartstrings while visualizing the story the album shares. It seems to mirror the love affairs of James Dean and Pier Angeli and Bonnie and Clyde. It’s angst and love: a classic love story.
He has also collaborated with Taeyeon and Heize and performed at KCON 2016 in Los Angeles with Amber of f(x) and Zion T in full house. One can only anticipate what more DEAN has to offer through his artistry.
As Dean continues to rise in his music career, he has this philosophy of staying to true to himself and never compromising his worth for “the dream.” A true rebel spirit has taken root in an industry where rules are obeyed.