4minute was a five-member girl group from Seoul, South Korea, formed by Cube Entertainment in 2009. The group consists of Nam Ji Hyun (남지현), Heo Ga Yoon (허가윤), Jeon Ji Yoon (전지윤), HyunA (현아) and Kwon So Hyun (권소현).
They made their debut with "Hot Issue" on June 15, 2009 and performed on their debut stage on June 18, 2009 on Mnet M! Countdown. Their official fan club name is "4Nia", a combination of "4minute" and "mania". 4minute won their first music award on 27 September 2009 on SBS' Inkigayo for their second single, "Muzik".
2009: Debut and For Muzik
Cube Entertainment announced the creation of 4minute in May 2009, along with the identity of two of the group's members, Nam JiHyun, the group's leader and Kim HyunAh, a former member of Wonder Girls. On 11 June 2009, the silhouette teaser video was released online, along with their official website, www.4min.co.kr. The remaining three members' identities were not announced until June 12.
Cube Entertainment had released a teaser for their first single "Hot Issue" on 10 June while the single debuted on June 18. The group promoted the song from its release until August. At the end of August, 4minute released a mini-album called "For Muzik" which was alongside their second single, "Muzik". 4minute won a Mutizen Award and a Mnet Award for their second single "Muzik". Their third single "What A Girl Wants" was released shortly after the release of their EP.
On 21 June 2009, after the first week of "Hot Issue" promotions, fans stole various items from the group's van, including clothing and other items. Cube Entertainment said, "It was very unfortunate that such an ordeal occurred."
Two months later, on 27 August, KBS banned the playing of "안줄래 (Won't Give You)" for what they considered to be overly sexual lyrical content. The lyrics in question, in the style of a first-person narrative, express an unwillingness on the part of the subject to "give" herself or her heart to her partner. Cube Entertainment responded to the ban by stating that the song was intended to be "about the pure feelings of a girl to a guy" and that they were very disappointed by the decision.
4minute was featured in fellow label-mate Mario's Christmas digital single "Jingle Jingle", which was released on 2 December 2009; the music video premiered online on December 3, 2009. They also recorded a remix with American artist Amerie for her song "Heard 'Em All (Remix) (feat. 4 Minute & Beast)" that was released on the Asian version of her fourth album.
2010: Hit Your Heart and debut in Japan
Cube Entertainment announced that Universal Music Group would be assisting 4minute with an international launch of their album.
They embarked on their Asia Tour that started in January and followed into other countries such as Taiwan, Philippines, Thailand, Hong Kong, and Japan. They had their first solo concert in Japan on May 8, 2010. Cube Entertainment announced that the tickets to the concert had been sold out in a very short period of time. For their first solo concert in Japan, they performed in front of an audience of 4,000. On April 23, 2010 a new repackaged album of 4minute was sold in Taiwan adding in the Hyuna's solo debut "Change (feat. 용준형 from BEAST)" featuring Jong Junhyung (용준형) of B2ST and their duet song with Amerie "Heard 'Em All", as well as a bonus DVD of their concert in Taiwan.
On May 5, 2010 Muzik (Japanese version) was rerecorded in Japanese as the group's debut single in Japan.
4minute released a new mini-album entitled HuH (Hit Your Heart) for their comeback on May 19, 2010. Along with this, they also released the first single from it, titled "HuH". In the first track "Who's Next? (feat. 비스트)" 4minute's fellow label mates, the members of B2ST, were featured and also appeared in the music video for "HuH" and "Who's Next? (feat. 비스트)". They released a new music video for "I My Me Mine" their second single from "Hit Your Heart" on July 5, 2010.
On July 19, 2010, the song "Superstar" was digitally released for the Korean TV show Superstar K season 2. 4minute also performed the song live, to further promote the show. They performed for Celebration at Marina, the warm-up concert for the Singapore Youth Olympic Games 2010, on August 13, 2010 together with B2ST, becoming the first Korean artists to perform for the Youth Olympic Games.
On July 28, 2010 Cube Entertainment also announced "I My Me Mine (Japanese Version)" as their next Japanese single. Three different editions of the single were released.
In September, Far Eastern Tribe Records announced a third Japanese single and their first double single, entitled "FIRST / DREAMS COME TRUE". After a teaser was released, the full music video for "FIRST" was officially released on 21 October 2010. The single was released on October 27, 2010. 4minute had their second solo concert entitled 4Minute Energy Live Volume 2: Diamond. It was held for two nights in Tokyo on December 4 and December 5, 2010 in Osaka. It also marked the start of their promotions Diamond which was released on December 15, 2010 and debuted at the number 18 spot on the Oricon charts.
2010: Role in North/South relations
In May 2010, the South Korea began broadcasting to the North on the FM station "Voice of Freedom." Among the songs broadcast was 4minute's "HuH." The lyrics include the lines, When I say I want to appear on TV, when I say I want to become prettier, everybody says I can’t do it. Baby, you’re kidding me? I do as I please. This was supposed to make North Korean listeners aware of the greater opportunities available in the South.
2011: Heart To Heart and 4minutes Left plus Japan Activities and Promotions
On January 13, 2011 4minute participated at DiGi Live K-Pop Party 2011 in Malaysia at Stadium Negara together with B2ST and G.NA. The group received the Bonsang Award at the 20th Seoul Music Awards on January 20, 2011. On February 6, the group attended the 2010 Billboard Japan Music Awards, and received the "KPop New Artist Award".
On January 19, 2011 it was announced that 4minute would be releasing their fourth Japanese single, “WHY” on March 9 and that is the theme song to TV Asahi drama, "Akutou~Juuhanzai Sousahan". The MV teaser for "WHY" was released on January 21, 2011 and the music video was released on February 7, 2011.
On February 23, 2011, the group modeled for the well-known bridal designer Yumi Katsura at her "2011 Paris Grand Collection Tokyo fashion Show" held in Tokyo’s Ryogoku Kokugikan. At the end of the show they performed their songs "Muzik (Japanese version)" and "WHY". They performed at 50th Anniversary Music Wave Concert in Thailand on March 12, 2011.
On January 12, 2011 Cube Entertainment announced that 4minute would be returning with a full official album in March. After several teasers were released with the name "Steal 20". 4minute released their third mini album, titled Heart to Heart featuring five new songs, with a title track titled "Heart to Heart". The MV teaser for "Heart to Heart" was released on March 28, 2011 and the music video was released on March 29, 2011. The MV also stars CN Blue's Jungshin. With the release of the third mini album, it confused many fans, but Cube Entertainment explained that it was a new form of marketing, and that a full Korean Album was coming in April. This was confirmed after an alternate version of the Heart to Heart intro track "4minutes Left", featuring a much heavier dance beat was revealed.
On April 5, 4minute released their first full length Korean album titled 4Minutes Left. Along with the highly anticipated video for their Shadow Title Track "거울아 거울아 (Mirror Mirror)". The album consists of all the tracks the Heart to Heart digital EP had, along with "Hide and Seek" and "Already Gone" which were from their debut album in Japan, [açbum artist=4minute]DIAMOND, as well as the new shadow title track "거울아 거울아 (Mirror Mirror)", another new song titled "나쁘게 (Badly)" and a Korean remake of their Third Japanese Single "First (Korean version)". The Album and two lead promotional singles are maintaining their positions in the top 10 of many Korean REAL TIME Charts.
4minute made a comeback after a year hiatus through M.net's M! Countdown on April 7, 2011, to further promote the album. Despite the song's success, controversy followed because of the song's provocative spread leg choreography for "거울아 거울아 (Mirror Mirror)" with various Korean music program's demanding it be changed or 4minute would not allowed to be perform the song on their shows. Their new choreography debuted on M! Countdown April 14, 2011.
4minute's "거울아 거울아 (Mirror Mirror)" Music Video dethroned Britney Spears "Till the World Ends" in the number 1 spot of Europe's HIT INT'L VIDEOS TOP 20. During the airing of the May 1, 2011 episode of the show 4minute's "거울아 거울아 (Mirror Mirror)" leaped from #5 to #1. And they were also ranked #2 on Gaon Charts losing the #1 spot to Korean boy band, Big Bang.
In late April, it was announced that 4minute will collaborate with Japanese singer Thelma Aoyama for her single, "WITHOUT U feat. 4Minute". It was released on May 25, 2011. The English Version was released on May 7, 2011.
4minute's member HyunA released a solo mini album Bubble Pop! on July 5, 2011. Within 5 days of the Bubble Pop! music video's release, it received 1 million views per day.
4minute planned they would release their 5th Japanese single "Heart to Heart (Japanese Ver.)" and their first DVD "Emerald of 4minute" on September 7, 2011. On August 3, 2011, 4minute released their music video for "Freestyle" and "Freestyle" is the song for a street basketball game called "Freestyle".
The girls revealed the album jacket photos for the Japanese version of "Heart to Heart (Japanese Ver.)" on August 7 and on August 8, they revealed the audio teaser of the song and they revealed the music video teaser last August 12, 2011. On August 15, Universal Music Japan released the music video for "Heart to Heart (Japanese Ver.)". The single and DVD both ranked in the position 15 on the first day of sales in Oricon's Singles and DVD daily chart.
On October 1st, the group's Japanese agency, Far Eastern Tribe Records, announced the group's 6th Japanese single titled "Ready Go", which was released in December 7. The song is a soundtrack for the TV Tokyo's drama "Welcome to the El-Palacio", which started on October 6. A 45 seconds teaser of the song was revealed on the same day.
On their Facebook page, 4minute released "Ready Go" on November 11, 2011.
2012, 2013: Comebacks
On December 22, 2011, soompi.com announced the next Cube Entertainment unit group will consist of Gayoon and Jiyoon. The new group debuted as 2YOON with the Harvest Moon EP on 17th January, 2013.
4Minute released Name Is 4minute on 26th April, 2013 with a title track produced by Brave Brothers and an accompanying music video released on the same day.
Birth name: Nam Ji Hyun (남지현)
Stage name: Jihyun
Position: Leader, Vocalist, Visual
D.O.B.: January 9, 1990
Birth name: Heo Ga Yoon (허가윤)
Stage name: Gayoon
Position: Main Vocalist
D.O.B.: May 18, 1990
Additional Notes: Featured in Mario’s music video “I’m Yours”.
Birth name: Jeon Ji Yoon (전지윤)
Position: Lead Vocalist, Lead Rapper
D.O.B.: October 15, 1990
Birth name: Kim Hyun Ah (김현아)
Stage name: Hyuna
D.O.B.: June 6, 1992
Position: Lead Dancer, Main Rapper, Vocalist, Visual
Additional Notes: Former member of Wonder Girls, resigned due to health issues. Featured in AJ’s (Gikwang from B2ST) song “2009 (feat. 현아)” and music video for “Dancing Shoes”. Released her solo single Change (feat. 용준형 from BEAST) on January 4th, 2010.
Birth name: Kwon So Hyun (권소현)
Position: Vocalist, Rapper
D.O.B.: August 30, 1994
Additional Notes: Was once a member of the child group called "Orange".