South Korean girl group with Vietnamese member sets new K-pop record

By Hieu Nhan   August 17, 2022 | 10:30 pm PT
South Korean girl group with Vietnamese member sets new K-pop record
Hanni (L) and members of new K-pop girl group NewJeans. Photo courtesy of the artist
NewJeans, a girl group with Vietnamese member Hanni, has set a record in highest first-week sales for a K-pop girl group debut album.

Local media reported that their debut album "New Jeans" sold over 311,000 copies in just the first week after hitting the shelves on Aug. 8, setting a record for a debut album by a girl group.

The record was previously held by music label mate Le Sserafim who sold 307,405 copies back in May with their album "Fearless".

According to Korea JoongAng Daily, album sales in the first week are considered an important indicator of a K-pop artist or group's popularity.

The lead track "Attention" has ranked first on many local online music websites like Melon, Genie, and Bugs.

It also topped Spotify Korea's daily top chart for 13 consecutive days and debuted on the music streaming site's global top song chart and Billboard's Global chart, according to Korea Times.

NewJeans also hit first place on iTunes "Top Albums" charts in at least nine different regions, including Thailand, Finland, Indonesia, Russia and others. Their album also ranked second in Japan and tenth in the U.S.

Local financial news publishing service provider Fnnews stated the group's success helped shares of the management company HYPE group rise sharply, avoiding a drop following a series of news about K-pop boyband BTS's enlistment.

Yonhap News stated the nostalgic style of music is one of the factors contributing to NewJeans' success.

Typically, girl groups release debut albums with edgy and upbeat dance music, but NewJeans' debut album went the opposite way by featuring soft and melodic songs.

Jung Min Jae, a pop culture critic, said NewJeans’ songs remind him of R&B or Hiphop tracks from the 1990s. He also pointed out that everyone can hear NewJeans’ songs since it is melodic and easy to listen to, helping to set the group's own music style and distinguish it from the current music trend.

Born in 2004, Hanni's real name is Pham Ngoc Han. Her father is from Hanoi and her mother is from Ho Chi Minh City. Both live in Australia.

The 18-year-old Vietnamese-Australian recently debuted in the new five-member K-pop girl group NewJeans.

Korean-Australian singer Danielle, and three remaining Korean members - Minji, Haerin and Hyein - make up the group of five. Their ages range from 14 to 18 years old.

The group was launched in late July by All Doors One Room (Ador), a label under the HYBE group that represents K-pop titans BTS.

She was selected to join the group after passing the global audition Plus Global Audition 2019. She spent two and a half years as a trainee before debuting.

According to local media, she is the first Vietnamese female idol to sign a contract with HYBE.

Hanni is the sixth Vietnamese-origin artist that has debuted as a K-pop idol so far, according to K-pop news-related site Koreaboo.

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