Owing to their ability to create great, quality music consistently, the K-pop boy band, “Winner” quickly gained a reputation and was labeled “Trust and Listen” by the public because everyone who heard their track was always inclined to listen due to its admirable rhythm. Their musical versatility which saw them transition easily from Kpop to rock and R&B, won them international recognition, several awards and endorsement deals.
Winner was formed in 2013 by YG Entertainment after the “WIN: Who Is Next” show. Their first studio album “2014 S/S” became number one the Gaon Album and on the Billboard World Albums Charts, causing the Korea Herald to label their success as “unprecedented” for a rookie group. But, despite Winner’s popularity, there are still a number of facts about the group many fans may not know.
7 Things You May Not Know About Winner
1. All Winner Members Are Famous Variety Kings
Before debuting as “Winner”, all members of the boy band were already making their way to fame. Seungyoon contested on Mnet’s Superstar K2 in 2010, before signing with YGE the next year and appearing on MBC’s sitcom High Kick: Revenge of the Short Legged.
Jin-woo came to YGE in 2010 through Big Bang’s Seungri’s dance academy, while Taehyun was picked through auditions in 2011, Seunghoon competed in the 2012 edition of SBS’ K-Pop Star, joining YGE that same year, and Mino came from the group BoM.
All five then went on to compete in “WIN: Who Is Next”, winning it and claiming the “Winner” title which has stuck since then.
2. Who Are The Members of Winner?
Four members currently make up the group; they are Seungyoon, Jinwoo, Seunghoon and Mino. A fifth original member was Nam Taehyun, but he left the group in November 2016 for health reasons. Here’s a brief look at each member’s profile.
Leader Seungyoon (now referred to as Yoon) was born Kang Seung Yoon on January 21, 1994, as an only child. He attended the Busan Music and Arts High School. In 2013, the musically-inclined Yoon debuted as a solo artist and released several singles, including the hit “It Rains”. He speaks both English and Japanese.
Jinwoo (now Jinu) was born Kim Jin Woo on September 26, 1991, in Imjado, Korea. In Winner, he is the lead vocalist. He trained in Seugri’s dance academy and is a regular on the travel show “Wizard of Nowhere”. Jinu, who has 2 sisters, is the group’s peacemaker. His 2 cats – Bay and Ray – are sphynx because he’s allergic to cat fur.
Seunghoon (now Hoony) is the group’s main dancer and rapper. He was born Lee Seung Hoon on January 11, 1992. He is known for choreographing a majority of the group’s singles. He also coaches on the dance show competition “Dancing High”. Hoony also excels in his hobby as a lyricist.
Song Min Ho is Winner’s face of the group as well as its vocalist and rapper. He was born on March 30, 1993. One of his two sisters, Song Danah, is a member of the girl group New F.O.
Mino started out as an underground rapper and would have been Winner’s group leader but for an ankle injury that saw Seungyoon take the position. In 2018, he opened his first art exhibition.
Former member Nam Taehyun was born May 10, 1994. He was the group’s vocalist. Since leaving Winner in 2016, he’s gone on to form his own agency South Buyers Club and is part of its band South Club.
3. The Band’s Rising Influence
Owing to their success, Winner has become role models to several artists in bands like Golden Child, A.C.E, JBJ and Signal. Not only is the group known for collectively making their own songs from scratch, but they are also great live performers.
4. The Band Members Are Philanthropists
Winner has engaged in several philanthropic gestures over the years and continues to do so. In 2014, proceeds from a charity event they headlined was donated to a humanitarian organization “Good Neighbors” that helps single mothers and their children.
5. Winners Group Work As A Team
All Winner members contribute to either to the production, songwriting or choreography of their music, making them highly involved. Outside their musical career, every Winner member looks out for each other.
6. Awards And Accolades Received
Winner has won 16 awards so far; they include the Asia Artist Awards, Mnet Asian Music Awards and MTV Asia Music Gala, including endorsement and ambassadorial deals.
7. Still Going Strong
Despite their years of success as a group, Winner is not slowing down. October 23, 2019, saw them in a comeback with their third EP “Cross”.