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GD&TOP on rumors, contract controversies, and scandals

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Although the members of Big Bang are achieving much success in a variety of different areas, the repercussions from their two-year hiatus are still being felt. During their absence, rumors began circulating about discord between the groupmates themselves and their label, YG Entertainment.
In an interview with Union News, G-Dragon and T.O.P took the time to clear up the rumors with their own honest thoughts.
The reporter first addressed the issue of rumored discord between the members, and the two looked as if they had expected the question. “Each of us have different tastes, but regarding music, whether we’re on our own or working as all five together, we are of the same opinion.”
They continued, “One time, our CEO, Yang Hyun Suk, told us that we didn’t look as close as other groups did. In front of the cameras, we don’t act any different from how we normally do, so from a third party perspective, we can understand how it could look like that. It’s just like how you don’t tell your family members you love them every single day – our dynamic is like that, and we don’t change. Because each of us have such individuality, we’re an ideal combination.”
Unfortunately, those rumors of discord amongst the members later spread out to include their label as well.  G-Dragon explained, “We can’t avoid having arguments with our agency, but we solve it through music. To us, satisfying our musical endeavors is the most important thing, and our agency completely supports our music productions. That being said, we don’t have any actual problems with our agency. We’re allowed to bring our own thoughts and opinions into the promotion style as well.”

The two were also asked for their opinions on the contract disputes that TVXQ and KARA were undergoing with their respective agencies.
G-Dragon stated, “We’re an idol group as well, so hearing about such events don’t feel foreign to us.  It’s something that we could have gone through.  I’m sure that a lot of different issues were stacked in order for the problem to have reached such a point, but in the end, it comes down to there being a problem in the process of resolution. What’s most important is for the agency and the artist to look upon the future, and to protect their loyalty to one another.”
T.O.P mentioned that the rising popularity of Korean idols overseas also gave idols an additional responsibility.  “I recently visited Japan to promote ‘Into the Fire‘, and Japanese reporters asked me about the KARA dispute.  I felt upset because it seemed as if the Japanese thought that ‘Korean singers were all a problem.’  I told them that the information might have been exaggerated, and to please trust the artists. An artist’s problems can only be resolved by the artist – I hope Korean artists promote more actively there as well.”
Regarding the term ’slave contract’ being constantly brought up whenever there is a contract dispute, the two expressed, “It’s upsetting that the term has even been created.  It’s wrong for people to view singers as slaves, and we feel animosity towards those who view artists as products.”

When asked about some of the more recent scandals they’ve been swept up in, G-Dragon replied, “The scandals weren’t true, but I don’t feel anything negative about them. Whenever I see Hollywood stars sucked into scandals, regardless of whether it’s true or not, I become jealous. I’m 24 years old now, so falling in love is natural.  In writing songs, experience is the best, but because my profession is a singer, I have to work to hide it. These days, I feel that our fans are working to understand our opinions and point of views.”
He continued, “Even CEO Yang Hyun Suk does not ‘touch’ on matters regarding our love life.  If we were to ever get girlfriends, he’d probably reach out and ask to have a meal together.”
T.O.P revealed that he’d keep his relationships a secret as well. “Even if I do date, I plan to hide it and keep it a secret. I hate being ruled as something just because I’m dating.  Everyone has their own style, but it’s important to me that I keep a ‘territory’ of myself hidden.”
This mindset was said to have been the result of the constant stress they received from gossip. While reminiscing back to his plagiarism controversy in 2009, G-Dragon concluded, “I was once at the center of gossip. I was afraid to even open my eyes and lost my confidence to the point where I found it difficult to even see my parents. Now that I look back, I feel that it was an opportunity of growth for me.  You have to lose something in order to grow.”

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