CJ ENM’s CSV program ‘O’PEN MUSIC has started to offer ‘Open’ opportunities to aspiring young composers since 2018. The selected creators of O’PEN Mus MUSIC ic are provided with various benefits such as financial support, space for content development, and mentoring from the industry’s leading composers. They can also join well-structured programs including special lectures and practice sessions for composition, lyric writing, mixing, recording, and production. In addition, O'PEN MUSIC hosts the Song Camp through which participants can actively communicate with various music experts. Moreover, they are given chances to take part in drama OST production, artist album, or broadcasting soundtracks, which help them continue their pursuit of different aspects of music and overcome the unstable environment of creation and the high entry barrier as rookies.
Furthermore, O’PEN MUSIC not only finds and nurtures talented young
musicians but also supports a wide range of musical activities to secure the
diversity of genres and help expand the base of Korea’s
music industry. We give composers of O’PEN MUSIC chances
to collaborate with legendary musicians in Korea so that they can learn from the
experience and know-how of industry experts and further communicate with the
general public. Recently, O’PEN MUSIC launched digital
Youtube Channel <Romance is Back> together with the legendary singer-songwriter
Choi Baek Ho, who is the chief mentor of O’PEN MUSIC,
demonstrating a musical communication that broke down the barriers between
■Chief Mentor of O'PEN MUSIC & legendary
Singer-songwriter ‘Choi Baek Ho’
Q. How did you meet O’PEN Music?
A. I first met young
composers of O’PEN MUSIC since 2018
as a chief mentor of 1st O’PEN MUSIC program. The new
musicians discovered by CJ ENM were highly talented, so I thought, ‘if I could continue
to exchange inspiration and strengthen a network they would surely be able to
stand on their own feet with “music” in a short period of time’. Many programs for seniors are
disappearing nowadays. I thought it would be nice to start a program on digital
including Youtube, which can be easily accessed by anyone, to newly introduce
the songs of senior musicians and let more people listen to them. The digital channel
<Choi Baek Ho’s Romance is Back> started from the
idea that it would be great if new composers of O’PEN MUSIC
remake original songs of senior musicians.
Q. What was the most
memorable work experience with O’PEN MUSIC?
A. I recently released my new
album <Moment> with young O’PEN MUSIC musicians whom I thought had excellent composing skills
when I first met them in 2018. I’ve been in singing for
over 40 years, but this album was a big challenge because it had songs in new
genres. The work was not easy or familiar to me, but the process of releasing
this album was unforgettable.
Q. What does O’PEN Music mean to the Korean music industry?
A. K-Pop still has high entry barriers for rookies, and performers have a higher threshold. However, the transformation of K-pop starts with the new composers, and we need them to introduce good music to the public continuously for the next 10 or 20 years. Many want fruits, but there are very few who sow the seeds. In that sense, O’PEN Music is really meaningful in the efforts it has put into the development of K-pop industry for the past five years. I hope this program will continue for more than 10 years ahead and offer good opportunities for many new composers.
Q. Is there anything
that you want to accomplish with O’PEN MUSIC?
A. First of all, I hope the
newly released album gets good responses and proves to be of help to the new
composers I worked with. As of now, there aren’t enough occasions for musicians aged 50 or more to work in the
K-Pop industry. As a singer getting old together with them, I’m thinking of creating opportunities for them to interact more with
young composers. I hope O’PEN MUSIC will also offer
great support in this regard.
Q. As we conclude this
interview, please share your words of encouragement for young composers.
A. When you get older,
romance becomes good memory. You don’t realize that youth itself is romance. You may have difficulties
and challenges right now, but your youth is already a strength in itself. I
hope you enjoy your youth at this moment.
■1st O’PEN MUSIC, ‘Choi Eun Hye(HEN)’
Q. What made you apply
for O’PEN MUSIC?
A. While engaging in many
projects, you get new inspirations. I wanted to meet people in the same field,
and introduce my music to more people. Having those thoughts, I’ve got the information about O’PEN MUSIC and applied for the program.
Q. What does O’PEN MUSIC mean for rookie composers?
A. Most rookie composers in
K-Pop industry do their work with only limited boundary of people. As I was
able to meet new musicians and people from the business side, I had
opportunities to come up with various ideas and broaden my music perspective from
a more diverse views of point. O’PEN MUSIC is my good and reliable friend who
is always by my side.
Q. What activities of O’PEN MUSIC were most helpful to you?
A. Throughout O’PEN MUSIC program,
the point that I could introduce my music to the world was very helpful. This
program allowed me to have more opportunities to join various projects with my
songs and meet new people and peers with whom I could work with.
■4th O’PEN MUSIC, ‘Jung, Na Young’
Q. What made you apply for
A. I was told by my friends
that the programs of O’PEN Music were really good. I applied for O’PEN Music as
it offered opportunities to meet great musicians, develop my skills with various
training programs, and introduce my songs to the people in the industry while
exchanging ideas with experts.
Q. What does O’PEN MUSIC
mean for rookie composers?
A. O’PEN MUSIC is like a big
tree for lonely new musicians. We can seek shade in hot sun, suffer less damage
from rainstorms, get some rest under the tree’s shadow, and meet good friends
within the safe fence of O’PEN. I had to go through challenging competitions
before joining O’PEN Music. But after that, my colleagues and I felt a sense of
partnership rather than rivalry, and thought we would be able to make
Q. What kind of music do
you want to create through O’PEN MUSIC?
A. I hope to make music that can heal and give comfort to people. I still feel a need for improvement, but I met many good people and will continue to work on new songs. Moreover, by creating songs that many people love, I want to become financially more stable!