Jaehyun


  • I. Introduction

    Jeong Yoon-oh (정윤오) (born Jeong Jae-hyun (정재현), known professionally as Jaehyun (Hangul: 재현), is a Korean singer, songwriter, rapper and actor. He is one of the main vocalists, lead dancers, sub rappers and visuals in the permanent NCT sub-unit, NCT 127. NCT 127 sings primarily in Korean, as well as songs in English, Chinese and Japanese. He is also a singer, rapper and dancer in the rotational sub-unit NCT U, usually as a main, lead and/or center.


    II. Career

    III. 2013-2016: SM Rookies

    Jaehyun was born on February 14, 1997 in Seoul, South Korea. He was cast on the street in front of his school by SM scouts in 2012 and introduced as a member of the pre-debut group SM Rookies on December 9, 2013. Originally cast as a rapper, and with no previous dance experience, he began appearing with other members of the SM Rookies group in live performances and variety shows. In 2015, he and group mate Doyoung were MCs on the music show, Show Champion.


    IIII. 2016: NCT

    He made his first appearance in NCT on April 10, 2016, as part of NCT's rotating combination unit, NCT U. NCT U utilizes different members to match the song and its accompanying performance, as well as serving to debut new NCT members. Jaehyun appeared as a rapper, singer and dancer in "The 7th Sense," NCT's debut single, as well as a singer on "Without You" in the Chinese and Korean versions.

    Jaehyun appeared in the ongoing NCT reality show, NCT Life, from varying periods throughout 2016-2018. In April-May 2016, he appeared in NCT Life in Bangkok, focusing on the members of SM Rookies and their journey to debut. As part of the show, he prepared for shows and appearances in Thailand with other members,Hansol, Johnny, Taeyong, Yuta, Doyoung, Ten, Taeil, Mark, Jeno, Jaemin, Haechan and Jisung.


    Jaehyun also appeared in the second season of NCT Life in Seoul in May-June 2016, featuring the members touring around Seoul and completing missions. He joined several of the other SM Rookies featured in Season 1, including Taeyong, Yuta and Doyoung, as well as new Chinese members Kun and Winwin.


    On June 30, 2016, it was announced that NCT would debut its first permanent sub-unit, NCT 127. Jaehyun debuted with NCT 127 on the EP NCT #127 on July 10, 2016 as a rapper and singer. Jaehyun is one of only three baritones in NCT, and his voice is used to complement and enrich NCT 127's vocal harmonies. His vocal range also can reach a falsetto.


    In July-August 2016, he appeared in the third season, NCT Life in Paju, with the other NCT 127 members planning and enjoying games and activities in Paju.


    In October-November 2016, he appeared in the fourth season, NCT Life: Korean Food King Challenge, a cooking competition show featuring his fellow NCT 127 members, as well as Ten.


    IIIII. 2017: Limitless and Cherry Bomb

    NCT 127 released its second EP Limitless on January 4, 2017.

    Jaehyun returned to Thailand for the sixth season NCT Life in Chiang Mai in March-April 2017, with NCT 127 members Johnny, Taeyong, and Doyoung, with non-NCT 127 member Ten serving as a tour guide.


    In March 2017, Jaehyun also became a host of a radio show NCT Night Night with fellow NCT 127 member Johnny.


    NCT 127 released its third EP Cherry Bomb on June 14, 2017. It made its first appearances in live shows in the U.S. throughout the summer.

    He also appeared on a number of variety shows, often with fellow member Doyoung.


    In November 2017, he released a solo song, "Try Again" with d.ear for SM's Station project.


    IIIV. 2018: Empathy and first album

    In January, Jaehyun partnered with Taeil and Doyoung for an NCT U song "Timeless" as part of the SM Station project. Jaehyun participated with NCT during the NCT 2018 project on March 14, 2018, featuring all NCT members, and debuting three new ones. This project also included the first NCT full album, NCT 2018 Empathy. He appears as a singer on "Boss," the re-released "Timeless," "The 7th Sense" and "Without You" in Chinese and Korean, as well as the NCT 127 song "Touch." He is also a dancer in "Black on Black."

    NCT 127 released its first Japanese EP Chain on May 23, 2018.


    NCT 127 released its first full album Regular-Irregular on October 12, 2018, featuring a popular English version of its lead single, "Regular," that was utilized during the group's United States' based performances. The version includes Jaehyun's key line "walking with the cheese - queso queso" that remains popular in its fandom. The group also released a repackage Regulate on November 13, featuring the single "Simon Says."


    Jaehyun also featured on an OST song, "New Dream" with Taeil.


    IIV. 2019: First World Tour and Inkigayo

    In January 2019, NCT 127 began its first concert tour, Neo City - The Origin, with worldwide stops until May.

    The group also released its first full-length Japanese album, Awaken. The group then increased its publicity in the United States ahead of the release of its fourth EP, We Are Superhuman, including appearing at the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade. They also released an English version song "Highway to Heaven" of the Korean song on the EP and an accompanying video filmed in California. On October 24, 2019, 127 released a live album based on the Neo City concert tour: Neo City Seoul - The Origin.

    In addition to his activities with NCT 127, Jaehyun continued to appear as a guest on variety shows, as well as within special performances. Jaehyun appeared in the ninth season, NCT Life: Chuncheon and Hongcheon, with NCT 127 members touring parts of South Korea. He also appeared on a single with Doyoung for an OST.


    In October 2019, Jaehyun was announced as one of the three new MCs for the weekly music show, Inkigayo, alongside Minhyuk of Monsta X and Naeun of April. The trio went on to be one of the longest-serving and popular host combinations.

    He also continued to feature in special performances, including the year-end 2019 KBS Song Festival as part of the Four Jaehyuns, performing a cover of 4Minute's "What's Your Name?" and EXO's "Call Me Baby." He also recorded an NCT U song with his NCT 127 members Taeil, Haechan and Doyoung for SM Station, "Coming Home." He also released a tremendously popular cover of "I Like Me Better" on the NCT Music YouTube channel, which highlighted his vocal range and reached views higher than several NCT 127 title track music videos.


    IIVI. 2020: Neo Zone and Resonance

    NCT 127 released its second full album, Neo Zone, on March 6, 2020, as well as a repackage Neo Zone: The Final Round on May 19.

    Jaehyun participated in the NCT 2020 project in October 2020, featuring all NCT members, and debuting two new ones. This project also included a 2-part NCT full album, NCT 2020 Resonance Pt. 1 and NCT 2020 Resonance Pt. 2. He appears as a singer on NCT 127's song "Music, Dance," as well as a part of NCT U combination units on 3 songs: "Make A Wish" in Korean and English, "Volcano," "Dancing in the Rain", which he co-wrote, and "All About You." He also features in the combination single "Resonance," which combines multiple songs. He also moves to center as part of the dance formation at points in the choreography. The entire project also appeared on NCT World 2.0, a competition-focused show.

    Jaehyun featured in key dance segments during the Resonance music shows, online concerts and award events, substituting at center and as a rapper for the injured Taeyong on several of the "Kick It "stages. He had previously substituted for him during some of the Neo Zone: The Final Round promotions.


    Jaehyun was announced as a lead role in his first part as an actor in Dear M, however, its release was delayed due to controversy connected with one of the actors. It was eventually released in 2022.


    IIVII. 2021: Double Million seller, more acting roles, second world tour and NCT 2021

    NCT 127 released its second Japanese release, Loveholic, on Feb. 17. On June 4, NCT 127 released a digital single, "Save", a collaboration with the Korean hip hop label, Amoeba Culture. On the song, Jaehyun is singing in his lower natural baritone than he usually sings on NCT 127 releases and performing in the center for a large portion of the song.


    NCT 127 released its third Korean studio album Sticker on September 17, 2021, which was also certified as a 2 million seller. Jaehyun took on a greater role in singing, rapping and dancing as center, as well as singing more frequently across all the parts of his vocal range, from his lower register to his falsetto. Additionally, Jaehyun appeared in a new season of NCT Life, NCT Life in Gapyeong, and two other new shows Stick Together and Analog Trip NCT 127: Escape from Magic Island.


    In October, NCT released a repackage album of Sticker, Favorite, which became a million seller. After memorable performances in NCT 127's appearance on SNL Korea, including an anxious guest ordering in a sandwich shop, a nightmare helper and a reluctant son in a spoof of an old country soap opera, it was announced that he was cast as the main lead in the remake of the drama "Bungee Jumping Of Their Own." This was his first role after the delay of Dear M. However, this production was later canceled based on concerns from the original writer during preproduction before shooting started.


    On November 3, NCT 127 released a digital single "Freeze" in collaboration with the video game Kartrider.

    Jaehyun participated in the NCT 2021 project in December 2021, featuring all active NCT members at the time. This project also included a NCT full album, NCT 2021 Universe. He appears as a singer on NCT 127's song "Earthquake," as well as a part of NCT U combination units on 3 songs: "Round&Round," "Vroom" and "Sweet Dream." He also features in the all-unit song "Beautiful." As part of NCT 2021 promotions, he also appeared in a special short digital series EuMARKJUNGsim, co-hosted by NCT group mates Mark and Jungwoo, and NCT 2021 YearDream, around the group's lore.

    On December 19, NCT 127 started its second concert tour, Neo City: The Link, with 3 nights in Seoul. Jaehyun featured in a solo stage with a song he wrote and composed with songwriter minGtion, "Lost."


    Jaehyun appeared with the other active members of NCT in December 2021 as part of the 2021 Winter SMTOWN: SMCU Express album on the song "Hope for Kwangya." He also appeared in the accompanying New Year's Day concert.


    IIVIII. 2021: Acting debut, Prada Ambassador and first solo

    In June 2022, Jaehyun was announced as a Prada brand ambassador after multiple pictorials and promotions with the brand. His drama Dear M also aired on Japanese TV and the international platform Viki.


    In July 2022, it was announced that Jaehyun would be the next member featured as part of the SM Station NCT Lab series, which highlights solo tracks, self-composed titles and more from NCT members. He co-wrote the lyrics for the song "Forever Only," which was also featured in his own episode of Music Space. The song charted on all the Korean charts, as well as the U.S. Billboard World Songs chart.


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    In September, NCT 127 released its 2 million selling fourth album, 질주 (2 Baddies). A new promotional series was also launched with the album, Fill It Up, which was similar to Stick Together, a mini reality series tied to Sticker promotions.


    NCT 127 headlined at the Olympic Stadium in Seoul for their respective tours, joining only a handful of kpop groups who have headlined there. As part of the shows, Neo City: The Link+, the group debuted new mini sub-unit tracks. Jungwoo featured with Doyoung and Jaehyun on a r&b song "Can We Go Back."


    He released a cover of Frankie Valli's "Can't Take My Eyes Off You" in October.

    III. Discography

    IIII. Performer:

    Title Date MV
    "Try Again" with d.ear 2017
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    "New Dream" - Dokgo Rewind OST - with Taeil 2018
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    "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" 2018
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    "New Love" with Doyoung 2019
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    "I Like Me Better" (Lauv cover - only on social media) 2019
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    "Lost" (solo at Neo City The Link concert) 2021 -
    "Forever Only" 2022
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    "Can't Take My Eyes Off You" (Frankie Valli cover - only on social media) 2022
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    IIIII. Songwriter:

    Title Album Release Artist Credits Chart
    "Fire Truck" NCT #127 2016 NCT 127 L KOR 103
    US 2
    "Dancing in the Rain" NCT 2020 Resonance Pt. 1 & 2 2020 NCT U L KOR 188
    "Lost" Neo City The Link concert (unreleased) 2021 Jaehyun L, C, A -
    "Forever Only" SM Station NCT Lab 2022 Jaehyun L KOR 120


    References:

    KOMCA: Searching Works (search JAI HYEON 10012907 under Writers & Publishers)


    IV. Videography

    V. Radio Show

    2017-2019 - NCT Night Night


    VI. Trivia

    - His official NCT emoji is 🍑 (a peach, after his "peach skin" and "peaches and cream" complexion that he and the other Neos joke about.)

    - Jaehyun famously joked that "he lived in America for four years - that's why he's here, man." He lived in Connecticut as a child.

    - Jaehyun is considered a member of the "Foreign Swaggers," although he the only Korean-born member of the group. During their pre-debut SM Rookies promo video, Mark dubbed the group of Johnny (an American), Mark (a Canadian) and Jaehyun (a Korean who "lived in America for four years, that's why he's here, man") as foreign swaggers. The joke has grown over the years and is referenced in social content. The group has expanded to include other foreign-born members who are fluent in English like Ten (Thai) and YangYang (Taiwanese).


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    - Although he was born Jeong Jae-hyun, he legally changed his name to be Jeong Yoon-oh. He still utilizes Jaehyun as his stage name.

    - He plays the guitar and piano.

    - He is a native Korean speaker who is extremely fluent in English and fluent in Japanese.

    - During their training years and early days, he was the maknae to other older 127 members and was still in high school (particularly Taeil, Johnny, Taeyong, Yuta and Doyoung, and they still often perceive him as their maknae.)

    - He is highly competitive and set the highest bowling score in the 2019 Idol Star Athletics Championship with just 3 weeks of practice.

    - His "I Like Me Better" cover has over 87M views as of October 2022. This is the highest amount of views for a SM cover.

    - He is the most followed NCT member on Instagram.

    - He is the member with the most streamed song on Spotify with "Try Again."

    - Jaehyun has a relaxed and soft-spoken personality with a dry sense of humor, and he is popular as an older brother to younger members. He is called the "unbothered king" by fans for his laidback, unruffled personality and dubbed himself "shy boy."

    - Jaehyun's fans are called Valentines, after he selected the name from their two choices of peachzens and valentines, and because of his birthday date. In October 2022, he started referring to them as Jaef.

    - He has a number of nicknames: "Valentine Boy," "Jeffrey" (Johnny's "new name" for him), Jae and "Jamal" (the name he was given on an Indonesian variety show and he liked so much he changed his Bubble name to it.)

    - Jaehyun has become a popular model for fashion brands, including Prada. He became the brand ambassador in 2022 for Prada.

    - He loves R&B music.

    - He loves classic and vintage items, including music, clothing and vinyl records.

    - He is an avid photographer.

    - The song "A Whole New World" is a long-running joke with NCT members and the fandom. Jaehyun first performed this song as part of his repetoire in SM Rookies.

    - He used to host a radio show with Johnny called NCT Night Night.

    - When he is embarrassed, his ears turn red.

    - SM released a video using the audio from NCT's MAMA performance that captures the journey of the members through their career.


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    - NCT members participated in a NCT 24 Hour Relay Cam that gives a snapshot of their daily lives.


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    - NCT members described their "beautiful moments" of 2021 as part of NCT 2021 Universe promotions.

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