One of the best vocalists of her generation, Yuju (real name Choi Yuna) was born in Ilsan, in October of '97. Yuju, whose stage name means 'affection' has always been musically inclined. While we all know her for her vocals, she can also play the guitar and enjoys writing lyrics and composing. When she was only 15, Yuju participated in the mother of all survival shows, K-Pop Star. There, she performed before a judging panel composed of BoA, Yang Hyun-suk and everybody's favorite plastic pants wearer, JYP. While YG thought the future GFRIEND main vocalist showed a lot of promise, JYP quite simply dragged her, saying her voice was too plain and her dance skills were lacking. Because of that she was booted from the show and joined a long list of idols who were rejected by JYP, including EXID's Hani, IU, SISTAR's Hyolyn and BTS's J-Hope. Oop! All wasn't lost though, because soon after she joined Cube Entertainment and, thank god, transferred to LOEN, the same company that helped make Yuju's idol, IU, the star she is today.
Eight months after debuting as a member of GFRIEND, Yuju and the group made headlines for the infamous Me Gustas Tu performance where our girl slipped FIVE times on a wet stage. Her determination pushed her to get up every single time and continue performing, despite hurting herself. With a broken finger and a legion of new fans, all impressed by the singer's professionalism, Yuju was ready to take over the K-Pop world. After the performance went viral, Me Gustas Tu jumped to the top of the charts and became one of the group's most beloved songs. By the end of 2015, the song had accumulated 66 million streams and more than a million downloads. By 2017, it had been downloaded 2.5 million times and boasted more than 100 million streams. She's also the first GFRIEND member to participate in King of Masked Singer and her first solo release, a collaboration with rapper Loco called Spring Has Gone By Chance, has sold more than 2.5 million downloads. Fuck JYP's drag, right?
When I first got into GFRIEND, I thought Yuju was the oldest member and the leader of the group. And no, it's not because I thought she looked older than the other girls. She exudes the kind of aura that made me notice her in this way. Even in their debut era, there was always an air of elegance around Yuju, she looked so... Poised? Mature? Add to that her incredible vocals and you've got one of the best idols to debut during the 3rd gen. I'm not @Vixen
so I'm not going to try and get technical about Yuju's voice. All I can say is that, to my ears, she has one of the most beautiful tones in all of K-Pop. There's something at once soothing and moving about her vocals which I find absolutely gorgeous. GFRIEND had other talented vocalists, but Yuju is the one who made those songs what they are. The absolute panic when she disappeared for a few months and Buddies all over Twitter were speculating that she had left the group. That's also when I realised how much I loved her and would miss her if she were to leave. Luckily, she reappeared a few months later and no, I'm not gonna talk about the fact that she suddenly had a very sharp jawline.
After GFRIEND's disbandment, Yuju joined Daniel Kang's agency, KONNECT. She released 'REC.', her debut EP as a soloist lead by the single Play in January 2022. While promoting the release, she confessed to NME that the idea of going solo was very daunting. Luckily, she had the support of her former bandmates, who have been supporting her not only after the album's release, but also when Yuju was working on it. Recently, she appeared on ReBirth Track, a show hosted by Tiger JK and Yerin, where she talked about that new chapter in her life while reminiscing of the good old days.
Anyway, enough of me rambling, I wanna know what made you fall in love with Yuju! Was it her high notes? Her pole dancing skills? Her solo debut?