8 April 1990
Jung District, Seoul, Korea, Republic of
18 December 2017 (aged 27)
Kim Jonghyun (Hangul: 김종현; April 8, 1990 – December 18, 2017), better known mononymously as Jonghyun, was a South Korean singer-songwriter, record producer, radio host, and author. He was the main vocalist of the South Korean boy group SHINee, and had further participated in S.M. Entertainment's project group S.M. S.M. The Ballad. Jonghyun debuted as a solo artist on January 12, 2015 with his first EP, titled BASE. In the same year, on September 17, Jonghyun released a compilation album, 이야기 Op.1 (Story Op.1). On May 24, 2016, Jonghyun released his first studio album, 좋아 (She Is).
Jonghyun has been active in music since he was in junior high school. He was in a band and participated in many festivals in his area. In his band, he was not a vocalist but a bassist. The band's name was "ZION" and during one of its shows, he was scouted by SM. Before his debut with SHINee, he sang a duet with Zhang Li Yin in the song “交错的爱 (Wrongly Given Love)” for her Chinese album.
Jonghyun was discovered at the 2005 S.M. Casting System. In 2008, he was chosen as a member of the group Shinee, the 5-member boy group debuted on May 25, 2008 on SBS's Inkigayo.
In November 2010, it was revealed by SM Entertainment that Jonghyun, along with TRAX’s Jay, Super Junior’s Kyuhyun, and rookie singer, Jino, had formed a project group, S.M. The Ballad, under their label. The group focuses more on ballad rather than pop and R&B themes. The group released their debut album, "너무 그리워 (Miss You)", on November 29, 2010. They debuted on November 28, 2010 on SBS's Inkigayo with their lead single, "너무 그리워 (Miss You)". They also promoted another single from the album, "Hot Times (시험하지 말기)".
In February 4, 2014, SM Entertainment revealed that SM The Ballad will make a comeback with new members, Jonghyun being the only one from the original formation. It was later revealed that he would be singing, together with Girls' Generation's Taeyeon, the title track of the new album, "숨소리 (Breath)".
In October 2010, Jonghyun was one of twenty idols from various South Korean groups that recorded the song, "Let's Go," for the purpose of increasing public participation in the 2010 G-20 Seoul summit. He provided vocals along with label-mates Sungmin, Seohyun and Luna.
In the 4th mini album "Sherlock", Jonghyun had written the two songs "늘 그자리에 (Honesty)" and "알람시계 (Alarm Clock)". The song "Honesty" is written to give thanks to their fans who have stayed by their side with unchanging love until now. The other song, "Alarm Clock" which is also co-written with fellow member Minho, is about wishing to wake up from a nightmare of past break-up. He also wrote for multiple SHINee songs including "너와 나의 거리 (Selene 6.23)" (album "The Misconceptions of Us") and "상사병 (Symptoms)" (album "Everybody"). Jonghyun fully composed the collaboration track with IU, "Gloomy Clock" in IU's 3rd album "Modern Times". He also fully composed, wrote and lead the vocal direction for Son Dam Bi's digital single, "Red Candle". Not only did Jonghyun compose and write the song, he also took part in the vocal directing. The lyrics relate the characteristics of a candle to someone in love, who feels excited and nervous at the same time.
As a DJ for MBC FM4U's midnight radio show "Blue Night" Jonghyun has revealed his newly written songs on his radio show which he has prepared for a special corner called "Blue Night Lyrics, That Man's Composition". Back in June, DJ Jonghyun tweeted: “As I started Blue Night, I contemplated on how to incorporate myself well into the program… As expected, the conclusion is communicating with listeners and music! That’s why I have prepared a project where I personally write a song pertaining to a listener’s story and let you hear it. The name of the corner is ‘Blue Night Lyrics, That Man Composition’. It won’t be aired every week, but it will be aired once every few months as a special corner, so please send in a lot of stories. I’m accepting stories through the homepage.”
MBC FM4U have revealed starting from July 7th, they will be releasing the self-composed and self-written songs of Jonghyun. Furthermore it was stated that Jonghyun has written a total of 7 songs and that they will be revealed succession over several weeks.
On December 18th, 2017, Jonghyun was found in his apartment unconscious after what evidence has pointed out was most likely a suicide attempt. He passed away while emergency services were transporting him to the hospital.
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