How Choi Seunghyun became T.O.P

Choi Seunghyun was born on the 4th November, 1987 in Seoul, South Korea. During his childhood, T.O.P said that he was rebellious and found it hard to study in school, as he mentioned on an episode of SBS’s ‘Go Show’:

“I had an extremely sensitive personality, and I snuck out (of school) to go home everyday. Because I kept coming home from school, my teacher and my mom decided to hide my shoes, but then I started going home barefoot. It was hard to work with others. I couldn’t adhere to the structured and organized activities. I wasn’t a delinquent, but I just couldn’t sit in class with all the other kids. It was so hard for me. In retrospect, those were things I needed to experience but I kept leaving to come home.”

TOP’s first kiss was near Han River when he was in 7th Grade, he shared the story on the YG Special of ‘SBS’s Strong Heart’:

“I’m not sure exactly how old I was, but I do remember the scene. When I was young, I wanted to show my mom my first kiss with a girl, so I asked my mom to come outside of the house for a moment. When she stepped outside, I beckoned my girlfriend who was hiding from behind the trash cans and confidently kissed her in front of my mom.”

Seunghyun seems to have always had a strong relationship with his mother ever since he was young. He now has his mother on No.1 speed dial and she lives with him in his own villa. During an episode of ‘Come to play’, he showed his strong affection for his parents by crying after reading a letter from his mother as he felt regretful for not being a better son. He also does not like it when people post up pictures of his family on the internet as he wants to defend them as even though he does not have a private life, he wants them to.

During his childhood, Seunghyun met Jiyong as they were neighbourhood friends from middle school who used to rap and sing together. However, Jiyong moved away and they both lost contact with each other.

In his teenage years, Seunghyun was a popular underground rapper named TEMPO and recorded the song Buckwild featuring NBK gray. His talent was so good that he even won a rap battle contest on a radio program. He was inspired by rap artists such as Notorious B.I.G and would often buy hip-hop clothes.

Later, when YG was looking for members for his new boy band (who would later become Big Bang), Jiyong contacted Seunghyun again and they recorded demos together, sending them to the CEO of YG entertainment, Yang Hyun Suk. YG called him in for an audition but rejected him as he was deemed ‘too chubby’ for the image of an idol. Because Seunghyun wanted to join YG so badly, he reportedly lost 20kg in only 40 days. He returned again to audition and was accepted into YG. When Seunghyun joined YG entertainment, YG couldn’t decide what name to give him. He suggested that he should be called Mark after his favourite guitarist, but Se7en suggested the name ‘T.O.P’ and so that was chosen to be his stage name.

During his trainee days for Big Bang, his rapping techniques were considered exceptional as he had little training compared to the other members. TOP’s main weakness was that he found dancing hard as he mentioned in Episode Seven of Big Bang’s Documentary:

‘I think dancing is really hard for me. Starting with memorising the choreography. It’s all hard for me.’

Big Bang, during trainee days originally had six members: T.O.P, GD, Taeyang, Daesung, Seungri and So-1 (Beast’s Hyunseung). YG wanted the band to have four members, so said that after Big Bang had danced at one of Se7en’s concerts, he would choose which members to keep. YG went on to choose T.O.P, GD, Taeyang and Daesung but said that he would give Hyunseung and Seungri one last chance to impress him, but he could only accept one more member. Seungri was chosen, and So-1 rejected, as his performances lacked emotion and expression.

In 2006, the five members debuted as Big Bang, with the song LA-LA-LA.

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15 responses to “How Choi Seunghyun became T.O.P

  1. hi everyone i love TOP he was very talent guy.and also i wish you would be always happy TOP KKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKK………………………………

  2. Correction*******
    the story he told on strong heart was when he was younger than 7th grade. Maybe you should work on that korean eyy? (: how are you gonna communicate with top when you ever meet him?

    • Well, no it was earlier than that because he was in 7th grade at school but I’m not entirely sure what age he would have been, maybe 12/13? 🙂

  3. Looks good to me 😀 Has enough pictures and you provided references to the quotes, so that part is good in any case XD

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