Did Tablo’s Misery Become a Blessing for Hip-Hop?


On the afternoon of Oct. 30, a friendly face greeted the audience and viewers of SBS Inkigayo.” It was Epik High member, Tablo.

Tablo recently released his first solo album after a one year and six month long hiatus that occurred when the academic controversy was sparked with him in the center.

Before getting on stage for his first comeback performance, Tablo was interviewed by “Inkigayo” MCs Jo Kwon and IU and thanked his fans. During the interview, Tablo showed the audience that he has become a more poised individual than he was previously, while also revealing his feelings on releasing his first album.

When asked how he felt about being on stage after a long time, Tablo responded, “I’m just really happy and grateful that I am able to do music again.”

Right after, IU proceeded to mention that his new album has become a hit among not only his fans, but also other celebrities and asked Tablo to introduce the title song, “Bad.” To this he said, “This song was not written for bad people. It was written for good people who are forced to become bad because of love.


Although Tablo’s responses were calm and relaxed, he gave his fans a lot to think about. It seemed that his words could be felt through the bones. This was because Tablo, who suffered through the academic controversy, was the one to say it.

Because music is the fruit of creativity, the producers’ lives become reflected in their music whether they mean for it to or not. It seems that the rough events Tablo went through led him into a new world of music, seeing as how “Bad” can be interpreted into a story of a young artist who had to suffer through much misery.

Before Tablo was confronted with the academic controversy, he captured the hearts of many fans through a variety of music styles. However, the music he came back with is different from his previous music.

In the past, Tablo came to his fans with songs that were at some times consisted of poetic lyrics accompanied by beautiful melodies, while at other times, they would be fast melodies with refreshing lyrics to express the feelings of love. However, the songs he returned with consist of darker emotions. His music reflects upon the past two years, when he was able to experience the highest and greatest type of emotions, along with the lowest and darkest.

Tablo is still fighting with the academic controversy that brought him to the cliff of despair in that past. However, the ironic thing is that this controversy was what helped him become a more mature musician.

The performance that Tablo put on during “Inkigayo” showed the audience his growth as a person and musician. Through his songs’ luxurious lyrics and sentimental melody, a significant difference between his music and hip-hop music that is usually rough was rendered. However, because his lyrics and expressions were the portrayals of Tablo’s personal experiences, it was not as easy for listeners to empathize with him.

Through his lyrics, fans and listeners were able to feel the sincerity of Tablo’s music. As a result, “Bad” rose up in the music charts as soon as the song was released last week, proving how much broader Tablo’s fanbase has become. 

Even after a year and six month long hiatus, Tablo’s existence is still immense. Whether he was standing on stage with Taeyang or on his own, Tablo still put on performances that charmed the viewers.

This is why it is said, no matter how cruel, that Tablo’s misery became a blessing for hip-hop music. He was able to overcome obstacles that caused him a great deal of pain and come back to his fans with music that rivals his many past hits.