– You expressed your respect towards sunbae Cho Yong Pil many times. How has he been your role model?
“I realized what kind of singer I want to become after seeing his comeback. He is the example of the life I want to live. I watched a documentary on him. He doesn’t like to be called “The King.” He said he doesn’t want to be trapped in the image people see him as. He also said the reason why he doesn’t appear on music shows is due to his philosophy that ‘An ideal meeting between a singer and fans is through concerts.’ I believe these are the traits of being a true singer.”
– You accompanied G-Dragon on his solo world tour. Do you also want to do it?
“I want to perform whatever the formality. It doesn’t have to be big. I would perform standing on top of a box of I had to.”
– You seem to have a model student image among the members of Big Bang. Is this true?
“Not really. Actually, I probably have more rebellious thoughts than any of the other members. But I don’t want to cause harm to my group members or the people around me, so I try my best. I don’t have an outgoing personality, and maybe that’s why I seem more well-behaved than I really am.”
– YG is going to debut is new boy group. How do you feel about it?
“As I was observing WINNER, I thought about how difficult and desperate they must have felt. Although on the show I was the one giving them tips on how to sing and dance, I learned a lot. It made me think about how I was when I was a trainee. I want them to do well because they will be following in our footsteps.”
– How is Big Bang’s comeback coming along?
“We’re in the stages of recording. I think we should be releasing a single by the end of the year. We are shooting for a new album for next summer or fall. We’re going to release something one way or another within the next year.”
– What does Big Bang mean to Taeyang?
“I think Big Bang is a tree and I’m one of its branches. Big Bang is my roots. I’m prepared to do anything for Big Bang. There were many incidents and happenings involving Big Bang, but whenever something happened, I realized I could do anything for my group members.”
– It’s been eight year since your debut. What is your goal?
“I stopped setting a specific goal after seven years. I think I should be devoted to what I am doing now. If doing something I like and doing something I think is cool are considered goals, then they’re my goals. I have conviction about how I should live as a singer, but I still need to work on how I’m going to inspire people through my music. It makes me happy to be worrying about these things.”
– You’ve never dated?
“I think it’s becoming more and more difficult for me to meet someone I really like the more time passes. I have been on dates before, but I can’t say I’ve had a real relationship. What I really want to do right now is fall in love. I think love is something I need at this stage of my life.”
-You’ve received criticism about your flashy hairstyle. What can you say about it?
“I used to get my inspiration from the African natives from watching shows like ‘Law of the Jungle’ or ‘Tears of Africa.’ I even tried styling my hair after a cow or a scorpion. My thoughts on style have changed now, so I’m going to try hairstyles people will understand.”
– What is your opinion on the on-going arguments relating to plagiarism in K-Pop?
“I get inspiration from seeing different things and listening to different kinds of music. However, the important thing is the intention. Rather than making it sound the same, I think it’s important to listen to the type of music I like as much as I want and then create something new through completely absorbing it.”