Block B’s Zico And WINNER’s Song Mino Talk About Their Friendship, First Impressions, And More

Block B’s Zico and WINNER’s Song Mino reunited to talk about their trainee days together!

On December 3, Song Mino appeared on Zico’s “Thinking Bout,” which is broadcast through Naver NOW. “Thinking Bout” is an audio show hosted by Zico in which he invites people who have had an impact on his growth as an artist.

About Song Mino, Zico said, “He’s someone I can’t forget to mention when talking about my life and career. When I think about how we both got to where we are today, I feel so proud of us. I think a lot about the past and feel a lot of different things. He is a music industry colleague from before my debut and before I got this stage name. We also showed good chemistry on the same team on ‘Show Me the Money.’ My friend Mino, Song Mino.”

Zico revealed that it had been a while since they’d met in person but that they frequently keep in contact. Zico said, “We contact each other a lot but we don’t have time to meet often. We meet about twice a year. Our moods have changed a lot. We used to have a lot of energy and only look to the future, but recently we’ve started looking back on the past. We’re very open about our feelings with each other.”

The two artists also shared their first impressions of each other during their trainee days. Zico said, “We first met at an agency called Brand New Stardom. I started my trainee life at that agency and Park Kyung, P.O, Hanhae, U-Kwon, Mino, and many others were there at that time too.”

Song Mino added, “P.O and I were going to art school at the time and P.O met Zico first. He told me that he knew a hyung who was really good at rapping and told me to meet him. I thought at that time that there was nobody who was better at rapping than me.”

Zico said, “If you look at Mino’s results now, then this sounds believable. At that time, though…” Song Mino continued, “At P.O’s words, I thought, ‘Well, how good can he be’ and we met for the first time in a karaoke room. P.O went to spy on him first and told me that he was too good for words. [Zico] must have known we were coming because he was rapping in English by himself when we came in. He pretended that he didn’t see us come in and continued rapping.”

Zico said, “I honestly don’t remember that time very well. I remember Mino’s face and his school uniform when he was introduced to me as a fellow trainee. At the time, he had a very heavy presence. He’s very slim now, and it’s not like he lost a lot of weight or anything, but somehow he had a very strong presence then. He seemed very strong and like he’d be good at sports. He had tanned skin and a resilient vibe, and he said that he was a rapper, so I asked him to show me his rapping. At the time, he wasn’t very good. He had a lot of potential in dance and personal charisma, but he improved in leaps and bounds after he debuted.”

Song Mino said, “I really thought I was good at the time” and Zico said, “That’s why you didn’t listen to the feedback that Park Kyung and I gave you.”

The two mentioned Song Mino’s brief history as part of Block B, meeting backstage after they’d moved to separate groups, and their work together on “Show Me the Money 4.” Zico said, “It’s already been four years. Time goes by fast. I got a lot of hate as a producer and Mino got a lot of hate as a contestant. It can’t have been easy for him to decide to compete. He debuted in Block B, then he debuted in another team, then he returned to being a trainee and debuted in WINNER. As soon as he debuted, he competed on another survival show.”

Song Mino said, “It was a fight for survival. At the time, we’d gotten No. 1 as soon as we made our debut. I was grateful for the attention, but I felt a lot of pressure about whether it was a good thing to go on the survival show. But ever since I was young, I wanted to be acknowledged for the rapping that I could do.”

Zico joked that he should have kept the hit song “Fear” for himself and Song Mino laughed and said he wouldn’t give it up. He said, “I can’t watch my performances on ‘SMTM4.’ I can’t listen to those songs. I’ve grown a lot since then, but ‘Fear’ is 100 percent sincere. I recently met Insooni on a music show and she told me that she listened to ‘Fear’ at a difficult time in her life while exercising. I felt goosebumps, but I thanked her. I’m glad that my fellow celebrities could relate to the song.”

Zico released the album “Thinking Part.2” in November as the follow-up to “Thinking Part.1” in September. Song Mino is currently appearing in tvN’s “New Journey to the West 7” and released the mini album “CROSS” with WINNER in October.

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