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Special Features, Original Features

Way Back Wednesday: S.E.S. - Putting girl groups on the map

By GhostWriter   Wednesday, June 1, 2016   74,042   8,402   29



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This is Way Back Wednesday where we feature a blast from the past.

If you haven't heard of S.E.S. – Sea (Bada)EugeneShoo –then you're unaware of one of the most important groups in K-pop history. It's been nearly 20 years since they debuted, and around 13 years since their last release, but these girls were the OG female idol group for K-pop! 

SEE ALSO: [INTERVIEW] HA:TFELT On Her Comeback, Music Videos, Germany, and More!

Debuting in 1997 under the careful management of Lee Soo Man and SM Entertainment, the trio became an overnight sensation, captivating audiences with a deadly combination of sweet voices, pretty faces, and a charismatic stage presence.

Bada, Eugene, and Shoo have switched up their style consistently over their 5-year career, as they went from cutesy-innocent to urban to sleekly mature. Of course, the changes weren't just superficial - it was first and foremost a reflection of the trio's growth as musicians. With their first two albums, 'S.E.S.' and 'Sea & Eugene & Shoo', the trio were naturally marketed with an innocent, almost angelic image. The girls would prance about the stage with pompoms in their hair, singing about naive (if not charmingly optimistic) confessions of love.

Things started to get interesting with the release of their third album, 'LOVE'. In an attempt to shed their suffocating 'innocent' image, the girls dyed their hair orange and yellow - a move that was considered daring for the time, as both the music industry and the audience were more conservative back then. Although the girls still sang pop songs, they successfully managed to experiment with various styles - natural, mature, sexy/dominant, and urban. Because of their solid success, executives believed that they were good enough to enter the Japanese market under Avex Trax. Unfortunately, their reception was lukewarm at best. Nevertheless, the move set a precedent for future generations of pop stars, mainly fellow SM Entertainment artist BoA.

The group sought separate careers in 2002. Leader Bada signed with JIIN Entertainment. While her first solo work had a strong reception, her subsequent work suffered low sales. Nevertheless, she's still highly respected in the music industry as a great vocalist. She's also starred in numerous musicals, and having taken a liking to them, continues to build upon her craft. Interestingly enough, she's decided to shed her 'Bada' stage name and utilize her real name, Choi Sung Hee. Eugene also left SM in order to sign with another agency, PFull Entertainment. After releasing two solo albums, she's decided to redirect her career towards acting. She also got married and started a family. Shoo started acting in musicals and performed well enough to land a few acting roles in dramas. Shoo also released a mini-album in 2010 and started a family of her own a few years later.

A legendary group that every K-pop fan should be made aware of. Make sure to look them up on YouTube and check out their numerous other tracks that weren't covered here.

  1. S.E.S
  2. Bada
  3. Eugene
  4. Shoo
  5. way back wednesday

MollieRose (Banned) Thursday, June 2, 2016

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nite0wl (Banned) Thursday, June 2, 2016

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ajshawol1990 Thursday, June 2, 2016

they are they Queens of Kpop! And no one can beat them. They were the pillars upon which the present day girl groups stand and the future groups will stand. They will always have a special and place in the K-pop industry because they deserve it. Thanks to Lee Soo Man, who daringly took the first step in creating this group should also get credit. Because without him, there will be on SES and a very hard struggle for all the girl groups so far.

Laylay_99 Thursday, June 2, 2016


foltarida Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Oh My God. year of they debuted when JungKookie wa born..hahhahahah

kitteauaena Wednesday, June 1, 2016

I didn't know Bada was from SES! I remember I loved her song Only One Person for the Baker King Kim Tak Goo OST.

iisstf28 Wednesday, June 1, 2016

I'm Your Girl is iconic in Kpop!!I love Bada, her performances in Immortal Songs are the best!!👌👌

MK_Zi Wednesday, June 1, 2016

a picture of eugene on my friend's laptop background got me interested in S.E.S. their music got me introduced to Kpop and eventually more. When they broke up. I even quit Kpop for a few years lol.

teengohangal Wednesday, June 1, 2016

I'm Your Girl, and Be Natural are my favorite songs from S.E.S. 🙂

hana_sakura Wednesday, June 1, 2016

I just found out that they're from SM xD And I first knew them because of Dreams Come True from a school performance many years ago. I still like that song til today! And Running Man also reminds me of them, because Haha and Shoo were a pair back then xD

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