Letter Time: Working with Red Velvet’s Wendy

Greetings to all of you reading this,

I hope this post finds you all well. Today I want to address a matter that, up until recently, was only made public for the first time. The topic as you can see by the title is my working relationship with one of the members of SM Entertainment’s newest girl group, Red Velvet’s vocal pride Wendy.

Last Thursday (August 21st, 2014), my friend Angel posted an article on Wendy on her blog DragonsForAngel.com (original post here). She quoted some stuff I told her, which obviously made a secret I’ve had for nearly three years public – that I was, for a time, Wendy’s producer while she was still in Canada. To give some context as to how her and I originally connected, I should start from the beginning.

In February of 2011, I took a trip to Vancouver during my winter reading week to visit family and friends out there. At the same time I was there, I also had the chance to go to an event hosted by Koreaboo and Cube Entertainment – the final round for Cube’s ‘2011 Global Auditions’ and singer G.NA’s debut showcase in Canada. Prior to G.NA performing at that event, the top 14 audtionees that made it to the final round each performed in front of a panel of judges to prove why they should be chosen to sign with Cube. Wendy was one of the auditionees there. Not knowing who she was at the time, I was amazed by her vocal range and knew right away that I needed to connect with her.

A week after that event, I proceeded to contact Wendy via Facebook about working with her on some music. Having only started producing music a few months before, this was a trial-and-error happenstance, mainly because of my lack of experience in producing for myself, much less for anyone else. That being said, I knew this was something I needed to do, not only to improve my skills as a producer, but to try and help make this young star move forward with her future career. Little did I know that things were in motion at the time that would lead to something much bigger.

From March of 2011, Wendy and I began the task of panning out ideas for a song. I wrote two or three melodies based on what I heard of her voice at the time. Eventually I settled on one that I felt would suit her soulful vocals, the demo of which exists on my Soundcloud page, in its unfinished format. I left Wendy the task of coming up with lyrics and recording them once she was happen with what she made. I chose to let her do that to see what she could do in the hopes of helping her grow as an artist. At the same time, I was also working on another song that would have featured her vocals and the rap stylings of another Toronto-based artist, former JTBC Made in U contestant Eric Moon. A year flies by and by June of 2012, we were going into the process of recording her lyrics when out of nowhere, we had to stop our work together for reasons she never clarified.

I was left wondering what happened, and hoped that eventually I would have an answer. Lo and behold, it took almost two and a half years before I finally knew why she had to pull out of our work together – one of the three largest entertainment agencies in Korea had signed her after she auditioned in Toronto around the time we put our work on hold. Another half a year passed and now she’s a part of one of the hottest groups to debut this year, gaining much attention for her versatility and skill as an artist in her own right.

I finally had my answer. Now you know how everything came to be.

Before I finish this letter, I want to clarify a few misunderstandings that I have been made aware of through browsing what people are saying online:

1. I was the one who reached out to her, mostly to improve my skills and help her improve, and it was all in good fun. Nothing legal or commercial about any of it. Just two artists working with each other on level ground.

2. Contrary to popular belief, Wendy did not ‘ditch me for SM’. Rather, she took my advice about continuing to pursue bigger opportunities, and when the right one came, she grabbed on with both hands and held tight. It paid off for her very well as you all can see.

3. Despite how things may have ended at the time, as a friend and lover of music in general, I am happy for her. There’s no malcontent to be found here. If anything, I just find it funny how a few months before she auditioned for SM that I said to her, “Someday, someone in Korea will smarten up and sign you before I can.” I’ve said that about other singers I grew close with in the past, and I haven’t been wrong yet.

4. The reason I revealed this news to the world through a lesser-known blog was not to draw attention to myself at all, but rather to let fans know that there were other people interested in her talent before SM signed her, and that if anything, she truly is a ‘diamond in the rough’.

5. While we never had the chance to meet in person before she left for Korea, if she happens to read this, I want her to know how proud I am of her, and that I wish her nothing but the best.

letter

Thank you for taking the time to read my humble story of how I briefly worked with a future KPOP star.

 

Sincerely,

Jorge (aka Gentleman Bear)

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