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[BOOK] Girls' Generation MemoirsCompleted

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arghninja arghninja
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Posted 02 May 2011 - 10:46 PM


Hi all! I'm currently working on the Japanese book, GG Memoirs! I thought I learned my lesson translating another idol book in the past, but nope, guess I didn't.

Anyways, the book is actually mostly text with only a few color photos in the beginning of the book. This is a great book for those who are just getting to know Girls' Generation, as it starts from their beginnings and examines each member and their accomplishments over the years. For those Sones who have been around for a while, take a trip down memory lane and maybe you'll find something new. smile.gif

I plan to have it finished by their anniversary in August, but we'll see how that goes. ^^;
I'm hoping to release each chapter or sub chapter on a weekly basis and I'll just be updating this thread as I go, so keep checking back!

You can purchase the Japanese book from these sites:
Amazon Japan

Major props goes to my editor, Reyu! Thanks for helping out! And happy reading!

Girls' Generation Memoirs
Written by: Girls' Generation Research Group
Published by: Soryusha Publishing

Translated by: arghninja@ssf (aka Fenrir@jphip)
Edited by: Reyu@ssf (aka Yuuyami@jphip)

(Updated 8/14 - Completed)

Table of Contents:
Chapter 1 - The Birth of Girls' Generation (see below)
Chapter 2 - Getting to Know Them More
Chapter 3 - Girls' Generation Touching Stories
Part 1
Part 2
Chapter 4 - Girls' Generation Cutie Phrases
Chapter 5 - Girls' Generation News
Chapter 6 - Misc. Info related to the Girls

Girls’ Generation Memoirs

Chapter 1

The Birth of Girls’ Generation

Homepage appearance of a new group

Resonating singing with polished dancing. Girls’ Generation takes that place as a girl group who is not your typical idol and is popular among the people. The girls first showed themselves on July 16, 2007. On the official SM Entertainment homepage, the 9 girls’ photos were shown to the public as the new girl group that was debuting in August.

There was a growing anticipation of the talented girl group, like Yuri, who already started activities as a model, and Sooyoung, who already had experience as a singer.

Furthermore, on the 18th, through community sites like Daum and on the official homepage, it was announced to the public that they would have a documentary filmed before their debut. On the 29th, the documentary program, “Girls Go to School,” aired on Mnet, showing their history starting from their auditions up to their debut. Girls’ Generation grabbed people’s attention even before their debut.

Trainee Generation who dashed out of training camp

Girls’ Generation, who appeared on “M Countdown” on July 19th and performed their debut song, “Into the New World” before an audience for the first time, officially debuted about 2 weeks later on August 2nd. Soon after, their first album, “Girls’ Generation,” was a hit and reached number 1 on SBS “Inkigayo” charts in November. From this, the girls that became a popular idol group steadily climbed the steps to stardom after this. And that success is backed by the number of years cultivated from their strict trainee days.

Each member of Girls’ Generation worked hard on their lessons for various length of time as SM entertainment trainees.

Jessica, Hyoyeon, and Sooyoung each trained for about 6 to 7 years. The member with the shortest length of time, Tiffany, still trained for 3 years. Sunny was a trainee for 9 years when combined with the time when she was under another agency.

While each of them lived together in training camp, it was dance and singing practice day in and out. Because lessons were normally strict, it was expected to be more than 12 hours or longer every day. It was so strict that Taeyeon confessed on a variety show, “Star Golden Bell,” that she ran away from the training camp in Seoul and went back home. Tiffany, Taeyeon’s roommate at the time, looked back upon it and said, “I was so surprised coming back from practice to find Taeyeon’s belongings gone.”

Super Girls and the Member’s Vision

Trainee Generation improved their dance and singing skills and also learned the necessary languages in order to flourish overseas while living together in training camp.

Also, the Trainee Generation that were close in age, singing level and etc, were put into temporary groups and did activities together. The members of Girls’ Generation were also put into the temporary group, “Super Girls,” and did their lessons.

However, at the time, Super Girls was not 9 members, but 14 members. Formed in 2005, Super Girls afterwards went through some member changes and had some bumps and detours, but debuted as Girls’ Generation in 2007.

Well then, what happened to the girls who did not make it into Girls’ Generation? One girl who shared so much with the members of Girls’ Generation as a SM Entertainment trainee, Soyeon, is currently an active member of the 7 member vocal group, T-ara. Soyeon confessed on Korea’s cable channel Ntv program where while riding and chatting with the taxi driver called “Taxi” that she was a SM Entertainment trainee and was a member of Girls’ Generation predecessor group, Super Girls. Moreover, she told the bare truth that because she was weak-willed she withdrew from Super Girls and she was jealous of the earlier debut and success of Girls’ Generation.

Also, it wasn’t only Soyeon that could have been in Girls’ Generation. Placing 1st in the singing category in SM Entertainment 2003 auditions, trainee Lee Hwan Hee, and Stella, a girl personally scouted by SM Entertainment founder Lee Sooman, were both members of Super Girls. They definitely did not quit the group because they lacked the skills. Like Soyeon, they had the abilities, but left the group for other reasons.

Main member contender who was accepted to a prestigious university

While a main contender as a member of Girls’ Generation, Jang Ha Jin, quit as a trainee of her own free will. As a girl who loved singing and dancing, she passed SM Entertainment’s audition when she was in 6th grade and became a trainee. For 3 years, while going to school, she commuted from her home in Ilsan to the training place in Seoul and took on the strict lessons. Even becoming a trainee, she told her parents that she would not fail school and even during her commute her study guides never left her hands. And in middle school, her average grade was 95.

After Girls’ Generation debuted, Ha Jin appeared on KBS “Imagination Plus” and showed a picture of her with the members of Girl’s Generation. Overcoming the tough lessons together, one can definitely feel the bond of friendship between them.

If she had continued on as a trainee, she could have also debuted as a member of Girls’ Generation. However, it became progressively difficult to balance between the harsh lessons and school work. In the middle of all this, Ha Jin failed to get into the special high school for elite training. Because of this failure, she quit being a trainee and immersed herself in her studies. Now, Ha Jin is studying at the prestigious university, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST). She does not regret quitting as a trainee at that time. And she cheers with all her heart for the success of the members she shared much with.

A member of the hot new group was also a contender?!

Co-ed, a 10 member group consisting of 4 girls and 6 boys, debuted in Korea in September of 2010. Their agency, Core Contents Media, is the same agency handles T-ara and Supernova.
One of the members in Co-ed who handles the solo parts with her overwhelmingly powerful singing voice, Chan Mi, was actually a contender to be in Girls’ Generation. At the time of Co-ed’s debut, Chan Mi’s SM Entertainment trainee photo circulated around the internet.

In the photo, Chan Mi was wearing a beige dress that the other fresh Girls’ Generation members were also wearing.

Because Chan Mi had quite a bit of talent and like the other Girls’ Generation members, Chan Mi’s voice and dancing were acknowledged. Regardless of her being only a trainee, with her talent and cute looks, an official Heo Chan Mi Fan Café was made. However, with unknown reasons, at some point in time, Chan Mi quit being a SM Entertaiment trainee, joined with Core Contents Media, and debuted as a member of Co-ed.

Also like Soyeon of T-ara, Chan Mi became rivals to friends she once shared a deep bond with. In Korea, attention is gathering on Co-ed about how much they can catch up to Girls’ Generation and what kind of activities they will be doing from now on.

Strategy of targeting teen females

Through the great success of legendary idol group H.O.T., SM Entertaiment started their idol training in 1997. Of course with boy groups as well, they also put in effort with girl groups and in the time up to 2000, about 40 girl groups debuted. However, the boy groups showed their results as it was, but nobody could say what was needed for a girl group to be successful.
Around the same time, Boa of SM Entertainment hit a big break. It was an era of authentic artists. Taking this hint, SM Entertainment planned for an idol girl group that could both sing and dance. That was Girls’ Generation. Up until now the biggest difference between idol girl groups and Girls’ Generation is the demographic of their fans. Up until now idol girl groups’ targets were male fans, but in contrast, Girls’ Generation’s target is females. Moreover, young teen females that are the same generation as the members.

Kenzie, SM Entertainment’s composer, created the song, “Into the New World,” an energetic song, but with a melody that shows the delicate and pure heart of female teens. This song was chosen to be Girls’ Generation debut song. Also, in their first album, “Girls’ Generation,” they covered the King of Live, Lee Seung Cheol’s 1989 hit song, “Girls’ Generation.” Kenzie boldly did the arrangement of Lee Seung Cheol’s “Girls’ Generation.” They also changed it to pop lyrics that relates to female teens. That kind of targeting worked amazingly and Girls’ Generation got their break in one hit.

After all the strict lessons, the girls who practiced hard for their skills, danced and sang songs that emphasized with girls of the same era. Since their debut, this concept hasn’t changed and they ushered in a girl group boom in 2009. Their group name “Girls’ Generation” means a girl’s era has come. Who would have thought that it really has become like their name right now in the K-pop world.

Passing SM’s Audition and becoming trainees

The members of Girls’ Generation aimed to be idols from when they were kids. Their background varies, such as becoming trainees after passing the SM’s public auditions that are held periodically or becoming trainees after being scouted.

Among that, there are contestants who compete and winners in SM Entertainment sponsored SM Best Youth Contest get their hands on a ticket to becoming a trainee. Those contests are separated into many categories and if you win first place in that category, it means you are one step closer to debut. Leader Taeyeon became a trainee after winning SM Entertainment’s Eighth Annual Best Singer Contest in 2004 when she was 15 years old. Yuri became a trainee after getting the grand prize in SM Entertainment’s 1st Annual Best Dance Contest in 2001 when she was 12 years old.

Back story of Japan’s Debut

Reason why Girls’ Generation was successful in Japan

Why did Girls’ Generation have a breakthrough in Japan? There are two reasons for this. First, through the spread of the internet and exchange between Japan and Korea, the difference of values have decreased regarding the values Korean and Japanese females have on make-up and fashion. Because of this, Korea’s sense of “pretty” became Japan’s “pretty” and Japan’s “cute” became Korea’s “cute.” Furthermore, cute Korean girl groups do more than sing and dance than Japanese idols. Even among them, with looks and talent, the top class of Korea’s entertainment world, the 9 members of Girls’ Generation, already had a high level of attention before their Japan debut and it was enough proof that a breakthrough was obtainable.

The second reason was the presence of their seniors, Boa and Tohoshinki. Boa, who debuted in Japan in 2001, and Tohoshinki, who debuted in 2005, had a big breakthrough and interests in Korean artists were high in Japan. These are definitely the reasons for Girls’ Generation breakthrough.

The agency’s vision intertwines Japanese debut

On August 25th, 2010 at Tokyo’s Ariake Coliseum, Girls’ Generation had their first Japanese public performance: Premium Showcase Live. Approximately 22,000 fans gathered for a total of 3 performances and over 1000 people of mass media crowded around. Also in the following month, on September 8th, “Genie” was released and finally their Japanese debut was achieved. “Genie” first appeared at number 5 on Oricon’s Daily Chart. For a foreign artist Japanese debut, it was extraordinary.

However, one month before Girls’ Generation’s Japan debut, there was another girl group who debuted. That group was the 5-member girl group, Kara. In Feburary 2010 at Akasaka Blitz, Kara held a live performance and quickly gathered attention. Also, when their debut was decided by Universal Sigma, an official fanclub was established. Furthermore, they had tireless activities before their debut, such as the commemoration sale release event for their special limited edition CD in Japan. And they accomplished their Japanese debut with the release of “Mister” in August.

Girls’ Generation debuted in Japan following Kara’s footsteps. So exactly how did it become like that? That is due to the different visions of the agencies the two 2 groups are attached to.
Girls’ Generation belongs to SM Entertaiment and Kara belongs to DSP Media. These two agencies have a rivalry going on between each other. For example, when SM Entertainment debuted H.O.T., in opposition, DSP Media debuted Sechkies. And again, in recent times, against Tohoshinki, SS501 debuted.

DSP Media has been following SM Entertainment up to now, but in regards to the big project of a Japanese debut of a girl group, DSP Media had a motive to be one step ahead of SM Entertaiment no matter what. Japan’s market still sold CDs more than Korea, where download sales were mainstream, so DSP Media wanted to get Kara selling before anybody else.
On the other hand, in opposite of DSP Media’s fierce offensive, SM Entertainment decided to take more care in Girls’ Generation’s development in Japan. That is because they had a painful experience in the past.

In 1997, SM Entertainment debuted the 3 member girl group, S.E.S., in Japan. However, the results were an utter failure. They did not get a break in Japan and because they shifted activities to Japan at the height of their popularity in Korea, the passion of the Korean fans began to cool down during that time. In order not to repeat that failure, SM Entertainment took extra care in choosing the song, the details of their debut event and most importantly, the length of time of their Japan debut before sending Girls’ Generation over.

Japan in August is immersed by Girls’ Generation

Girls’ Generation debuted in August of 2010 and Japan was dyed completely by them. Giant billboards of their debut song, “Genie,” were up in Ginza and Roppongi, and life sized stands of the girls were put in brand name record stores. As it was in the middle of summer vacation, many students stood in front of the panels and posters and took many photos as they pleased.
Girls’ Generation is gradually establishing that position of not your ordinary idols and is becoming a group that teen girls look up to. Admired in Japan, there are quite a few female copy dance groups out there.

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colin<3SNSD colin<3SNSD
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Posted 02 May 2011 - 10:58 PM

wooo... i saw that book sell on yesasia but i didn't get it, but now i can fully undestand it from here... ^^
BIG THANKS to arghninja and Reyu for subbing and editing this up ! it's not easy to sub a whole book. you guys doing a great job ! looking forward to the next chapter. :book:
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Posted 02 May 2011 - 10:59 PM

OMG!! Thank you so much for translating this! I bought the book but can't understand a single thing, nevertheless, I keep it as a collection. But....with this! I can understand what they are talking about! I'm so happy~ Thank you!
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snditzz snditzz
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Posted 02 May 2011 - 11:00 PM

Thanks for sharing this~
This is pretty well written ; Enjoyed reading it :thumbup:
I'm looking forward for more too =]
It really shows us a lot about SNSD. Real lot...
Anyway, thanks for putting in the effort in to this~
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Posted 02 May 2011 - 11:00 PM

love this! and for some reason I feel happy Tohoshinki was being mentioned as well.
The girls are shining bright!Proud of them :)
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Posted 02 May 2011 - 11:01 PM

Thanks so much for the translation. Finally able to understand the history of SNSD...
Will continue to check back for updates.. Looking forward to it.. :-)
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appletrash appletrash
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Posted 02 May 2011 - 11:02 PM

wow that must have been tough to sub! really appreciate your effort! i had no idea of the back stories that went on like soyeon and the rest of the supposed "other" super girls members.

trainee live must really have been tough, so many people quitting, even the tough taeyeon ran away. it really proves how strong our girls are and how deserving they are of their big break!

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As a SooSicSphere who hold the belief that SooSica are complete as one,

I promise to cherish SooMeo and Jessiette's secret world,

To uphold my everlasting faith and trust towards the Trainee Couple's promises to eachother,

To be extra observant in order to catch their most subtle, enigmatic moments,

And to continuously love both of my Ice and Cheerful Princesses 'till it Snows in the middle of a Summer day.

I promise, I promise I will.

jolovessnsd jolovessnsd
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Posted 02 May 2011 - 11:02 PM

Thanks for translating! i didn't buy the book cos i wouldn't understand it..but now there's you! thanks for providing us this new read!
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Posted 02 May 2011 - 11:13 PM

Thanks for translating, and wow I knew part of the history but now I understand more things about before of the debut it's amazing how the things can change soon
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UrinatorZzZ UrinatorZzZ
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Posted 02 May 2011 - 11:24 PM

Ahh! Now that's interesting!
I didn't know they were once called "Super Girls" :P
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Posted 02 May 2011 - 11:36 PM

I honestly haven't read it yet cos I got some homework to rush but Thank You for translating this!
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I like just the way you are...

Ferin Ferin
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Posted 02 May 2011 - 11:37 PM

Great! :thumbsup: I like this memoirs writing ^_^ hey, you're right! I find something new that i don't really know about The Girls.. ;) Looking forward for your update!

Thanks Subbers!
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af_1993 af_1993
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Posted 02 May 2011 - 11:58 PM

thanks..i really appreciate it..^^
sm should make a book about our girls, in english and also in korean
so that more international fans could understand :thumbup: :thumbup:
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To remain secretive with all my dancing mistakes,To outshine others with my aegyo and smiling eyes,
And to do everything I can to spread the word about our Brighter than Gems Fany Fany Tiffany

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Posted 02 May 2011 - 11:58 PM

Woohoo ! Many thx for the translation ! Never knew bout all this b4 . Especially the birth of SNSD . SNSD Fighting ! So looking forward to chapter 2 !!! (Y)
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akiyama_yume akiyama_yume
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Posted 03 May 2011 - 12:01 AM

Thanks for translating :D.
But I think this part "Sunny was a trainee for 9 years when combined with the time when she was under another agency. "
is quite weird.. 9 years !!??
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chronical256 chronical256
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Posted 03 May 2011 - 12:08 AM

Really thank you for the translations,
but i think the training time for sunny is not correct.
If i'm not wrong she trained for 5 years in another company then trained in SME for 9 MONTHS before snsd debut.
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Trasher_54 Trasher_54
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Posted 03 May 2011 - 12:18 AM

That chapter is very interesting. I knew much of some parts in that chapter, but also never knew some. I guess it must be a tough job being a trainee. =P

Thank you very much for translating, and I'll look forward for the next one. :thumbup:
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llc1281 llc1281
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Posted 03 May 2011 - 12:26 AM

Thanks a lot for translating, I'm planning on getting it too from yesasia.com for my collection even if I don't understand a word. Looking forward to read the rest of the chapters. Glad SMENT learned their lesson and being extra careful with Soshi's Japan debut/promotions. :clap:
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arghninja arghninja
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Posted 03 May 2011 - 12:32 AM

Thanks for translating :D.
But I think this part "Sunny was a trainee for 9 years when combined with the time when she was under another agency. "
is quite weird.. 9 years !!??

Really thank you for the translations,
but i think the training time for sunny is not correct.
If i'm not wrong she trained for 5 years in another company then trained in SME for 9 MONTHS before snsd debut.

I'm only translating what is written in the book, but I believe they took all the time when she entered the entertainment industry up to her debut with SNSD as "training." So starting from 1998 when she joined Starlight Entertainment up to SNSD's debut in 2007 (taken from Wiki), that would be a total of 9 years.
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Posted 03 May 2011 - 12:33 AM

Thansk for translating. There was some things that I didn't know about the girls... I was trying to find a cut of Ha Jin on SSP, but couldn't find it :( i really wanna see that D:
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