Steve Aoki says BTS demonstrates Asian potential to the world

November 1, 2018

SEOUL, Nov. 1 (Yonhap) — Japanese-American musician Steve Aoki said that K-pop boy band BTS has successfully demonstrated the high potential Asian artists have to the world.

“Just like (Chinese-American) actor Bruce Lee ruled the world 50 years ago, BTS broke down the cultural barriers. They represented Asians, while they sang only in the Korean language and demonstrated Asians’ potential,” Aoki said in a written group interview with Korean media outlets, distributed by Sony Music in the Korean language.

The 41-year-old DJ and pop icon released his new song, “Waste It on Me,” last week in collaboration with BTS, their third joint work after the remix version of BTS’ highly popular 2107 song “MIC Drop” and “The Truth Untold,” a track off BTS’ album “Love Yourself: Tear.”

This photo of Steve Aoki is provided by Sony Music. (Yonhap)

This photo of Steve Aoki is provided by Sony Music. (Yonhap)

Aoki said he tremendously enjoyed working with BTS for the third collaboration.

“I first met BTS around May 2017. They were already making big changes to the world. … I invited them over to my house and had a bromance,” he said, adding that the invitation led to their first collaboration on “MIC Drop.”

When he first received BTS’ vocal recording of “Waste It on Me,” the voices were so good that he did not want to modify it in any way, Aoki noted. “When I work with other artists, I have to go through several adjustments and feedback. But with BTS, I did not want to spoil the pure sentiment their voices were carrying.”

Aoki said it’s “jaw-dropping” to see the success of their first collaboration on “MIC Drop.” BTS’ recently sold-out American and European legs of the “Love Yourself” world tour is an unprecedented record in history, which even English-speaking singers have not been able to achieve, he said.

“It’s a record that would look still historic even if you look back some 20 years from now,” he said. “I am grateful that I could be with them in the process to make it possible for Asians to conquer the mainstream (culture).”

BTS’ sensational success on the globe conjured up hopes and dreams, especially for Asians, that “If you continue to work hard, you can achieve results,” he said.

In addition to BTS, the DJ said he also wants to work with other K-pop artists, citing Monsta X and CL among others.