BTS to take leave to serve in South Korean Military
By: Austin Bryner
One of South Korea’s most prominent attractions is the K-Pop boy band, BTS, who will be taking a long hiatus from the music industry to undertake the required military service in South Korea.
In June, the band previously announced that they would be taking a break from their group musical activities to pursue some solo projects. The popular band has won many music awards such as having six RIAA-certified platinum singles, won the Group of the Year award in 2022 for the fourth straight year at the MTV VMA’s, and much more in the band’s tenure from 2013 up until 2022. They also have multiple records broken for the billions of views their music has received on various platforms like YouTube and Spotify.
Kim Seok-Jin, mainly known as Jin who is the oldest member of the music group as well the band's music label, Big Hit Music, announced the news Monday that all seven members of the group will be enlisting. Almost all able-bodied men must serve their country for at least 18 months before they are 28 years old. However, for pop stars, the South Korean parliament did pass a bill in 2020 that allowed them to push back their mandatory military service until the age of 30. Jin was one of the first K-Pop stars to be offered the delay in partaking in military service as it was a way to recognize the band's efforts in growing the South Korean image.
Big Hit Music also went on to state in the announcement that they were keeping an eye on the right moment for the group,“ to respect the needs of the country and for these healthy young men,” and they felt that the time for it was now.
“Group member Jin will initiate the process as soon as his schedule for his solo release is concluded at the end of October. He will then follow the enlistment procedure of the Korean government,” said the label.
The label also went on to discuss when the other members of the music group plan to enlist.
“Other members of the group plan to carry out their military service based on their own individual plans,” said the label.
The band is hoping and is expected to come back together as a group in 2025, according to Big Hit Music. Reuter news agency also reported that according to the country’s defense minister that the band still has the possibility of performing overseas while serving in the military.