Following the sudden loss of SHINee’s Jonghyun, South Korea’s music industry has slowed down, with many of the most popular acts deferring releases of new music, or canceling activities altogether out of respect to the deceased.
High profile acts like EXO and TWICE put new releases on hold: The former’s Universe winter album, which was planned to be released on Friday, will be pushed back to Tuesday (Dec. 26), while TWICE’s music video for their recently released “Merry & Happy” will be pushed off one day, from Thursday (Dec. 21) to Friday (Dec. 22).
A new single from several Cube Entertainment artists was also postponed.
Along with musical releases seeing delays, several other activities were put off by K-pop acts: Seventeen suspended this week’s segment of Going Seventeen, the group’s webseries on YouTube, which had been set to air within hours of Jonghyun’s passing, while BTOB canceled a press conference set for Saturday (Dec. 23) ahead of their upcoming concert.
Along with EXO, many artists signed to SHINee’s label, S.M. Entertainment, have suspended regularly planned activities in light of the memorial period, which ends on Thursday with Jonghyun’s funeral. Girls’ Generation’s Taeyeon, who was featured on Jonghyun’s last single “Lonely,” canceled a fan meeting on Tuesday, and first-generation K-pop icon Kangta didn’t host his daily radio show for two days. Overseas, popular SM duo TVXQ!dedicated their Dec. 20 Tokyo Dome concert to Jonghyun and are expected to do the same for their Dec. 21 show.
Since debuting as a member of the boy band SHINee in 2008, Jonghyun (born Kim Jonghyun) grew to become a prominent singer-songwriter throughout his near-decade in the K-pop industry. He died Monday by suicide at the age of 27.