Hae-Sol is a mystery.
First, he is famous for being the great RnB vocalist, composer and hip-hop artist “Zion.T” signed under Amoeba Culture, one of Korea’s most popular and successful hip-hop labels. Second, he goes by the widely known nickname “Skinny Red” which he even uses for his official Twitter and Facebook accounts. And third, he is the leader of VV:D (speak “vivid”), a well-known and respected South Korean hip-hop crew, made of five very creative heads.
As we resolved the mystery around his stage name “Zion.T” in our exclusive interview earlier this week, we are still left with two remaining questions: Why is he known as “Skinny Red”? And what is the story behind the VV:D crew?
“The skinny guy with the red hat!” – Zion.T, Curvism Magazine 2012
When Kim Hae-Sol started to make some music, he connected with a lot of new and interesting people (lovingly referred to as his “hyungs”). As they didn’t know much about him, they naturally became more curious and got interested in the young man “who always wears the same red hat”. Being the skinny guy he is, his “hyungs” recognized him as the “skinny guy with the red hat”. Hearing this funny description of him, Zion.T combined “skinny” and “red” and made it as his new nickname. Thus, the famous “Skinny Red” was born.
“I wanted for people like me to gather and show their talent independently.” – Zion.T, Curvism Magazine 2012
Zion.T’s music has to be fresh and new; something that can be remembered by its listeners and stays with a positive feeling in their heads. He wants to create new trends and musical styles, thus making a name for himself instead of being recognized as another Korean version of, let’s say, “R.Kelly”.
He once told this to the Korean magazine “Curvism” in an interview he gave around the release of his debut album “Red Light” in 2012. “There is no Korean someone”, so the singer in reference to all those “Korean Trey Songz and R.Kelly”. Arguably, he felt regretful about it and decided to change the status quo, or at least be one of the change’s initiators. He further added, “If possible, I wanted people like me to gather and show their talent independently.”
Hence, the popular VV:D crew was born and became a well-respected group when it comes to hip-hop artists and producers. Its members are Zion.T aka Skinny Red as its leader, Gray (whom we, by the way, interviewed too – more on this in our February Issue), Loco, Elo, and Crush. Obviously, every single VV:D member writes and produces his own music and collaborates with his fellow members as well as other popular and inspiring artists.