|Stage Name||Birth Name||Position||Birthday||Age||Height||Star Sign||C Y||BT|
|Jiwon 지원||Eun Jiwon||Leader, Rapper||39||174 cm or 5'8½"||Gemini||Horse||A|
|Jaejin 재진||Lee Jaejin||Dancer||38||175 cm or 5'9"||Cancer||Ram||O|
|Jaeduk 재덕||Kim Jaeduk||Dancer, Rapper||38||174 cm or 5'8½"||Leo||Ram||B|
|Sunghun 성훈||Kang Sunghun||Vocal, Visual||38||175 cm or 5'9"||Pisces||Monkey||B|
|Suwon 수원||Jang Suwon||Maknae||37||176 cm or 5'9½"||Cancer||Monkey||A|
Sechs Kies 젝스키스 is a male idol group formed under Daesung Entertainment in 1997. Their name is supposed to mean "six crystals" (representing the six members) in German, although "Kies" is actually translated as "pebbles." Their official fan club is Yellow Kies, and official fan club color is yellow.
Sechs Kies debuted on April 15, 1997 and disbanded on May 20, 2000, performing "Bye" and "Remember Me" for the last time at the Dream Concert. The group held a reunion concert in 2016 on the variety show "Infinity Challenge." On May 11, 2016, YG Entertainment officially announced that they'd signed a contract with five of the Sechs Kies members (Eun Jiwon, Lee Jaejin, Kim Jaeduk, Kang Sunghun, and Jang Suwon).
Eun Jiwon, who'd been studying abroad in Hawaii, was scouted by DSP Entertainment, along with his friend Kang Sunghun, in a nightclub. The agency had originally planned to debut Jiwon and Sunghun as a duet, but with the success of SM Entertainment's male idol group H.O.T., the agency shifted gears to instead debut a six-member male idol group.
Kim Jaeduk and Lee Jaejin at the time were members of a dance crew called ‘’Quicksilver’’ in their hometown of Busan and had submitted an audition tape to Daesung Entertainment. Jang Suwon was cast during an open audition, and lastly, Ko Jiyong, a childhood friend of Sunghun, was cast as the final member.
Sechs Kies debuted on April 15, 1997, on KBS "Music Bank" with their first single, "School Anthem (학원별곡)". Their debut album, School Anthem, named after the title track, was released on May 15, 1997.
Sechs Kies had hit after hit "School Byeolgok (학원별곡)," "Remember Me," and "The Way This Guy Lives - Pomsaengpomsa (사나이 가는 길 - 폼생폼사)". OhmyNEWS reported that Sechs Kies' debut album exceeded 1,700,000-1,800,000 copies, but this may be a combined figure for the first two albums which were released back to back. The physical sales of Sechs Kies' albums remain unclear not only because of DSP's under-reporting but also because official records do not exist for albums released before September 1998.
Sechs Kies made their much anticipated comeback in October 1997 on KMTV's "Recharge 100% Show" and began promotional activities for their second album's release. Welcome to the Sechskies Land, a 20-track album with the theme of a fictional amusement park known as "Sechskies Land," was released on November 1, 1997. They quickly began promoting the single "Chivalry (기사도)" on various music programs, which gave the group their first #1 spot on SBS' "Inkigayo" on December 7, 1997.
Sechs Kies was quickly being recognized as rookies of the year and received several awards at various music award shows. In December, they won the 12th Korea Visual and Records Grand Prize (later named Golden Disc Awards) Bonsang, the KMTV Korean Music Awards New Artist Award, the Seoul Music Awards Bonsang, the KBS Music Awards Bonsang, and the Best 10 Artist Awards at the MBC and the SBS Music Awards.
On December 21, 1997, Sechs Kies held their first ever concert in Seoul at the Sejong Center; tickets were reportedly sold out within five hours. They were the first dance group to hold a concert at Sejong Center for the Performing Arts.
Sechs Kies’ fanbase and general popularity quickly began to grow by the spring of 1998. After wrapping up their second album promotions in February, they began a spring nationwide tour, including concerts in Busan, Ulsan, Gwangju, and Daegu.
In March, Sechs Kies’ very own movie, Seventeen, was filmed. On July 17, 1998, it was released nationwide, and the group held promotional fan signing events for the film's premiere release. Moreover, Sechs Kies starred in the children's musical Alibaba and the 40 Thieves alongside the singer Jinjoo. The musical ran from April 25 to May 5, 1998, at the Sejong Center. On May 5, SechsKies performed the musical in front of President Kim Daejung at Blue House to celebrate Children's Day.
On July 15, 1998, Sechs Kies released their third studio album, Road Fighter, which had hybridized elements of hip-hop and electronica. Jiwon participated in the production of the album. Sechs Kies began promotions for their third album by returning with "Crying Game" on SBS' "Inkigayo." Sechs Kies held consecutive wins for "Road Fighter" on "Inkigayo" and "Music Bank" in July and August. They also won for the #1 spot on "Inkigayo" and "Music Bank" for the follow-up track "Reckless Love (무모한 사랑)" in September and October.
On October 30, 1998, Sechs Kies released a soundtrack for Seventeen titled Special Album, which was later referred to as the group's 3.5 album release. They began promotions on "Music Bank," promoting two songs off of the album, "Couple" and "Letting You Go (너를 보내며)." They also won the #1 spot on "Inkigayo," "Music Bank," and "Music Camp" for "Couple." A special photo book was released in conjunction with the album in November.
With the huge success of "Couple," Sechs Kies finally won the 9th Seoul Music Awards Daesang with H.O.T. Sechs Kies also won the 13th Korea Visual and Records Grand Prize Award Bonsang, the KBS Music Awards Artist of the Year (Teen Category), the 9th Seoul Music Awards Bonsang, the Popularity Awards at the MBC and the KMTV Korean Music Awards, and the SBS Music Awards Best 10 Artist Awards.
Sechs Kies held concerts throughout Korea in February, 1999. Their tour started on February 6, 1999, in Ulsan and ended on February 27, 1999, in Seoul. On April 5, 1999, Sechs Kies released their first concert video, recorded from their largest concert to date, the Seoul Concert on February 25, 1999. They also released a live concert album with the video on April 10, 1999. On April 18, 1999, Sechs Kies held a two-year anniversary special official fan club meeting.
After their concert tour, Sechs Kies returned to the studio to create their fourth album. It was released in early September 1999, with Sechs Kies performing "Com' Back," "Hunch (예감)," and "Stay Still (그대로멈춰)." Compared to their previous works, this album had more input from the members of the group, with several of them writing and producing tracks.
In the second half of year, Sechs Kies began to promote overseas. On August 23, Sechs Kies started their promotion in Taiwan and performed in the Asia Super Concert on August 27. They received such a strong response, they returned to Taiwan in October.
On November 30, 1999, Sechs Kies participated in the 1st Korea China Music Festival co-hosted by KBS and CCTV in Beijing, which was broadcast on CCTV. On December 5, 1999, they performed in the 2000 Peace Friendship Music Concert in Pyongyang, North Korea, becoming one of the first South Korean dance groups to ever perform in North Korea.
At the end of the year, Sechs Kies won several awards including the 14th Korea Visual and Records Grand Prize Award Bonsang, the 10th Seoul Music Awards Bonsang, Bonsang at the KMTV Korean Music Awards and KBS Music Awards, and the Best 10 Artist Awards at the MBC and the SBS Music Awards.
On January 12, 2000, Sechs Kies had a 1000th day celebration party with their fans. On February 28, 2000, Sechs Kies' Seoul Concert was held in the Olympic Gymnastics Arena. Tickets were reportedly sold out within a few hours. Sechs Kies members participated in directing the concert and performed self-composed songs. A concert DVD was also released.
On May 18, 2000, SechsKies held a sudden press conference to officially announce their disbandment. Sechs Kies' final performance was at the Dream Concert on May 20, 2000. On May 31, 2000, their final release, Blue Note, a best-of compilation, was released as the farewell album to fans. In August of that year, the members self-released one final track and music video titled "Thanks" for their fans, which was uploaded online.
On April 14, 2016, Sechs Kies held an impromptu reunion concert at the Seoul World Cup Stadium as a part of a special episode of the popular Korean variety show "Infinite Challenge." Their dramatic reunion was broadcast through the three consecutive episodes of "Infinite Challenge." Except Jiyong who'd retired from the entertainment industry, the group had agreed to perform at the reunion concert impromptu. One most important rule was to keep it secret until the day of the performance, which was originally planned for April 7. However, the concert was cancelled since several media outlets violated the embargo and disclosed the day of the concert. On the afternoon of the 14th, the day before the anniversary of Sechs Kies' debut, "Infinite Challenge" announced the pop-up reunion concert through their Twitter. In spite of the sudden notice, approximately 6,000 fans gathered within a few hours at the stadium. Numerous fans donated yellow raincoats to the audience and brought yellow balloons, symbols of Yellow Kies, to wear at the concert to show support.
The most dramatic moment of the episode was when all six members showed up for the reunion concert. While there was wistful speculation among fans that one day the group would perform together, Ko Jiyong's participation was always in question. Unlike the other members who had been releasing their own solo albums and/or appearing on media, Jiyong left the entertainment industry completely and had been living as an entrepreneur in Korea after time studying abroad. He also got married and had a son. Although Jiyong's participation was in doubt, he was persuaded by "Infinite Challenge" and Yoo Jaesuk to appear at the reunion concert. In the show, Jiyong wished that his participation in the reunion concert would be helpful for other members' careers and for the fans who had been longing to see Sechs Kies for the past 16 years.
On May 11, YG Entertainment officially announced that they'd signed a contract with five members of Sechs Kies (Jiwon, Jaejin, Jaeduk, Sunghun, and Suwon). YGE also stated that they would welcome Jiyong to participate in the forthcoming album and concerts. Each member's solo albums and individual performances will be handled by their own management agencies, while the forthcoming Sechs Kies albums and group activities will be supported and produced by YGE. Later, Jaejin and Sunghun also signed individual contracts with YGE.
Sechs Kies held their own concert on September 10 and 11 at the Olympic Gymnastics Arena; all 20,000 tickets for the concert were sold out within only 5 minutes. On October 1, Sechs Kies appeared at the Busan One Asia Festival Opening Ceremony. Approximately 6,000 fans flocked to Busan by more than 60 large buses to see them.
On October 7, Sechs Kies released their new digital single "Three Words (세 단어)." Their first song as a group after 16 years, it was co-written and produced by Tablo of Epik High and Future Bounce. "Three Words" topped all 8 major music charts shortly after release. It was also ranked high in Asian music charts and on iTunes in Taiwan and stayed among the top tracks on iTunes charts in Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and others. "Three Words" also topped Gaon's Digital Chart, Download Chart, and BGM Chart for the 1st week of October. The song also topped both the Melon Daily Chart and the Gaon Monthly Digital Chart; among idol groups, only Sechs Kies and Big Bang managed this feat in 2016.
Sechs Kies' new album was released on December 1, 2016. 2016 Re-ALBUM contains 10 of Sechs Kies' past hit songs, rearranged and remastered by YG producers. The album includes "Couple," "Chivalry," and "Heartbreak" with "Three Words" as a hidden bonus track. The album topped the Hanteo real time chart, daily chart and weekly chart for the 1st week of December.
Sechs Kies continued their Yellow Note concert tour on December 10 in Daegu and on December 24–25 in Busan. They held a Yellow Note Final in Seoul concert on January 21 and 22 at the Jamsil Indoor Stadium. On December 22, all 13,000 tickets were sold out within three minutes.
Initially, Sechs Kies' official fan club was called DSF (Dear Sechs Kies Friend) and the official fan club color was yellow. Sechs Kies fans used yellow balloons and yellow raincoats as their main cheering tools. Sechs Kies’ fandom was the first to introduce the concept of using a specific color to represent their fandom identity.
On August 18, 2016, Sechs Kies announced their new fan club name, Yellow Kies, via Naver's V app. The traditional yellow balloons were replaced by a new yellow light stick.
Sechs Kies' disbandment was suddenly announced without clear explanations at the height of their career, resulting into widespread rumor that DSP media was deeply involved in the disbandment procedure. At Sechs Kies' last performance, teenagers presumed to be Sechs Kies fans mistook reporter Jo Young Goo's car as the car of Lee Hoyeon, the CEO of DSP Entertainment, and destroyed it completely. Lee Hoyeon paid him 11 million won as a compensation on their behalf.
Each member has talked about disbandment through various media channels several times. In 2005, Jaejin stated that what Sechs Kies members wanted was to change their agency, not disband. Jiwon said that the members had decided it would be best to disband at the peak of their career. Echoing that statement, in 2015, Sunghun mentioned that the members had agreed to disband at the peak of their career. At a concert in 2015, Sunghun stated that Sechs Kies seems to have left a strong impression for having disbanded at the top of their career. However, he also added that he had disliked the idea of disbandment as well. Suwon and Jaeduk have also mentioned several other reasons of disbandment.
They had an occasion to talk about the disbandment all together at the interview on October 17, 2016. Jiwon stated that the disbandment was decided upon agreement by a majority of the members and that Jaejin was one of the members against the disbandment.
The sales of albums were under-reported in purpose of tax evasion. Sechs Kies' first and second albums are estimated to have sold millions of copies, but the physical sales of for their third album shrunk down to 400,000-500,000 copies, which does not seem to match with their growing popularity at the time. In August of 2000, reporter Lee Sangho reported on several problems at DSP Entertainment, including tax evasion, embezzlement, underpayment, and lack of written contracts, which was featured in the news series, "PD & Reporters' Morning." Lee Sangho also mentioned in his book, Global News, that he was threatened by DSP before the news report was aired. Afterwards, DSP was investigated by the police for allegations of tax evasion, embezzlement, and unequal contracts. The investigation ended after it was determined that the allegations were unfounded. But the National Tax Service conducted a tax audit of the corporation, and collected an additional hundreds of millions of won from it.