BTS : KINGS OF KPOP
“Do you know BTS?” – a question that oldest member, Jin, frequently asks people. And, more recently, a question that’s become an inside joke between both the members and the fans. But really, it’s difficult to have not heard about BTS!
BTS is a seven-member boy group from South Korea that debuted back in 2013. This group, just having passed their eighth anniversary, has surpassed any other K-pop group or artist in the industry. They’ve taken over the music scene all around the world and keep rising in popularity. There’s no limit for the group, so we’ve gathered some of their greater achievements from 2018 until now.
If you’d like to read through some of their greatest moments throughout their entire career, you can read our “8 Biggest BTS Moments” article. Or, if you’d like to go through the good and the more emotional moments throughout their career, you can read our “8 Years with BTS” article.
2018: the Beginning of BTS’ Busiest Years
Firstly, we should talk about the fact that things started happening for BTS rather quickly. By this, I mean that the slowly growing popularity since their first music show number one “I Need U” in 2015 turned into a rapid growth of success. This is because their success hit a point where they started gaining a lot of attention. BTS began going on talk shows, interviews, various award shows, etc. Because of their popularity, they only received more recognition. And, by default, they received more fans, too.
You can watch this short video we did about their success in 2018 and 2019 here:
Biggest Moments Within 2018
2018 was a year that was jam-packed for BTS. I’m talking record-breaking moments, award shows in both the USA and Asia, concerts, interviews, two mixtapes, a docu-series, a Japanese album, two Korean albums, multiple appearances on various US talk shows, a tour, a United Nations speech, a movie, and an award given by the South Korean president. I don’t think the boys stopped moving the entire year.
But everything they did showcased how popular the group had become. So, in an attempt to talk about the crazy year 2018 was for the boys, here’s a few of the bigger moments that happened.
1. Burn the Stage Docu-Series (and later, a movie)
Starting on March 28, 2018, BTS’ YouTube Red Original Series Burn the Stage slowly rolled out to the world.
This docu-series is a total of eight episodes. It follows BTS behind-the-scenes of their sold-out Wings tour. It showed the highs and the lows that the group experienced as they went from stage to stage, fans to fans. Truly, it was the first time ARMY had seen such behind-the-scenes footage of the group, causing both excitement and resentment for the series. (Personally, I remember many ARMYs refusing to watch the series because they felt it invaded the group’s privacy. But this was the first time BTS had done anything like this, so I understand why they were so hesitant to watch it.)
Later in 2018, this docu-series evolved into a full-fledged movie. On November 15th, the Burn the Stage movie came out in theaters worldwide. This film brought more behind-the-scenes content and different interviews for each member. You can find this film on YouTube now and can watch it for a small price.
2. Billboard Accomplishments throughout May
Amongst their album release, BTS went on to break a few records in May 2018. More specifically, records for Billboard. BTS became the first Korean act to perform at the Billboard Music Awards and they also became the first Korean act to win the Top Social Artist award two years in a row.
They performed their song “Fake Love” for the first time at the BBMAs and it stirred quite the reaction from the United States. They were also greatly surprised at how many ARMY showed up at the red carpet before the show to express their support for the group.
A week after the award show, the group became the first Korean act to top the Billboard 200 chart with their album Love Yourself: Tear.
“Fake Love” made its debut in the Top 10 of the Hot100 Chart, and BTS finally pushed up to the number one spot on the Artist 100 chart. This became their first time at the number one spot and also the first time a Korean act held that position.
Truly, May of 2018 was a time of Billboard record-breaking moments for BTS.
3. United Nations Speech
On September 24, 2018, the boys make an appearance at the United Nations Assembly. They’re invited because of their collaboration with UNICEF for their Love Myself Campaign.
Leader RM actually makes a six-minute speech at the assembly that still resonates throughout the fandom today. Specifically, his words “I would like to ask all of you. What is your name? What excites you and makes your heart beat? Tell me your story. I want to hear your voice, and I want to hear your conviction. No matter who you are, where you’re from, your skin color, gender identity: speak yourself. Find your name, find your voice by speaking yourself.”
You can watch his speech here:
2019: an Even Busier Year for BTS
If you thought 2018 was hectic, then you might want to buckle in for the crazy ride that 2019 was for the group. 2019 included more record-breaking events, another album, a Grammy appearance, another tour, another docu-series and movie, a video game, a small break for the group, and then another season for their reality show Bon Voyage.
Let’s just say that BTS don’t know how to slow down…
Biggest Moments within 2019
Firstly, we definitely know there’s more than enough stuff from 2019 alone to talk about for thousands of words. But, to make it shorter for you, we’ll just talk about some of the more important moments.
1. The Grammy Appearance
As a bit of a teaser, BTS made their first appearance at the Grammys as presenters for the Best R&B Album.
The boys were beyond excited to go to the Grammys, even if they weren’t performing at the time. You can watch a video BTS released of the behind-the-scenes at the show.
2. Love Yourself Speak Yourself Tour
In the middle of 2019, BTS went on the second leg of their Love Yourself Tour. This leg of the tour consisted of Stadiums across the world. This includes grand stadiums such as the Metlife Stadium in the US, the Allianz Parque in Brazil, the Seoul Olympic Stadium in South Korea, and Wembley Stadium in the UK.
One of the more impressive feats of this tour—besides the large-scale locations—was the fact that BTS sold out most of these venues. The one that gets everyone talking is the two-night sold-out Wembley shows.
Wembley Stadium holds thousands of fans—probably the biggest stadium on this tour. And with two nights, BTS had over 114,000 tickets to sell. Not only did they sell all 114,000+ but they did it in about ninety minutes. So they became the first Korean act to headline a tour at Wembley and they became the first Korean act to sell out not one but two shows there. BTS’ power is unmatchable.
3. Clean-Sweep at MAMA and MMA
We’ve talked about this in our “8 Biggest BTS Moments” article, but one of the biggest achievements for BTS in 2019 is the clean-sweep of all major awards at the Melon Music Awards (MMA) and Mnet Asian Music Awards (MAMA).
In 2019, BTS wrote history by becoming the first group to win all eight major awards at the MMAs and MAMA. This had never been done before by any group or soloist.
You can read more about this remarkable moment in our “8 Biggest BTS Moments” article.
2020: an Exciting Start to a Quiet Year for BTS
We all know that 2020 started off amazing. However, the year quickly put a pause on everything when the Covid-19 virus spread. This is no different for BTS.
At the beginning of 2020, BTS had so many things going on. They were releasing their next album, Map of the Soul: 7, and they were preparing for their next tour. But just after their appearance on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, showcasing their new song “ON” with a performance in Grand Central Terminal, the world shut its doors. And everything else with it got put on hold.
Biggest Moments within 2020
Despite being a different year than expected, BTS still did so many things in 2020. This includes a performance on the Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve, two new Korean albums, a Japanese album, a mixtape from Suga, online concerts, even more record-breaking moments, a special reality show (In The Soop), another speech at the United Nations, and the group’s first all-English single.
Even when the world seemed to have stopped moving, BTS didn’t take a break. Instead, they found new ways to keep bringing content to their fans.
1. Map of the Soul: 7 Release
At the beginning of 2020, BTS released their seventh album (including their EPs). And, since it was the group’s seventh year, it was a special album. (I should also probably mention that BTS includes seven members… so this album came at a time when it was all about the number seven.)
The title track, “ON,” was first performed on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. Making it a very different comeback for the group.
However, “ON” was not the first song released from the album. Since the group was starting their own collaboration with various artists for their “CONNECT, BTS” project, it makes sense that the group would also connect with other dance artists.
On January 17, 2020, BTS release the Art Film for their song “Black Swan.” The dance crew in the video, MN Dance Company, give a raw contemporary performance to the song. It brought something raw and intrinsically unique to this comeback.
2. Bang Bang Con The Live and Map of the Soul ON:E Online Concerts
Since their 2020 tour got cancelled—rather, it got delayed—the group decided to put on a few different online concerts. The first one the did, Bang Band Con The Live, was in the middle of July. This concert included fun stages from their recent Map of the Soul: 7 album and a little teaser to what the tour was supposed to be.
To watch this concert, you can buy it from the Weverse Shop and watch it on Weverse.
Their second online concert, the Map of the Soul ON:E concert, was slightly different. Though it included songs from the same album, the stages were far different. They performed songs that they didn’t at the first one—including their solo stages—and made sure to bring high energy. Unlike the first one, this online concert was a two stage event that fans could watch. It was live from the Olympic Gymnastics Arena in South Korea.
To break a record, this second online concert brought in nearly one million watchers (about 993,000). That’s the most that any online concert had seen.
Unfortunately, this concert isn’t available to rewatch. So, even those of us who bought tickets to it originally can’t watch it again. Just know that it was truly an unforgettable performance from the group.
In 2020, BTS did something that we never expected. They released an all-English single. This single, “Dynamite,” broke more records for the group than we could’ve guessed.
Besides being a catchy disco-pop song, “Dynamite” brought Billboard records, a Grammy nomination, and what seems like a million different performances. This song alone created such a frenzy throughout the music world. People who had never heard of BTS suddenly knew their music. And fans who had been with BTS for years were finally seeing the group’s hard work being recognized.
If you’d like to read more about the amazing things “Dynamite” brought, you can read through our “Dynamite” blog post here.
2021: Continued Success for BTS
Though 2021 is still only halfway over, BTS have already given a lot of different contents. This includes a Grammy performance, a Japanese album, another livestream concert, and another all-English single. While this might not seem like as much as their past years, it’s still quite a lot considering the group can’t actually go places and do certain things with Covid-19 still controlling the world. And, besides, it’s still only July. So there’s plenty of 2021 to go.
Biggest Moments within 2021
There may not be a lot right now, but there are a few moments from 2021 that we should talk about!
1. The Grammy Performance
After their first English single “Dynamite” received a Grammy nomination, BTS was invited to perform at the Grammys. Of course, they performed “Dynamite.”
However, we’ve written an article about this performance, so you can read more about this moment in this article of ours.
It wouldn’t be right to talk about 2021 without talking about “Butter.”
This track is BTS’ second all-English single that came out May 20, 2021. It’s a nice summer song that you can just vibe along to. It broke records that were previously held by “Dynamite” (including YouTube views in the first 24-hours and Hot100 Chart).
To read more about “Butter,” you can check out this article we’ve written about it after it came out!
3. Sowoozoo Online Concert
For their eighth anniversary, BTS ended their Festa with a two-day livestream concert. This concert, their yearly Muster, took place on June 13th and 14th.
The group performed a variety of songs—including a song from Suga’s newest mixtape and j-hope’s song with Becky G. This two-day event was full of fun and with high energy. Though the group talked often about needing to get back into the swing of performing, they definitely looked like they were enjoying themselves.
What to Expect Next from BTS
There’s no telling what the rest of 2021 will bring for BTS, but hopefully there will be more to come. We can still look forward to their previously delayed tour (maybe it won’t happen until next year, but we can only hope). And there’s rumor of another album sometime soon. But, for now, we’ll just have to wait for word from BTS about what to expect.
If you’d like to read more about BTS, you can check out the blogs on our Blog Page. We recently released quite a few posts to celebrate the group’s anniversary, so there’s a lot of things you can read about them!