K-pop stars BTS on their Grammy nod: ‘It’s hard to express in words’

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  • ‘Dynamite’ gave the South Korean boy band a nomination for best pop duo/group performance
  • They are up against Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande, and Taylor Swift and Bon Iver among other international artists
Associated Press |
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BTS is up against Lady Gaga and Taylor Swift among other artists. Photo: AP

Stuck at home during the pandemic, BTS created Dynamite and released the song to their isolated fans as a gift. Now, the gift has returned to them – in the form of their first Grammy nomination.

“A lot of people were sad and down and out because of the Covid situation and it was sort of our suggestion to pick [everyone] up,” Jin said in an interview this week.

“We were supposed to do the whole stadium tour all over the world. There was no plan to release a single like Dynamite,” RM explained.

“Dynamite gave us huge success in Korea, of course, a Grammy nomination, a performance, so you know, life is really interesting.”

The song became BTS’ first No. 1 hit on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart when it was released last year. After years of logging Top 40 hits and selling out arenas and stadiums, the seven-member collective is competing for best pop duo/group performance.

They will also perform at Sunday’s show.

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“It’s really hard to express in words,” Jimin said of the nomination.

“Even now we can’t still believe that we were nominated, and we’ll be able to perform at the Grammys. So, we’re thankful. We’re honoured.”

BTS’ explosive hit will battle another No. 1 smash – Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande’s Rain on Me – as well as Top 10 successes like Taylor Swift and Bon Iver’s Exile and Justin Bieber and Quavo’s Intentions.

J Balvin, Bad Bunny and Dua Lipa’s Un Dia (One Day), which topped the Billboard Hot Latin songs chart, rounds out the five nominees.

“I always listen to Rain on Me,” RM said. “It’s so great to listen to that song on the treadmill. It was a hit. It was fire last year.

“And, of course, Intentions, Exile [were] crazy. And J Balvin and Dua Lipa.

“We’re nervous and actually, frankly, we’re not expecting [to win] so much because we don’t want to get disappointed because Lady Gaga, Taylor, Bieber, all the big names [are nominated].

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“So we’re kind of confused. It’s like roller coaster – back and forth, back and forth, up and down.”

Their Grammy performance will mark their second on the major awards show – they assisted Lil Nas X when he sang Old Town Road last year. Sunday’s performance follows the recent airing of MTV Unplugged Presents: BTS, which featured BTS covering Coldplay’s popular rock ballad, Fix You.

In a tweet – in Korean – Coldplay called BTS’ rendition “beautiful”.

“Coldplay came to Korea about three years ago for a big concert, and me and J-Hope went and we watched Fix You at that time, and it meant so much,” RM recalled.

“Hopefully we can work with them, or maybe have a meeting and sip some tea or coffee or anything. We love Coldplay.”

The IFPI, the organisation that represents the global recording industry, said last week that BTS was the best-selling act of 2020.

The band is currently working on new music – as a group and soloists. They said the Grammy nomination does create some pressure for the next batch of songs they produce, but they’re not letting the success get to their heads.

“We try to stay down-to-earth and put our feet to the ground and do what we do,” RM said.

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