IU

Gifted with a versatile voice and a knack for writing lighthearted pop ballads, South Korean singer-songwriter and actress Lee Ji-eun (May 16, 1933) jumped into the spotlight in the late 2000s and went on to become one of the best-selling solo acts in an industry dominated by boy bands and girl groups. Born in the city of Seoul, she developed an interest in the performing arts from a very early age, attending acting classes and singing in school events. After signing with LOEN Entertainment in 2007, she made her debut at the age of 15 with the single “Lost Child,” included in her debut EP Lost and Found (2008). In 2009, IU returned with her studio debut Growing Up and the EP IU… IM, both of which broke into the Korean Top 10. Her big breakthrough arrived in 2010 when her third EP Real climbed to Number 2 on the Gaon charts thanks to the single “Good Day,” her first Number 1 hit as a lead artist. In the following years, IU scored her first chart-topping album, 2011’s Last Fantasy, crossed over into the Japanese market with the Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis-produced EP Can You Hear Me? (2013), and landed starring roles in several feature films and TV shows. All of her subsequent releases debuted atop of the Gaon Albums Chart, including Modern Times (2013), Palette (2017), Love Poem (2019), and Lilac (2021). The latter spawned the single “My Sea,” which peaked at Number 11 in South Korea.

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