HYBE has announced the first post-BTS solo project – a solo album and single from J-Hope.
The announcement came via Weverse and it appears the solo album will arrive on July 15. The solo project is called Jack in the Box and the first single will arrive on July 1. According to the statement on WeVerse, this album “represents [J-Hope’s] aspirations to break the mold and grow further.”
J-Hope also shared news of the single and new album on his Instagram account. HYBE announced in June 2022 that BTS would take a temporary break from their group work to allow individual members to release their solo projects. J-Hope’s solo album is first up on the docket, but BTS members RM, Suga, V, Jungook, Jin, and Jimin are all likely working on their own solo projects.
J-Hope will be headlining the main stage at Lollapalooza on July 31. The set will be the first time a South Korean artist has headlined a main stage at a major music festival in the United States. J-Hope is replacing Doja Cat, who announced in May that she needed to drop out due to tonsil surgery.
Not everyone is happy that BTS appears to be heading in the solo direction, however. President of the Korea Singers Association sent an open letter to BTS and HYBE imploring them to reconsider the breakup and solo projects. “I’m overcome by my fear and concern that the BTS Hallyu Wave, a movement possessing the greatest cultural soft power that the world has ever witnessed, will vanish soon,” the open letter reads.
“If BTS goes away, the missionaries of Hallyu and Korean culture, ARMYs, also go away. South Korea’s tourism industry will suffer, and it will be difficult to hope for a future for South Korea as a hub of culture in Asia,” she continued. The group’s solo projects are set to be released via Universal Music Group’s Geffen Records.