How Taemin Gets Inspiration To Make His Music

Taemin debuted with SHINee in 2008. At the time of his debut in the K-pop group, he was only 14 years old. In 2019, Taemin joined SuperM, a joint venture between SM Entertainment and Capitol Records.

Over the years, Taemin has also launched a successful solo career. The Korean artist has repeatedly proved his star power with each comeback. In 2020, he released a studio album called Never Gonna Dance Again.

Taemin
Taemin | Gabriel Olsen/Getty Images

Taemin released a new album in 2020

Never Gonna Dance Again was released in two parts. The first part of the album was released on Sept. 7, the second part was released on Nov. 9, and the entire album was released on Dec. 14.

“Criminal” served as the lead single for Never Gonna Dance Again : Act 1. The first part of the album features nine songs: “Criminal,” “Black Rose (feat. Kid milli),” “Strangers,” “Waiting For,” “Famous (Korean Version),” “Clockwork,” “Just Me and You,” “Nemo,” and “2 KIDS.”

Never Gonna Dance Again : Act 2 also has nine tracks: “IDEA,” “Heaven,” “Impressionable,” “Be Your Enemy (Feat. Wendy of Red Velvet),” “Think Of You,” “Exclusive (Korean Ver.),” “Pansy,” “I Think It’s Love,” and “Identity.” “IDEA” is the lead single of the second part of the album and features vocals by BoA.

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“The title track ‘IDEA’ was inspired by the allegory of the cave (Plato’s Cave),” Taemin told Hypebae. “Instead of ‘being trapped in a cave’ and living in the shadow of the truth, I want to free myself from the darkness and embark on a journey of enlightenment where I discover a new ego, identity and meaning.”

Taemin on his music inspiration

The artist’s interview with Hypebae was published on Nov. 10 following the release of Never Gonna Dance Again : Act 2. In the interview, Taemin discussed his creative process and involvement with the album.

“I participated in the writing of three tracks: ‘Heaven,’ ‘Think of You,’ and ‘Pansy.’ I’m always writing and taking notes in my notebook when I have time between schedules, so a lot of the inspiration came from that,” he said.

When looking for inspiration, Taemin uses his current emotions to try and inspire new music.

“When I watch a movie, I’m not inspired by the movie itself, but the feelings that I have as I’m watching it. That’s what plays the most important role,” he told Hypebae. “I had that period where I was going through a slump of trying to create something new, so I wanted to make that experience artistic and useful and incorporate it into my album.”

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The singer and his relationship with fans

Taemin has been in the spotlight for over a decade, and to this day his biggest supporters are Shawols, SHINee’s fan base. Going forward, the singer wants to make sure he continues to experiment as an artist while still recognizing the impact SHINee has had on his artistry.

“For the past 13 years, I’ve been spending a lot of time with them and creating music together as a group,” he told Hypebae. “With my solo career, I don’t want fans to think that I’m throwing all that away. It’s more about creating something new and different than what I’ve been showing in my past with the group.”

He continued, “In the past years, I learned a lot, and I always had things that I wanted to try and experiment with. It’s not about the end of SHINee or moving on, but a new beginning.”