The OST Queen, Ailee: Profile, Discography, and Latest News

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Ailee, the Korean-American Diva

Growing up in a foreign country for years did not make Ailee forget about her roots. She was determined to make her debut in South Korea, despite already being recognized in America through the unexpected relationship with TV producer Maury, which led her to perform Rihanna’s Unfaithful for the first time on the national television. Her position as an internet sensation remained the same when the citizens of her motherland praised her for being the country’s pride.

In this article, Channel-Korea will tell you all about Ailee, starting with her personal profile and fun facts, her discography, filmography, awards, and nominations, concert and tours, her YouTube channel, her appearance on Singer and Trainee, her debut in America, her rumored plastic surgery, her Instagram Feed, fashion style, and latest news. So, stay tuned!

Ailee’s Full Profile

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Stage Name: Ailee

Korean Name: Lee Ye Jin

English Name: Amy Lee

Nickname: Korean Beyonce

Date of Birth: Denver, Colorado, United States of America, May 30, 1989

Age: 31 (Korean age) / 30 (International age)

Zodiac sign: Gemini

Chinese Astrology: Snake

Religion: Christian

Height: 164.5 cm

Weight: 52 kg

Blood Type: O

Education: Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School, Pace University, with a major in communications (dropped out in order to pursue music career)

Twitter: @itzailee

Instagram: @aileeonline

Talent Agency: YMC Entertainment

Fun Facts About Ailee

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  • Ailee grew up in New Jersey.
  • She started singing seriously when she was 16 and has been acting since she was 7.
  • Ailee moved to South Korea in 2010 to go to a music audition for Jin-A Entertainment, the agency led by singer Tae Jin-ah. She sang If I Got You and automatically passed the audition.
  • Before she signed with YMC Entertainment, Ailee had two YouTube accounts called “mzamyx3” and “aileemusic”.
  • Contrary to her image as a confident singer, Ailee originally didn’t believe herself to be a good singer.
  • Ailee’s best friend is f(x)’s Amber. She is also close friends with Eric Nam, AOA’s Jimin, INFINITE’s Dongwoo, and Seventeen’s Woozi.
  • Ailee’s hobbies are singing, cooking, and lurking on Facebook.
  • Ailee’s favorite color is pink.
  • Ailee picked Big Bang’s Taeyang as her ideal type. She likes generous people with a good sense of humor and who values fitness and health.
  • Besides vocals, Ailee is also able to play several instruments, such as the piano, flute, and drums.
  • Ailee’s dream is to establish Ailee school.
  • She was chosen to perform the national anthem, Aegukga, on the opening day of the Korean professional baseball season in 2012.

Ailee’s Discography

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After appearing on Singer and Trainee with male singer Wheesung, Ailee was confirmed to debut under YMC Entertainment in February 2012. Her debut track, Heaven, was composed and written by Wheesung and told the way to love even in the harsh world that we live in. The song established Ailee’s reputation as a strong contender for the title of Korean diva, as her powerful voice infiltrated listeners’ hearts. Notably, Heaven’s digital sales reached over 3.2 million downloads. What an achievement!

Eight months later, Ailee released her first mini-album, Invitation, with its title track I’ll Show You. The album was produced by famous producers, such as Duble Sidekick, Kim Do-hoon, Lee Hyun-seun, Park Guen-tae, and Wheesung, and featured a number of other artists, such as Verbal Jint, Simon Dominic, and Swings.

In July 2013, Ailee came back with her second mini-album, A’s Doll House. Its title track, U&I, successfully became Ailee’s first All-Kill as the song hit the top of music charts within four hours of release. The same thing happened with the album’s physical release, as it went out of stock.

After going on hiatus after her nude scandal, Ailee promoted her new song, Singing Got Better, in January, 2014. The music video for the song featured MBLAQ’s former member Lee Joon, and its digital sales resembled the previous release, as it reached the first rank on various Korean music charts, such as Genie, Daum Music, Naver Music, Olleh, Soribada, Bugs, and Mnet.

Despite having a foot injury, Ailee pushed through her 2015 comeback for the sake of the fans. Her first full album, VIVID, was released on in late September. Ailee’s consistent effort to promote proved to be fruitful, as she won the Show Champion’s trophy and Best Female Vocal Award on MAMA that year, for the song Mind Your Own Business.

In August, 2016, Ailee released her fourth mini-album, A New Empire, with the pre-release track If You, which profitably became the first rank on the MelOn, Gaon Weekly Chart, and BGM Charts. The title track, Home, which featured Yoon Mirae, released on October 5.

Besides her solo discography, Ailee also became the featured artist and sung many original soundtracks for movies and dramas. We have summed up the complete list below.

2011 – The Guys Are Coming (as featured artist with Wheesung for album He is Coming)

2011 – Racing Queen (featuring Mighty Mouth for the original soundtrack of Racing Queen 2)

2011 – Superstar (featuring Hyorin and Jiyeon for the original soundtrack of Dream High 2)

2012 – Love Again (as the featured artist with 2 BicC for album Hu+Man)

2012 – Highlight (as the featured artist with Eru for album Feel Brand New Part 2)

2012 – I Forgot You  (as the featured artist with Joosuc for album 5 Point 5)

2012 – Shower of Tears (as the featured artist with Baechigi for album BaeChiGi Vol. 4 Part.2)

2012 – If it Ain’t Love (as the featured artist with Verbal Jint for album If it Ain’t Love)

2012 – My Grown Up Christmas List (Hitman Project #1: A tribute To The Hitman, David Foster)

2012 – Love Note (original soundtrack of Full House Take 2)

2012 – Ice Flower (original soundtrack of King of Ambition)

2013 – Wash Away (as featured artist with Geeks for album Backpack)

2013 – Go Away (as the featured artist with Maboos, Chakun, and Feeldog for album Deux 20th Anniversary Tribute Album)

2013 – Higher (as the featured artist with Yiruma for non-album singles)

2013 – Love Hurts (as the featured artist with Pro C for non-album singles)

2013 – Beautiful (as the featured artist with 2000 Won for non-album singles)

2013 – Almost Paradise (as the featured artist with Eric benet for album From E to U: Volume 1)

2013 – Tears Stole the Heart (original soundtrack of Secret Love)

2013 – Day by Day (original soundtrack of Triangle)

2014 – I’m in Love (as the featured artist with 2LSON for non-album singles)

2014 – A Real Man (as the featured artist with Swings for non-album singles)

2014 – Baby, It’s Cold Outside (as the featured artist with Sung Si-kyung for album Winter Wonderland)

2014 – Nobody Knows (as the featured artist with Cheetah for non-album singles)

2014 – Goodbye My Love (original soundtrack of You Are My Destiny)

2015 – Q&A (as the featured artist with Seventeen’s S.Coups, Woozi, and Vernon for non-album singles)

2015 – Are You The Same (original soundtrack of Shine or Go Crazy)

2015 – Because It’s Love (original soundtrack of Come Back Mister)

2015 – Loyalty (as the featured artist with Dok2 and Groovy Room for non-album singles)

2016 – Kiss (as the featured artist with Wheesung for album Transformation)

2016 – I Can’t Live Without You (featuring Truedy for the original soundtrack of Entertainer)

2017 – Bam-di-ra-ri-ra (as the featured artist with Clon for album Clon – 20th Anniversary)

2017 – Shine (as the featured artist with Melomance’s Jeong Dong-hwan for non-album singles)

2017 – I Will Go to You Like the First Snow (original soundtrack of Guardian: The Lonely and Great God)

2017 – Rewrite…If I Can (original soundtrack of Flower Ever After)

2018 – Thirst (as the featured artist with Mad Clow for non-album singles)

2018 – Fly Away (as the featured artist with Shin Seung-hun for non-album singles)

2018 – Jealousy (as the featured artist with Gummy for non-album singles)

2018 – Is You (original soundtrack of Memories of the Alhambra)

Ailee’s Filmography

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Although renowned as a female diva in South Korea, Ailee does not limit her activities to only being a singer, as she appeared on variety programs several times. Even so, it is no doubt that most of the television programs where she became part of the cast were music-related, such as King of Mask Singer, Fantastic Duo, Immortal Song 2, and The Call. Here you can see the list of Ailee’s drama and variety show appearances, below!

2011 – MBC Singer and Trainee (as Contestant with Wheesung)

2012 – KBS2 Dream High Season 2 (Supporting Role as Ailee)

2012-2018 – KBS2 Immortal Songs 2 (as Contestant on 36 episodes with 7 wins)

2012 – JTBC Vitamin (as Regular Cast)

2013–2014 – JTBC Great Marriage (as Regular Cast)

2014 – SBS Laws of the City (as Regular Cast)

2014 – MBC Music Ailee’s Vitamin (as Regular Cast)

2014 – MBC One Fine Day (as Regular Cast)

2015 – MBC King of Mask Singer (as Contestant on episodes 7 and 8)

2016 – MBC Duet Song Festival (as Contestant on episodes 3, 25, and 26

2016 – SBS Fantastic Duo (as Contestant on episodes 5 and 6)

2016 – Mnet Superstar K 2016 (K8) (as Judge)

2017 – O’live and tvN One Night Food Trip: Food Race (as Guest Cast on episodes 6–10)

2017 – SBS Fantastic Duo 2 (as Contestant on episodes 7, 8, and 3)

2018 – KBS2 Hyena on the Keyboard (as Producer with Jeong Dong-hwan on episodes 3-4)

2018 –Mnet and tvN The Call (as Contestant and Producer on episodes 1–8)

Ailee’s Awards and Nominations

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Throughout her career in the music industry for almost ten years, Ailee has won a ton of awards for her priceless work. One of the music awards which often nominate her is Mnet Asian Music Awards, followed by Golden Disc Awards, Melon Music Awards, and many more. Here is the complete list of Ailee’s accomplishments as a female soloist, below!

2012 – Best New Artist at Asia Song Festival (Winner)

2012 – Song of the Month (February) on Cyworld Digital Music Awards (Winner)

2012 – Rookie of the Month on Cyworld Digital Music Awards (Winner)

2012 – Best R&B/Ballad on Melon Music Awards (Nomination)

2012 – Song of the Year Daesang on Melon Music Awards (Nomination)

2012 – Best New Artist on Melon Music Awards (Winner)

2012 – Top 10 on Melon Music Awards (Nomination)

2012 – Music Chart Winner on KBS’s Music Bank (November 23)

2012 – Best New Female Artist on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Winner)

2012 – UnionPay Artist of the Year on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Nomination)

2012 – UnionPay Song of the Year on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Nomination)

2012 – Best Vocal Performance – Female on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Winner)

2013 – UnionPay Song of the Year on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Nomination)

2013 – Best Female Artist on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Nomination)

2013 – UnionPay Artist of the Year on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Nomination)

2013 – Mnet Rising Star Award on Mnet Pre-Grammy Awards (Winner)

2013 – New Artist Award on Seoul Music Awards (Winner)

2013 – Artist Award on Seoul Success Awards (Winner)

2013 – Music Chart Winner on MBC’s Show Champion (July 24)

2013 – Music Chart Winner on KBS’s Music Bank (July 26 and August 2)

2013 – Top 10 on Melon Music Awards (Winner)

2013 – Artist of the Year on Melon Music Awards (Nomination)

2013 – Song of the Year on Melon Music Awards (Nomination)

2013 – Rap / Hip Hop Award on Melon Music Awards (Winner)

2013 – New Female Solo Artist on Gaon Chart Music Awards (Winner)

2013 – Grand Prize Award on Korean Culture and Entertainment (Winner)

2013 – Best New Artist on Golden Disc Awards (Winner)

2014 – Grand Prize Award on Korean Culture and Entertainment (Winner)

2014 – Best Original Soundtrack on APAN Star Awards (Winner)

2014 – Digital Bonsang on Golden Disc Awards (Winner)

2014 – Digital Daesang on Golden Disc Awards (Nomination)

2014 – Best Original Soundtrack on Korea Drama Awards (Winner)

2014 – Best Ballad on Melon Music Awards (Nomination)

2014 – Song of the Year on Melon Music Awards (Nomination)

2014 – Music Chart Winner on MBC’s Show Champion (January 15 and October 15)

2014 – Music Chart Winner on SBS’s Inkigayo (October 5)

2014 – Music Chart Winner on Mnet’s M Countdown (October 9)

2014 – Music Chart Winner on KBS’s Music Bank (October 10)

2014 – Best Female Solo on SBS Awards Festival (Winner)

2014 – Top 10 Artists on SBS Awards Festival (Winner)

2014 – Best Vocal Performance – Female on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Winner)

2014 – UnionPay Song of the Year on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Nominated)

2014 – Best Female Dance Performance on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Nominated)

2014 – Best Female Artist on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Nominated)

2015 – UnionPay Artist of the Year on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Nominated)

2015 – Best Vocal Performance – Female on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Winner)

2015 – UnionPay Song of the Year on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Nominated)

2015 – Best Female Artist on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Nominated)

2015 – Music Chart Winner on MBC’s Show Champion (October 7)

2015 – Popular Singer of the Year on Gaon Chart Music Awards (Nomination)

2015 – Digital Bonsang on Golden Disc Awards (Winner)

2015 – Digital Daesang on Golden Disc Awards (Nomination)

2015 – Singer of the Year on Korean Culture and Entertainment (Winner)

2015 – Artist Award on Cable TV Broadcasting Awards (Winner)

2016 – UnionPay Song of the Year on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Nominated)

2016 – UnionPay Artist of the Year on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Nominated)

2016 – Best Vocal Performance – Female on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Winner)

2016 – Best Female Dance Performance on Seoul Music Awards (Winner)

2016 – Popularity Award on Seoul Music Awards (Nomination)

2017 – Outstanding Korean Drama OST on Seoul International Drama Awards (Winner)

2017 – Best Hallyu OST on Soribada Best K-Music Awards (Winner)

2017 – Bonsang Award on Soribada Best K-Music Awards (Nomination)

2017 – Best Original Soundtrack on Mnet Asian Music Awards (Winner)

2017 – Bonsang Award on Soribada Best K-Music Awards (Nomination)

2017 – Popularity Award on Asia Artist Awards (Nomination)

2017 – Best OST Award on Asia Artist Awards (Winner)

2017 – Digital Bonsang on Golden Disc Awards (Nomination)

2017 – Best Original Soundtrack Daesang on Korea Cable TV Awards (Winner)

2017 – Top 10 on Melon Music Awards (Nomination)

2017 – Kakao Hot Star Award on Melon Music Awards (Nomination)

2017 – Song of the Year on Melon Music Awards (Nomination)

2017 – Best OST Award on Melon Music Awards (Nomination)

2018 – Artist Award on Asia Artist Awards (Nomination)

2018 – Korea’s Best Singer Award on Korea Best Star Awards (Winner)

2018 – Best OST Award on Golden Disc Awards (Winner)

2018 – Hallyu Special Award on Seoul Music Awards (Nomination)

2018 – Bonsang Award on Seoul Music Awards (Nomination)

2018 – OST Award on Seoul Music Awards (Winner)

Ailee’s YouTube Channel

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As has been briefly explained in the earlier section, Ailee was initially branded as an internet sensation due to her singing covers of famous American singers, through her YouTube channel, Ailee Music. The diva joined the platform on November 28, 2007, and uploaded several videos which showcase her singing skill. In her personal information, Ailee stated that ‘her love for music has brought her to where she is today’. Her first video was published on December 22, 2007, introducing her new channel, which later became the tool to greet the public who love her voice.

Some of Ailee’s videos for her song covers have hit a million views. Notably, the earlier video of her singing No One, by Alicia Keys, achieved 1.5 million views, and her cover of Miley Cyrus’s The Climb two years later reached almost 2 million views.

Ailee’s last uploaded video was her performance at Between Cafe in Itaewon, in March 2011. The event was sponsored by Hite, LG, and the cafe and had over 180,000 views.

Ailee Blew Away the Audience of Singer and Trainee

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After her rising popularity as the golden-voiced vocalist on the internet, Ailee appeared as a contestant of MBC’s Chuseok’s special program Singer and Trainee. Along with singer Wheesung, Ailee sang Usher and Alicia Keys’ My Boo. Her singing and brief rapping performance received the judges’ praises, “Her singing ability is top notch” and “She will be a great star wherever she goes”.

Not only for her duet with Wheesung, but Ailee also became a hot topic after singing Soon Ee’s Night by Night and Beyonce’s Halo, which secured her the first rank on the show. In addition, Ailee became the top search on various Korean search engines and portals, and gained the attention of singer Kim Bum-soo, who posted a link of her Halo performance along with a message that read, “Korea does not seem to be too far away from producing a world-class singer”.