Volume 3 / Chapter 121
[TN: Hey guys! Happy Wednesday! Hump DAAAY]
- Hey, Jun Hyuk. What’s up? You’re calling twice in one week?
“ Well… Something bothersome happened.”
- What? What happened? Was there an accident? Did you beat someone up?
“Hey. Am I some hoodlum? To hit someone?”
“I didn’t get in an accident. I unexpectedly came across a way to make some money.”
- What? I sent this kid to study… I left you there because you said you wanted to study but what? Money?
“That’s why I said unexpected.”
Jun Hyuk quickly explained the situation in order to avoid Yoon Kwang Hun’s nagging. He even added in that Coline the cellist is his best friend.
Most middle-aged Korean men nod their heads if they say it was for a friend.
- Really? Then there’s nothing you can do.
It worked. Is it because friends disappear one by one from middle aged Koreans? They go flying when it comes to friends.
- I think Lawyer Baek would be better for that than I am. He said he has something to tell you anyway. Hang up and wait. I’ll tell him to call you right away.
Jun Hyuk hung up the phone and waited for a moment before it rang again.
- Is this Jun Hyuk?
“Yes, Lawyer Baek.”
- This kid is still calling me Lawyer Baek. I told you to call me uncle. Really!
Lawyer Baek Seung Ho is very different from Yoon Kwang Hun. Yoon Kwang Hun is not affectionate, but Baek Seung Ho does not hesitate to express his friendliness.
- You haven’t heard the news, right?
- Your album. It’s doing pretty well in Japan. You didn’t know, right?
- Yeah. It’s sold over 120 million right now. It’ll sell better than it did in Korea. And it’s standing proudly at 3rd place on the chart. You’ll become rich soon. Ha ha.
“3rd place on the chart?”
- Ah, not Oricon or Orion or whatever it is, but a Japanese Indie Music Chart.
Jun Hyuk had not known that his album was being sold in Japan.
- You’re not long from becoming a Hallyu star. You don’t have a picture but if you did, it would be all over Myeondong.
Baek Seung Ho did not give Jun Hyuk a chance to speak and kept talking,
- I know you’re not coming back to Korea because of your studies, but can you make about a week of time?
- Yeah. Let’s meet in Japan. It seems Japanese partners have gotten in contact multiple times, but Mr. Jo Hyung Joong and Mr. Yoon Jung Su turned them all down saying that you’re studying.
Baek Seung Ho’s proposal became tempting when he recalled the familiar faces one by one.
- They say it’s a huge deal for these kinds of sales without ever having a promotion by the star of the record. Apparently it’ll be different again if we pour oil on this while it’s going out well. And… you can see Kwang Hun. Isn’t a week okay?
He wanted to go to Japan to see Yoon Kwang Hun, not to promote his album. He even thought that Baek Seung Ho had prepared this event to give him and Yoon Kwang Hun time to spend together.
- And the most important thing. All expenses will be paid for on the Japanese side. What do you think?
“It’s like getting a tour of Japan for free. Of course I have to go. Ha ha.”
- Okay. Then wait while I check on the schedule. I’ll let you know when we can go. Then I’ll see you in Japan.
“Wait. I said I had something to ask you. He didn’t tell you?”
- Ah, right. He said something about a friend. What is it?
When Jun Hyuk explained his situation, Baek Seung Ho started by bursting out in laughter.
- Ha ha ha. When you take a part-time job, it’s at a different level. Can’t you do something more common? Like delivering pizza?
“It’s not funny. I have to meet them soon.”
- Alright. In those situations, you only say one thing. You’ll look over it and get back to them.
- They’ll make a proposal, whether it’s orally or in a contract. Then tell them that you’ll take a look at it and get back to them as quickly as you can. As soon as possible. Okay?
“But what if they ask me how much first?”
- Listen carefully. The first person to give a number in a negotiation is the one who loses. You know what you do well. If you don’t like it, tell them to forget it.
“What if they really stop it?”
- Then you don’t do it. It becomes an excuse you can give your friend too. How can you help him when the negotiations didn’t work out?
Oh! There was a convenient way to do it. Jun Hyuk even thought that all the smart people in the world must be lawyers.
- And Americans forget everything once a contract is signed no matter how much you fight during negotiations. They just think of it as a part of work. Just push it forward.
“Okay. Thank you, Lawyer Baek.”
- Hey! I told you to call me uncle…
Jun Hyuk hung up the phone. It was too soppy to call him uncle.
The Jun Hyuk that Ili met in the 1st floor lobby of the school lightly exceeded his expectations. A bookworm in the library with a sparking talent in the recording studio. Jun Hyuk’s image is far from these kinds of people.
Normally when musicians meet a person from a large record label, they are bound to be a little taken aback. But Jun Hyuk did not shrink back. His confident expression, the hand he put forward for a handshake.
“I guess we’ll need to pay according to our company’s manual? This is the general contract. I already printed it. Take a look.”
Ili seemed to be a bit angry as he got to the point and handed the contract over. Jun Hyuk thought that it was because a rookie was bringing money up first, but Ili thought it definite that they start with a contract. He was just frustrated and annoyed that everything was moving so slowly.
“$5,000 per song in the case of a newbie producer. It’s $55,000 since there are 5 songs.”
“Alright. I’ll look over it and let you know as soon as possible.”
“What? Look over it? Forget it if you’re thinking of trying to make a deal. This is already decided. And there aren’t very many companies that are as generous as we are.”
“We can just leave it if you don’t want to. I’m just here because of Coline. Use a different producer if you can’t wait. I’m sure you have a lot of producers since it’s a large company.”
Ili grabbed his hair with one hand and waved with his other, motioning for him to go. It is not his job to go through such negotiations. If the price is not right, they can just not go through with it.
Jun Hyuk took the contract and went back to his dorm. Coline followed him, looking teary.
“Jun, how much do you want? I’ll earn the difference and give it to you. Really.”
“Money? No. Honestly, I was surprised too. It’s $55,000 for just 5 songs.”
Coline could not come to him senses as he saw Jun Hyuk laugh.
“What? Then why didn’t you okay it on the spot? Are you doing this because you want to see me go crazy?”
“Ugh, Coline. Trust me. This is how adults make deals. I’m a professional who even released an album in Korea. You tell the LA producer tomorrow that I’ll sign the contract. Ha ha.”
Coline finally relaxed when he heard Jun Hyuk’s arrogant laugh. He had just grabbed the handle of the door to success.
Coline threw his now weak body on Jun Hyuk’s bed when his phone rang.
“Oh, Mr. Gotez. I was about to call… Excuse me? Airline ticket? Okay. I understand. Please wait one moment.”
Coline blocked the phone with his hand and whispered,
“Jun, Ili is calling.”
“Why? He’s so impatient. How many minutes have passed…..”
“No, that’s not it. He said he’ll take care of all of our airline tickets. Something about hating New York because it’s cold? He said he needs an answer right away because he’s personally taking care of the expenses. If you reject this, he’s going back alone.”
Jun Hyuk smiled brightly and stuck his hand out to Coline.
Coline’s face also became bright and he high fived Jun Hyuk’s hand with strength.
“Mr. Gotez, Jun is signing the contract right now. Thank you for being considerate.”
When the call ended, Coline jumped on Jun Hyuk’s bed and cheered. Jun Hyuk spoke while looking at Coline,
“Stop playing around and get down. There’s a lot to do now. It isn’t a time to play around like a kid.”
“Oh, sorry. I got too excited.”
Jun Hyuk took a guitar case out from underneath his bed.
“What do you mean where? Your practice studio. Tell your members to hurry up and come too.”
“Why the studio all of a sudden?”
Coline could not figure out what Jun Hyuk was trying to do. He remembered the promise he made. The promise that he would do as he was told so that Jun Hyuk would not have to explain everything.
“You’re asking because you don’t know? We have to hurry up and modify the songs to practice them. You want to get to LA and practice what I arranged? You have to record once you get there.”
“Then you’re saying you’ll arrange it now? There are 5 songs. When are you going to do all of that?”
“This kid. You still don’t know me. Hey! An hour is enough for 5 songs. Let’s hurry up and go.”
Coline stuck out his tongue as he followed Jun Hyuk who was already leaving the room.
Jun Hyuk had his guitar on his back and was walking the cold New York streets with Coline.
“There wasn’t time to tell you last time, but I have to tell you something.”