Exclusive: AleXa makes her debut with "Bomb"! + Interview
Published 9 months ago
AleXa, also known as Alex Christine, made her official debut with the explosive title track "Bomb" on October 21st. AleXa has been involved in the K-Pop industry for the past three years competing on multiple high-profile competition shows, garnering a supportive fanbase along the way, and signing with a top K-Pop production team. The catch? She's only 22 years old, grew up in the United States, and for the first 21 years of her life hadn't spoken a word of Korean. So how does a small-town girl from Oklahoma wind up as a K-Pop star?
AleXa's K-Pop story began in 2016 when she entered in—along with over 5,000 other contestants—to compete on Soompi's new survival show Rising Legends. Not only was she chosen to compete, she also ended up winning after receiving nearly 1 million fan votes! After being crowned 'Rising Legend', AleXa released the single "Strike It Up" in partnership with Soompi and CUBE Entertainment.
But the journey didn't end there! In 2017, AleXa signed with Zanybros and became the first to debut under their artist agency ZB Label. Zanybros is renowned in the industry for producing MVs for some of the biggest names in K-Pop including BTS, SNSD, EXO, and many more.
In 2018, AleXa once again beat out thousands of competitors and became one of 96 contestants on Mnet's singing competition program "Produce 48". Now, having overcome two survival shows and joined a top production company, AleXa is here to make her mark on K-Pop. After releasing the MV to her debut song "Bomb" on Youtube, AleXa successfully garnered over a million views in under 48 hours!
"Bomb" is described as a "powerful dance track combining Brazilian Funk and electronic elements matched to a choreography inspired by Afrobeats and Dancehall moves". It was created by a Swedish team at EKKO MUSIC RIGHTS that has written and produced tracks for TWICE, Red Velvet, NCT, and more.
OurKpop recently had the privilege of interviewing AleXa ahead of her debut. In our interview, AleXa shares her personal debut journey, what "Bomb" means to her, her experience in the K-Pop industry, and a fun Halloween story!
Would you be able to explain AleXa? Who is AleXa?
AleXa is an AI created by ZB Corporation. In “Bomb” she can be seen as awakening from being shut down, reprogramming herself, and figuring out where she is and what she’s destined to do.
You’ve mentioned wanting to debut with a stage name since Alex Christine doesn’t sound very “idol-like”. What was the decision behind AleXa? What does the X in AleXa mean?
The decision behind debuting with the name AleXa is quite simple. ZanyBros was the first company in Korea to shoot music videos using the Alexa camera, and therefore the name Alexa is very precious to them. As I am their first artist, they bestowed the upon me.
The “X” in AleXa itself stands out, when written, as I want to stand out in the industry and make a statement.
How is it being able to debut? What kinds of emotions are you going through?
Being able to debut and finally seeing all the fruits of our labor come together in such an awesome music video like “Bomb”, it’s truly humbling.
I have experienced many emotions during this whole process; most of them positive and happy ones, however there are, of course, nerves and anxious emotions and play as well.
What was your biggest challenge while getting ready to debut?
My biggest challenge while getting ready for debut was the Korean language. Having grown up in America 21 years of my life, having never spoken a lick of Korean, the language has been the biggest challenge.
Who would you say is your biggest influence in becoming an artist?
My biggest influence in becoming an artist can definitely be summed up to two people/groups. First HyunA sunbaenim. I have been a fan of her since wayback, and she has always been someone I look up to as a role model. She such a dynamic performer and I love everything about her.
Secondly, the first group I ever fell in love with was SHINee sunbaenim. If it weren’t for them, I probably would not be where I am today. They were the first group I fell in love with.
How would you say growing up in America has influenced your music?
I think growing up in America, where it’s a melting pot of people and cultures, definitely influenced “Bomb” to be the melting pot that it is. It takes heavy influence from Brazilian funk and a few other music styles.
What was the biggest takeaway you had from Produce 48?
Be fearless. Don’t hold back. If you want to do something, push yourself to achieve it.
You participated in Produce 48, which was the first of the Produce series that welcomed trainees from both Korea and Japan. I also understand you learned some Japanese in college. Might there be plans for activities in Japan in the future?
Absolutely!! We fully intend to take AleXa global, in the future!!!
What was one of your favourite memories from Produce 48?
Definitely meeting the wonderful friends that I have now. I did not speak Korean too well at the time, so the friends that I have now were kind enough to speak to me in English. They helped me a lot along the way.
Who has been the most memorable artist you’ve had the opportunity to meet?
IN2IT sunbaenim!!! I am so fortunate to have met them this year, having gone on tour with them twice! They are truly such a talented group of boys, and I am excited to see what the future has for them! Please do support them, they are a great role models for me as an artist.
Who would your dream collaboration be with?
My dream collaboration would be with one of three artists: Jessi, HyunA, ChungHa. Three powerful women.
Aside from the concept with “Bomb”, what further concepts would you hope to pursue in the future?
I, myself, absolutely love anything dark and macabre. Therefore, I would love to do something similar to Billie Eilish’s “bury a friend” or like VIXX sunbaenim’s “Voodoo Doll”. Spook me up.
How different was it filming for your debut MV “Bomb” versus “Strike It Up”?
“Strike It Up” language aside, is VERY different from “Bomb”. “S.I.U” is a song with a bright tone, while “Bomb” is a darker tone. Both are motivating and go-getting songs, but “Bomb” moreso than “S.I.U”, holds more power.
What’s a story you've always wanted to tell in an interview but never had the chance?
Seeing as it is almost Halloween time, I have a funny story for you. Well, maybe not so fun, but entertaining. When I was younger, I had gone to a Halloween event at our local aquarium. I was dressed as Venom and my younger brother was Spiderman. The costume was fully equipped with fake muscles and a mask. Upon looking at me, nobody assumed I was a girl. I distinctly remember getting bro-nods of approval from boys around my age. It was very entertaining to me, as a female.
What are your bigger goals now that you’ve debuted as AleXa, and what can we expect for the future?
I’d say my biggest goal right now is to garner 1 million views before the end of the year, and to successfully tour at least 10 cities by the end of next year.
Find AleXa on all socials below!
- Twitter - Alexa_zb
- Instagram - alexa_zbofficial
- TikTok - alexa_zbofficial
- Facebook - ZBAleXa
- YouTube - AleXa • ZB Label
Special thanks to AleXa, and ZB Label for this opportunity.
All images shared are used with permission from ZB Label.