The latest K-pop sensation to take the world by storm, SOMI is an artist of both incredible talent and undeniable appeal. The Canadian-Dutch-Korean singer/songwriter recently signed to Interscope Records as part of its partnership with THEBLACKLABEL (an affiliate of YG Entertainment)—a turn of events that gives SOMI the rare distinction of being one of the few solo K-pop acts to land a record deal in the U.S. Proving her tremendous star power, the 19-year-old artist instantly delivered on that promise with the arrival of her Interscope debut “What You Waiting For,” a larger-than-life anthem whose video surpassed 7.5 million views on YouTube in under 24 hours.
Born Ennik Somi Douma in Ontario, Canada, SOMI grew up in Seoul and first found fame at the young age of 12, appearing on a Korean TV show that spotlighted her skills in Taekwondo (in which she’s now a third-degree black belt). Several years later, she took part in Korean girl-group competition show “Produce 101” and emerged as the winner, which soon led to her joining the 11-member girl group I.O.I. Along with turning out a series of hit singles, I.O.I won the New Artist prize at the Seoul Music Awards and the Best New Artist (Female Group) prize at the Golden Disc Awards, among many other accolades.
After the completion of the project group I.O.I in early 2017, SOMI moved forward with her commercial and acting career, then linked up with THEBLACKLABEL in 2018. The following year, she found immediate smash success with her debut single “Birthday,” a wildly catchy and epic track that shot to the top five on Billboard’s US World Digital Song Sales chart, amassed more than seven million YouTube views within its first 24 hours, and graced the trailer for “Awkwafina Is Nora from Queens.” The song also helped to expand SOMI’s already-sizable fanbase, with her Instagram follower count now at over 7.4 million.
As her first new music since “Birthday,” “What You Waiting For” marks the start of an exciting new era for SOMI. Bigger, bolder, and more self-assured, the hypnotic and high-energy track finds SOMI sharing a writing credit with BLACKPINK writer/producer Teddy, and seamlessly shifting from Korean to English in her lyrics. Meanwhile, the visual for “What You Waiting For” offers an outrageous escape into a beautifully warped world all her own. With more new music on the way, SOMI is sure to continue her rise to the forefront of the global pop scene.