The Taeyeon and Wiz Khalifa/DJ Bonics controversy seemed to die down without an actual conclusion following an explosive couple days, leading me to maybe think it might be over. However, DJ Bonics recently talked with Koreaboo and fleshed out their side of the story for us.
It’s a long article recapping everything, but I’ll try to highlight the important parts and new information.
DJ Bonics talked about the MR and AR issue, as well as what happened during the rehearsal that Taeyeon left.
“They gave me both MR and AR files to download. I downloaded one of them. I played it for them. That’s the whole point of the Thursday night rehearsal. Whether or not I played the AR or MR, that’s what rehearsals are for. On Thursday night, I played the AR. Not one person, not the representative from MAMA or [SM Entertainment] told me it was the wrong one. She didn’t stay for the rehearsal on Thursday. They said she didn’t feel well, she had to go to the hospital. Whether they meant hotel or hospital, she left the rehearsal. We flew that day to attend the rehearsal. We rehearsed and no one told me it was the wrong track on Thursday. They said, ‘Cool, it’s all good.’ The next day we did the same thing, they said, ‘It’s the wrong one.’ They waited until the day after for the next rehearsal to say that it was the wrong file. When we tried to rehearse again, they said, ‘We don’t have enough time. Let’s just do it the way we did it.’ We could have fixed the track and prepared the correct one if Taeyeon’s team had stayed behind and told us that it was the wrong track or told us earlier it was the wrong track.”
DJ Bonics confirmed that they were absolutely told she was leaving the rehearsal to go to the hospital because she was not feeling well. He states that there may have been a misunderstanding and either SM Entertainment or MAMA representatives might have meant hotel. He made it clear that Wiz Khalifa did not make up these statements.
The misunderstanding might have come from as after every rehearsal, Wiz went to his changing room. It’s just normal for the artist to head back to their room after going on stage and doing their thing. They don’t stick around and talk to everyone. Wiz performs, he rehearses, and heads back to his room. He comes back out, rehearses again, sticks around on stage or around the stage to make adjustments and then goes back to his room.
Of course, there was also that odd thing about Taeyeon supposedly asking to be on a different stage, which was always a bit bizarre. In actuality, it appears to be MAMA or SM Entertainment reps that were trying to communicate and clearly having issues.
The most confusion came when Wiz Khalifa tweeted about Taeyeon wanting to be on a “different stage.” DJ Bonics added to the tweet by revealing that they were told Taeyeon would look too short next to Wiz Khalifa, by representatives from either MAMA or SM Entertainment. DJ Bonics revealed to Koreaboo, “Why would they even tell us things like, ‘Oh, we want to put her on a different stage because she looks too short next to [Wiz Khalifa]’? This is what our tour manager was told by them.” For clarification, Wiz Khalifa is 6’4”. Taeyeon is 5’4”. The explanation behind these tweets seem to be that the cameras were not set up to clearly show the two on stage together. This claim is further backed by MAMA’s Red Carpet 360 Camera. Celebrities walking the red carpet were able to stand in an object that would take a 360-degree video and photo-shot of them. Unfortunately, Wiz Khalifa was far too tall for this and his head was completely cut off from the shots.
Primarily this seems like a communication and logistics issue with representatives from MAMA and SME combining to complicate matters with Wiz Khalifa/DJ Bonics. Wires appear to have gotten crossed at some point, and I think the last quote is plausible given their confusion and her confusion about where the other person was.
Speaking of communication issues, apparently there was also some cultural confusion about how business is conducted, and it led to Wiz Khalifa/DJ Bonics addressing Taeyeon directly even though it wasn’t her that communicated with them.
All tweets written by Wiz Khalifa and DJ Bonics that were related to their collaboration stage were directed towards Taeyeon. The assumption was that if Taeyeon backed out of their collaboration stage, she *must* have made the final call.
While fans were making DJ Bonics aware that the K-Pop industry does not work the same as the US industry, DJ Bonics clarified that he continued to tweet about Taeyeon making her own decisions because it was simply not understandable how a world star could not put her foot down and demand that she perform. In their eyes, any artist as great and as popular as Taeyeon would have simply told them she would be doing this stage no matter what.
The confusion was confirmed when DJ Bonics revealed, “We are in charge of our own artistry. If Wiz wants to do something, he’s going to do it. We didn’t know that K-Pop artists don’t manage themselves 100%.”
“We didn’t know that Taeyeon couldn’t perform without her agency’s approval and that they had the final decision in all matters.” — Wiz Khalifa’s Team
So … yeah. That confirms what I think most rational people would conclude. Not sure why anybody would’ve thought Taeyeon was directly telling them all the shit they were tweeting about, but whatever.
Also, as they’ve said all along, they respected Taeyeon’s singing.
In our conversations with DJ Bonics, it was clear he was extremely disappointed this stage and performance did not happen. He revealed, “She sounded amazing. Nobody over here was like, she’s wack. Nobody over here was like, she can’t sing. She sounded so amazing.”
He revealed, “We are upset for the fans. We want the fans to see something like this. The fact that someone, whoever it may be, took that away. Now that we understand Taeyeon must not have had a direct hand in cancelling this performance, we’re also upset for her. She must be extremely upset that she was not able to perform with Wiz Khalifa on this stage. We should have all won that night.”
As I’ve said, it’s a disappointing outcome because it did sound legitimately good, and given the crowd response, it would’ve been a memorable stage for an event that needed one.
As I’ve already found out, you guys are gonna interpret this however you want, but to me, it sure as hell seems like most of this comes down to communication and logistics issues.
Wiz Khalifa and his team have zero reason to lie about any of this, I believe that. But the thing is, I also have a difficult time finding a motivation for Taeyeon herself to want to duck the stage. Or at least finding one that passes the sniff test and doesn’t devolve into conspiracy theories and shit.
Look, it’s just difficult for me to reconcile the fact that everybody knows MAMA is always messy and that Mnet is constantly messy, but yet when it comes to this, everybody wants to blame either Taeyeon or Wiz Khalifa for the failures of the people calling the shots above them. People on both sides of the aisle got so dug in with their position from the start that they now can’t seem to loosen their commitment to a certain narrative. Instead of continuing with that shit, I’d suggest trying to clear the board and thinking about what actually makes sense based on what we know so far.
Anyway, you guys are probably gonna go wild regardless, so a plea for reason is likely pointless.
Seriously though, because K-pop is most relevant, I understand much of the discussion centers around Taeyeon. However, in the end the people I feel bad for are definitely Wiz Khalifa and his team. Not only because of the abuse and drama (it was fucking amazing, tho) they suffered, but especially because apparently MAMA let them know it would be a solo act right before they went on.
DJ Bonics revealed that they were only made aware that Taeyeon would not be performing with Wiz Khalifa minutes before his performance. This was after they had decided on singing over the track as the best option after rehearsals. “We were sleeping up until 10 minutes before Wiz went on stage due to the rehearsal night before and jetlag. Our management was dealing with it while we were sleeping. Before we were sleeping, everything was okay and the stage was going on as planned. That’s how it was brought to us.”
Yeah, no wonder they were pissed.