“This song is so good,” wrote Jungkook in an Instagram story in December 2021, where he shared Park’s track with his 33.6 million followers.
Almost overnight, Park found himself with thousands of new followers, who scrambled to listen to his three-year-old song. On the Low swiftly topped music charts in South Korea.
That’s not to say Park was an unknown before his track was given the BTS stamp of approval. On the Low is part of the Los Angeles native’s debut album Places Like Home. It features 14 R&B tracks, all written by Park—the tracks explore the emotions that come with relationships. His 2019 cover of US R&B and soul singer-songwriter Pink Sweat$’s critically acclaimed Honesty gained traction and now has 1.8 million views on YouTube. Meanwhile, he’s also toured with the likes of Amber Liu of K-pop girl group f(x) and Korean rapper BwehY.
This month, he released new single Mi Vida. With a combination of English and Spanish lyrics, the song—the name of which means “my life” in English—pays tribute to his hometown and the Hispanic community, whom Park credits with supporting him throughout his life.
What was your reaction when Jungkook shared your song on his Instagram?
I felt like my world was about to explode. I didn’t think the news was real at first, and when I found out it was, I almost went into cardiac arrest. I called everyone. Then I stayed up the whole night sharing it on my socials.
When BTS first came out, I was one of their first fans. If Jungkook or BTS wanted to do a song with me, I would take the chance in a heartbeat.
Why did you decide to mix English and Spanish in Mi Vida?
Initially, we wrote the song with the intention of it being in an English, Reggaeton and summer-bop record. But because I had been hanging out with my hairstylist Edna Lugo and her Mexican friends, I was inspired to pursue having Spanish in the record.
I was a bit fearful that people might have negative opinions about an Asian artist singing in Spanish, but my approach is a homage and in total appreciation of the culture and everything they’ve done for me. I’m from Los Angeles—you can’t help but learn so much from the Latin and Hispanic communities.