An anecdote about Kim Jong-kook’s past has been told.
Broadcaster Jo Hye-ryun appeared as a guest on KBS2’s entertainment program “Problem Child in House”, which aired on May 11th.
Jo Hye-ryun shared talks with MC Song Eun-yi, Kim Sook and Jung Hyeong-don as comedians recruited by KBS and developed a bond of sympathy with Kim Jong-kook, who is also from Anyang. She said, “Anyang has many muscular men. Kim Jong-kook, me and Rain (Jung Ji-hoon)”.
Kim Jong-kook then said, “Rain only came to study, so it’s hard to say that he’s from Anyang. Ji Chang-wook is my high school junior”.
Jo Hye-ryun also brought up Kim Jong-kook’s past stories when debuted as a member of Turbo and he was at his popularity peak. She said, “To explain how stingy he was… I became a celebrity first, then Kim Jong-kook debuted in Turbo. I used to move in an Avella (a kind of car), but Kim Jong-kook still took the bus. It was when he worked in Turbo”.
Kim Jong-kook admitted, “I moved by bus until the release of the 3rd album”. When asked if he actually did it to save money, Kim Jong-kook explained, “I already became popular at that time but I still didn’t have money since it was before the tax adjustment. No one recognized me when I took off my sunglasses, but they did when I wore them on. I took the express bus, not the city bus, so not many people recognized me”.
Kim Jong-kook is widely known in the entertainment industry with the nickname “Jjan-dol-ii”, which means someone who tries to save money. He can generously spare money for others but is known to save almost all the money he should spend on himself. In March, he posted a photo of his gray socks that have holes on Instagram and wrote, “I’ve been using them for 3 years”.
On the other hand, the producer of SBS’s “Running Man” once talked about Kim Jong-kook’s image, saying, “Kim Jong-kook has an image of being stingy, but he is actually the person who eats the most without considering the price”.
Kim Jong-kook made his debut as a member of the duo Turbo in 1995. He was active as a solo singer in the 2000s but has been working as an MC for entertainment programs and running his Youtube channel.