On March 24, 2023, Jimin of BTS released his first solo album, FACE. The album and its respective tracks would go on to break multiple records and gain positive acknowledgement from fans and critics alike. Of course, the formation of this album did not come easily or lightly. The artist had confided that the album was one of creative discovery, where he faced himself as he continued forward in his musical journey and found his own voice as a soloist. Months later, on Jimin’s 28th birthday, Weverse announced a special documentary called “Jimin’s Production Diary” that showed a glimpse of how Jimin created his record-breaking solo album. The documentary was later released on October 23 and is available to stream on Weverse.
The diary opened with a black and white preview of what fans can expect, beginning the journey in May 2022, then closed the preview with saturated color and Jimin’s final journey of his album promotions in April 2023. Jimin started the film by visiting the producers who helped with his album and asked them to reminisce with him on how they began to collaborate on this project.
Breaking the documentary between the process for each song, they began with Face Off, where they were seen experimenting in the studio, playing with various keyboards on the wall and building the song as they went along. Once the track was produced, the songwriting was later fleshed out during a session at Pdogg’s house. The process moved on to where Jimin is now in the recording room, singing through the same verse until he was satisfied.
The documentary continued back in the same production studio in a short segment called “Would You Like a Drink?” There, the producers and Jimin were once again experimenting in the studio before the documentary cut to show scenes of the next song, Like Crazy. The main producer tested with a synthesizer while a beat played in the background and compared its likeness to “a sorrow party.” Jimin then lightly rasped the first draft of the whispers that are now heard during the beginning of the song. The producer liked it and suggested to include a line from a foreign movie, to which Jimin replied that he was thinking of adding a sample from the movie “Like Crazy.”
It was later revealed that the final audio used was not a sample but a male and female voiceover that mimicked the tone of the movie. While working on Like Crazy, Jimin could be seen pacing around the studio while the producers worked through the song. During the songwriting brainstorming session, Namjoon was there to help Jimin work through what he wanted to convey in the song’s narrative before they moved back into the production studio to finish fleshing out the details of the song and how that would look when performed onstage.
The next song that was shown was Alone. Jimin admitted that it was a difficult song to work with since it began in a lower key than the other two. During this song’s producing process, he wanted to convey the feeling of getting fingers pointed at him through the staccatos and the downward-spiraling vocables. Alone seemed to be the song that Jimin and the producers were having the hardest time to work through as they’d been at it for four hours so far. The documentary showed them going back and forth between the production studio to the living room, where Jimin would conceptualize the lyrics, to the recording room where he would finally be able to put it all together.
In the next segment, ARMY was able to see Jimin recording on his phone and playing a snippet of himself on his guitar, one that was later posted on Weverse. The guitar-playing session continued on and would unfold to become Dear. ARMY, a hidden track in the CD album. Jimin would later drop a surprise music video of the song to ARMY during BTS’s 10th Anniversary FESTA. Jimin looked to be having a bit more fun while producing this song as it was more of a gift to ARMY, though he still struggled with the lyrics. In a recording session, it was shown that Jimin would include Jungkook to harmonize in the background.
Finally, the last song shown in the documentary was Set Me Free Pt. 2. The highlight of this segment showed Jimin in Los Angeles, where he met his “choir” for the song, and later listened to a final draft. After that, Jimin finished the recording in the studio with the segment that would close with him singing the words, “Set me free.” The documentary ended with Jimin’s final thoughts on his album-making process.
Written by: Rei
Edited by: Sanam
Designed by: Achan
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