With new artists debuting weekly in the K-pop scene, the rookie gongs at the various end-of-year awards shows are one of the best indicators as to who’s got a future in the industry, and who needs to pack their bags and find a new career. The 2012 Melon Music Awards, which selects its winners based on sales, was held last night, with powerhouse songstress, Ailee, and bad ass boy band, B.A.P, picking up the Best New Artist trophies.
They beat out stiff competition from Lee Hi, Juniel, and Superstar K3 winners, Ulala Session, but their victories don’t come as a huge surprise. Ailee’s only released two singles this year, but they were both huge digital sellers, while B.A.P flooded the market with five back-to-back singles and non-stop promotions all year, easily making them the most visible new boy band of 2012.
Both B.A.P and Ailee are also nominated in the rookie categories at the upcoming Seoul Music Awards. They have a chance of winning again, but may have trouble beating the likes of EXO-K and Busker Busker, who have been incredibly popular this year. Even so, Ailee and B.A.P have already achieved enough this year to cement their spot as two of K-pop’s most promising rising stars — it’s groups like NU’EST, A-JAX, and BtoB that need to worry.