|Origin||Seoul, South Korea|
|Genres||Alternative hip hop, hip hop, pop rap|
Map the Soul, Inc.
|Associated acts||Pe2ny, TBNY, J-Win, Clazziquai, Dynamic Duo, Jisun, Jinbo, DJ Friz, Kebee, Nell, Myk, UnknownDJs, Dok2, Younha, Drunken Tiger, Dumbfoundead|
Epik High (Hangul: 에픽하이) is a South Korean indie hip hop group from Seoul, South Korea. The group is composed of Tablo, Mithra Jin and DJ Tukutz. Their music has been considered by many as a “lyrical piece of literature” and “urban poetry”, lyric orientated, soulful and often witty while addressing serious social issues such as identity, discrimination, community, unity and change as a whole through the use of sometimes controversial subject matter. The group went on hiatus in 2009 as a result of DJ Tukutz being called for mandatory military service. DJ Tukutz returned from his mandatory military service on August 7, 2011, leaving only Mithra Jin away from the group. Mithra Jin is also enlisted into the military and is expected to return in 2012.
 2003-2005: Earlier Days
Epik High was relatively unknown early in their career due to hip-hop’s lack of popularity in Korea. Their success began with the release of their second album, titled “High Society“. Upon the success of their third album, Swan Songs, released in late 2005, Epik High has become one of the most popular hip-hop groups in Korea. “Fly”, the title song, and “Paris” (feat. Jisun from Loveholic) from their third album became hits in Korea, reaching number one on many Korean music channels as well as on online music charts. “Fly” was also chosen for the video games FIFA 07 and Pump it up, this song has now become a popular track for dancers/freestylers. Epik High’s fourth album, “Remapping the Human Soul“, released on January 23, 2007 has shown a very different music style from their previous albums. “Fan”, the fourth album’s title song, and “Love Love Love” have been big hits in 2007.
 2006: Swan Songs
Epik High’s 3rd album, Swan Songs, became a mainstream hit in the Korean music scene. Notable hit singles included Fly and Paris. The album was later repackaged as “Black Swan Songs”, which included remixes of various hit songs.
 2007: Remapping the Human Soul
Their fourth album, Remapping the Human Soul, was released on January 23, 2007. The album was supposed to come out in October 2006, but the date was postponed. The album sold almost 90,000 copies in its first month and pushed Epik High to the number one spot for best upcoming artist. It went on to sell a total of 130,000 copies. The group was chosen as the best artist of the month. The group decided to head towards a ‘no genre, just music’ style for their fourth album. Some songs in the fourth album have been banned from several channels due to issues dealing sexual crimes, war, education and religion; the Ministry of Culture and Tourism is trying to stop air play as stated by Tablo in an interview with The Korea Times. With the title song “Fan”, the album became their number one selling music album. In addition, Epik High’s fame has risen in Japan with the song “Flow”, which features Emi Hinouchi. They will release a CD sample in Japan. There have been offers to remake “Fly” as well as “Paris”. The album sold 120,301 copies during the year, making it the third best-selling album of 2007 in South Korea.
 2008: Early Success of Fifth Album and The First Mini-Album
Over 50,000 copies of the fifth studio album entitled “Pieces, Part One” were pre-ordered. The first single off the new album and released music video is “One,” which features Jisun from Loveholic and Korean actress Jung Ryu-won. Shortly after “One”, music videos for “Breakdown” and “Umbrella” were created. After the success of “Pieces, Part One,” Epik High released a mini-album, titled Lovescream. This is their first mini-album since their debut in 2003. It came out September 30, 2008. Teasers were put up on the Epik High website, which gained attention because it was made of abstract, animated graphics instead of actual actors. The mini-album gained huge success and the title track “1 Minute 1 Second” topped online music charts.
 2009-2011: Venture into Map the Soul and Merger with Woollim
Epik High’s seventh work, a book-album entitled “魂: Map the Soul,” was released on March 27, 2009. Completely independent from any major label, the book-album was distributed exclusively on Epik High’s website, MapTheSoul.com. YouTube videos show Epik High’s progress as they recorded and created the album with the help of other artists such as MYK, Kero One and Beatbox DG. Tablo has specifically stated that 魂: Map the Soul is not Epik High’s official 6th album but instead a special project. On May 19, 2009, Epik High released both worldwide and Korean versions of the music video for “Map the Soul”. To commemorate their first release under their independent label and to interact with fans, Epik High toured various cities in the US (New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle) along with Kero One, MYK and Far East Movement in May 2009.
On July 22, 2009, Epik High and the electronic group they scouted, Planet Shiver, joined forces and released an album with re-recorded, remixed and remastered versions of Epik High’s past hit songs titled Remixing The Human Soul.
On August 14, 2009, Epik High member Tablo revealed on his blog that they are working on a new album called “[e]”. Shortly after on September 16, 2009, Epik High’s 6th album, “(e)“, was released. This album contains 30 tracks in 2CDs and a 74 page mini-book, which has interviews of each member as well as pictures. The Korean tour began on September 19, right after the album release. The first single for (e) was “따라해(Wannabe)” which features Mellow, and is an electronic-pop song that criticizes the current trends of K-pop. A joint music video was released for the next upcoming singles (“Trot” and “High Technology”) shortly afterward. On December 6, 2009, a music video featuring scenes from the movie “No Mercy” was released with the track “Slow Motion”.
On October 15, 2009, DJ Tukutz temporarily left the group to begin mandatory military service for two years. Epik High is currently on hiatus due to this matter.
Epik High had created their new album with their new song “Run” where they show a totally new reflection of what they were before. This new album contains less songs than the last one but is with dedication to all their fans and they thank everyone for all their support, as they wait for DJ Tukutz to finish his military service.
Due to the hiatus, Tablo and Mithra have started working on their respective solo albums.
On August 3, 2010, it was announced that Mithra had enlisted in the army.
Announced on September 27, Tablo will be making his comeback on November 1 with a solo album. Although Tablo signed an exclusive 4-year contract with YG Entertainment, he indicated that does not mean that Epik High has disbanded nor that they will necessarily sign to YG as a group.
- Tablo AKA Supreme T, AKA Daniel Armand Lee: rapping, vocals, songwriting, composing, programming
- Mithra Jin AKA Sleeping M: rapping, vocals, songwriting, composing
- DJ Tukutz AKA Street T: turntables, programming, samples, songwriting, vocals, composing, engineering
 The Movement
Epik High is part of The Movement, a Korean hip-hop crew, which includes several other well-known hip-hop artists:
- Drunken Tiger
- Dynamic Duo/CB Mass
- Buga Kingz
- G-Won (Eun Ji Won)
- Double K
- Insane Deegie
- Bobby Kim
- Ex-plicit Linez
- Roscoe Umali
- Mickey Eyez
- Planet Shiver
 Studio albums
- 2003: Map of the Human Soul
- 2004: High Society
- 2005: Swan Songs
- 2007: Remapping the Human Soul
- 2008: Pieces, Part One
- 2009: (e)
- 2010: Epilogue
- 2008: Lovescream
Producer, lyricist, MC, writer
Real Name: Lee Sun Woong (이선웅) or Daniel Armand Lee
Tablo (born July 22, 1980), is the leader and rapper of the group. He was born in South Korea and moved to Canada when he was eight years old. Tablo is known not only for his appearance in Korean variety shows and sitcoms such as MBC’s Nonstop5, but also for his Bachelor’s Degree and Master’s Degree in English Literature and Creative Writing from Stanford University, California, USA. Tablo was a big hip-hop fan ever since he could remember, listening to old Run-DMC and Cold Crush tapes and always rhyming around the way in South Korea. But there was one emcee who inspired him to take it seriously. After he heard Drunken Tiger rapping, he became part of a group called Epik High in 2000 and also claimed to be the first emcee to invent the rhyming rifle. In the fickle world of hip-hop, Tablo kept his name alive over the years by doing shows and various cameos with the EPMD. He is planning on making his own album later.
Producer, turntablist, engineer
Real Name: Jeong Sik Kim (김정식)
DJ Tukutz (born November 19, 1981), is the disc jockey for the group. DJ Tukutz first got into DJ-ing in the summer of 1995 while spending his time at illegal raves and warehouse parties, where his passion for the scene and music began. He started playing at local raves and parties in Japan’s underground Hip-Hop scene, before moving up to South Korea in 2000 to attend the Technics DJ School. After returning from the academy, he hooked up with Tablo and headed to the states. He worked and DJ-ed on radio shows, live events and clubs around the Boston and New York City area.
Producer, lyricist, MC
Real Name: Choi Jin (최진)
Mithra Jin (born January 6, 1983), is a rapper in the group. Mithra Jin was originally a poet whose poems also worked as rhymes. Park emceeing and poetry readings were the first places where he met his future partner Tablo. They were introduced by a mutual friend and clicked right away because each other’s style of poetic rhymes was comparable.