CL’s Childhood Until Her DEBUT !!

Because Of CL’s Bday Has Coming Soon !! I Want To Share Some About CL Childhood, Hope You Enjoy Guys !

Little Chae ~

On February 26, 1991, a very special girl named Lee Chaerin was brought into the world in Seoul, South Korea. This little bundle of joy, that would in the future become “the baddest female Seoul city has ever had”, was born into an illustrious family: her dad is a Physics professor (who has penned patents for his researches) and children’s book author, an aunt who is a judge, another aunt who owns a gallery, a CEO grandad from one part of the family and another grandad who, just like Daddy Lee, was a physicist. Raised in an environment that nurtured and encouraged both her scholarly and artistic nature it is no surprise then that the CL we know now is a seamless blend of a free spirit and rationality. Her eclectic taste in fashion, music, and the arts show the free spirit that is growing in her and her love of reading  show her insatiable desire to still learn (remember her literally burning a whole in her blanket because she snuck her reading light under the covers to continue reading while the rest of her roommates sleep with the lights off). CL’s interest in art was evident from her younger years, as seen in the family photos below.

A young CL proudly holds up her art piece

And as we all know, her interest in art has not waned. She had created a few art pieces that can be seen in the “Go Away” Japanese PV and has once said that if music had not worked out for her, she would have been an artist! (Boy, aren’t we glad she stuck with music!)

Due to the nature of her dad’s work, CL was already a globetrotter even at a young age. Professor Lee had once written about a teenage-CL’s impressions of Paris and more endearingly about the times he would be walking in Paris with a then baby CL pushing her in a stroller. Even before she became a teenager CL had lived not only in Seoul, but also in Paris and Japan.

Could this photo that Dara shared be of baby CL in Paris? Hmmm.. we wonder..

CL spent a large amount of her childhood in Japan and attended elementary school there at Tsukuba International School (TIS). TIS conducts its lessons in English and thus she was exposed to English and Japanese more than her native Korean tongue from a very young age. Her journey with music started in her childhood, thanks to her father’s love for variety of music particularly the rock and roll genre, and continued on until she found her own set of musical influences ranging from pop icons like Madonna, neo-soul artist Erykah Badu, hip hop R&B soul Lauryn Hill to rock legends Queen. Even in music, CL’s taste is quite like her, eclectic and top notch class.

A rare photo of CL in her younger years

At around the time when she was eight years old, Chaerin’s family moved back to Seoul where she continued her studies and attended junior high. While in Seoul she went to a dance school that was also attended by Secret’s Zinger, Wonder Girls’ Sunye and 4 Minute’s Hyuna, this was probably where CL first started to hone her skills in the performing arts.

CL in France

In her years as a teenager CL also went on a month-long study trip in Paris.  CL’s dad included an account of her days in Paris in his book “To Play Well with the Laws of Physics”.She continued to actively pursue music and dance during her teenage years, even picking up formal study in jazz and ballet. Contrary to popular belief, CL was in fact never formally a JYP trainee. She had however attended a dance school that was part of JYP and trained with JYP trainees that would one day be members of Wonder Girls and 2PM.

CL with miss A’s Min before their respective debuts

In addition CL was also reported to have attended Winners Dance School, which counts SNSD’s Hyo Yeon and miss A’s Min as alumni, where she had opportunities to train and meet with prolific dancers such as world-famous B-boy from Germany Storm and K-pop’s reigning queen Lee Hyori.


CL with Lee Hyori

While she pursued her interest in music and dance, CL did not forgo her formal education and managed to complete high school amidst it all. In her own words she was “a very nerdy student that listened well to adults”. (Nerdy? A far cry from the CL that explodes with confidence and swag while on stage now isn’t it? ^^) 2NE1′s fashionable leader was also a self-confessed tomboy during her schooling years preferring the comfort of track shoes, baggy clothing and pants instead of skirts, even wearing the boys’ school uniform to school rather than the girls’. Who would have ever thought of that looking at the sexy and confident fashionista that she has blossomed to today, huh? The well-rounded education CL had in her younger years had provided a strong foundation that has led her to grow into the wise and amazingly talented young woman that weall love today.

Into Hip-hop style clothing even from a young age

Netizens were instantly curious about the mysterious girl that had held her own among the YG men on stage and comments like “Who is she?” “She’s good!” became the word of mouth. However, the public was not the only one that sat up and took notice. Chaerin’s impressive rapping skills had also caught the attention of two other artists: YG’s very own YMGA and singer-actress Uhm Jung Hwa, a long-time friend of YG himself. In 2008, she earned featuring spots in 2 songs, one in YMGA’s What, and another in Uhm Jung Hwa’s DJ. Once again, she showcased her enviable talent for rapping, offering fans a glimpse of “CL, the baddest female” that would one day become 2NE1′s charismatic leader, rapper and vocalist.

1TYM’s Baekyoung dubbed her “YG’s princess”

Interestingly, aside from her stage debut with the YG Family during her trainee years, CL also had her first foray on screen way before 2NE1Tv. She was actually caught on camera in the making video of Big Bang’s THE REAL concert that was released in early 2007. (Watch the clip here! Did you see her among the crowd at around 22:52 onwards? (Hint:She’s first seen right beside Seungri!))

Although not formally credited, CL is also known to have lent her voice to the intro of Hot Issue, Big Bang’s 2nd Mini Album that was released in 2007 and “A Good Man” in 2008

The World is a Stage

Soon enough, CL’s charisma and rapping skills garnered her fans. She was still a trainee, a highly anticipated trainee, that already had groups of fans crowding her for signature. Fame was really coming for Chaerin and it showed no signs of backing down.

Already surrounded by fans even before her debut!

Initially rumoured to debut as a solo artist, the trainee CL was eventually put into an unnamed group with Gong Minji, Sandara Park, and Park Bom. Destiny was at work. The group practices showcased the evident chemistry the four girls had together and soon enough they were scheduled to debut as 2NE1 on May 17, 2009.

The group also bonded quickly, apparent from the various photos that they took together in their younger days.

CL was finally able to fulfill her dreams of performing on stage on that fateful day. Dancing and rapping her verses with impeccable charisma and stage presence, so much like a seasoned pro that it was hard to keep in mind that  May 17, 2009 was, in fact, their very first stage as a group.



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