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5566 is a Taiwanese boy band. Their name is derived from their original five members (Zax Wang, Jason Hsu, Sam Wang, Rio Peng, and band leader Tony Sun) working in six entertainment fields (singing, movies and dramas, hosting, modelling, commercials, and dancing). To date, they have starred in three idol dramas: My MVP Valentine, Westside Story, Mr. Fighting, released three albums: [1st Album (5566 album)|1st Album (1st Album)]], Boyfriend (2nd Album), Long Time No See (5566 Album, three OSTs: My MVP Valentine OST, Westside Story OST, Mr. Fighting TV Sound Track, and two compilation albums, C'est Si Bon Greatest Hits, I Love 56-Reemerging Legends: 5 Years Greatest Hits.
5566 not only work together as one, but they can also work separately. One of the most famous instances is Sam Wang's membership in 183 Club, effectively making him the busiest 5566 member. Tony Sun and Zax Wang often have dramas to shoot, while Jason Hsu has been featured in many local promotional campaigns.
Each of 5566's members has had varying degrees of success prior to their formation.
Tony Sun has gained much solo experience by releasing several well-received albums in the Taiwanese dialect in the 1990s; he even gained the title of the "Taiwanese little champion". However, his popularity waned when he had to fulfill his mandatory military service. Sun was signed under Jungiery since his earlier days; this was how he used his connection with the company to secure the second part of his career.
Zax Wang was a member of short-lived boyband POSTM3N. After the group disbanded, he was planning to start a cellphone shop with a colleague when Sun De Rong, Jungiery's head, contacted him. Wang took up the deal.
Sam Wang was a national soccer player and a model before signing with Jungiery. He is also a member of another Jungiery boyband 183 Club.
Jason Hsu was originally obese and unpopular in school. However, he started appearing in several commercials when he successfully lost weight, giving him the looks of an idol. Jungiery offered him a contract, and he gladly accepted.
5566's debut and sudden rise to popularity has been a controversial topic. They showed their multiple talents in their debut interview, yet the hard work was not respected, drawing lots of criticism and earning them a negative nickname, "Turkey", which is still used today. This continued until their first idol drama, My MVP Valentine, aired on local television. The drama, featuring 5566 in its lead roles, exceeded expectations by having a higher television rating than several other idol dramas at the time. Not only did this drama help skyrocket 5566 to fame, it was also the driving force behind the careers of Angela Zhang and Johnny Yan.
Due to a serious injury that he suffered during the filming of a variety show, Rio Peng temporary pulled out from group activities to recover. Although the remaining 5566 members confirmed that Peng was still part of the group, Peng would eventually leave the group, forming his own management company, Wingman Entertainment.
In December, 5566 released their first album, which sold 240,000 copies in Taiwan. However, ever since the album was re-released in two additional versions, 5566 would become infamous for regularly repackaging their albums. This holds true today; the Westside Story OST and the Top on the Forbidden City OST are the only two albums that remain unrepackaged.
Promotional activity for their first album continued during the first few months of this year. When activities ended, 5566 temporarily bade farewell to their home country for overseas promotion in Southeast Asia. After this was finished, 5566 began work for their second idol drama, Westside Story. This drama was also well-received, and the Westside Story OST complimented the drama nicely, faring well on the music charts.
2003 also saw the start of Jungiery's marketing strategy, which was to utilize 5566's fame to increase the popularity of other Jungiery artists. This was seen on the Westside Story OST, where a song by the now-defunct bubblegum pop group R&B and a duet between Tony Sun and Cyndi Wang were included. Both R&B and Cyndi Wang became well-known artists almost in an instant. Rio Peng, with his company Corvette Entertainment (the name Corvette was later abandoned in 2006 in favor of Wingman), formed the 5-man dance group K One. However, K One did not do well with their first album; a very likely reason is that Peng did not wish to involve his own artists with 5566, hoping that K One would make a name for themselves. Another possible reason is that there was already a popular dance group, Energy, in existence; due to this, few people were excited about the arrival of K One. However, Peng ultimately did place K One with Jungiery the following year.
After K One was placed under Jungiery, they were soon put to act in the idol drama, Top on the Forbidden City. This idol drama had a lead cast roster of K One's Gino and JR, and Joanne from the girl group Sweety. To help this drama's fame, Sam Wang also played a supporting role in the drama, and the theme song for this drama, Twist The Fate, was sung by both 5566 and K-One together. This strategy was once again successful; K One's fame rose sharply.
During the period which this drama aired, 5566 began advertising for the 7-11 convenience store chain. 7-11 released special junk food and instant food varieties based on 5566's own ideas. 5566 recorded a short song, C'est Si Bon, to aid this campaign.
After Top on the Forbidden City was finished, Cyndi Wang's own idol drama, Le Robe de Mariage des Cieux, took over. The OST for this drama featured Cyndi Wang, R&B (with some obvious member changes), and the new male vocal band 183 Club, which included Sam Wang. Seeing the changes above, fans speculated that R&B would crumble, and 183 Club would eventually rise to rival the fame of 5566. Both of these guesses ended up being true; original R&B members left Jungiery one by one, and remaining members were re-grouped with other Jungiery trainees into the bubblegum pop group La-La, while 183 Club's fame surpassed 5566's in China.
A few weeks later, 5566 released their first compilation album, C'est Si Bon Greatest Hits. This compilation featured songs from their previous three works, in addition to three new songs, one of which was the re-recorded full version of C'est Si Bon, and featured 7 Flowers. The ending of promotions of this album also signaled the end of 5566's core activities for this year.
5566 sprang to an early start in 2005 with their new idol drama, Mr. Fighting. Unexpectedly, both the drama and the OST did not perform as well as was expected, and many thought that 5566 was beginning to lose their grip on the entertainment industry. Jungiery's manager also seemed to notice this, and decided to shift his attention to 183 Club, fearing that the whole J-Star group would collapse if their main pillar fell, and there were no supporting pillars to take over. After this drama, problems between Avex Trax and Jungiery arose, and Jungiery defected to Warner Music.
In summer, 183 Club's idol drama, The Prince Who Turns Into a Frog, aired. This drama focused on 183 Club and 7 Flowers rather than 5566; the lead casts were 183 Club member Ming Dao and 7 Flowers sub-leader Joe Chen, while the roles of supporting casts were taken by Sam Wang and 7 Flowers leader Joyce Zhao. Even the OST did not include 5566; only 183 Club, 7 Flowers, and the new vocal duo VJ were included. (However, many agree that 5566 still played a part in the unexpected popularity of this drama; 5566 still held a degree of influence, and in this case was credited to Sam Wang. Without him, the drama might not have received enough attention.)
Shortly before the drama ended, 5566 released their third album, Long Time No See. This album was also 5566's first musical work released under the Warner Music label. This album featured more of Tony Sun's vocals, as there were complaints that Zax Wang's vocals were featured too much in their second album. Despite this, the above mentioned decline and many fans voicing a deterioration of quality slightly dented the album's performance.
2006 was a hiatus year for 5566's activities. Tony Sun and Zax Wang both went to Mainland China to film their own dramas, Sam Wang, along with 183 Club, starred in the idol drama The Magicians of Love which aired early in the year, as well as releasing an album with 183 Club during the summer. Jason Hsu stayed at Taiwan to do various promotional campaigns because he is still studying.
On November 19th, Zax Wang's daughter was born. She is known in the public as "Le Le". Le Le's mother is Taiwanese entertainer Ji Qin. 5566 also attended the 41st Golden Bell Awards. They gave the award to the winner and had a perfomance some songs from some popular Taiwanese Drama soundtrack such as "Chuan Shuo" (Westside Story), "Wo Nan Guo" (My MVP Valentine/ MVP Lover), "Qing Fei De Yi" (Meteor Garden), "Won't Give Up" (Mr. Fighting), and "Zhen Ai" [feat. Ming Dao](The Prince Who Turn Into A Frog).
To kick the year off, 5566, along with Jungiery, released a new compilation album in the Love Miracle series, Love Miracle 3. This compilation, following the tradition, included some new songs as well as selected older songs. 5566 recorded two new songs for this album, On Fire (also the Chinese theme song for the Ghost Rider film), and Red Youth Is Knocking. Jungiery martial arts group Tai Chi collaborated with 5566 in the On Fire Music Video. The same group had previously collaborated with 5566 in the song "One World One Dream" from their third album, both vocally and visually.
In May, 5566 released a special compilation album named I Love 56-Reemerging Legends: 5 Years Greatest Hits. This album did not feature any new songs and was exclusive to the Mainland China area.
2007 was the first year all of 5566's members appeared as lead actors in their own individual dramas. In February, Zax Wang co-starred with Taiwanese singer Pace Wu in the drama Shi Shen (God of Cookery). The other three members made their appearances one after another in the later half of the summer holidays; Jason Hsu co-starred with "Prince-Frog Couple" Ming Dao and Joe Chen in the idol drama Ying Yue 3+1(Wild Cherry 3+1), Tony Sun starred in the Taiwan-Mainland-Hong Kong collaboration martial arts drama The Sword and the Chess of Death, and Sam Wang starred in upcoming idol drama E Nu A Chu (Mean Girl A Chu)with Joanne Zeng, One Chen, and Genie Zhuo. Tony also starred a new drama titled Ai Qing Liang Hao San Huai (Full Count) with Joanne Zeng and One Chen as the main cast and also Joyce Zhao as his co-star partner. On November 24th, 5566 attended the 42nd Golden Bell Awards but this year was different with last year. This year, they only gave the awards to the winner.
5566 has also said that they will be releasing a new album at the end of this year.
5566 has, on many occasions, earned media attention from their controversial acts. They have sometimes aroused public criticism for their disrespectful behavior towards other people, mishandling of affairs, and vehement denial of several claims, including the fact that most of their songs are covers. On the Internet, hardcore 5566 fans have sparked heated debates between fans and anti-5566 communities.
Tony Sun (leader).