Lee Jung-hyun Sets Her Sights On the U.S. With Expert Help

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Lee Jung-hyun Sets Her Sights On the U.S. With Expert Help

Lee Jung-hyun, the 20-year-old singer who has been called the Techno Queen of Korea and who scored success with the songs "Wa" and "Change," is hoping to crack into the American market with the help of one of Madonna's songwriters.

Ms. Lee's manager, Pang Yoon-tae, said that Peter Rafelson, who wrote "Open Your Heart" for Madonna, had expressed interest in producing Ms. Lee's next album for release in the United States.

"Peter spotted her talent and potential for success after watching her perform on TV," Mr. Pang said. Then Mr. Rafelson co-produced her most recent album, her second, and wrote one of the songs on it.

In addition to having written for Madonna, Mr. Rafelson, who owns a record label, recording studio and publishing company, has also composed and produced songs for Elton John and Jackson Browne. He recently co-produced the song "Dreams" by the Corrs, an Irish band.

To prepare for her next album, which will be her third, Ms. Lee will stop appearing on television next month and travel to the United States early next year. "We have not yet discussed exactly when we will record the album," Mr. Pang said. "We'll know the details soon."

Ms. Lee is a trendsetter in the world of techno dance. She wore a metallic outfit on the cover of her first album, "Let's Go to My Star," in her guise of "space woman warrior," and the outfit was much admired by some young fans.

In her second album, "Lee Jung Hyun 2," Ms. Lee transformed from female fighter to messenger of peace. In her recent hit, "Peace," she sang, "The world needs to become one."

The singer has also shown an interest in current events - or at least in cashing in on the issues of the moment. Her first album, which included the hit "Change," was released before the general election in Korea. The song became a popular campaign song. "Peace" was released in late June after the North-South Korean summit meeting earlier that month.

"This was a kind of strategic plan to take advantage of world interest in the meeting," Mr. Pang said. "These days, it is time to focus on peace, especially as Kim Dae-jung received the Nobel Peace Prize."

by Kim Jae-seon

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