I.N is the original “maknae on top,” period. The youngest member of Stray Kids literally wrote a song about it! Keep reading to meet the K-pop idol, his age and debut details.

Who Is I.N?

I.N, whose real name is Yang Jeongin, was born in Busan, South Korea on February 8, 2001 (an Aquarius!). He joined JYP Entertainment in 2016, where he trained for two years before debuting with Stray Kids in 2018.

What Does ‘Maknae on Top’ Mean?

As Stray Kids’ maknae — meaning the group’s youngest member — I.N released his very own single and music video in January 2021. Some of the (iconic) lyrics include: “Even though I’m polite, I don’t act like the youngest. This year and next year, I’m Stray Kids’ maknae on top.” 

During a 2021 livestream, I.N revealed that his friends with some pretty big K-pop stars including with TXT‘s Beomgyu, ENHYPEN‘S Heeseung and Just B’s Lim Jimin. The friend group has nicknamed themselves “이즈 (ee-z).”

Who Are Stray Kids?

Stray Kids includes 8 members: leader Bang Chan, Lee Know, Changbin, Hyunjin, Han Jisung, Felix, I.N and Seungmin. The band was formed through a reality show competition in 2017. There, nine JYP Entertainment trainees worked together to solidify their spots in the music company’s next boy group.

Stray Kids is one of the only K-pop groups who write their own music, and have nearly full creative control of their sound and choreographies.

i.n stray kids
Photo by Kristy Sparow/Getty Images

During an interview with Zach Sang in February 2020, Bang Chan spoke about why it’s so important for Stray Kids to produce their own music. “Ever since pre-debut, we have been trying our best to work on our own music and creating our music,” he said. “We feel like it’s really important. We are gonna be a group that does the music they perform on stage … It has to be ours in order for it to feel more genuine.”

The group’s last musical drop was in June 2023 with their album 5-STAR, one of their most successful comeback to date. “2022 was filled with so many unbelievable events; it all feels like a dream,” Han told Billboard when reflecting on the group’s chart success ahead of 5-STAR‘s release in June 2023.

He continued, “The goal of this album is to emphasize Stray Kids’ unique color, which can be defined as ‘strange yet special.’ I hope that 5-STAR will be yet another breakthrough for our group and become an album that many people acknowledge as a legendary one.”

Love J-14? Be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel for fun, exclusive videos with your favorite stars.