Both an actor and singer, he launched his career by winning the reality competition series Superstar K in 2009. He broke through as an actor in the show Reply 1997.
He was 10 years old when he developed a passion for singing. He attended Daebul University where he studied Applied Music.
He has won awards for both acting and singing, including wins at the Cyworld Digital Music Awards, Mnet Asian Music Awards, Korea Drama Awards, Style Icon Awards, K-Drama Star Awards, Melon Music Awards, Gaon Chart K-Pop Awards, SBS Drama Awards and KBS Drama Awards.
He was born in Ulsan, South Korea and would later live in Seoul.
He recorded a couple of singles as a duet with Jung Eun-ji for the soundtrack to Reply 1997.