When one hears the term Kpop you either think ‘oh, Korean pop music’ or ‘the name of a candy brand’ (like I did the first time I heard it). These days the musical genre has soared beyond the Asian shores. Many across the world are getting more aware of Korean culture through the addictive sounds of their pop music. From massive groups like Girls Generation and Super Junior, to the urban-esque BIG BANG and rising icons 2NE1, Kpop has indeed come a long way and continues to captivate new audiences daily. Most recently, a somewhat not your average entertainer has taken the phenomenal genre to higher heights, by introducing the globe to a catchy dance named after an upscale neighborhood in Seoul.
Psy‘s Gangnam Style has been creating waves since its release. The charismatic performer doesn’t follow the kpop mold, he breaks it, earning the nickname ‘Bizarre Singer’ for his highly incomparable musical style. Gangnam Style, which I initially considered to be some sort of parody to gangs (go figure), is Psy’s most successful single to date, gaining international recognition for its humorous concept and unusual dance moves. The music video has since reached over 280 million views on YouTube, and has entered Guinness World Records as the most liked video since YouTube’s conception.
The fact that this song and video hilariously depicts the kind of lifestyle portrayed by people of the mentioned district it is no wonder it has gotten such positive feedback. We all like trendy and catchy music videos (we’re living in very visual times); it only takes a really funny, quirky, and overall different style to appeal to the mass, and lucky for Psy, Gangnam Style has that appeal. This brings me to my initial point, could Psy be the light Kpop has been seeking? Could this adorably cute and witty entertainer take Kpop to global domination and do what so many have attempted in the past but have come up short? I think he could, if not already there. After all, Gangnam Style has taken the number one spot on iTunes, and so far has gotten to the Billboard Hot 100 charts, peaking at number 11, which from my recollection is the first for any Kpop artist (please correct me if there have been others to make it to that chart). He has certainly brought forth greater exposure to the already popular genre, but what does that mean for Kpop, and more importantly, what does this sudden stardom mean for Psy? I’ll let you be the judge.
What do you think about Gangnam Style? Just a faze, is Psy gonna maintain that interest in global markets?
Credit: officialpsy channel