x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Gangnam Style phenomenon has staying power

Since the music video went viral on YouTube four months ago, it has been imitated by an impressive roster of notables – and shows no sign of going away.

President Barack Obama, the British prime minister, and now Madonna - every time someone signals the death of Gangnam Style, up pops another high-profile figure to keep the phenomenon alive.

In the four months since the music video by the South Korean rapper Psy went viral on YouTube, it has been name-checked and imitated by an impressive roster of notables.

While many still believe Gangnam Style will prove to be a one-hit wonder, the song has shown surprising staying power and an unlikely ability to penetrate international corridors of power.

The UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon called it a force for world peace. On the morning of the US presidential election, Obama told a local radio station that he was confident he could match Psy's dance moves.

The British Prime Minister David Cameron and London Mayor Boris Johnson performed a joint Gangnam Style dance for their wives in September during a private gathering in the premier's country retreat Chequers.

After the Google chairman Eric Schmidt gave a rather awkward horse-riding performance during a visit to Seoul, Time magazine declared the Gangnam Style craze "officially over" - but that was way back in September.

If anything, Psy has since gone from strength to strength, gaining the ultimate showbiz accolade last week by performing a mash-up of Gangnam Style with Madonna during her concert in New York. - AFP