I do not know how to do it in Gangam Style.

Till commencement of February 2013, I pronounced the singer of world famous record breaking Gangam Style as Pee-eS-whY, presuming its a band.

Gangam styleBecause now a days, western music influence is so much, every now and then I hear a new name. And, I detest learning a new band’s or singers’ name after their albums feature top lists worldwide. Blaming the youth of today trying to ape the western culture, I move on with my life, not caring enough to listen to a Justin Bieber song. Okay agreed, they have a talent, thanks to a dozen artists they manage to look good, and owing to a million advertising and marketing strategies their albums hit it off. But then I thought why Indian people ignore the talent India already has.

Eventually, over past few years, it sinked in that rappers like Yo Yo Honey SinghΒ ans singers like Himesh Reshammiya and Mika have taken oven the main stream music in India. Very rarely soothing music of A R Rahman falls on one’s ears. And after Slumdog Millionaire and Jai Ho with the Pussycat Dolls, I just accepted that no more can I chose to what I want to listen. I gave in to the trend and my playlist started featuring Eminem, Chris Brown, Rihanna, Beyonce, Wiz Khalifa and I haven’t looked back since then.

But in my heart I always wanted eastern music to be more popular. Then suddenly on a fine 2012 morning my Facebook feed was full of a Korean singer. I looked up to heaven and smiled, I dint mean that eastern too. πŸ˜‰

Owing to my initial hostility towards change, non acceptance of trends and an oath to discard all YouTube links on FB newsfeed, I did not watch Mr P-S-Y till late December. Even then, it was my Times of India headlines which shouted out the broken world records and Guinness Book acclaim, that I finally Google’d “Ga” which automatically predicted to be Gangam Style and took me to the *dreaded* page of our talented singer Psy.

My first response to that now-opened-link was, “my my really 1 billion views”. Then came a moment of truth, a certain odd thousand people had disliked the video. I knew it even before watching, I will be belonging to this category.

gangam style stats

As much as I expected, my facial expression remained still all throughout the 4 minute video. Maybe my brows lifted a bit when Psy started doing his signature step, but only to wonder why was this so famous.

I then opened a few old videos of Govinda dancing and found those more entertaining than the Korean award winning track. Even when our Shakti Kapoor or Mammootty dance, they create a stir across nation. πŸ˜‰

gangam stylegangam style

So it left me puzzled. Why do a billion people like it and IΒ don’t…!!! Β End of this was, I shut the YouTube tab and declared, I am different from a billion people. Ha!

# writing this post reminded me of the Kolavari song, but that will feature in another post.Β 

# all South Koreans are my brothers and sisters and I love them dearly.
# People who like bands- yay woohoo, dont mind dude.
# People who like Bieber- I am sorry, I have nothing more to say. You like Bieber for God’s sake, what CAN I possibly say.

Forbes talk about Gangam Style

For my friends who like PSY :

gangam styleCheers!

123 thoughts on “I do not know how to do it in Gangam Style.

  1. I don’t like Kolaveri at all. Don’t like Bieber either, but his ‘Girlfriend’ was okayish. ‘Gangnam’ is also just okay, but Korean pop is more of an acquired taste. ‘Roly poly’ by T-ara and ‘troublemaker’ by Hyun-A are much better, if you are at all into K-pop.

  2. You have cheered me up, as I’d put my neutrality down to the fact that being a child of the 60’s, I was too old for this modern dance style lol

  3. Let me add to that. I honestly don’t like this singer. His song is catchy, but so was mmmBop back in the day. What I don’t appreciate about him is his personality after stardom. I’m sure he believes it well deserved, but acting with such arrogance can only help to deter some of those who liked his catchy beat. I get it, he’s famous and everyone around the world has heard his song. Retire it already. Let him show the world that he can follow it up with something more meaningful than just simple tunes. He might just end up a one hit wonder after all.

  4. Sakshi ji… +1 I too hate that Gangnam Dance. I don’t understand why ppl liked that so much. His Yankee step? Whats so spl about that? Go to some Nursery School you will find kids doing the same step for the rhyme “Yankee Doodle doo” Kolaveri was much much much better than this.

  5. You have taste darling, and don’t follow the herd. Good for you.
    But I am ashamed to admit that after repeated plays on the radio I find myself singing along. The power of brainwashing. But I can’t bear to look at the horrid little man, Yuk!!

  6. A lot of people are sheep. They follow the crowd and don’t be true to themselves. The latest craze (this month at least) is the ‘Harlem Shake’. I don’t like or get it either. Sometimes I get frustrated, but then I remember if they’re enjoying themselves – and not harming others – why not let them have their fun. I’d rather spend my time focused on the bigger issues – like how are we going to power the planet, feed and water seven billion people, stop people fighting wars, and continue to enjoy the conveniences of modern life without impacting the planet. I’m prepared to take on that responsibility and think rationally about these kinds of things, but not many are. But everyone needs to escape from the harsh reality of life sometimes with crazy, stupid things like this.

    • oh Harlem Shake is a song eh? I thought it was google-doodle something, because everyone was saying Google “Harlem Shake”…so I thought its some trick of google..like that gravity one…

  7. Well, it feels good to know that there are other people around there like me too who get stared at in a lounge/club bcoz they try to question what Mr. Psy actually wants to say?! Read a few posts and you seem like minded πŸ™‚ Looking forward to reading more. And thank you for visiting my blog πŸ™‚

  8. great one Sakshi! yes our songs are far more entertaining and catchy,if its govinda’s or nowadays salman’s…there isn’t anythng great in the PSY style just that the tune is catchy and u unkwingly hum it for the beats

  9. My two cents: There’s place for all kinds of music in this world. These days, thanks to the internet, we have access to so much more music than ever before. Of course, it means we need to filter out a lot more stuff to find out what we like and what we don’t. Yes, perhaps Psy’s music has been overly hyped. But let’s not dismiss ‘Gangnam Style’ as another frivolous K-pop song. It’s meant to be a satire. And a lot of us tend to forget that bit.
    Nice post nonetheless πŸ™‚

  10. It is not often that eastern music reaches us and when it does… well, there comes Psy… and I’m with you among a certain odd thousand people πŸ˜‰ But thanks to your post, I got to know and love Allahrakka Rahman.

  11. First of all, your post made me watch his video for the first time, so actually I have added to his viewing record! And yes it is one of these songs that I wouldn’t listen for any other reason. I really don’t care about videos, since they should be only the vehicles to promote a song and not the actual product. But in this case I think that it is the main product, since we are counting the views and the new record set is just one more trick to enhance sales.

    But about your points on music from the East, it is a big debate about it in Greece as well. Being in the crossraods of East and West. I really believe that good music can be universal, but since it takes time and good education for people to realise and appreciate what they listen to, this is not possible. Music as a product is, unfortunately tangled to the big music companies. And like any other company they want to have as much profit with the least expenses. They create a universal audience (some taste in music, clothes, food etc) and they sell their products with one add! What could be more efficient! My only hope was the easiness of the internet, but they have managed to handle this with the vastness of it. You have to know how and where to search. And people as I mentioned before, do not learn anymore. They can’t be critical towards these little things, and eventually they can’t be critical towards bigger issues, like politics, education, etc.

    Last but not least, even though the artist comes from Korea, this is actually a western song. Can’t see any traditional elements in this song.

  12. I know I dont’ have to like it nor do I require numbers to tell me if I like something or not. MY new work says I simply have to support it. It is up for people to become self aware and make chnages to the world around them. NOt always easy to stand up for what you do like but the feeling when you do succeed is much better then whallowing. The is only more experience to be gained by getting another one. TAking the positives and leaving the negatives enable me to see more. If the numbers don’t agree and needed, well find numbers that do agree. The entertainment industry has to evolve with the new world power just like everybody else. It is up to the public to tell them how to sell their products. Honesty may be tough but producers of services and commodites can only produce from fact well.

    • Valid argument, but the fan following really is equivalent of a herd of sheep.. 10 follow and others join and soon one billion, even thought the initial 10 might be actually timely and strategically plotted…

  13. It is always good to be your own person. My mother used to hammer into us “Think for Yourself”. That advice has served me well in my business life, not so much in the social world. Why, because people want to be with people who like the same things they like. I simple so not like a lot of those things. But I’m maintaining my independence and enjoying it. Thanks for visiting and the like of my post “Our Big Snow”.

  14. I enjoy your posts! It’s so nice to connect with someone so far away geographically! Thanks for reading my poetry, too. It’s special to see “sakshivashist likes your post”

  15. You’re definitely not the only one! I can’t stand it. My first take was the SNL sketch version of it, and I didn’t get it. Then I heard the overplayed (on the radio and everywhere) song and I am more than sick of it. Show me real talent, then I’ll like you. Doesn’t matter what you look like (“they” will make you look real good!)! And, Indian people are gorgeous (just like Asians, but Psy ruined this style for me) and they do make fabulous music:)

  16. Well…the song is catchy and the dance is easy to do. Will he be a one hit wonder? Yes. I think so. Some will like his music, while others won’t. That’s what makes the world the way it is πŸ™‚ I haven’t put the song on my iPod as one for me to run to or workout to so it hasn’t made it as a keeper for me to so to speak.

    Thanks for like one of my posts. Have a great day.

  17. I appreciate your individuality to stand aloof from common tastes. I take this hit as people’s craving for anything that may give them a break from the dead monotony they suffer in mechanical repetitive suppressed horrid bored life style. This particular dance and music was more like an exercise for the glued masses that made them jump with frenzy, which I think was good like catharsis and release. Modern Society lives trite and hackneyed life that is very unhealthy to body and mind. Some cranky stuffs has power to enliven them to life. Once in a while such things are welcome.

    • I guess yes, once in a while such songs should be welcomed. Although that still doesn’t state why only this song broke records, there must be many jumpy-sporty songs out there which makes for sense or are easier to comprehend..

      • Mass hysteria – is always unpredictable, for us individuals. It happens out of the total Unconscious of Humanity. When you were not even born on this earth, BONEY-M, and Pink Floyd made million times more impact than Gangnam, (Of course, they had depth and soul-stirring qualities). Movie Sholay still reigns supreme, you know the violence involved in it. People may suddenly change their tastes. I can understand your concern – people’s taste is not progressive and uplifting – but deteriorates. There I am more deploring than you! Thanks for your social awareness!

      • I wanted Gangam…but you answered that question..

        and a bit of Tamil I have also learnt, hence Kolavari was still tolerable to the extent that I heard it around 20-25 times till now. But PSY I really cant…when you can’t connect to the language and wordings, how to enjoy?

  18. I agree with Vikram — you are not alone!! I’m a Westerner, but I love Indian music and dance. Most of it lifts my spirits immediately. I’m thankful for the friends who introduced me to the music.

    Gangnam style seemed to me just a joke.

      • We need to work on our jokes then … I could use a little extra cash, couldn’t you? But I’m not going to do silly dances — Bollywood, yes; goofy and silly, no.

      • at times I am game for goofy dance too..like playing with kids or poor street kids..they have their own style of dance.. its fun to be a part of it.. play a band-baja or dhol tune and watch ’em move πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜€

        and yes, humor business is very appealing..only it needs a lot of fresh creativity.. I read in a book recently (don’t remember author or name of book)..in that it was said…jokes are always same, they repeat all the time…there can only be few jokes which can be “invented”…but the way of narrating or telling them change- which makes it humorous..

        So even though content remains almost same, the build up and narration adds the actual humor πŸ™‚

      • I find, too, that attributing some “old” jokes or sayings to animals then makes them funny all over again in a new way. I especially like LOL cats. They make me laugh.

        I’m not really a good joke teller, but I have a good sense of humor and probably excell more at witty statements coming from something we are talking about. This trait seems to run in my family — helping us to laugh even when things seem a little grim.

  19. Pingback: They love me! They love me! Today, kids, we learned about the VBA | unkilleddarlings

  20. If I had a list of dances I would like to learn I would start with Ball Room dancing and the Waltz. I pretty much have two left feet. I like my folk, soft rock music. I think mostly just because of the circumstances that Mr. Psy took two years to produce this video, and was – shall we say not in the best financial situation that people flocked the music. I think I like some of the copy-cat videos better. First I can not understand the language of the song. Though there seems to be fun and humor in it. I see no reason why one must be dancing, seated in the WC (water-closet or bathroom). But I am not one for pushing buttons on anything on U-tube. I think I am with you though as the music is loud, and shall we say not family oriented. I do wish him enough to get his family needs met. But I tire of The Gangham Style.

  21. I still don’t get why people r quick to refer to him as a one hit wonder when all he’s done for the past 12 years is produce one massive hit after another. I refuse to conform to the idea that you are not considered a star until America has approved of you! Psy’s a superstar, Korea agrees, Asia definitely follows suit and even this fan in Scotland gives a massive nod! op…op….op……;)

    • Well, maybe you have, but this side of the world did not hear of him till Gangam Style…and even if I agree for a moment I agree with you.. that all he’s done for the past 12 years is produce one massive hit after another – why suddenly this song only bought him to limelight?

      that is my main question. Undoubtedly, he is a hero of a billion fans today, but why with this song?

  22. My dear friend from Malaysia showed me the link and I was amazed and flummoxed at the same time. He often shows me the funniest, zaniest videos so I was ready for something. At that time, in Sept ’12 I didn’t realize how popular this song was. But my friend also told me that Psy is already famous for many other Korean pop songs, and that Gangham/Gangha? is an area of Korea and that this kind of pop is huge in Korea, already 3 things I hadn’t known before. Maybe small trivia, but I felt it was a way in to a culture that I have little connection with. Although small, I think this song enabled a whole swathe of people like me to connect to Korean culture where we never would have. As for the music… well….

  23. I too have no idea why this bizarre song/video is so popular. I can only guess that when something hits a certain saturation point, everyone will see it regardless. And never underestimate the power of peer pressure – as you already know, if you’re the only one who doesn’t like something you’ll start to question yourself rather than the thing…

  24. Great! Grown-ups like this guy too? All I see is little kids doing this little dance. He’s at their level, I guess.
    Thanks for stopping by my blog πŸ˜‰

  25. Its quite funny because my bestie (she’s half Korean) and I were linked this youtube hit a week after we came back from a two week trip in South Korea. Our friend who linked us runs a Korean fashion store in Chinatown and was telling us it would be a big hit…damn she was right and I will proudly admit, I’m a Psy fan not just Gangnam style, his other hit songs too πŸ˜›

  26. I totally totally hated Gangnam till sometime back. I didn’t get the point of the entire video! But a recent trip to Vietnam changed that. I met some Koreans in that trip and they explained some of the context surrounding that video. Like for example, in the scene where the guy dances in the train. The Korean told me that people in Korea are usually extremely quiet in the trains and apparently the guy dancing in the train was hilarious for the people who actually knew about that! Go figure!! πŸ˜€

    Thanks for stopping by my blog! πŸ™‚

  27. Thanks for stopping by my blog. I love this post on Gangam Style…. I’m out of the loop too and don’t mind a bit. Thanks for sharing!

  28. One of the greatest things about art is that everyone is entitled to their own opinion about what they like! For instance, I may sit in front of a modern painting, perplexed, but be moved to tears by a classical piece. (true story) But what is fantastic, is that the modern stuff exists for the person that doesn’t like the romantic.

    I used to work in an underground club, booking bands, and managing the place. I remember how there would be conflict between genres, and particularly sub-genres, “Oi Punk is superior to Pop Punk; Death Metal is superior to Nu Metal; Prog Rock is superior to College Rock is superior to Emo.” I don’t know how many times I told surly musicians “Your music is as relevant as his music, and vice versa.”

    I don’t relate to all genres of music, but I appreciate all of them on an artistic level; I don’t dismiss any nation’s music out of hand, but really enjoy international music. That said, I’ve always had something of a problem with performers who have to lip sync live, because they’re great dancers, but can’t carry a tune. I don’t think they’re musicians.. but they make people happy. It’s a fine line, I guess, to acknowledge the validity of a particular people’s music, while acknowledging your right to feel how you feel about it all. I do know that the older I get, the more my own playlist is shrinking! Thanks for such a brilliantly written and interesting post. I’m so grateful you stopped by, so I’ve had the opportunity to read.

  29. I’m on your opinion for this, I listen many of Asian song, But Gangnam version Psy really far away from interest me. I didn’t listen to your choice of song either but I do listen to A.R Rahman music, “pray for me brother” he’s talented! Until I found on Gangnam version Jayesslee, than I can connect. Thank you for visiting me, and greetings πŸ™‚

  30. They don’t manage to look good. Photoshop makes most of it possible. (Photoshop-user myself)
    And PSY is different from all the music that came out lately that’s why people like him. I love his style πŸ™‚

  31. Great quotes, I agree totally! Have to check out your music links eithter. And thank you for visiting my new blog tuscanybeloved.wordpress.com – a joint project of my twin girls and me. Sunny greetings from Tuscany!

  32. I think that the music in India has also witnessed a drastic change from where it was, let’s say 5 years ago. *refer: The Coke studio, The Dewarists, MTV Unplugged etc. Not to forget, the various upcoming bands in all genres and the quirky and foot-tapping performances held on an almost weekly/monthly basis in cafes.

  33. Hi Sakshi, I totally connected with this article of yours. Three years ago, I had a “ah-ha” moment, when I was contemplating putting out a podcast on music. The fact was that I didn’t like the music I would have to play. Which is when I chanced up on indie music. There is an ocean of good music being made out there that we are hardly aware of. Check out radio maverick (http://radiomaverick.wordpress.com) some time. Would love your feedback on the music.

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