The Straits Times
Published on Nov 18, 2012

The phenomenon that is Gangnam Style


SEOUL (AFP) - United States President Barack Obama, the mayor of London, China's top dissident artist and 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 South Korean rapper Psy went viral on YouTube, it has been name-checked and imitated by an impressive roster of global notables from world leaders to sports stars and business tycoons.

And the public has joined in with tens of thousands turning out for giant flashmob performances of Psy's horse-riding dance in cities like Paris and Rome.

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