News / Arts & Entertainment

Korean Rapper Psy Releases New Single

 In this Feb. 25, 2013 photo, South Korean rapper PSY performs before President Park Geun-hye's presidential inauguration ceremony in Seoul, South Korea.
In this Feb. 25, 2013 photo, South Korean rapper PSY performs before President Park Geun-hye's presidential inauguration ceremony in Seoul, South Korea.
Reuters
South Korean rapper Psy released his much-anticipated new single on Thursday hoping to repeat the success of "Gangnam Style'' that made him the biggest star to emerge from the growing K-pop music scene.

The video for "Gangnam Style'' has become the most watched item on YouTube with more than 1.5 billion hits and Psy's horse-riding moves sparked an international dance craze.

The details of his latest single, "Gentleman," were kept under wraps until the song was released at midnight in New Zealand (1200 GMT). The song, with a techno beat, was full of puns in Korean and contained the lines "I am a party mafia!'' and the refrain, "I am a mother father gentleman''.
       
Psy, 35, will perform "Gentleman'' in public for the first time on Saturday at a concert at Seoul's World Cup stadium but he has been coy about what dance to expect this time, except to hint that it is based on traditional Korean moves.
       
"All Koreans know this dance but [those] in other countries haven't seen it,'' Psy told South Korean television last week.
       
White party

He has asked fans to wear white to Saturday's event and his stylist told Reuters last month that the concept for the new song would again be a formal suit with "an unexpected twist of fun."

In "Gangnam Style'', written as a commentary on materialism in the wealthy Seoul suburb of Gangnam, Psy was decked out in sunglasses, a white dress shirt, bow tie and tuxedo jackets.

The song racked up 3.59 million digital sales last year in the United States and Canada, according to Nielsen SoundScan and Nielsen BDS, putting it ninth in the best-selling list. It was third on Amazon's MP3 song bestseller list for 2012.
  
"Gangnam Style'' catapulted Psy to global fame after a rocky career in the music business over the past decade.
       
Psy, whose real name is Park Jae-sang, graduated from the Berklee College of Music in the United States and made his debut in 2001 with the album "PSY from the Psycho World."

But he ran into trouble with the authorities for "inappropriate'' content in the lead song on that album, which was seen as sexually suggestive. He was also charged with possession of marijuana in 2002. Since then he has released five more albums.

Psy's brash style - at a concert last year he parodied Lady Gaga, complete with fake breasts that he set on fire - stands in stark contrast to the squeaky clean singers that dominate K-pop which, is finding an increasingly large international audience.

A Music Industry White Paper published by the Korean Creative Content Agency said sales of K-pop outside Korea surged 135 percent in 2011 from a year earlier to $196 million. In 2006 overseas sales were worth $16.7 million.

Psy acknowledged last month that the stress of following up Gangnam was taking its toll. He tweeted a picture of himself covering his face at a recording studio, with the caption "The pain of creation.''

You May Like

Hong Kong Democracy Calls Spread to Macau

Macau and Hong Kong are China’s two 'special administrative regions' which gives them a measure of autonomy More

After Nearly 2 Years, Pistorius Remains Elusive

Reporter Anita Powell reflects on her experience covering the Olympic athlete's murder trial More

Kenyan Coastal Town Struggles With Deadly June Attacks

Three months after al-Shabab militants allegedly attacked their town, some Mpeketoni residents are still bitter, question who was really behind the assaults More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Obama to Ramp Up Anti-Ebola Efforts in Africai
X
Luis Ramirez
September 15, 2014 11:01 PM
President Barack Obama on Tuesday will unveil his plan to ramp up efforts against the spread of the Ebola virus in Africa. VOA White House Correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Obama to Ramp Up Anti-Ebola Efforts in Africa

President Barack Obama on Tuesday will unveil his plan to ramp up efforts against the spread of the Ebola virus in Africa. VOA White House Correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video West Trades Accusations Over Ransoms

As world leaders try to forge a common response to the threat posed by Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria, there is simmering tension over differing policies on paying ransoms. In the past month, the jihadist group has beheaded two Americans and one Briton. Both countries refuse to pay ransom money. As Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London, there is uncertainty in the approach of some other European nations.
Video

Video Scotland Independence Bid Stokes Global Interest

The people of Scotland are preparing to vote on whether to become independent and break away from the rest of Britain, in a referendum being watched carefully in many other countries. Some see it as a risky experiment; while others hope a successful vote for independence might energize their own separatist demands. Foreign immigrants to Scotland have a front row seat for the vote. VOA’s Henry Ridgwell spoke to some of them in Edinburgh.
Video

Video Washington DC Mural Artists Help Beautify City

Like many cities, Washington has a graffiti problem. Buildings and homes, especially in low-income neighborhoods, are often targets of illegal artwork. But as we hear from VOA’s Julie Taboh, officials in the nation's capital have come up with an innovative program that uses the talents of local artists to beautify the city.
Video

Video US Muslim Leaders Condemn Islamic State

Leaders of America's Muslim community are condemning the violent extremism of the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria. The U.S. Muslim leaders say militants are exploiting their faith in a failed effort to justify violent extremism. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports.
Video

Video Americans' Reaction Mixed on Obama Strategy for Islamic State Militants

President Barack Obama’s televised speech on how the United States plans to “degrade and destroy” the group known as the Islamic State reached a prime-time audience of millions. And it came as Americans appear more willing to embrace a bolder, tougher approach to foreign policy. VOA producer Katherine Gypson and reporter Jeff Seldin have this report from Washington.
Video

Video Authorities Allege LA Fashion Industry-Cartel Ties

U.S. officials say they have broken up crime rings that funneled tens of millions of dollars from Mexican drug cartels through fashion businesses in Los Angeles. Mike O'Sullivan reports that authorities announced nine arrests, as 1,000 law enforcement agents fanned out through the city on Wednesday.
Video

Video Bedouin Woman Runs Successful Business in Palestinian City

A Bedouin woman is breaking social taboos by running a successful vacation resort in the Palestinian town of Jericho. Bedouins are a sub-group of Arabs known for their semi-nomadic lifestyle. Zlatica Hoke says the resort in the West Bank's Jordan Valley is a model of success for women in the region.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid

New in Music Alley

Border Crossings

Graham Nash has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice – once for his work with The Hollies and once as part of Crosby, Stills & Nash. The legendary folk-rocker joins "Border Crossings" host Larry London to talk about his latest project, “CSN 2012,” which captured on video recent live performances by Crosby, Stills & Nash.