South Korean singer/rapper Psy returned to his hometown of Seoul to perform a massive, free show to cap off a month of globe-hopping to mark the massive success of his single ‘Gangnam Style.’ The Korean government closed off part of the centre of the capital city and extended subway operations for an estimated 80,000 fans to squeeze into the open venue outside Seoul City Hall, with many fans spilling out into the surrounding streets as the massive space proved to still not be enough. The show streamed live on YouTube, adding to Psy’s already impressive online resume, with the video for ‘Gangnam Style’ already surpassing 350 million views on YouTube since it was uploaded in July.
The modest singer told the massive crowd and those watching at home, “I did not get here because I was worthy of it. I’m here because of all of you. I’m just a fat man with two kids.”
The song has gained a huge amount of popularity across the world and despite the fact that most of it is sung in Korean, ‘Gangnam Style’ is currently top of the British charts and number two on the US Billboard’s Hot 100 chart. The Korean, whose success has made him something of a national hero in his native country, made it to the free concert following a hugely successful promotional tour of the US last month. During his time in the States he made a guest appearance at the MTV Awards in Los Angeles and was given a cameo role on NBC’s Saturday Night Live.
His success sets him apart from the rest of the K-Pop pack: a number of Korean artists performing a style of pop distinct to the country who have tried and fail to break the charts overseas. The Korean Government has hailed Psy’s success and whilst some commentators have linked his success to racial stereotyping, Korean officials have insisted that all publicity is good publicity.