What Does Gangnam Style Mean?

What is Symbolized by Gangnam Style? Who sang the Song? What is Kpop? Where is Gangnam? Is it a Real Place?
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In the middle of 2012, everyone was so much into this one song named Gangnam Style. You might have enjoyed it the most, even if you were not getting the lyrics. What does Gangnam style mean was one of the most asked questions of that time. And, is Gangnam style Kpop, was asked by fans who had recently started listening to Kpop. So what does Gangnam style mean? Let’s move ahead with the journey without any further ado.

1. What is Gangnam?

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Gangnam is a district in the city of Seoul in South Korea, and Gangnam means the place on the south of the Han river. The district of Gangnam has tremendously developed in the past 30 years. It is a known place and is considered a dynamic and influential area in the state and the country as a whole. The city is considered the national capital of education, thereby attracting a huge crowd of people preparing for the intense competition of university entrance examinations. This coupled with South Korea’s high education standards makes the city the most attractive destination in the country. 

Gangnam is known for its shopping complexes and entertainment areas. COEX Convention and exhibition center (Korean World Trade Center) is also situated here. This place is full of a luxurious lifestyle, rich people, and various national and international events are, organized here. (Also read Why do rich people like to play golf?)

2. Is it a Real and Luxurious Place?

According to the estimates from 2017, about 561,052 was the population strength of the district. Many years ago, Gangnam was not as luxurious and famous as it is now. The area was merely considered farmland. What does Gangnam style mean must be related to the new money that was brought in by the rich people through their investments? They started buying lands and constructed complexes, apartments, educational institutions, etc., slowly increasing their value. In a matter of just 30 years, the land and its popularity changed tremendously. (Also read Where Are The Suburbs?)

Now, a person has to pay 7,50,000 Dollars (more than 50 crores in Indian rupees) annually for an apartment in Gangnam. The annual income of an average person in South Korea by the year 2017 was $40,000. Hence many people find it difficult to match up with the Gangnam lifestyle. you might wonder, what does Gangnam style mean? Let’s read about it in the next segments. 

3. What is Gangnam Style?

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It was on 15th July 2012, and a song named Gangnam Style was released. The song features a famous Kpop singer Psy. It is the stage name of Park Jae Sang. This song revolves around the elite lifestyle of people residing in the Gangnam District. The rich and first-class population of the area is very boastful and lacks a sense of nobility towards others. They are among Korea’s upper class but are regarded as self-indulged people. (See How to Play the Trumpet for Beginners?)

4. What Does Gangnam Style Mean?

Well, in South Korea, girls call a guy Oppa if he is older than them. Girls address a guy with the word to show affection. To make it easier to understand, take Oppa as a synonym for darling or boyfriend. But Oppa is used only in the context of boys. Boys use the word Hyung for addressing another guy, older than them, or their elder brother. So, the song chorus says, Oppa Gangnam style which means your boyfriend has the elite and luxurious style of Gangnam. (Also read Go Dawgs Sic Em Meaning)

The singer Jae Sang grew up in an area nearby the Gangnam District. Belonging to a wealthy family himself, he has seen their lifestyle from up close. In an interview, he mentioned that residents of Gangnam are considered to be good-looking, because of the luxuries they can afford. And according to Psy, this is the answer to what does Gangnam style means. 

5. What is Kpop?

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K-pop is mainstream music created in South Korea. This term has been used ever since the 1990s because before that, South Korean pop music was called gayo. The celebrity associated with K-pop is known as K-pop Idols. And the term Korean Wave is used in terms of the popularity of South Korean culture and art. The K-pop artist can be a single performer or in a group. A K-pop idol is skilled in a variety of talents like dancing, singing, and, acting. On the other side, Korean singers are not generally skilled in dancing and acting. They can be a specialist in one genre like a ballad, classical, etc. 

The K-pop industry gained significant growth from the year 2016. According to the Global Music Report issued by the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry in 2019, among the top ten music markets across the world, K-pop was ranked-up number Six. Bangtan Sonyeondan (BTS) were the artists specially referred to in their article as the reason for this tremendous success in the music industry across the globe. Ever since then, their success and popularity, is increasing each day. (See Why are Korean dramas so popular?)

6. Is Gangnam style Kpop?

The very famous song was sung and performed by a K-pop artist named Park Jae-sang. He has also been known, in the K-pop industry as a Psycho singer who picks up weird lyrics and songs along with weirder dance steps. And the initials Psy are the first three alphabets from Psycho. So, this song is a famous K-pop and dance song not only in South Korea but all over the world. (Also read 10 Best Male Country Singers)

7. How Did Barack Obama React to the Song?

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A bilateral meeting took place on 7th May 2019 in the White house. The meeting was between the United States President Barack Obama and South Korea’s President Park Geun-Hye. During that meeting, President Obama hailed the success of Gangnam Style. What does Gangnam style mean, to the residents of other nation can be estimated when Barack Obama mentioned it during the meeting. He even used it as an example to describe the effect music has in uniting people around the world and the impact of Korean Wave culture.

It was not only President Barack Obama, but also several politicians and Prime Minister of Britain, David Cameron, along with United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon have hailed the song as the force for world peace. (See Video Summary: Barack Obama’s Complete Victory Speech 2012)

8. How Famous is Gangnam Style?

Since the date when the song was released on 15th July 2012 it has smashed all the records in the Kpop industry, and it became the first South Korean music video to break the internet. The song topped the music charts in more than 30 countries, including the United States, Germany, Canada, United Kingdom, France, Italy, Russia, and Spain. The song climbed up to the position of number 2 on the Billboard Hot 100.

This song was even recognized by Guinness World Records as the most liked video on youtube and won the best video award at the MTV Europe Music Awards. The video even broke YouTube records when it became the first one to reach 1 billion views on 21st December 2012. And as of 27th July 2021, the video has already crossed the 4 billion mark on YouTube which means that it broke the records of Justin Bieber, Wiz Khalifa, and Charlie Puth. (Also read Examples of Famous Acrostic Poems)

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