Psy’s ‘Gentleman’ climbs YouTube heights

South Korean rapper Psy poses during a news conference before his concert in Seoul April 13, 2013. REUTERS/Lee Jae-Won
South Korean pop star Psy poses during a news conference before his concert in Seoul last weekend. Credit: Lee Jae-Won/Reuters

South Korean pop star Psy’s new video, “Gentleman,” rocketed up the YouTube heights with more than 82 million views by Tuesday, chasing the success of his megahit “Gangnam Style” after smashing the previous record for first-day views for songs.

“Gangnam Style,” which holds the YouTube record for most views ever with more than 1.5 billion, made the Korean a global star and one of the best-known faces to come out of the growing K-pop music scene.

The video to “Gentleman” racked up more than 20 million hits in the first 24 hours after its Saturday night release. That easily outstripped the 8 million views for Justin Bieber’s “Boyfriend” in its first 24 hours.

“51 million views in 40 hours!!My God!!” Psy tweeted Monday.

The song was also climbing music charts around the world, hitting eighth in Britain and seventh in Australia, according to the Apple store’s iTunes ranking, and holding top place in most of Scandinavia. It ranked 21st for songs overall, compared with 90th place Saturday before the video was released.

“He is good. I love his energy,” one woman commented on YouTube. Others said the video was hilarious and the sunglasses-wearing 35-year-old’s dancing “smooth.”

Some were less complimentary, with a few saying the video was arrogant and “too sexual.” It shows Psy playing tricks on women such as splashing coffee in their faces and untying a bikini top.

“Meh. ‘Gangnam Style’ was better,” one woman wrote.

“Gangnam Style” racked up digital sales of 3.59 million units in the United States and Canada last year, according to Nielsen SoundScan and Nielsen BDS, ninth in the best-selling list. It was third on Amazon’s MP3 song bestseller list for 2012.


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