PSY Is A Collaborative Genius In These 4 Music Videos

PSY’s partnerships are a work of art!

Legendary soloist and P NATION label founder PSY is soon to release his ninth album, PSY 9th, featuring title tracks “That That” with BTS‘s Suga, and “Celeb” with actress and soloist Suzy, as well as a slew of other musical collaborations, leading fans to believe that he seems to know just about everyone in the K-Pop industry.

Despite this, PSY’s collaborations are not just for show. In fact, he is often very careful and articulated in the ways he teams up with artists, keeping the target audience and thematic message in mind.

Here are four songs were PSY bands together with other artists to share important messages of virtue and cultural diplomacy.

1. Parris Goebel and ReQuest Dance Crew in “LOVE” Featuring BIGBANG’s Taeyang

While BIGBANG‘s Taeyang is the featured singer in PSY’s 2017 inspirational song, “LOVE”, award-winning dancer and choreographer Parris Goebel takes center stage in its music video.

Parris Goebel and ReQuest Dance Crew in PSY’s “LOVE” music video | PSY Official YouTube Channel/YouTube

“LOVE” encourages listeners to radiate love and positivity throughout the world in the face of life’s many hardships. As the music video director, Parris Goebel and her ReQuest Dance Crew blend their dance moves into the animated graphics and lyrics that flash across the screen.

ReQuest Dance Crew dances alongside graphics in PSY’s “LOVE” music video | PSY Official YouTube Channel/YouTube

In the chorus of the song, Taeyang and PSY’s key line, “All we need is love” is shown on screen in various languages, such as Spanish, Japanese, and Hindi. Simultaneously, ReQuest Dance Crew raises their arms in a cheer dance to the lyric followed by pointing to their chest, emphasizing the heart.

ReQuest Dance Crew’s key choreography to “All we need is love” lyric in Spanish (top) and Japanese (bottom) in PSY’s “LOVE” music video | PSY Official YouTube Channel/YouTube

PSY uses this moment of international collaboration with ReQuest Dance Crew, which hails from New Zealand but is well known across the globe, to accentuate and spread an encouraging message to the world.

2. Lang Lang in “FATHER”

While PSY’s music is usually quite quirky and upbeat, this is not the case when he collaborates with well-renowned Chinese pianist Lang Lang in “FATHER”, to tell a story of the sacrifices a father makes for his family.

Thumbnail from PSY’s “FATHER” music video | PSY Official YouTube Channel/YouTube

This 2015 animated rap ballad, a revamped version of PSY’s 2005 single of the same name, comprises of Lang Lang providing piano instrumentals, while PSY raps in Korean during the verses.

Pianist Lang Lang | @langlangpiano/Instagram

During the chorus however, PSY sings in Mandarin Chinese, as the two artists work together to translate the song and add on-screen Mandarin subtitles to the entirety of the music video. For this reason, the song went viral in China, leading to PSY winning the “Most Influential Global Artist Award” at the 2015 QQ Music Awards. 

Chorus of PSY’s “FATHER” with on-screen translated Mandarin Chinese lyrics: “Dad, I finally understand” | PSY Official YouTube Channel

The song’s message of maintaining familial love throughout time, combined with Lang Lang and PSY’s efforts to share this story to both Korean and Mandarin speakers, is nothing short of heartwarming.

3. Snoop Dogg in “HANGOVER”

U.S rapper Snoop Dogg‘s upcoming 2022 collaboration with BTS will not be his first time making music with a K-Pop artist. In 2014, he partnered with PSY to make “HANGOVER”, an electronic dance track that comedically features drinking and party culture in South Korea.

Snoop Dogg (left) and PSY (right) drink Somek (a combination of soju and beer) in “HANGOVER” music video | PSY Official YouTube Channel/YouTube

All through the music video, Snoop Dogg and PSY travel to various places where people drink in South Korea, including a Noraebang (karaoke) studio (with a surprise cameo from BIGBANG’s G-DRAGON), and a Pojangmacha (pop-up tent bar). The two even drink herbal supplements and eat Ramyun (instant ramen) with triangle shaped Kimbap at the GS25 convenience store chain, which are both common hangover recovery cures.

Snoop Dogg (left) and PSY (right) eat at GS25 convenience store in “HANGOVER” music video | PSY Official YouTube Channel/YouTube

“HANGOVER” is one of the first prominent international K-Pop collaborations. PSY possibly kept that idea in mind as he works with Snoop Dogg to introduce these aspects of modern Korean society to the world.

4. National Gugak Center in “KOREA”

In “KOREA”, PSY joins forces with the National Gugak Center to celebrate Korean culture, both modern and traditional. Gugak (national music), refers to the prominent folk music and performance arts traditions within the country, and the National Gugak Center is the primary educational facility for such arts.

PSY in “KOREA” music video | PSY Official YouTube Channel/YouTube

You can spot various instruments and dance styles throughout the music video, such as Samulnori (drum performance), Buchaechum (fan dance), and Bukcheong lion dancing.

PSY walks alongside Bukcheong lion dancers in “KOREA” music video | PSY Official YouTube Channel/YouTube

PSY and all of the National Gugak Center performers march through the gates of Gwanghwamun in Seoul as a way to cheer on South Korea at the 2012 London Olympics.

PSY 9th will be released on April 27th at 6:00pm KST.

Promotional image of PSY 9th album | @42psy42/Instagram
Source: PSY Official YouTube Channel, New Zealand at Expo 2020 Dubai and National Gugak Center