|Zico of Block B released “Any Song” on Jan. 13. The song quickly went viral on social media. [KOZ ENTERTAINMENT]|
If it has recently seemed like everyone has started dancing on your social media feed, you’re not alone. The hottest trend this winter isn’t a long coat or a sweet drink, but the “Any Song” challenge, a choreographed dance to the song of the same name by local rapper Zico.
“I couldn’t believe it when I saw [singer] Lee Hyori dancing to the song,” Zico said during an interview on the SBS program “Night of Real Entertainment” on Wednesday. “The challenge had really taken off!”
Zico, the rapper and member of boy band Block B, first posted the challenge on the video-sharing social network TikTok on Jan. 13 and followed up with videos of him dancing the moves to “Any Song” along with Hwasa of girl group Mamamoo and singer Chungha.
On TikTok, users can share short videos along with the background music of their choice. The app is owned and run by Beijing-based ByteDance.
Zico’s videos quickly went viral, and more than 100,000 people worldwide have uploaded clips of themselves participating in the challenge.
The users chose to dance wherever they were, in an office, at home in their living room, on a rooftop with laundry hanging in the background or outdoors with palm trees swaying behind them.
|Rapper Zico performs the “Any Song” challenge with, from left, singer Chungha, Mino from boy band Winner, Hwasa from girl group Mamamoo and entertainer Jang Sung-kyu. [SCREEN CAPTURE]|
Couples, co-workers, friends, daughters and mothers and any other combination you could think of have gotten in on the fun.
Stars have taken part in the challenge as well, including Tiffany formerly of Girls’ Generation, Sandara Park, AB6IX, Cai Xukun and Fan Chengcheng of now-disbanded Chinese boy band Nine Percent, members of Chinese boy band Unine and Chinese actors Lan Yingying and Jiang Shuying.
“Any Song” itself has remained on the top of the local music charts in Korea since its release on Jan. 13.
Experts say there is something different about the popularity of this song compared to the way that Korean music has gone viral in the past.
“In the case of Psy’s ‘Gangnam Style’ and Twice’s ‘TT,’ these songs went viral as people followed the dance moves,” said Lee Gyu-tag, professor of pop music and media studies at George Mason University Korea in Incheon. “But in the case of ‘Any Song,’ the music itself plays as big of a role as the dance. Also, the function in TikTok that allows people to make their own videos to the selected music will only get more popular.”
“Apps like TikTok are a venue open to everyone,” said Lee Jee-heng, the author of “BTS and ARMY Culture.”
“When you see the videos uploaded by fans on fan websites, they’re usually taken from a distance. But users on TikTok who are taking up the challenge are not necessarily fans but those who want to take part in the challenge out of fun. So you can see the difference in the way they have filmed the videos up close.
“This kind of meme culture will only grow over time,” she said. “And it is likely to transcend all borders in cultures and languages.”
Other stars have used TikTok to post challenges with their songs before. American rapper Lil Nas X rose in popularity last February with the yeehaw challenge, as people posted videos of themselves along with his song “Old Town Road.” The challenge was taken on by more than 3 million people who posted videos of themselves turning into cowboys in time for the song’s drop.
The song stayed at the top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart for 17 weeks, breaking the record for the longest run atop the chart.
Lizzo’s “Truth Hurts” also went viral on TikTok last year as people created their own memes to the lyrics, “I just took a DNA test, turns out I’m 100 percent that bitch.”
“Memes are big abroad,” said Lee Dae-hwa, a pop music critic. “They’re short and funny. Those factors make them easy to share and go viral quickly.”
BY MIN KYUNG-WON [[email protected]]
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