The worldwide phenomenon, PSY recently went to France recently to promote his worldwide hit “Gangnam Style.” After reuniting thousands of people for his flashmob near the Eiffel Tower, PSY held a press conference on November 6. Soompi France attended the event along with thirty journalists from all around the world. Park Jae-Sang a.k.a PSY answered questions of the Press for around 30 minutes. Check out now his interview and some pictures. Also look forward to our exclusive video footage coming out soon.
Q: What was your reaction after seeing the crowd who attend the flashmob in Paris?
I don’t believe things I see on the internet. I heard I was famous but I didn’t want to believe it. I only believe what I see with my own eyes but when I arrived in Paris, I still couldn’t believe it.When I saw these 20,000 people, I was really impressed. They even sang in Korean. It was my first time in Paris. It was an unforgettable experience.
Q:What inspired you this song?
It’s my 6th album. I’ve been doing this job for 10 years. When I made my debut, people thought I was funny. When I became more famous, I thought I became too serious so i decided to come back to my debut days with this song. I did my best to be as ridiculous as I could.
Q: How did you come with these ideas for the music video?
We worked really hard to be as ridiculous as possible, in every situations, we tried really hard. The scene in the bathroom wasn’t planned in advance, it was one of the last scenes we filmed in the sauna. before filming the sauna scene, I went to the bathroom and I tought: “If we zoom in on me from above whem I’m on the toilet, it might be ridiculous.” I took my phone out and looked at myself and I thought it was funny so I told the PD about my idea.
Q: When did you get to know you were worldwidly known?
I didn’t make any special efforts to be famous, my music video was more aimed to the Korean audience. I received a lot of phone calls from company fellows that told me there were a lot of comments left by foreigners. So I went online and I saw all these different languages so many that I couldn’t read all the comments so i tried to understand what was happening. Many famous Pop singers started to tweet my video and they have a lot of followers, that came to see my video. Moreover, many journalists started talking about me. We can say that everything happened thanks to SNS.
Q: You are a big star in South Korea, right?
It’s quite embarassing to say but I thought I was a superstar. Before “Gangnam Style,” I tought I was a superstar but now, after what happened, I think I wasn’t even close from the “super.” Although being in Paris to have tis Press Conference, i’ts “super.”
Q: Can you tell us more about your past?
Whem I was a child, I don’t know why but I was really excited every time I saw a crowd, during baseball games or for any kind of speeches, I felt my body booming from the inside. I was leader of the cheers when i was little and then I moved to the US to go to college and I had my first vision, my first dream which was to become a compositor, not a singer but a compositor so I tried to make music on my computer. I made 15 songs and I tried to sell them but after two years, I didn’teven sell one so I thought that instead of wanting to sell my songs I should try to sell myself and that’s how I debuted.
Q: You tried really hard to be ridiculous, your music video is one of the most viewed on Youtube but you still received one of the most important cultural awards in Korea. When do you think you’ll start taking yourself seriously?
Sometimes I am serious. I’m a human being, I’m not always ridiculous. Although today, the product “PSY,” France like it because it’s funny. During my concerts, my fans jump and laugh but in the end, many of them end up crying. Here I’m a rookie and people want something funny. So for now, I have to be ridiculous but if I’m given the opportunity I will show other faces.
Q: Would you like to sing political songs or use your voice to make yourself heard?
When I was younger, I wrote some songs about politics in Korea but now I don’t like that. I’ve changed through time. I think people should do their best in their job before anything else and then start thinking about others are doing. My job is not linked to politics. I’m a singer so I want to do that job well first. I don’t like it when artists are getting involved with politics.
Q: You’ve become someone important. You’ve signed a contract with Justin Bieber agency. Do famous stars now want to sing with you in the future in the US?
To be honest, yes they do. They start to contact me but I can’t say anything now.
Q: You manage your own Twitter account. How do you reply back to criticism?
My work is related to culture and we can’t say if culture is good or not, it depends on a person’s tastes. Everyone has different tastes. People can love or hate it. What can I do about that? I can’t do anything but what some people hate, my fans love it. It’s the same thing but reactions are different so I try to ignore these kind of criticism.
Q: How do people living in Gangnam reacted to your song?
There is no criticism of Gangnam in my song. I’m just describing the the “serious” Gangnam during the day and its “craziness” during the night. I described that, when talking about the sexy ladies for example. Many foreigners are starting to ask questions about Gangnam so I heard people leiving there were grateful towards me.
Q: This month, the second part of your album is going to be released, do you more information to give us about it ?
My fans are waiting for the second part of my album but as a lot of things that I didn’t planned happened, that I travaled a lot, I’ve visited more than 30 diffrent cities. If I take 2 or 3 days, it will be released with 3 months delay or more. When I’m domne with my schedule overseas, I will release it in February or March 2013. The new album will be just half in korean. For Koreans, it will be the biggest hit songs of PSY and for foreigners it will be my debut album.
Q: What kind of music do you listen to and influence you? Do you like French music?
I like David Guetta. When I was younger, I listened a lot of rock music such as Queen, so I’ve been influenced by these kind of music when I was younger. I moved to the US and spent four years there. At this time, it was hipo hop music that inspired me most. When I listened to hip hop music, I thought I might be able to rap so I started on this path. With these two style of music I try to make this kind of music in Korea.
Q: We’ve seen you in the Ellen Show. people think that she focused too much on the dance. The dance make people forget that you are also a singer and a compositor. What dou you think about that?
Twelve years ago, the same thing happened to me, I composed and wrote my own songs. At that time, my songs were really crazy, the music videos were so crazy that no one thought I’d become a musician. I’m sorry to have done that, I can’t say that I’m alone but this time again I’m only going to try to do my job well and maybe later people will think: “It’s not only a funny guy, he does his best, he’s very serious about music.” Today if people think I’m a funny guy, I don’t really care because I’m going to go on doing what I’ve done these past 12 years.”
Q: Do you think that your success can open doors to other Korean singers?
I like this question. before me a lot of Korean singers tried. people see K-Pop singers as skinny idols so I’m happy to be here with the body I have. I was aware thatpeople had a different view on Asians and that’s the reason why I tought that Asians acted just as foreigners. They act as Americans or Europeans, but we are Asians. So when I flew to the US, I made the decision to be Korean. Here is the reason why I didn’t change the lyrics of my song. If I had translated the lyrics in English, I wouldn’t have been that special. So I tried to keep the Korean words and I will keep doing that because it works. It’s not thanks to me, it’s thanks to people that discovered the video on Twitter and Youtube. I can’t say I achieve this success, people did it for me so I hope being able to achieve this success by myself and do it a second time. I will let Korean singers know and try to help other Korean singers to become famous as well. But only once I have prooved that I’m a real singer.
Q: Do you think your song is aired in North Korea?
We can’t communicate with them, but I hope so. I hope that they also did the horse dance but I have no news from them. I just hope they like it too.