They’re called the American Music Awards, but this year’s version took on a distinctly international flavor. The Best Artist award was nabbed by Canadian heartthrob Justin Bieber, and the closing act was performed by none other than South Korean rap sensation Psy.
While the crowd at the 2012 American Music Awards seemed at a loss for words – presumably because very few of us have any idea how to pronounce the lyrics to Psy’s signature tune “Gangnam Style” – the star-studded audience did get in on the invisible horse dance action, bucking and jockeying along with the Asian sensation.
But the usually dapper, tuxedoed Psy donned a less-conventional outfit when he took the stage Sunday night: Hammer pants. After his trousers had sufficiently willowed with the force of Psy’s world-famous invisible horse dance, the song spontaneously galloped back two decades as Psy welcomed the stage none other than MC Hammer.
The two then hammered down to a mashup of “Gangnam Style” mixed with MC’s 1991 hit, “2 Legit 2 Quit” – a dance that features an equal amount of stomping and wild arm-flailing. And Psy, who’s previously said he has been inspired by flamboyant and energetic Queen frontman Freddie Mercury, pulled out some exuberant dance moves that seemed to best even Hammer himself.
While critics have wondered how a song with just a single phrase in English could do so well across the world, Psy’s global appeal – enough to make him the closing act at the American Music Awards – proves that the phenomenon he created is indeed too legit to quit.