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Gangnam Style gallops to over a million sales in the UK!

08/02/2013

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Gangnam Style gallops to over a million sales in the UK!

By Dan Lane

Gangnam Style has broken through the million copies sales barrier to become the UK’s 129th million selling single, and first million seller by an Asian music star!

Congratulations to Psy - Gangnam Style has now sold over a million copies in the UK!

According to Official Charts Company sales data, Gangnam Style has become not only the 129th track to sell over a million copies in the history of the UK’s Official Singles Chart, but also the first million seller by an Asian* music star.

“This is an amazing achievement by Psy,” comments Martin Talbot, managing director of the Official Charts Company. “It is further confirmation of Gangnam Style as a true phenomenon – it is the first UK million-seller by an Asian music star, and a sign that K-Pop has truly arrived in the UK!”

Chart Performance

Gangnam Style made its Official Singles Chart Top 40 debut on September 16, 2012 at Number 37. It climbed a massive 34 places to Number 3 the following week, before reaching Number 1 on September 30 (Psy is pictured above holding his Official Number 1 Award with BBC Radio 1 Official Chart Update host Scott Mills).

While Gangnam Style only remained at Number 1 for a week, it spent a further 17 weeks in the Top 10 and was the UK’s sixth biggest selling single of 2012. To date, Gangnam Style has spent 21 weeks on the Official Singles Chart Top 40.

In total, Gangnam Style has reached Number 1 in 27 countries , including Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Honduras, Israel, Italy, Lebanon, Luxembourg, Mexico, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and, of course, the UK. In fact, it would have been quicker to list the countries where Gangnam Style wasn’t Number 1 - take a bow Brazil, Columbia, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Japan, Romania, Slovakia, Sweden and Venezuela!

Not an overnight success

While many view Psy’s ascent to global superstardom an overnight success, the rapper (real name Park Jae-Sang) has been releasing music in his native South Korea for 12 years. His first album, Psy From The Psycho World!, was released in January, 2001, and four more albums, and one EP - PSY 6 (Six Rules), Part 1, from which Gangnam Style is taken - have followed.

A large percentage of Gangnam Style’s, and indeed Psy’s success outside his homeland, has been down to the accompanying music video and now iconic dance routine (which has been performed by everyone from Britney Spears to Madonna, and UK Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama).

Gangnam Style was uploaded to video streaming site YouTube on July 15, 2012. Five months later, on December 21, it became the first video in the site’s then seven year history to break a billion views (it was on a mere 186 million views when it first entered the Official Singles Chart Top 40, and 326 million views when it climbed to Number 1).  And it’s still going strong:  at the time of writing this news story, Gangnam Style is up to 1.2 billion YouTube views.

The new age of the super hit

While the 1990s were responsible for the highest number of million selling singles in Official Charts history (32), it won’t be too long before this decade eclipses that total.

In the last three years 15 singles have passed the million copies sales milestone, with last year being the biggest year on record for single sales in British history. 188.6 million singles were sold during 2012 - a 6% increase on 2011, which was the previous high.

Gangnam Style brings the total of tracks which made their Official Singles Chart debut in 2012 and have sold over a million copies to five (the others being Gotye FT Kimbra’s Somebody That I Used To Know, Carly Rae Jepsen's Call Me Maybe, James Arthur’s Impossible and Fun.’s We Are Young).

The Million Sellers

You can see the full list of the UK’s 129 million selling singles below:

  TITLE ARTIST YEAR OF RELEASE
1 SOMETHING ABOUT THE WAY YOU LOOK TONIGHT/CANDLE IN THE WIND 97 ELTON JOHN 1997
2 DO THEY KNOW IT'S CHRISTMAS? BAND AID 1984
3 BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY QUEEN 1975
4 MULL OF KINTYRE/GIRLS' SCHOOL WINGS 1977
5 YOU'RE THE ONE THAT I WANT JOHN TRAVOLTA & OLIVIA NEWTON-JOHN 1978
6 RIVERS OF BABYLON/BROWN GIRL IN THE RING BONEY M 1978
7 RELAX FRANKIE GOES TO HOLLYWOOD 1983
8 SHE LOVES YOU THE BEATLES 1963
9 UNCHAINED MELODY/(THERE'LL BE BLUEBIRDS OVER) THE WHITE CLIFFS OF DOVER ROBSON GREEN & JEROME FLYNN 1995
10 LOVE IS ALL AROUND WET WET WET 1994
11 MARY'S BOY CHILD/OH MY LORD BONEY M 1978
12 I JUST CALLED TO SAY I LOVE YOU STEVIE WONDER 1984
13 BARBIE GIRL AQUA 1997
14 ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE/EVERGREEN WILL YOUNG 2002
15 I WANT TO HOLD YOUR HAND THE BEATLES 1963
16 BELIEVE CHER 1998
17 (EVERYTHING I DO) I DO IT FOR YOU BRYAN ADAMS 1991
18 LAST CHRISTMAS/EVERYTHING SHE WANTS WHAM! 1984
19 IMAGINE JOHN LENNON 1975
20 SUMMER NIGHTS JOHN TRAVOLTA & OLIVIA NEWTON-JOHN 1978
21 TWO TRIBES FRANKIE GOES TO HOLLYWOOD 1984
22 I'LL BE MISSING YOU PUFF DADDY & FAITH EVANS 1997
23 PERFECT DAY VARIOUS ARTISTS 1997
24 DON'T YOU WANT ME? HUMAN LEAGUE 1981
25 CAN'T BUY ME LOVE THE BEATLES 1964
26 I WILL ALWAYS LOVE YOU WHITNEY HOUSTON 1992
27 THREE LIONS BADDIEL & SKINNER & LIGHTNING SEEDS 1996
28 TEARS KEN DODD 1965
29 ...BABY ONE MORE TIME BRITNEY SPEARS 1999
30 MY HEART WILL GO ON CELINE DION 1998
31 KARMA CHAMELEON CULTURE CLUB 1983
32 YMCA VILLAGE PEOPLE 1978
33 CARELESS WHISPER GEORGE MICHAEL 1984
34 (WE'RE GONNA) ROCK AROUND THE CLOCK BILL HALEY & HIS COMETS 1955
35 I FEEL FINE THE BEATLES 1964
36 THE CARNIVAL IS OVER THE SEEKERS 1965
37 GANGSTA'S PARADISE COOLIO FEATURING L.V. 1995
38 EYE OF THE TIGER SURVIVOR 1982
39 THE POWER OF LOVE JENNIFER RUSH 1985
40 WE CAN WORK IT OUT/DAY TRIPPER THE BEATLES 1964
41 RELEASE ME ENGELBERT HUMPERDINCK 1967
42 SOMEONE LIKE YOU ADELE 2011
43 KILLING ME SOFTLY FUGEES 1996
44 UNCHAINED MELODY GARETH GATES 2002
45 WANNABE SPICE GIRLS 1996
46 (IS THIS THE WAY TO) AMARILLO TONY CHRISTIE FT PETER KAY 2005
47 NEVER EVER ALL SAINTS 1997
48 COME ON EILEEN DEXY'S MIDNIGHT RUNNERS 1982
49 THINK TWICE CELINE DION 1994
50 I GOTTA FEELING BLACK EYED PEAS 2009
51 IT WASN'T ME SHAGGY FEATURING RIKROK 2001
52 SOMEBODY THAT I USED TO KNOW GOTYE FT KIMBRA 2012
53 TAINTED LOVE SOFT CELL 1981
54 HEART OF GLASS BLONDIE 1979
55 MOVES LIKE JAGGER MAROON 5 FEATURING CHRISTINA AGUILERA 2011
56 WONDERWALL OASIS 1995
57 IT'S NOW OR NEVER ELVIS PRESLEY 1960
58 DIANA PAUL ANKA 1957
59 IT'S LIKE THAT RUN-D.M.C. VS JASON NEVINS 1997
60 HALLELUJAH ALEXANDRA BURKE 2008
61 GREEN, GREEN GRASS OF HOME TOM JONES 1966
62 SEX ON FIRE KINGS OF LEON 2008
63 BRIGHT EYES ART GARFUNKEL 1979
64 MERRY XMAS EVERYBODY SLADE 1973
65 HEARTBEAT/TRAGEDY STEPS 1998
66 MARY'S BOY CHILD HARRY BELAFONTE 1957
67 THE LAST WALTZ ENGELBERT HUMPERDINCK 1967
68 EARTH SONG MICHAEL JACKSON 1995
69 DO THEY KNOW IT'S CHRISTMAS? BAND AID 20 2004
70 BLUE MONDAY NEW ORDER 1983
71 STRANGER ON THE SHORE MR ACKER BILK AND HIS PARAMOUNT JAZZ BAND 1961
72 DON'T GIVE UP ON US DAVID SOUL 1976
73 CAN'T GET YOU OUT OF MY HEAD KYLIE MINOGUE 2001
74 I LOVE YOU LOVE ME LOVE GARY GLITTER 1973
75 SPACEMAN BABYLON ZOO 1996
76 SATURDAY NIGHT WHIGFIELD 1994
77 WE FOUND LOVE RIHANNA FEATURING CALVIN HARRIS 2011
78 NO MATTER WHAT BOYZONE 1998
79 JUST THE WAY YOU ARE (AMAZING) BRUNO MARS 2010
80 PARTY ROCK ANTHEM LMFAO FEATURING LAUREN BENNETT AND GOONROCK 2011
81 I BELIEVE/UP ON THE ROOF ROBSON & JEROME 1995
82 ANGELS ROBBIE WILLIAMS 1997
83 HIT ME WITH YOUR RHYTHM STICK IAN DURY AND THE BLOCKHEADS 1978
84 TELETUBBIES SAY "EH-OH!" TELETUBBIES 1997
85 2 BECOME 1 SPICE GIRLS 1996
86 TORN NATALIE IMBRUGLIA 1997
87 POKER FACE LADY GAGA 2009
88 I REMEMBER YOU FRANK IFIELD 1962
89 THAT'S MY GOAL SHAYNE WARD 2005
90 GHOSTBUSTERS RAY PARKER JR. 1984
91 CALL ME MAYBE CARLY RAE JEPSEN 2012
92 PURE AND SIMPLE HEAR'SAY 2001
93 ANOTHER BRICK IN THE WALL (PART 2) PINK FLOYD 1979
94 BACK FOR GOOD TAKE THAT 1995
95 BLUE (DA BA DEE) EIFFEL 65 1999
96 PRICE TAG JESSIE J FEATURING B.O.B 2011
97 HEY JUDE THE BEATLES 1968
98 THE YOUNG ONES CLIFF RICHARD & THE SHADOWS 1962
99 DANCING QUEEN ABBA 1976
100 I FEEL LOVE DONNA SUMMER 1977
101 LOVE THE WAY YOU LIE EMINEM FEATURING RIHANNA 2010
102 FAME IRENE CARA 1982
103 RIDE ON TIME BLACK BOX 1989
104 ONLY GIRL (IN THE WORLD) RIHANNA 2010
105 UNCHAINED MELODY THE RIGHTEOUS BROTHERS 1965
106 BLEEDING LOVE LEONA LEWIS 2007
107 CRAZY GNARLS BARKLEY 2006
108 STAND & DELIVER ADAM AND THE ANTS 1981
109 I DON'T WANT TO MISS A THING AEROSMITH 1998
110 CAN WE FIX IT? BOB THE BUILDER 2000
111 UPTOWN GIRL BILLY JOEL 1983
112 I WILL SURVIVE GLORIA GAYNOR 1979
113 SAILING ROD STEWART 1975
114 SUGAR SUGAR THE ARCHIES 1969
115 SAVE YOUR KISSES FOR ME BROTHERHOOD OF MAN 1976
116 I'D LIKE TO TEACH THE WORLD TO SING THE NEW SEEKERS 1971
117 WHITE CHRISTMAS BING CROSBY WITH THE KEN DARBY SINGERS AND JOHN SCOTT TROTTER ORCHESTRA 1942
118 DON'T CRY FOR ME ARGENTINA JULIE COVINGTON 1976
119 THE LION SLEEPS TONIGHT TIGHT FIT 1982
120 EYE LEVEL THE SIMON PARK ORCHESTRA 1972
121 LONG HAIRED LOVER FROM LIVERPOOL LITTLE JIMMY OSMOND 1972
122 UNDER THE MOON OF LOVE SHOWADDYWADDY 1976
123 TIE A YELLOW RIBBON ROUND THE OLE OAK TREE DAWN FEATURING TONY ORLANDO 1973
124 WHEN WE COLLIDE MATT CARDLE 2010
125 FIGHT FOR THIS LOVE CHERYL COLE 2009
126 FAIRYTALE OF NEW YORK THE POGUES FT KIRSTY MACCOLL 1987
127 IMPOSSIBLE JAMES ARTHUR 2012
128 WE ARE YOUNG FUN. FT JANELLE MONAE 2012
129 GANGNAM STYLE PSY 2012

© 2013 the Official Charts Company. All rights reserved.

* There are a number of artists with Asian heritage, including Sir Cliff Richard and Engelbert Humperdinck who were born on the continent, to have million selling singles. However Psy is the first artist born, bred and currently still residing in Asia to reach this milestone.
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