PSY Net Worth & Biography - Celebrity Net Worth

By Mixxerly Updated: SEPTEMBER 22, 2021

Introduction

NET WORTH

$70M

PSY is a South Korean singer, rapper, songwriter, and record producer. Psy is known domestically for his humorous videos and stage performances, and internationally for his hit single "Gangnam Style". The song's refrain was entered into The Yale Book of Quotations as one of the most famous quotations of 2012.

On October 23, 2012, Psy met United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon at the UN Headquarters where Ban expressed his desire to work with the singer because of his "unlimited global reach". On December 21, 2012, his music video for "Gangnam Style" exceeded one billion views on YouTube, becoming the first video to do so in the website's history. As of , PSY has an estimated net worth of about $70M.

At a Glance

Full name: Park Jae-sang

Other names: PSY, "King of YouTube"

Birthday: December 31, 1977

Age:

Net worth: $70M

Occupation: Singer, Songwriter, Record producer, Rapper.

Nationality: South Korea

Net Worth

Psy released his fifth album PsyFive in 2010, and its lead single "Right Now" was banned from under-19 audiences by South Korea's Ministry of Gender Equality and Family for what it deemed an "obscene" lyric, "Life is like toxic alcohol".

Despite the ban, Psy received awards during the 2011 Melon Music Awards and Mnet Asian Music Awards. Psy had, up until this point, topped domestic music charts half a dozen times throughout his twelve-year career in South Korea. As of , PSY has an estimated net worth of about $70M.

Artistry

Park Jae-sang's stage name "Psy" derives from the word psycho. Explaining his stage name, he said in a BBC interview, "what I thought was, you know, crazy about music, dancing, performance, so that kind of psycho".

Early life

Park Jae-sang was born on December 31, 1977, to an affluent family in the Gangnam District of Seoul, South Korea. His father, Park Won-Ho, is the executive chairman of DI Corporation, a manufacturer of semiconductor manufacturing equipment listed on the Korea Exchange. His mother, Kim Young-hee, owns several restaurants in Gangnam.

Park attended Banpo (반포) Elementary and Middle Schools and Sehwa (세화) High School. He disliked school and was known as the class clown. In an interview on South Korea's Seoul Broadcasting System, a former teacher of Park said: "I remember Psy making a lot of sexual jokes during class. He had such a big influence that he would drive the entire class to his jokes. I disliked him at the time, but looking back, I see that he added a great energy to the class."

Park told CNN's Alina Cho that when he was 15 years old, he watched a Korean TV programme that introduced foreign pop music. One particular episode showed a concert at Wembley Stadium held by the British rock band Queen where they performed their 1975 hit single "Bohemian Rhapsody". Park said it was this concert footage that sparkedhis love for music.

Favorite Quotes from PSY

“The fact that I’m shouting that I have Gangnam style makes people crack up. Imagine if Brad Pitt was singing the song – would it be funny? A twist is important when it comes to writing lyrics.” – PSY
“If you give a man the correct information for seven years, he may believe the incorrect information on the first day of the eighth year when it is necessary, from your point of view, that he should do so. Your first job is to build credibility and the authenticity of your propaganda and persuade the enemy to trust you although you are his enemy.” – PSY
“As an artist, the more experience, the better the creation. I’m a very positive person.” – PSY
“When I signed with Scooter Braun and I decided to go overseas to promote my song, the only concern was how should I communicate with the public and the audience with my language. Scooter and I talked a lot about that: should we translate or not? Finally, we didn’t, and I think that was a really good decision.” – PSY
“I’m not that good looking. That’s why ‘Gangnam Style’ works. If someone handsome uses that phrase it’s just awkward. But if someone like me uses it, it’s funny.” – PSY
“I lived in the States from 1996 till 2000. I attended the Berklee College of Music in Boston in 1997. But I wasn’t the most hard-working student. I rarely went to school. At that time, I seriously doubted that you could learn creativity in school. Music isn’t something you can just learn from other people. Sometimes I regret missing classes.” – PSY

Legacy

During the span of his career, Psy was awarded multiple Guinness World Records for:

  • "Gangnam Style" – Most viewed video online
  • "Gangnam Style" – Most "liked" video online
  • "Gangnam Style" – First video to be viewed more than 1 billion times on YouTube
  • "Gentleman" – Most viewed video online in 24 hours
  • "Gangnam Style" – First video to be viewed more than 2 billion times on YouTube

As a result of his achievements, Psy is considered to be the first K-pop artist to make a breakthrough in the Western music industry. In an interview with Agence France-Presse, Psy affirmed that "[i]t will be only a matter of time before K-Pop will produce many others like Psy".

According to Hugo Swire, the British Minister of State for the Foreign Office, Psy's music has given the world a glimpse of the dynamism and vibrancy of modern Korea. South Korea's Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism recognized Psy's cultural achievements by bestowing upon him the Okgwan Order, a 4th grade Order of Cultural Merit.

On May 25, 2017, Psy was presented with a Diamond Play Button from YouTube, in recognition of his surpassing 10 million subscribers to his YouTube channel, making him the first Asian solo artist to ever do so.

Music career

1996–2000: Brief study in the United States and career beginnings

As part of preparations to take over DI Corporation from his father, Park had originally planned to study business administration at Boston University in 1996. However, upon his arrival in the United States, he lost interest in his studies, spending his remaining tuition funds on musical instruments and entertainment equipment, including a computer, an electric keyboard, and a MIDI interface.

After attending an English-language summer course and studying for one semester, Park dropped out of Boston University and applied to study at Berklee College of Music instead. During his time at Berklee, Park took core curriculum lessons in ear training, contemporary writing and music synthesis, but he soon dropped out and returned to South Korea to pursue a career as a singer, without having attained a degree from either Boston University or Berklee. In South Korea, Psy made his first appearance on Korean national television in 2000 after his dancing caught the eye of a TV producer.

2001–02: Psy from the Psycho World!, controversy, and domestic success

In January 2001, Psy debuted his full-length album Psy from the Psycho World!, for which he was fined by South Korean government authorities due to his album's "inappropriate content". Psy was a rookie hip hop singer that stirred up the Korean pop music scene with very blunt lyrics, peculiar dance moves and an unconventional appearance that earned him the nickname "The Bizarre Singer".

His second album Sa 2 also created controversy upon its release in 2002, earning complaints from civil groups due to the potentially negative influence his album would have on children and teenagers. Since then, Psy has been thought of as a controversial artist, and Sa 2 was banned in 2002 from being sold to the under-19 set. In September of the same year, Psy released his third album 3 Psy. The album's title song, "Champion", saw great success partly due to the hype from the World Cup games held in Seoul. Despite the significant amount of controversy surrounding his music, Psy was awarded songwriting accolades at the annual Seoul Music Awards, marking his breakthrough in the South Korean music industry.

2003–09: Military service, Ssajib, and re-enlistment

In 2003, Psy was conscripted into the South Korean military as part of mandatory military service imposed on all South Korean men aged 18 to 35. Psy was excused from military duty due to working at a software development company (the South Korean government grants exemptions to those with technical expertise work in companies that serve the national interest). He was expected to be released from duties in 2005. In 2006, Psy released his fourth album Ssajib, which won honors at the 2006 SBS Music Awards and Hong Kong's Mnet Asian Music Awards.

In 2007, state prosecutors accused Psy of "neglecting" his work, holding concerts and appearing on local television networks during his period of prior employment. On October 12, 2007, the Seoul Administrative Court decided that Psy must be redrafted, rejecting a lawsuit filed by Psy against the Military Manpower Administration (MMA) in August. Two months later, Psy was re-drafted into the military where he had held the rank of Private First Class and served as a signalman in the 52nd Army Infantry Division, before being released from duties in July 2009.

2010–12: 5th studio album and debut performance in Japan

Owing to financial difficulties, Psy could no longer release his own songs. His wife encouraged him to join the South Korean music label YG Entertainment, whose founder and chief executive officer Yang Hyun-suk was an old friend of Psy's. In 2010, Psy joined YG Entertainment. The K-pop singer Kim Hee-chul, from the boyband Super Junior, wished Psy had joined his group's label SM Entertainment instead.

On January 7, 2012, Psy performed alongside K-pop bands Bigbang and 2NE1 in front of 80,000 Japanese fans during the YG Family Concert in Osaka. His performance was broadcast by Mezamashi TV (mezamashi meaning "wake-up alarm"), a Japanese news magazine show produced by Fuji Television. This marked his first appearance on a foreign broadcasting network.

During the concert, Psy introduced himself to his Japanese fans with a sign that read "I'm a famous singer well known for driving the audience wild in Korea, but here, today, I'm just a little chubby newcomer" and sang five of his hit songs while Japanese TV commentators expressed their approval in their astonishment at his humorous incorporation of the moves of Lady Gaga and Beyoncé.

2012–13: "Gangnam Style" and unexpected international breakthrough

In July 2012, Psy released his sixth album Psy 6 (Six Rules), Part 1 and the song "Gangnam Style" appeared in broadcasting networks and newspapers outside Asia. On August 14, "Gangnam Style" ranked first on YouTube's 'Most Viewed Videos' monthly chart; on August 21, 2012, "Gangnam Style" officially charted No. 1 on the iTunes Music Video Charts, overtaking Justin Bieber's "As Long as You Love Me" and Katy Perry's "Wide Awake"; this feat was the first for a South Korean artist.

After the video went viral, celebrities quickly jumped on board, with Katy Perry, Britney Spears, and Tom Cruise taking to Twitter to share their delight. The Gangnam Style phenomenon has also popularized his older music videos, such as "Right Now". On September 14, 2012, he appeared on The Today Show on NBC in New York City, performing the song live and teaching dance moves to the anchors. The following day, he also made a cameo appearance on Saturday Night Live during a skit featuring "Gangnam Style". Commenting on his popularity among foreign celebrities, Psy said:

When I realized that some top stars like have imagined or tweeted about me, I thought, "That's joking. That's not gonna happen" ... I never expect things like this, not because they are top stars, but because this is the biggest market in the universe for pop music, right, so everybody's dreaming about having appearance in the U.S. so I’m still saying, "What going on here? This is beautiful."

Riding high on the success of "Gangnam Style", Psy was signed by Scooter Braun to Braun's Schoolboy Records, a label distributed by Republic Records. In early September, the Gangnam district awarded Psy with a plaque and named him an honorary ambassador. On October 24, 2012, Psy was recognized by the United Nations as an "International sensation". According to Reuters, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon scheduled a meeting with Psy in the belief that music has great power to overcome intolerance. On October 23, 2012, they met at the United Nations Headquarters where Ban expressed his desire to work with Psy. He remarked that Psy has an "unlimited global reach" and said, "I hope that we can work together using your global reach".

According to Korean newspaper The Dong-a Ilbo, Psy was appointed as a goodwill ambassador of the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF).

On November 7, 2012, Psy held a speech in England at the Oxford Union to discuss the inspiration behind "Gangnam Style" and his next album. He told the audience that due to the success of "Gangnam Style" he is now living in both a dream and a nightmare, as it will be difficult for his next song to equal "Gangnam Style"'s success.

He also talked about his early life and the moment he realized "Gangnam Style" became famous. According to The Independent, tickets for his speech were "in such demand they had to be assigned by ballot—a method not required when former presidential candidate John McCain spoke earlier that year, nor when Mother Teresa, the Dalai Lama nor Michael Jackson spoke".

On November 12, 2012, Psy became the second South Korean music artist to appear at the MTV Europe Music Awards where he performed "Gangnam Style" and held off competition from Rihanna, Katy Perry, and Lady Gaga to win the "Best Video" award. The event was broadcast worldwide and hosted by the German model and actress Heidi Klum, who introduced Psy to the audience as the "undisputed King of Pop".

A few days later, American singer-songwriter Madonna performed a mashup of "Gangnam Style" and "Give It 2 Me" alongside Psy and her backup dancers during a concert in New York City at Madison Square Garden during The MDNA Tour. Psy later told reporters that his gig with Madonna had "topped his list of accomplishments".

On November 24, 2012, "Gangnam Style" became the most viewed video in YouTube history, surpassing the previous most watched video, Justin Bieber's "Baby". The number of views were achieved about eleven times faster than Bieber's. Psy later won four awards at the 2012 Mnet Asian Music Awards in Hong Kong on November 30, 2012. On December 21, 2012, "Gangnam Style" reached 1 billion views on YouTube, becoming the first video to do so in the website's history. He met actor and stunt performer Jackie Chan, who called him a role model that proved that "dreams do come true".

In January 2013, Psy was announced as a winner of the 2013 Korea Image Awards, being awarded the Korea Image Stepping Stone Award for "his contribution to enhancing the national image". Psy made his debut on South American television by giving an interview on the Brazilian news program Fantástico. It was announced on January 27, 2013, that Psy would perform at South Korea's presidential inauguration ceremony on February 25, 2013.

2013–14: "Gentleman", "Hangover", YouTube record

"Gentleman" promotions

On April 12, 2013, the audio of Psy's follow-up single "Gentleman" was leaked onto the internet, a day before its official international release. On the following day, the music video for 'Gentleman' premiered at Psy's 'Happening' Concert, which was attended by 50,000 people and live streamed on YouTube to an audience of 150,000. Guest performers of the concert included Lee Hi, 2NE1 and G-Dragon. He reportedly invested US$2.7 million into the production of the concert.

Psy continued to promote Gentlemen throughout 2013. In May 2013, PSY appeared twice on Live! with Kelly and Michael and taught Kelly Ripa and Michael Strahan how to do the Gentleman Dance. Psy also appeared in the finale of American Idol season 12 and sang "Gentleman".

Psy also performed his song "Gentleman" on the Finale of Dancing With the Stars, Season 16. Five days later, Psy also performed at the final match of the 2012–13 Coppa Italia. On June 8, 2013, Psy and his troupe performed "Gentleman" on the Finale of Britain's Got Talent, Series 7. Later that month, on June 8, Psy co-hosted the Canadian MuchMusic Video Awards, where he also opened the show with his worldwide hit "Gangnam Style" and ended the show with his "official last performance of 'Gentleman' on TV."

Other activities

Psy was slated to star in a South Korean remake of the Hindi film ABCD: Any Body Can Dance, taking over the role of Vishnu (Prabhu Deva) in the original film. In April he became the tourism ambassador of South Korea for 2013. On May 9, Psy gave a special lecture at Harvard University. In this lecture, he spoke about his passion and other reasons for his popularity.

On May 24, 2013, people began voting daily, at www.psygobibigo.com, for one of the Top Three Chefs, based on more than one hundred ninety video entries, in Psy's "Psy Needs a Chef" video contest. The Top Three Chefs in this contest were Aaron Contreras, Dj Park and Ricardo Caput. Voting ended June 10, 2013, at midnight Greenwich Mean Time.

Aaron Contreras received 2,005 votes. Ricardo received 22,384 votes. Dj Park, won the popular vote with 22,533 votes. Winners were to be announced June 14, 2013. However, Psy postponed his decision until June 18, 2013, and chose Ricardo to be his chef, in spite of the popular vote.

On June 9, 2014, Psy released a new single, "Hangover", featuring American rapper Snoop Dogg, and announced his intention to release a new song titled "Father".

YouTube record

On December 1, 2014, the YouTube video garnered over 231 − 1 views, overflowing the YouTube counter to a negative number, resulting in a public comment from Google/YouTube saying "We never thought a video would be watched in numbers greater than a 32-bit integer (=2,147,483,647 views), but that was before we met PSY. "Gangnam Style" has been viewed so many times we had to upgrade to a 64-bit integer (9,223,372,036,854,775,808)!" Hovering over the counter of the YouTube video triggered an easter egg. A YouTube representative later revealed that the comment was a joke and that the company had already updated to a 64-bit integer months ago.

2015–18: Chiljip PSY-da, 4X2=8, and departure from YG Entertainment

On March 28, 2015, he released a music video for his song Father. On December 1, 2015, Psy released his seventh album titled Chiljip PSY-da, with double title tracks "Daddy" and "Napal Baji". The album included features from label mate CL as well as Will.i.am Promotions for the album included two performances on Inkigayo, where the single "Daddy" won a triple crown, as well as a performance on You Hee-yeol's Sketchbook. "Daddy" was also included in the dance video game Just Dance 2017.

In May 2017, Psy released his eighth studio album, 4X2=8, with lead singles "I Luv it" and "New Face". The album features collaborations from several artists including label-mates G-Dragon and Taeyang. The music video for "I Luv It" featured actor Lee Byung-hun and comedian Pikotaro while for the "New Face" video Apink's Son Na-eun played the title role.

On May 15, 2018, Psy officially left YG Entertainment after eight years.

2019–present: P Nation

In 2019, he founded his own company – P Nation. He signed his first artist Jessi on January 25, 2019. Two days later, on January 27, 2019, he also signed both Hyuna and Dawn, formerly of Cube Entertainment with the latter being a former member of Pentagon under the name E'Dawn. He also signed Crush on July 17, 2019, and Heize on September 16, 2020.