‘Laowai Style’: Beijing Foreigner’s Remix of ‘Gangnam Style’

Jesse Appell in 'Laowai Style' remix of PSY's 'Gangnam Style' filmed in Beijing, China featuring the lives of foreigners in China.

Jesse Appell in 'Laowai Style' remix of PSY's 'Gangnam Style' filmed in Beijing, China featuring the lives of foreigners in China.

On Youku:

Laowai Style! “Gangnam Style” Remix

This video was filmed at various places [in Beijing] including Tsinghua University, the Drum Tower, and the Bird’s Nest and emulates “Gangnam Style”. The video features what life is like for us foreigners in China, and I hope everyone enjoys it!

You can follow big brother’s [referring to self] weibo. I won a Chinese scholarship this year specifically to come to China to learn xiang sheng and Chinese comedy: @中美幽默桥 [“China-USA Humor Bridge”]

I especially want to thank the Fulbright Association and the Chinese Government Scholarship for providing the funds to research comedy, as well as the IUP at Tsinghua Chinese Program, all the performers, and the support of friends from various countries!

Jesse Appell in 'Laowai Style' remix of PSY's 'Gangnam Style' filmed in Beijing, China featuring the lives of foreigners in China.

This video was created by Jesse Appell, an American and Brandeis University student, who explains:

This year I am in China on a Fulbright research grant, where I’ll be spending a year in China studying Xiangsheng with Ding Guangquan 丁广泉, Da Shan‘s Xiangsheng teacher, and trying to learn how to connect China and the Western world through humor and cultural exchange. In addition to Xiangsheng, I also think popular media has great power to serve as a bridge between cultures and I’m thrilled that this video took off like it did!

Comments on Youku:


Not bad, maybe if it was a little more professional, the sound is a little uncomfortable [not mixed well].


Haha, indeed. The dancing skills need to be improved but the lyrics aren’t bad!

Yep, I think only a foreigner who has lived in Beijing long-term could write [these lyrics]. Sigh, too much “horse-riding dancing” lately!


I like this kind of laowai, the reason is because they’re willing to learn China’s culture, integrating themselves into this country. The laowai where I live has been in China for 10 years and only know two phrases of Chinese, “ni hao ma” and “xie xie“. They’re in China only to make money.

葛建峰 sam:

Haha, Tsinghai’s foreign students sure have nothing better to do.


Now this is what a remix/adaptation is!


This laowai‘s Chinese singing is truly very good, and its rapping too~~~ niubi


The inside-the-subway scene couldn’t have been easy, how’d they find such an empty subway car…?


I want to say to Youku, stop putting so much of this bangzi garbage music on the homepage, okay???!!!


His Chinese is much better than Jay Chou’s


Yun, one of the lyrics is a laowai who crosses the street without waiting for the red light to turn green~ a Chinese characteristic, haha!


Haha, I like, this laowai is quite funny!


This is what happens when you live in Beijing and breathe in severely over the limit PM 2.5.


Idiots! He’s ridiculing/mocking our China!


Laowai Style, worth three laughs! He he… he!


Do you know this handsome guy? I think “laowai is a very amiable form of address, and normally only Westerners are so amiably referred to as laowai, whereas Koreans and Japanese don’t get such a distinction.


种,老,外,囧了。 Do they know what 种 is?


I personally think this Style is even more interesting than the original one!


Every time I encounter a laowai who knows how to type pinyin to chat with me online I always think they’re really perverted and scary.


This laowai must be over HSK Level 6…

✿ 吳東桀`灬Elroy:

I saw myself and my classmate in the video… in the Bird’s Nest part… Had I know, I would’ve gone and danced with them too…


Laowai also like to listen to Gangnam Style. Today when I went to the gym, there was a Canadian who kept choosing that song to exercise to.


Compared to Psy’s original MV [music video], China’s subways have a lot more people, haha~~


In Western culture, they dare to try things, dare to change things, dare to show off, not like our culture.


Yeah, and what more, that laowai really understands/knows China! Support!


Not bad, video isn’t bad, and the Chinese is even better. And the video has a lot of views on Youku too. Jia you!

杨禹婷 aNna:

Hahahaha, creative -____-“


There’s scholarships for this? I want to apply too…


There is cause to suspect it was dubbed by a Chinese person, and it’s obviously singing about Chinese people’s problems, what’s the meaning of this?


I was just talking with a friend about traveling to another country and the tour guide there saying that if we saw anyone running a red light, the person would definitely be Chinese… and I come back and see this video… This phrase “crossing the street without waiting for the red light to turn green…” … Truly embarrassing…


Truly talented~!


Mentally retarded laowai style.


Yeah…the girl in green looks pretty good~


Although it isn’t particularly well made, it’s still extremely great~~~ Praise~~~


I think this would make a better promotional song for Beijing than “Beijing Welcomes You”.


Not sure why but watching this made me feel really disgusted…


I’m truly in awe, this song is universal, I’ve seen nearly a hundred versions now.


Of all the versions I’ve seen, this is the one I like the most!!!


Even though I fell apart/lost it twice, I still managed to finish it, hahaha.


Has definitely understood the essence/spirit of this song, niubi!


Haha~ Is it only laowai who can be so relaxed/carefree while in school?

Many of the comments were Chinese netizens simply repeating the “heeeyyy… laowai lai le” and a few other lyrics in amusement.

What do you think?

Jesse Appell in 'Laowai Style' remix of PSY's 'Gangnam Style' filmed in Beijing, China featuring the lives of foreigners in China.

See also:


Written by Fauna

Fauna is a mysterious young Shanghainese girl who lives in the only place a Shanghainese person would ever want to live: Shanghai. In mid-2008, she started chinaSMACK to combine her hobby of browsing Chinese internet forums with her goal of improving her English. Through her tireless translation of popular Chinese internet news and phenomenon, her English has apparently gotten dramatically better. At least, reading and writing-wise. Unfortunately, she's still not confident enough to have written this bio, about herself, by herself.


Leave a Reply

One Ping

  1. Pingback:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.