Tough to believe, but last Friday marked the one-year anniversary of unique performer Piko Taro’s "Pen-Pineapple-Apple-Pen (PPAP). The minute-long jam went live on YouTube on August 25, 2016, and initially didn’t attract all that much attention. But not long after, teens across Asia embraced the “#ppapchallenge” and then Canadian pop rascal Justin Bieber shared it on Twitter and...well, you probably know.
The cheetah-print loving performer, though, hasn’t stopped post “PPAP.” After basking in the birthday of his breakout moment, Piko Taro shared a new song, merging Japanese summer festival fare with the world of dance music. “Love & Peace ONDO” finds the YouTube breaker exploring his sound, and underlining that he won’t let his big moment define his sound forever. Watch it below:
Notice the biggest change for Piko Taro? This song lasts just over four minutes, which is basically a quadruple increase in run-time from an artist whose comedic cuts last a minute on average. In this extended format, Piko Taro takes his time connecting traditional Japanese dance music - fittingly, “Love & Peace ONDO” dropped before the one weekend in August when a bunch of festivals happened - and contemporary electronic tunes.
Of course, Piko Taro remains as silly as ever, and the video for “Love & Peace ONDO” features some playful moves from an assortment of dancers, including some anime-inspired ones in the middle. Piko Taro himself mostly serves as DJ and master of ceremonies, sporting cat ears the whole time. And he remains a pro at mugging for the camera.
The new song wasn’t the only way Piko Taro celebrated his milestone Friday. That day, Piko Taro had a special performance at YouTube Space Tokyo, featuring not only live music (including “Love & Peace ONDO”) but also talk segments and other revelry. Watch a clip of that one below. The very next day, he brought his charm to Ajinomoto Stadium in the capital for the first day of the biggie-sized A-Nation festival. You haven’t lived until you’ve seen a soccer venue’s worth of people doing “PPAP.”
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