South Korean singer-songwriter Psy has left YG Entertainment, the talent agency that helped lift him to global stardom with his hit single “Gangnam Style.” He had been with YG for eight years and had renewed his contract in 2014.
One of Korea’s top three agencies, YG announced the news in statement. But it did not say how he will be represented in future.
Korean news agency Yonhap reported that Psy will establish his own agency, though that information has not been confirmed. YG’s statement pointed to some form of enduring relationship.
“Regardless of an exclusive contract, YG and PSY’s close relationship will last forever. We are cheering on PSY’s great new beginnings and wish for his health and happiness. We express our deep gratitude to the fans who have loved PSY as a YG artist until now,” YG said.
Psy, real name Park Jae-sang, grew up in comfortable middle-class circumstances, but fell on hard times and in his early career attracted controversy. These included trouble with the Korean army over his exception from conscription, and two of his songs were banned from sale to under 19 year-olds. He had topped the music charts in Korea on six occasions before his highly stylized 2012 effort “Gangnam Style” went viral. The accompanying video broke records on YouTube. His “Gentleman” and “Hangover” also enjoyed worldwide reception, though not on the scale of “Gangnam Style.”
YG continues to represent BigBang, Blackpink and CL, who appeared in the recent Winter Olympic Games closing ceremony.